Hi Alexandra, it's so nice to meet you and speak to you. You're an author from New Orleans and that is reflected in the atmosphere and spiciness of your writing. I wonder, growing up, how did you make the decision to become a writer?
I don’t think I had a choice really. It was something I started to do at the age of eight. Putting words on paper that imparted the emotion I was feeling at the time just seemed like something natural to me. I began with poetry, moved on to short stories, but because of my career demands in nursing did not write my first novel until I was in my thirties.
I didn't start until my fifties, so you're ahead of me! Who is your favorite author? Favorite book?
My favorite author is Ian Fleming. I know it’s weird, but I really loved his character development of James Bond. The books are a whole lot better than the movies and as a writer I learned a great deal about what makes a character memorable.
I tend to read a book after seeing the movie and oftentimes agree. Where do you get the inspiration for your stories?
I wish I knew. Ideas pop into my head and I cannot rest until they are on paper. I think a writer is nothing more than a super-computer in a way. We put together all of our experiences, people we have met, and surroundings, and turn them into a story. I see many people I know or have known come through in my characters. Sometimes you surprise yourself as a writer.
I'm always surprising myself. We're also emotional sponges. Yesterday I was ecstatic because my characters are falling in love. Today, I'm sad because they're breaking up. How about you? Do your characters come first or the does the plot come first?’
Characters come as I write them and many times so does the plot. I have an idea for or story or see the end, but never the whole book. Honestly, as I write the story develops.
Oh, speaking of characters... Have you ever fallen in lust… I mean love with one of your characters?
Of course! Most of them, if not, all of them. I write people I would love to know, good or bad. I think that is the gift a writer has; we can create people. I always hope that heaven is a place where I finally get to meet all of the characters I have written. Imagine the fun I will have!
I tend to love the male characters and live in the emotions of the female ones, so I can definitely relate. Ahem... When it comes to your sultry sex scenes – where do your ideas come from?
I get asked this question a great deal by friends. They look at my husband of twenty years in a whole new way after they finish one of my books. But knowing how a character moves, talks or has sex is part of who they are. I attribute the sultry sex in my books to my active imagination.
I must say, having a great imagination spices things up. Have you ever been turned on by something you’ve written?
If your story doesn’t turn you on, then you are doing something wrong. If you can’t get turned on, then your reader won’t be interested. I write from my gut, if I don’t feel it, I start over. You have got to feel what you write; otherwise it just doesn’t work.
Okay, we're getting real personal now. If you had the opportunity for a one-night stand with one of your characters who would it be and why?
Why stop at one-night? Oh wait, you might have to fight off your female character. Don't tell me if she packs a piece. As for me, honestly? I don't want to hurt my female characters nor do I want to stand down Queen Michal, so I limit my imagination to minor characters. Ha, ha, like Prince Ittai. On that note, tell us about your current novel.
Diary of a One-Night Stand is about Kara Barton’s life after she has a one-night stand in a hotel room with a business associate, the sexy Scott Ellsworth. Raised by a single mother who taught her to use men to take care of her, Kara has fought her past all of her life. She went to law school, married a great guy, and had a child. But in her forties, she is beginning to feel like her youth is slipping away and because of her stale marriage she longs for one more night of lust. However after the tryst, her life becomes very complicated when Scott wants more, and so does Kara. After a violent argument with her husband, she takes her daughter and moves in with Scott, but the security she felt when she was married is missing, and despite their fairly-tale existence, she has doubts about Scott’s fidelity. It is really a story about wanting for something better, but finding out in the end that what you wanted was there all along.
Problem is getting it back, right? Is it a stand-alone story or part of a series? If it’s a series what can we expect in the next chapter?
This is a stand-alone novel. I have done a series in the past with the character of Nicci Beauvoir in To My Senses, Recovery and Sacrifice. The other current series I have involves the Dallas August character and begins with the novel The Secret Brokers. I like to break out and intermingle a stand-alone book with my series work. It gives me a brain break and I feel helps my writing by starting something fresh with new characters.
I agree. What can we expect from you in the future? Any new books in the works?
My next novel hits later this year. Called, Acadian Waltz it is a romance filled with Cajuns from the bayous of Louisiana. The main character, Nora Kehoe is feeling pressured by her overbearing mother to settle down. Then a passionate encounter with a childhood friend changes everything. The charismatic Jean Marc Gaspard manages the family business, Gaspard Fisheries. But rumors abound that Jean Marc is running more than seafood through the waters around Manchac Louisiana. Soon Nora is thrown headlong into the dangerous world of smugglers and swindlers.
In 2013 I have my first paranormal romance coming out. The Satyr’s Curse incorporates a great deal of New Orleans voodoo into a story about a man turned into a mythological creature, and doomed to roam the earth until he finds the woman who can free him of his curse. Filled with sex, murder, magic, and a whole lot of good New Orleans food.
Speaking of New Orleans food, Alexandra is guest posting about the Big Easy and how it lends its ambiance to writing. Watch for this article.
Thank you, Alexandra, for the fun interview. It's been a pleasure.
Alexandrea Weis is an advanced practice registered nurse who was born and raised in New Orleans. Her popular second novel, Recovery, won the Gold Medal for best romantic suspense from The Reader’s Favorite Book Awards 2011, was named best Romantic Suspense novel by the Spring 2011 NABE Pinnacle Book Awards, and was a Finalist in the ForeWord Magazine Book of the Year Wards in 2012. Her fourth novel, Broken Wings, won best Contemporary Romance by the NABE Pinnacle Book Awards in 2011, and is a finalist in the Reader’s Favorite Book Awards for Contemporary Romance in 2012. Her fifth novel, The Secret Brokers, was released in May 2012. A permitted wildlife rehabber with the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries, Weis rescues orphaned and injured wildlife. She lives with her husband and pets in New Orleans.
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