Welcome back my loyal Swamp followers. Did you all make it through the whirlwind of new authors and add layers to your To Be Read piles?
You did? Great!
We’re not quite done yet, my friends. Today we have to leave the kids with Dreamer to take some well deserved Adult Time and walk the edge of our desires with the wonderfully lovely and fantastic Erotica author, Kallypso Masters. We managed to waylay her on her way to Authors After Dark where she and some of our past guests like Jennifer Estep, and Lynn Rush will all be appearing! If you can make it, you MUST GO!
Now I realize we’re stepping outside our comfort zone a bit here, but what’s life without a few heart-pounding moments? Besides, for those who haven’t tried this particular genre, Kally’s Rescue Me series is a great introduction. Her characters are so real they’ll reach out, rope you into their world and make it so you don’t ever want to leave.
Without further ado, I present Kallypso Masters!
Thanks so much for having me here, Jami and friends! I am knee-deep in alligators right now and love to answer questions, so I opted to choose some of your very unique questions and answer them, hoping to reveal something new to some of my long-term fans, as well as have some new readers discover me and my books.
If your character(s) came with a warning label, what would it say?
Wounded, but not broken.
—and oh so real, I have to add!
If you turned your laptop/computer/pen/typewriter (yes, some of still use these!) over to your character(s), how would they describe you?
IF I turned it over? Master Adam has often commandeered my keyboard. One of my favorite times was when he came to speak to my readers about how to survive the holidays about the time his book, Nobody’s Hero, was released, Christmas 2011. (Read Master Adam’s message here!)
Hmmm, I think Adam would say…
Oh, Sir. Good morning! Um, yes, Sir. You most certainly can have the keyboard.
*Kally gets up to get dressed for breakfast*
Adam here. You want to know what I’d say about Kally? She doesn’t realize what a great talent she has at capturing stories, even from the most reluctant people, like Marc and me, and getting at what makes them tick. She doesn’t write sugary-sweet fantasy romances with gazillionaires and virgins. Okay, sometimes she tells a virgin’s story, well, she was a virgin until… Anyway, Kally focuses on true-to-life people and tells it like it is for so many of my brothers and sisters who have served their country. We aren’t rich. We’re sometimes fucked up. But she can make even the most fucked up of them all, me, come across as a hero, which takes a lot of talent and perseverance.
I appreciate how she spends hours and hours talking with and writing to people in the lifestyle and in the military to make sure she gets her facts straight. And that she won’t release a book early for a quick buck. When you get the book, you know she’s satisfied with it, which can take some doing. Yeah, sometimes she can overthink things and needs to learn to trust when she’s nailed the story, even with its imperfections, and let it go. But her attention to detail and that she brings in a team of people to help make her books the best they can be, are both admirable. I’ve learned in the Corps and beyond that none of us can do it alone.
And Kally genuinely cares about her readers, her family, and those who have been sucker-punched by life, as many of you already know. She keeps many of her engagements with readers private, but enough comes out when readers share with others that you know she cares. One of my Navy brothers and a fellow rope enthusiast, Kinbaku Gardener, recently described her in her discussion group on Facebook as “the salt of the earth,” and I think that pretty much sums Kally up. No pretense, no filters—just a woman who’s got her own healing to do, but wants to share that journey with others and help them get there, too. When you meet her face to face for the first time, you know you’ve found a new friend.
—*politely nodding* I have to agree since I found myself sharing things with her, I hadn’t shared with very many…
Personally, I tend to be a bit on the introverted side so the thought of being in the actual presence of one of my favorite writers makes my heart race, my knees shake and tangles my tongue (yes classic fan girl behavior). Who could reduce you to such a level and how do you imagine your initial meeting?
Well, once upon a time, it would have been Cherise Sinclair. Hers was my first erotic romance and first BDSM romance I ever read, and I followed her for a couple years before deciding to pursue writing in this genre myself. Imagine my reaction when she e-mailed me a couple months before my first book came out (after I’d engaged with her on Facebook for only a few weeks) and she said, “I can’t wait to read your book.” I totally screamed out loud (and, yes, my heart raced, I was tongue-tied, and my knees shook).
I’ve been fortunate to have met her twice now. The first time was at my hotel in San Francisco last year when she picked me up to go to a BDSM club for a lecture. I was nervous, but she put me at ease right away. I think she may have even been more nervous than I was, but she’s not as extroverted as I am. This past May (a year after our first encounter), she and I shared a room while attending a leather celebration for research. I now consider my idol a friend. But I still idolize her books!
