Nicole Lane is a graduate of the Danielle Steel and Judith Krantz school of romance. The grander the drama, the higher the stakes, the better! This balances out the fact that her everyday life with her little family in North Texas is extremely mundane and quite contented.
She blogs intermittently atwww.nicolelaneromance.com.
We were fortunate enough to interview Nicole about her latest romance, Playing All the Angles, as part of CLP Blog Tour.
What inspired the plot for your novel, Playing All the Angles?
It all started with the idea for a scene that happens early on in the novel, and by the time I’d written that, I was in love with the main character, and had to write out the rest of her story.
Would you say that you and the main character are similar or completely opposite?
Oh, we’re completely opposite. It’s a lot more fun for me to write characters who aren’t like me.
Who are your writing idols/heroes?
Pamela Dean, C.S. Lewis, Madeleine L’Engle, Ursula LeGuin, Fiona Neill, Douglas Adams…I could go on, and on, and on.
Describe your writing ritual.
If I had a writing ritual, my life would be a lot easier. The only thing I have to have when I’m writing is a cup of coffee. Otherwise, any time, any place. I hand write, type, scribble on napkins, then try to pull it all together into something that makes sense.
What are your writing goals for this year?
I have a novel in revision right now, so my goal is to finish that, get it into print, and move on to the next story.
What book(s) are you currently reading?
Since I’m in revisions, I’m not reading anything right now, but a friend just brought me a lovely little romance I can’t wait to dive into.
What are your all-time favorite books in this genre or others?
In romance, I’ll Take Manhattan is my favorite. But top five are Tam Lin, by Pamela Dean, Skinny Legs and All, by Tom Robbins, Slummy Mummy, by Fiona Neill, That Hideous Strength, by C.S. Lewis, and I am unhealthily obsessed by all the books in the Hunger Games trilogy.
Do you have any advice you can offer to aspiring writers?
The best advice I can offer is to write. Just do the work, keep doing the work, and then do more work. Then, find a good editor. The best books are made by a combination of storytelling and editing.
So…what’s Playing all the Angles about?
Dominic Phillips is an enjoyable distraction from fashion designer Eve D’Amico’s loneliness, but there’s never been anything more between them than hot sex. Since he desires no commitment from her either, it’s pretty much the perfect arrangement…except for the fact that he’s dating her sister Isabelle.Eve’s grown used to being the promiscuous black sheep of her family ever since an unplanned pregnancy at age fourteen, and Isabelle is the only one in the D’Amico clan who doesn’t treat her like a second class citizen. Eve doesn’t exactly revel in the idea of hurting her sister if the truth ever comes out.Just when she starts hitting it off with the sexy new neighbor next door, her world is turned upside-down when Dominic reveals his plans to marry Isabelle. As if things weren’t complicated enough, life decides to throw another surprise her way, and Eve is suddenly trapped with another secret to add to a much more shocking one from her past, both of which threaten to destroy every relationship she’s ever hoped to have. She must soon decide whether to reveal the truth and save her sister from a man who’s incapable of commitment, or to keep her lips sealed and secure her own place in the family. For now, though, she will dance around that decision for as long as she can, keeping everyone in check by Playing All the Angles.
Interested? Scroll down for an excerpt!
Eve whipped her body upright at the waist, long hair flying in damp, ropey strands to slap against her back and shoulders as it fell. Her skin was damp too, still a little wet from the shower but also covered with a fine sheen of sweat. If nothing else, he made her sweat, and that’s what she wanted. She closed her eyes against the expression on his face, concentrating on the burn in her muscles where his fingertips were digging into her thighs hard enough to bruise, and the swollen ache between her legs, where the pounding she’d just taken was now her rhythm to control.
She rode his hips, teeth bared, until he groaned loudly, gripping her waist to force a stop to the motion as he came in waves. She dropped forward onto her hands, watching as her hair swung with her, this time falling into his face, and then she dismounted to roll onto her back.
When she could breathe again, she said, “You need to go home now.”
“Gimme a minute,” he panted.
Eve sat up and felt around for her T-shirt, pulling it on in the dark, then found her yoga pants and did the same. “Come on, Dominic. Get up. You’ll fall asleep, and you can’t sleep here. Go home.”
“Why can’t I sleep here?” he asked, covering a yawn.
She gave him a narrow look and hissed out a breath. “You know why.”
“She’s out. Won’t be home until tomorrow afternoon.”
“It doesn’t matter. You know the deal.”
“Right,” he grumbled, finally sitting up. “Just the sex and nothing more.”
“It’s better that way. Less complicated.”
“And the fact that I’m living with your sister doesn’t complicate things at all.”
Eve sighed in the darkness. “Dominic…go home.”
“Have you got someone else coming over?”
“What if I do?”
“Go home, Dominic. We had our fuck; now go home.”
Instead of complying, he simply settled back more comfortably, rooting around until he could use his feet to pull the sheet up over his body as he shifted onto his side. “I’m at least having a nap. You can’t deny me that.”
“Fine.” She stalked out of the room, slamming the door behind her. As usual, she felt dirty and disgusted with herself, but not so dirty or disgusted that she’d even try to lie that it would be the last time.
Her sister Isabelle seemed clueless to the reality of it, but Eve had done all she could to make sure the fling didn’t become more than that. It was just very hot sex; she got what she wanted and then sent him home. She always sent him home.
Now she felt restless, guilty, wishing she’d not told him to come round when he’d messaged her earlier. At least when he left right away, she was able to put their coupling behind her. It was done, and she didn’t have to think about it again…until the next time.
There was always a next time.