Wednesday, September 8, 2010

GUEST POST and GIVEAWAY: Weighing in on...Erotic Romance

by Hope Tarr

As a Libran, I’m obsessed with balance or at least the illusion of it. “I feel so out-of-balance,” I’ve been known to lament—okay, whine—notably during the last few weeks of a deadline. 

But as we know, a perfect balance rarely if ever exists. As the late great Gilda Radner said in one of her popular comic personas, Rosanna Rosanna Danna, “If it’s not one thing, it’s another.” 


I’ve been a proud member of Romance Writers of America since 1997 and on moving to New York, one of the first things I did was join the RWA/New York City Chapter. How glad I am that I did!

Among the benefits of membership is a monthly newsletter and the theme of the August issue was erotica. The editor for the issue, a friend of mine, asked me to give a quote on what erotica means to me. What the heck does erotica mean to me? For the first time in a very long time I hit a stumbling block, dare I say “writer’s block.” 
As a writer of steamy if not exactly erotic fiction—though as one reviewer rightly pointed out, THE TUTOR definitely cuts it close—I also know that sometimes imbalance can be…intriguing. So long as the shift doesn’t swing too far in one direction. So long as it swings far enough. 

In my July Blaze Historical, THE TUTOR, the heroine, Lady Bea Lindsey, approaches her brother-in-law’s private secretary and former East London street rogue, Ralph Sylvester on the night her engagement to another man, a very nice but apparently sexually clueless gentleman, is announced. 

“I wish for you to tutor me in…sex,” she says and to dispel any doubts, she slides off her red velvet cape beneath which she is wearing absolutely nothing. 

There’s something simultaneously titillating and empowering about a young Victorian woman, a lady, taking control of her sexuality and more broadly, her life. 

In MY LORD JACK, my July 12th single-title historical reissue with Carina Press, my heroine, French √©migr√©, Claudia Valemont, likewise takes charge of shall we say…the situation. Only unlike Ralph, the object of her desire, Scotsman, Jack Campbell is…a virgin. And Claudia is an experienced woman, a former courtesan. Erotic? You be the judge. 

So I suppose for me good erotica, like good sex, is always about the delicate dance between the partners, the subtle and not so subtle shifts in passion and power, in tenderness and lust; the advances, retreats, and yes, submissions; the glorious imbalances that comprise any relationship, be it a long term love affair or a single sexy night.

Wishing you an end-of-summer filled with the “perfect” balance of naughty and nice. 


Check out the excerpt on The Tutor. 

Hope Tarr is the award-winning author of thirteen historical and contemporary romances including MY LORD JACK (Carina Press, July 12, 2010) and A ROGUE’S PLEASURE (Carina Press, August 16, 2010). For other in-person appearances as well as blog tour stops, check out the Media & Events page of her web site at

Now, for the GIVEAWAY! 

Hope has very kindly sponsored a print copy of Vanquished for International giveaway! Yay! 

How to Enter/Rules: 

1. You must be a follower (GFC, at least).
2. Comment here or in the post tomorrow (until September 9), or
3. Ask Hope a question.

Note: Not a follower + no comment/question = no chance to win.

Additional Chances to Win:

1. Each time you spread news of this contest (via Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, etc) earns you one point as well. Be sure to come back and give us the link of your tweet or announcement.
2. Follow us! Blogger, Facebook, Twitter, Good Reads. Each "follow" earns you one point. (Old followers are automatically entered.)

Contest Duration: September 8 to 9, 1159pm EST

Contest Winner Announcement: September 10

The winner will be picked via Instructions will be given then on how to claim your prize, so be sure to come back and check because we won't hunt you down. If prizes are unclaimed after twenty-four hours, a new winner will be chosen.


buddyt said...

I have some of Hope's books and I have enjoyed reading them so please enter me in the giveaway.

I am a Follower via GFC.

Thank you.

Carol T

buddytho {at} gmail DOT com

Hope Tarr said...

Carol, so glad you've enjoyed my previous books and good luck in today's contest to win a copy of VANQUISHED.

I'll be checking in throughout the day, so if anyone has questions/comments about A Rogue's Pleasure, writing romance or the like, please feel free to put them out there. :)

Danielle said...

I loved the guest post. Thanks for the giveaway.
I'm already a follower on facebook, twitter, goodreads.

I tweeted

aromagik said...

For me, the perfect balance is just enough romance AND erotica, so I'd say I prefer to read erotic romances as opposed to straight 'erotica'. Books that have that balance usually make my keeper shelf. :)

My question: Who are some other authors that you think have found that balance?

I blogged this post here:

I'm a GFC follower. :>]

P.S. I just went and ordered a copy of 'My Lord Jack' -- sounds like a great book!

Virginia C said...

Hello, Hope! "Heart with Heat", "Heat with Heart", "Erotic Romance", "Erotica"--they all have their own loyal readership. Ten people could read the same book and you could have ten different impressions of the same story line. As I have "gently matured", I have expanded my fiction box, and I have read many different romantic fiction genres. For me, no matter what type of fiction I am reading, I always look for interesting, well-defined characters and detailed story lines. Erotic romance and erotica don't always meet those terms, but sometimes they surpass them, and that really rocks!