–I love Cherise’s books! I discovered hers after yours.
Many writers have that first novel which will never see the light of day. Out of curiosity, do you have one stashed somewhere? Inquiring minds want to know: what was your first attempt at writing and how old were you?
I have at least 8 full or partial manuscripts that I kept and that are stashed away, including a short story from high school. The first thing I ever sold was a short story I wrote as a sophomore and sold to my 8th-grader sister for her English class. The teacher wanted to submit it to an anthology, but she quickly got shy and said, “Oh, no. I don’t want to do that!” She never confessed that it wasn’t her work. (I think I made $2.50—sure beat what I got for babysitting and dish washing at the time.) Most of these 8 manuscripts will remain hidden, although I did pull one out and sent it to one of my editors who lives the lifestyle and asked her to just beta read (not edit) it and tell me if it could be salvaged as a stand-alone novella or short novel. But I’d only put it out if it was of the same quality as the Rescue Me books—and I’m not sure that could be achieved without a lot of work. I don’t want to waste time fixing old books. I want to keep writing new ones using the skills I’ve learned in the process of writing new books.
–I’m with you, some of my older ideas are fun, but the amount of work and revamping required *shudder*, yea no, I think I’ll pass…
Whether we’re plotters or pantsers (outlines not needed), creating our stories takes us on very memorable journeys. Sometimes we may be part way through before we realize some major aspect of our story is just not working (plot, character, setting). Have you ever hit this sharp, pointy snag and if so, how did you escape? We’re you battered and bruised or a bloody mess?
I’m a pantser of the truest sense. (And in English classes in high school and college, I always wrote the outline after the paper.) To me, writing a book to an outline would just be too boring. I love the surprises and blindsides my characters present me with as I write. Usually I discover things just the way my readers do—as the story unfolds.
The one that left me most bloodied (SPOILER ALERT!!!) was in Nobody’s Angel. I’d written the book two years before, then decided to join the indie publishing revolution and publish it. It needed a lot of work and my editors helped me fix the original version—twice. Then Master Marc came to me one morning three weeks before the book was to be published and said, “I don’t want to share anymore.” Um, but Sir, this is a ménage and you ALWAYS shared before. “Angelina’s different. Mine.” So, I had three weeks to dump 55,000 words and write 85,000 new ones, only keeping about 35,000 words of the original. I kept the story in tact up to the sofa scene. (Good thing—that’s a fan-favorite threesome scene). But it was there that Marc began to realize Angelina was unlike any woman before her. She was truly THE ONE.
Mind you, I still have issues with this book—and Marc—but I hope readers will understand that he is very much a work in progress. I discovered (another BAM moment) why Marc is the way he is while writing Nobody’s Perfect. At that point, I realized he needed (and was finally ready) for a book to help him face things that have shaped who he is, but that did so on a subconscious level. I think that mirrors real life. We having coping mechanisms born of past hurts, and continue to screw up without understanding why, until it no longer works for us and we make a conscious decision to change our behaviors if we don’t want to remain lonely and disconnected from others, as Marc has been his entire life. I think after the revelations about Marc in the upcoming Somebody’s Angel (Rescue Me #5, due out in September) readers will be able to connect with Marc in a new way. I know he surprised me—yet again.
–*trying not to jump up and down in excitement* I soooo can’t wait for Somebody’s Angel…
Now for everyone’s favorite! Our bullet list, ready…set…go!
- Blades, guns, fists or feet?
Feet (as in feet running away—I’m not very confrontational)
- Favorite Fairy Tale of all time?
Sleeping Beauty—because so many of us remain asleep most of our lives, until that one special person wakes us up. For some of us, it’s a true love who awakens us. For others, it’s a friend, even a book, that gets us to see ourselves and our lives in a new way. But I also love how the fairies and other forces in Sleeping Beauty help the awakening along. We can’t always get through life alone.
- Three titles and their authors sitting on your nightstand/bookcase/table/floor waiting to be read?
Most of my print books now are research ones. “Screw the Roses, Send Me the Thorns” is on my nightstand—research for BDSM elements in my books. “Courage After Fire: Coping Strategies for Troops Returning from Iraq and Afghanistan and Their Families” is on my desk. And I can’t give you the third title, because it would give away an important secret from Somebody’s Angel that I want readers to discover on their own.
