She's been told she has a wicked sense of humor and often incorporates humor and adventure into her books. She also adores very spicy romance, which she weaves into her stories.
I've known Ashley for years so I was thrilled when she contacted me to see if she could be a guest in The Writers Studio.
Please welcome Ashley Ladd...
1 – What draws you to write romance?
I'm a born romantic, imagining romantic connections everywhere I go. There's a rare story I like that doesn't have a love story involved. I always hope for a happily ever after, even though I'm infamous with my family for also loving "end of the world" stories such as Night of the Comet, Armageddon, The Stand, Left Behind... If you're familiar with those stories, humanity triumphs in the end and there's a love story in every one of them.
2 – Are there recurring themes in your stories? And if so, what are they?
I consciously try to change my stories so they're all different. However, I often have action-adventure and/or comedy in my stories. If not straight out comedy, there will be a humorous tone to at least a character or two in my stories.
3 – Writing is a business. What kind of a writing schedule do you keep?
I have a full-time day job, so I get about 2-3 hours every evening after work to either write or promote. Lately, the time I was writing has been taken up by promotion as I just had two books release and there are two more books releasing in the near future.
I also try to write several hours on the weekends.
4 – Where is your favorite place to write?
That's a really sore point. Borders WAS my favorite place to write, but of course they went out of business. I liked it there because they had power I could plug into in their café. Then of course there was the café in case I got hungry. Also my daughters liked to go to Borders with me so they could read all day.
Now that Borders has passed onto that big bookstore in the sky, I write in my bedroom. It's not my favorite place, but the best I've been able to find. We moved too far away from Barnes and Nobles to drive there often, plus they don't provide power so my computer dies too fast to make the trip worthwhile. I would go to the library more, but my youngest daughter doesn't like to hang out there as they don't have enough manga to keep her satisfied. I tried to write at Panera Bread but that got to be a little expensive plus I got tired of people wanting my table.
5 – What is your favorite promotional tool?
Lately, I've been hosting other authors on my blog and also I've been doing blog tours for my own books. I hired My Family's Heart to help me set up blog tours, but I don't stop there. I also seek out bloggers who are willing to host me. Unfortunately, I don't have a large marketing budget so I have to do my own promotion. I can't wait for the day that I earn enough to hire a publicist so I can write full-time and let someone else worry about the marketing.
Here's a bit about Ashley's new book: Business or Pleasure
Guy Rogers is extremely attracted to his new realtor, Tom Beaudreaux. As a passionate vegetarian and animal activist, he’s ecstatic that Tom is a kindred soul. He could never be with a carnivore. Unfortunately, Tommy isn’t really a vegetarian or animal activist. He never said he was either, he just didn’t eat meat when he was with Guy. And maybe he emptied his house of all meat and dairy products before inviting Guy over. In fact, Tommy’s family owns the most popular barbecue restaurant in town and if his family has their way, he’ll manage the new location.
When Guy finds out that Tommy eats meat and his family owns a restaurant that is a monument to eating meat, he’s livid and doesn’t know if he wants anything else to do with Tommy.
But then Guy’s life gets crazy –his dad’s paranoia blossoms into violent dementia, he gets arrested for picketing a doggy mill, and then he winds up in even more legal trouble. When Tommy sticks by him through all his trouble and does everything he can to help him, Guy wonders if he’s been too militant and narrow-minded. Perhaps he can learn to live with people who have opposite views.
Guy finished his meal, wadded up his napkin and dropped it on his plate. “Do you think it will take long to find more houses for me to look at?”
“I’ll make you—it—my priority. Just give me a couple days.” Damn! A Freudian slip.
Guy reached over as if to put his hand on Tommy’s, but stopped in midair. His eyes softened and hope flickered. “I’d like it if you made me, not my business, your priority.”
Tommy’s throat went dry and his heart flipped over. “Do you mean what I think you mean?”
Guy lowered his hand and took Tommy’s in his. “I think so. I like you—a lot. You’re handsome and charming and I feel a connection. I know it’s quick, but I’m a forthright, fast kind of guy. Besides, if you find me a house as rapidly as I want, you’ll be out of my life before I can do anything about it. Do I have a chance with you?”
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Ashley loves to hear from her fans. You can find her at any of the links listed.