Can you tell readers a little bit about yourself and what inspired to write in this particular genre?
I grew up in Southeast Florida and have been residing in the great Northwest for over seven years. I graduated from Nova Southeastern University with a degree in psychology, which accounts for my particular interest in crafting the personalities, struggles, and motivations of my characters. I am an avid reader of many genres of fiction, but especially erotica and romance. Writing has always been my bliss. I am attracted to stories of self-struggle and ultimate recovery and I thought it would be interesting to combine erotica with suspense.
What inspired you to write this book?
Many stories and erotica inspired me including the Sleeping Beauty series by Anne Rice, Killing Me Softly by Nicci French, 9 1/2 weeks by Elizabeth McNeill and the movie of the memoir, Penthouse Forum in my younger days as well. The power dynamic in relationships fascinate me as does the pushing of one's boundaries. I also like the play between what you think should turn you on and what actually does.
Please tell us about your latest release.
My Body-His (Marcello) will be released March 15, 2013. It is the second book in the My Body Trilogy. Here is the blurb for the novel:
Jane Stiles has embarked on an intense odyssey into the world of domination and submission. She no longer recognizes herself. She has quit her job, surrendered her possessions and agreed to a wedding where she is the only one naked, all for the sake of the elusive Luke—a man so compelling, she can deny him nothing. Now there is no going back. Her new life will revolve around Luke, his friends and clients.
Hovering in the background is Luke’s best friend Marcello, whose ego is as towering as his stature. Marcello has set his sights on Jane. She is drawn to his power, his masculinity, and the challenge he represents, even though she fears and dislikes him. After Luke discovers that Jane has breached one of his many “rules,” he sends her to Marcello for punishment and lessons in Dom/sub culture. What happens there will change her forever.
Jane and Luke reconcile, and even find a rhythm that includes not only bondage and punishment but genuine love-making. Just when Jane is convinced that the happiness and devotion she has always craved is within reach, Luke pushes her beyond endurance, and she rebels in a way her harsh husband cannot forgive. From there, her life spins out of control. But Jane has a strong spirit, and she will prevail.
Was one of your characters more challenging to write than another?
Luke was by far the hardest to write because the story is told from Jane’s perspective and we, as readers, can only know what she knows about him. He was also the most emotionally closed of all the characters.
Is there a character that you enjoyed writing more than any of the others?
Jane is definitely my favorite character. The My Body Trilogy is told from her perspective and I have lived with her inside me, poking me to tell her story, for a long time. I know her intimately and will miss her once the trilogy is complete.
Do you have a formula for developing characters? Like do you create a character sketch or list of attributes before you start writing or do you just let the character develop as you write?
I write organically and allow the characters to take over the story. I do not plan, outline or sketch my characters.
Can these books be read as stand alones?
I believe all three books can be read as stand alones. I made a concerted effort to give enough of the back story from the first book, My Body-His, into the second, My Body-His (Marcello). I just completed the first draft of the last book of the trilogy, My Body-Mine and although I don’t revisit past events in a lot of detail, you can definitely read the story on its own. However, I highly recommend starting with the first. J
Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? How do you deal with it?
I don’t think I have ever suffered from writer’s block; however, there are times when the words are flowing so fast, I’m so grateful I’m a fast typist and that can go on for days and days. It’s rather wonderful when creating goes like that. Other days, it’s more like pulling teeth to get the right words down. Scenes that require more detail take longer than let’s say a conversation. I do take my time with sex scenes because it’s very important they not be redundant.
When did you consider yourself a writer?
I have always considered myself a writer but it wasn’t until my first novel was published that I considered myself an author. It has been an incredibly exciting journey to be living the dream.
What was the last amazing book you read?
I haven’t read anything recently, mainly because I have a hard time reading when I’m in the throes of creating. Instead, I will share my four top favorite books and interestingly enough, none are erotica.
Siddhartha by Herman Hesse
Replay by Ken Grimwood
Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
Killing Me Softly by Nicci French
What can readers expect next from you?
The My Body Trilogy is erotic suspense. I plan to write an erotic romance next.
Where can readers find you on the web?
Blakely Bennett’s Blog: http://blakelybennett.fannypress.com
Blakely Bennett’s Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/blakely.bennett
My Body Trilogy Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/My-Body-Trilogy/359307324147300
Blakely Bennett’s Twitter: https://twitter.com/BlakelyBennett
Would you like to leave readers with a little teaser or excerpt from the book?
Excerpt from My Body-His (Marcello) – Book two of the My Body Trilogy
“You need to learn respect, signorina,” he said, furrowing his brow and taking another sip of his coffee.
“Respect is earned. You can’t beat it into someone.” I wiped my mouth and smoothed the napkin back over my lap.
“How wrong you are on that account.”
“Fear and respect are not the same thing. You can beat fear into me but not respect … never respect. Respect would come from seeing you as a good man, a good person. Someone who is worthy of respect would never need to demand it from others, would never need to beat it into them.”
“I can see we will have a lot to discuss once you belong to me, but today is my day. As it should be, your safe word holds sway here. Just keep in mind that the words might get you out of some obligation today, but you will never truly be done with me. ”
“I’m doing this for Luke, so he will forgive me. That is the only reason I’m here.”
