Guest post with Olivia Waite

Olivia’s hijacked my blog today – so sit back, relax and leave a comment to show your love.  :)

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Lately I’ve been thinking a great deal about romance, reading, and pleasure.

By pleasure, I don’t just mean sexual pleasure—although of course I like my romances good and steamy. But I also can’t resist the pleasure of the well-chosen word, of the scene that breaks your heart, of the plot that keeps you frantically turning pages to find out what happens next.

There’s a pleasure in characters, too—the lonely heroine who slowly blossoms with passion, or the hero who realizes he’s capable of giving more of himself than he ever thought possible.

Even villains can be pleasing, as any James Bond fan knows. My second novella Hearts and Harbingers featured the odious Lord Wart, and his greasy, creepy appearances were incredibly fun to write.

But every romance reader also knows that pleasure is dangerous. It leads to risks and rulebreaking, as my characters found out in my latest novella, Damned if You Do. Somehow a demoness and the soul of a dead Regency lord broke every rule that stood between them and carved their own happy ending out of the volcanic rock of Hell. All for love, and the pleasure they’d found in each other.

I found a great deal of writerly pleasure in building the world in which Damned if You Do takes place. So much, in fact, that I’m presently at work on the sequel! It’s set in the mortal world this time, but even there sin and pleasure are always just around the corner. And today, just for you, here is a teasing little micro-excerpt from the manuscript!

 

***

Virginia frowned up at him. “Your demon powers won’t work on me.”

James laughed now, the sound full and delicious. “They already are.” He raised a hand and, shockingly, traced the neckline of her gown with the tips of his fingers. Her breath caught. She would have expected claws, like many other demons had, but this creature’s hands were simple and strong and masculine.

And green. She brought herself back to reality. “You misunderstand,” she said. “I mean that you cannot have my soul.”

His eyes were black, nearly pupilless, and his smile never wavered. “Did I ask for it?”

“You wouldn’t ask,” Virginia said with a flash of anger. Yes, that was good, it cleared her head and steadied her treacherously wayward fancy. “You’d just wear me down, sin by little sin, until my soul came away on its own. I’ve seen your kind do this before.”

“I’m sure you have,” he admitted. “You seem to have remarkably clear sight for a mortal. But have you felt it?” His tone was a symphony of conspiracy. “I have it on good authority that sin feels marvelous.”

***

James and Virginia are still working out the details of their own happy ending. I can’t wait to see how they get there—the greatest pleasure is always in the journey.

Bio: Olivia Waite loves to walk the fine line between propriety and hedonism. She writes thoughtfully steamy novellas for Ellora’s Cave and blogs frequently at www.oliviawaite.com.