Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Interview with V.K. Sykes, DANGER & DESIRE Boxed Set

What is the one thing your readers would be most surprised to learn about you?
That I’m actually part of a husband and wife writing team who put out books under the pen name of VK Sykes.  Many of our readers found us through my Vanessa Kelly historical romances, so some of them did already know that I co-write contemporary romance and romantic suspense with my hubby.  But others had no idea and were really surprised to find out that we write together—especially romance novels.  It’s always fun to read a review that mentions how realistic our male characters are when it’s clear the reader doesn’t realize that a man co-authored the manuscript.  I wouldn’t say that it’s not occasionally frustrating to have to work with a writing partner, but the benefits outweigh the negatives.  Randy is very good with plot and characterization, but he doesn’t enjoy layering in emotional subtext or writing sex scenes.  So that’s where I come in.  I guess you could say our writing tasks fall along gender-related lines, but we’re okay with that!

What comes first, the plot or characters?
Definitely the characters.  Although plot is obviously important, readers generally love—or hate—a story because of its characters.  I think most people would have trouble remembering the details or the exact sequence of events in books like To Kill a Mockingbird or Gone With The Wind, but they sure remember Scout and Atticus Finch and Scarlet O’Hara.  In Lethal Confessions, it was the villain who got us started.  Once we had a clear picture of him and what he was all about, we were able to imagine the type of hero and heroine who could stand up to and ultimately defeat him. Plot is certainly important as the vehicle for story—in other words, how the characters react and change in response to the twists, turns, and challenges thrown at them through plot.

Tell us about a favorite character from a book.
My most favorite character in the world is Amelia Peabody from The Amelia Peabody Mysteries by the fabulous Elizabeth Peters.  Amelia is the most outrageously confident, decisive character one could ever hope to meet between the pages of a book, a classic depiction of the non-nonsense, late Victorian heroine who marched through life in a determined effort to improve the world.  Naturally, Amelia often gets it wrong, but she’s also fearless, indomitable, smart, hilarious, fiercely protective of those she loves, and eternally optimistic.  I think she’s one of the most brilliant characters ever created.  Randy’s favorite fictional character is probably Jack Reacher from Lee Childs’ great series.

What are your favorite TV shows?
Right now both Randy and I are totally hooked on Breaking Bad, The Walking Dead, and The Black List.  I lean toward The Walking Dead as my fave, and Randy would probably come down on the side of Breaking Bad.  But all three shows share the same characteristics:  strong, flawed, but incredibly engaging characters, high stakes, smart writing, and some very dark humor.  Good or bad, you care about these characters and want to find out what’s going to happen to them.  All three shows are master classes in how to create riveting stories.  Plus…zombies.  Anything with zombies pretty much gets my vote.

Do you write in multiple genres or just one?
Between the two of us, we write in three genres:  contemporary romance, romantic suspense, and Regency-set historical romance.  We love all three, although we both wish that we had more time to write romantic suspense.  We do have the first draft of a sequel to Lethal Confessions, and we hope to get that book finished sooner rather than later.  My next historical romance, Tall, Dark, and Royal, comes out in November, and we also have a new contemporary romance series debuting with Grand Central in February.  It’s the Seashell Bay Series, and it’s set in a lobster fishing community on a small island off the coast of Maine.

What is your favorite meal?
If left to my own devices, I would probably eat chocolate cake 24/7.  Since that’s not realistic, I think I’d have to come down on the side of brunch, which encompasses most of our favorite foods—eggs and bacon, pancakes, French toast, home fries…what’s not to love?  I guess that makes us pretty boring in the world of foodies, but we’re more into comfort food than exotic culinary adventures.

Author bio:
V.K. Sykes is really two people – Vanessa Kelly and Randy Sykes, a husband and wife team who write USA Today Bestselling contemporary romance and also romantic suspense. Randy excels at plot and characterization, but tends to fall down on the job when it comes to that pesky old thing called emotion. That’s where Vanessa steps in. She usually writes the sex scenes too, since Randy is a bit uncomfortable when it comes to that sort of stuff. Vanessa also writes award-winning Regency-set historical romance for Kensington Zebra under her own name. You can check out their books at www.vksykes.com and also have a look at Vanessa’s bestselling historical romances at www.vanessakellyauthor.com.

Book & Author Details:
Danger and Desire Boxed Set
Publication date: September 15th 2014
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense

Danger and Desire: Ten Steamy Romantic Suspense Novels
Hold on tight for ten tales of intrigue and passion from New York Times Bestselling and award-winning authors. Men in uniform, sexy spies and pulse-pounding action fill over 650,000 words of this limited edition boxed set.
New York Times Bestseller Katie Reus – Sensual Surrender
RITA Award Winning Author Carolyn Crane – Against the Dark
USA Today Bestseller Pamela Clare – Skin Deep
New York Times Bestseller Dianna Love
Dee J. Adams – Against the Wall
USA Today Bestseller Norah Wilson
USA Today Bestseller VK Sykes – Lethal Confessions
Amber Lin
USA Today Bestseller Misty Evans
New York Times Bestseller Kaylea Cross
The individual novels cost over $35 in total and have more than 2,000 5-star reviews on Goodreads. This set is only available for one month, so grab your copy now!


Blitz-wide giveaway
--100$ Amazon gift card (INTL) 

a Rafflecopter giveaway


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