Q&A: Laila Blake on Driftwood Deeds

Driftwood DeedsIt’s no secret that I have a serious soft spot for Laila Blake. As a consequence, it should come as no surprise that today, on the release day of Laila’s novella Driftwood Deeds, I am beaming with pride. Some authors just have that magic spark, that turn of the phrase, the right words to draw you in and Laila has it in spades. To have a hand in publishing her novella (via A Hotter State) is not just a source of pleasure, it’s a real honour. Because, to me, it’s so clear that Laila’s is going places, and quickly. (Check out any erotica anthology in the coming two years and you’ll spot her name in the table of contents!)

I fully realise most people visiting my blog are looking for F/F erotica, but if you happen to enjoy gorgeously written, thoughtful and realistic BDSM erotica, then Driftwood Deeds will not disappoint you.

Here’s the blurb followed by what Laila herself has to say about it:

When journalist Iris Ellis visits a sleepy seaside town to interview recluse screenwriter Paul Archer, he offers her insights into never acted upon fantasies of dominance and submission. Too curious to deny herself a taste of them, Iris gives herself up to Paul’s gentle guidance, but when she realizes that a taste can never be enough, she must find the courage to ask for what she needs or risk losing it all.

1. Sell us your book in one sentence.
Driftwood Deeds is a story about longing and imperfections, about kindness and consent in bdsm – and about falling, falling in so deep.

2. Favourite line (or paragraph) from Driftwood Deeds
“He served tea, a weakness he admitted he hadn’t picked up until years in the
country, and while I took milk and sugar, he just squeezed some lemon into his mug. The fruit groaned under his touch, yielding its juice drop by drop and it smacked suggestively when he loosened his hold.”

3. Last book that blew you away?
Purple Hibiscus by Chimanda Ngozi Adichie

4. Which celebrity is at number one of your imaginary to-do list?
I always have to keep two – the male list is more stable and has pretty much been revolving around John Krasinski for a year or two, and the female list is complicated, and fluctuates because the girls who have dominated for a long time, kind of faded downwards a little in recent months (Alison Sudol from A Fine Frenzy just isn’t the same without her red hair that she seems to have exchanged for her new Juice-Cleansy attitude, I’m sorry!) I also get confused with who I’d just desperately want to be friends with, but staying on theme, I’d probably say it comes down to Felicia Day and Karen Gillan – what, I’m a nerd and I like redheads!

5. What’s your favourite sexy song?
I have somewhat odd ideas of sexiness when it comes to music, I guess. I find sadness and soul-striptease really sexy. Revealing, intricate lyrics that are a little bit like opening up a vein and bleeding into the song – super sexy, but it’s more the artist who is sexy in that case. Honestly I am not sure I have a favourite sexy song. Mary Lambert’s ‘She Keeps Me Warm’, is pretty sexy, though, right? A little bit? Or is that her again?

6. What are you most proud of?
Professionally, I think I still have a lot of work ahead of me until it can be something I am most proud of. At this point, I am proud of the fact that I am not giving up – not on me or my dreams, because there was a time when I was very close to both.

7. Who’s your favourite TV Character?
This took a shameful amount of thought, but I will go with Mary Crawley from Downton Abbey. I just find her such a fascinating, versatile person and a real rarity for a female character on TV. Honorary mentions go to Abed from Community, Arya from Game of Thrones, the 10th Doctor, Emily Fitch from Skins and Kenzie from Lost Girl.

8. Which author’s books are a must-read?
You really like asking the tough questions, don’t you? I have a few favourites, but I also know that Murakami or Hornby just aren’t for everybody, and I wouldn’t want to force it on them. I do think that some classics are must-reads, though, books like 1984 or The Handmaid’s Tale, book that make us think. Also the children’s books by Michael Ende, but unfortunately the English translations are a nightmare.

9. Anything else you want us to know?
Driftwood Deeds is my second publication and it holds a special place in my heart. It’s a complete rewrite of a story I wrote when I was 19, my first erotic story and it felt terribly daring at the time (even if, compared to Driftwood Deeds, it was positively tame). It also opened up ideas in me – about myself, my sexuality, my ambitions. I changed almost everything about the story, maybe because in 10 years so much about me changed as as well, but the feeling remains and I couldn’t be more excited to be sharing it now.

10. What’s next for you?
Together with my best friend L.C. Spoering, I am about to dip my toes into self-publishing with our post-apocalypse love story After Life Lessons, coming in the spring of 2014, and apart from that I have a lot of editing ahead of me. I spent the last few months writing and assembling ideas and stories and I need to spend some time polishing and submitting them now. Apart from that, I have several short stories coming out in really awesome anthologies over the next months, and I’m definitely looking forward to that.

Driftwood Deeds is available from Amazon US, Amazon UK, All Romance, Smashwords and directly from A Hotter State (more retailers will follow soon.)

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