- Greatest one liner of all time?
“Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.” (Second favorite of mine—“What the fuck are you doing in my bed?” *Snark*)
- Sarcastic witticism, Southern sweetness or Geeky disdain?
- Strangest item currently taking up space in your writing cave?
Just found my son’s sketchbook on the desk I recently commandeered as my own. Um, he is quite talented at capturing sensual nudes, but seeing the use of the Triskelion (BDSM) emblem in a couple of the sketches. I guess that explains the police-grade handcuffs we found under the bed after he moved out.
- Favorite supernatural creature?
Unicorns—so graceful, but able to get their point across when need be.
Now that you’ve had a chance to meet with Kally, read on for more….
USA Today bestselling author Kallypso Masters writes emotional, realistic Romance novels with dominant men and the women who bring them to their knees. She also has brought many readers to their knees—having them experience the stories right along with her characters in the Rescue Me series. Kally knows that Happily Ever After takes maintenance, so her couples don’t solve all their problems and disappear at “the end” of their Romance, but will continue to work on real issues in their relationships in later books in the series. Kally also loves showing how there is never anyone so wounded that he or she can’t find true love. Readers often write to tell her how the books have changed their lives or their perceptions of what matters in life.
Kally’s four e-book titles are available in three trade paperbacks (the first two books combined into one volume), as well. Next up will be the e-book edition of Somebody’s Angel, due out in September 2013.
Because so much of the above focuses on Master Adam, and that’s the first non-free book in the series that needs to be read in order (because Adam makes progress in his relationship in every book in the series), here’s more about Nobody’s Hero:
NOBODY’S HERO is the continuing romantic journey of Adam and Karla, which began in MASTERS AT ARMS and continued in NOBODY’S ANGEL, which ended in a dramatic cliffhanger that sets up the opening scene of NOBODY’S HERO.
Retired Marine Master Sergeant Adam Montague has battled through four combat zones, but now finds himself running from Karla Paxton, who has declared war on his heart. With a twenty-five-year age difference, he feels he should be her guardian and protector, not her lover. But Karla’s knack for turning up in his bed at inopportune times is killing his resolve to do the right thing. Karla isn’t a little girl anymore—something his body reminds him of every chance it gets.
But their age difference is only part of the problem. Fifty-year-old Adam has been a guardian and protector for lost and vulnerable souls most of his life, but a secret he has run from for more than three decades has kept him emotionally unable to admit he can love anyone. Will she be able to lower his guard long enough to break down the defenses around his heart and help him put the ghosts from his past to rest? In her all-out war to get Adam to surrender his heart, can the strong-willed Goth singer offer herself as his submissive—and at what cost to herself?
SPECIFIC ADULT CONTENT WARNING: This book contains very erotic scenes that include BDSM (bondage-discipline-domination-submission-sadism-masochism-master-slave)—but these ALWAYS will be safe, sane, and consensual (SSC) acts told in a more realistic approach to the BDSM genre. Includes rough sex, Shibari (rope bondage and suspension), anal play, cunnilingus, fellatio, flogging, nipple bondage and torture, sex toys, and intensely erotic “vanilla” sexual acts. Epic novel length of approximately 140,000 words.
For links to all of Kally’s books, available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Apple, Smashwords, and All Romance eBooks, go to http://kallypsomasters.blogspot.com/p/books-by-kallypso-masters.html.
If you’ve read the first four books and want to join Kally’s secret Facebook group Rescue Me Series Open Discussion, please send a friend request to Karla Montague and she will open the door for you, but you can only get there from here: https://www.facebook.com/karla.montague.1. Must be 18 to join.
And if you’d like to find Rescue Me and Kallypso Masters merchandise, such as t-shirts and aprons inspired by a scene in Nobody’s Angel that read: “Master Marc can put me in culinary bondage anytime” OR a beaded evil stick similar to the one used in Nobody’s Perfect, as well as signed paperbacks, check out my Kally Swag Store. With each order, you will receive a bag filled with free swag items, as well, including a 3-inch pin-back button that reads “I’m a Masters Brat,” two purple pens, bookmarks, and trading cards. Kally ships internationally. To browse my shop, go to http://kallypsomasters.com/kally_swag.