“Jane, you and I know better than that. After today you will see.” He rose and sauntered over. After pulling out my chair for me, he took my hand.
I cursed my body as his energy permeated me. I couldn’t make sense of the intensity of his mere touch. Maybe my anger fueled it. I needed some explanation for what I felt. Just get through it Jane, I thought. You’re a mere day away from being back home. Enjoy it if you must but get through it.
He led me to his bedroom, which seemed twice the size of Janice’s. I was struck by its warm, masculine feel. A black leather king-size bed dominated the space. No woman’s touch was in evidence on the black dresser or armoire that stood against the brown walls. Looking around at the artistic photographs and paintings of nude women, I found it interesting that none included bondage or whipping. I wondered if Luke had taken any of the photos but didn’t ask.
I felt young and self-conscious standing next to him. I paused, avoiding eye contact, totally unprepared for what happened next.
Reaching out, he put his hand on my arm and gently twirled me around to face him.
Reverently, as though determined to savor the moment, he lifted the top half of the robe off my shoulders. I felt so small next to him. He lowered his mouth and kissed my shoulder, working his way up the right side of my neck, nibbling, kissing, licking and biting. Unlike Luke’s clean shaven face, Marcello’s mustache tickled and felt unfamiliar but not unpleasant.
Stopping just short of my ear, he said, “So sweet you are,” then began to kiss and suckle the other side of my neck.
“Ohhhhh,” I said. I felt dazed and light-headed, but still tried to hold myself rigid. With each touch of his lips my guard slipped a bit more.
He drew back for a moment and gazed intently into my eyes. I was unable to look away. He lowered his head and kissed my mouth for the first time. The rest of my defenses melted away. The kiss seemed to have a life of its own. It transported me away from all my torment, bringing me closer to my real self even though I didn’t yet know her completely. I couldn’t understand how two such different men could excite me so much with their kisses. Did my body no longer have any discrimination or did Marcello’s energy speak to me in a way I needed?
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My Sexy Escapes
My Body-His (Marcello)
My Body Trilogy, Book 2
My Body Trilogy, Book 2
Genre: Erotic Suspense
Publisher: Fanny Press
Number of pages: 264
Word Count: 76,000
Cover Artist: Sabrina Sun
Jane Stiles has embarked on an intense odyssey into the world of domination and submission. She no longer recognizes herself. She has quit her job, surrendered her possessions and agreed to a wedding where she is the only one naked, all for the sake of the elusive Luke—a man so compelling, she can deny him nothing.
Now there is no going back. Her new life will revolve around Luke, his friends and clients. Hovering in the background is Luke’s best friend Marcello, whose ego is as towering as his stature. Marcello has set his sights on Jane. She is drawn to his power, his masculinity, and the challenge he represents, even though she fears and dislikes him. After Luke discovers that Jane has breached one of his many “rules,” he sends her to Marcello for punishment and lessons in Dom/sub culture. What happens there will change her forever.
Jane and Luke reconcile, and even find a rhythm that includes not only bondage and punishment but genuine love-making. Just when Jane is convinced that the happiness and devotion she has always craved is within reach, Luke pushes her beyond endurance, and she rebels in a way her harsh husband cannot forgive. From there, her life spins out of control. But Jane has a strong spirit, and she will prevail. My Body-His (Marcello) is Book 2 in the My Body Trilogy.
My Body Trilogy, Book 1
My Body Trilogy, Book 1
Genre: Erotic Suspense
Publisher: Fanny Press
Number of pages: 246
Word Count: 74,000
Cover Artist: Sabrina Sun
Jane Stiles is successful in business but bored with her socially mundane existence. One night at a party, she meets an intense and compelling stranger named Luke. This fateful encounter prompts her predictable life path to veer into uncharted territory, sweeping her along on a frightening erotic journey into the world of bondage, domination and submission.
Jane had never experienced genuine desire, and now passion consumes her life, robbing her of free will. Her new lifestyle creates an emotional chasm between her and her old friends. Will they understand why she has abandoned her high ideals and long-term plans for a traditional wedding? What society considers right or wrong no longer matters.
Prepared to surrender everything to Luke, she wonders if her everything will be enough. She now needs his discipline as much as she craves his love and approval. How far down this dark path is she willing to go? Jane’s pilgrimage into domination and discipline has created a war between her mind and her body, and her body is claiming victory.
About the Author:
Blakely Bennett grew up in Southeast Florida and has been residing in the great Northwest for over seven years. She graduated from Nova Southeastern University with a degree in psychology, which accounts for her particular interest in crafting the personalities, struggles, and motivations of her characters. She is an avid reader of many genres of fiction, but especially erotica and romance. Writing has always been her bliss.
She is attracted to stories of self-struggle and ultimate recovery. Blakely is married to a wonderful, loving and supportive husband, also a writer, who helps to keep her grounded. She is a mother, a communitarian, a lover of music (always on while she is writing—thank you, Pandora), and a good friend.
An advocate of love and female empowerment, she is a facilitator for a women’s group. She loves to walk and hike for exercise and finds that, since moving to Seattle, WA, she is now one of those “crazy” people who walk in the rain. You can find Blakely on the Web at: www.BlakelyBennett.fannypress.com
Author Blog: www.blakelybennett.fannypress.com