I have the "Tutor", and I am collecting the "Men of Roxbury House" trilogy to read leading up to Ralph's story. I'd love to win a copy of "Vanquished" : )

US Resident, GFC Follower, Subscriber

gcwhiskas at aol dot com

jen7waters said...

I have to say, The Tutor sounds like the kind of book that would certainly make me blush, come short with air, and laugh, and I just love that:) these women sound brave, they aren't afraid of their sexuality, and that's refreshing in the time period of the stories.

I follow on twitter (@Jen7waters),
Facebook (Carla Costa),
goodreads (Carla Costa),
and GFC (jen7waters).

Also posted on my sidebar:

thank you!

Ashley said...

Love the interview! I'm a gfc follower.

hewella1 at gmail dot com

A Mom's Choice said...

I've followed your blog. and tweeted about the giveaway

Lu said...

Great Guest Post Hope! :)

The covers look real steamy :D

I am a GFC follower, twitter, facebook and added on goodreads!

Thanks for the giveaway!

chidoryx AT hotmail DOT com

Hope Tarr said...

Virginia, hi again. Foremost, I've gotta say that is one adorable kitty. I have a big gray cat, Sweeney Todd, and I'm so crazy about him I just put his fictional alter ego in a second work---he's my bookshop proprietress heroine's cat in my novella, "Tomorrow's Destiny" in A HARLEQUIN CHRISTMAS CAROL coming out this Nov 10th.

As to your comments on erotica and romance, I heartily agree! From here on, my comment is "What Virginia says!" ;)

Hope Tarr said...

Hi Lindy,

Thanks for ordering MY LORD JACK. I hope you enjoy it. As to the re-post, you are so sweet!

Re other authors who've found the balance between heat and heart, Robin Schone comes to mind. Thea Divine as well. I'm sure there are tons more but the downside of writing multiple books a year is that it really cuts into my reading time and when I do read for pleasure, I usually read out of genre to keep things, me, fresh.

Hope Tarr said...

Thanks for the follower- and friendship, Danielle. It means a lot.

Hope Tarr said...

Jen, thanks for posting this on our sidebar and if it helps, I blushed a bit--okay, a lot--when I was writing The Tutor, too. Even after 10 years published, I still have to remind myself that what I write in the privacy of my home in my sweats is actually going to be read by other people! That doesn't stop me from writing the story with the steam but it makes for some... moments e.g., "Happy Mother's Day, mom!" ;)

Hope Tarr said...

Thanks Mom's Choice. Appreciate the support. As they say, it takes a village and fortunately the romance fiction community is one supportive village.

Barbara E. said...

Hi Hope,
I enjoy your books, they never disappoint. The Tutor sounds like a wonderful story.

I'm a GFC follwer

Sheree said...

Hi, Hope! I think I value characters, then plot and then whatever hot sex scenes/erotica there are. I haven't read a whole lot of erotica but the characters are still the most important to me. Of course, there should be a reason the characters are together than just hot sex. :) Also, it seems that many (not all) of the erotica titles are into bondage of some sort. Does any sort of variant on regular two-people sex automatically make a book erotica?

In any case, "The Tutor" sounds really hot!

(I'm a follower)


tetewa said...

I'm a follower, enjoyed the post!

Pam S (pams00) said...

I have a few of Hope's books and have really enjoyed them. The two Carina Press releases are alreay on my wishlist and I have to say I will be adding the Tutor as well. I don't mind spicier novels as long as there is a plot to it.

Pam S
pams00 @

Sandy! said...

I have never read Hope's books before but I heard about them.
The Tutor seems like an interesting book =D

sandymanga @

IheartBrookings said...

I can't wait to read some of Hope's books. I'm so glad that she was a guest on this site. Yay!

Leni said...

I enjoyed your post because I can so relate to the need for balance. Even though it may not always be the case, it is something to strive for.

Leni said...

forgot to mention that I'm a follower of the blog.

Carrie at In the Hammock Blog said...

I can't wait to read the Tutor!! I also have the original version of My Lord Jack waiting to be read.Thank you for the contest!

i'm a follower

inthehammockblog at gmail dot com

Carole said...

Hope, thank you for this post and for the giveaway. We're honored to have you here!

CrystalGB said...

Great interview. I have read some of Hope's books and enjoyed them.

CrystalGB said...

Great interview. I have read some of Hope's books and enjoyed them.

Misha1989 said...

I am a follower.I am new to this genre and the book seems wonderful!
Follower on FB (Misha Mathew)
Follower on twitter (Misha_1989)
SEnt a friend request on Goodreads


Hope Tarr said...

Thanks, Barbara! So lovely to hear that. Really helps me as I hunker down through deadlines. :)

Hope Tarr said...

I'm 100 percent with you, Sheree. Whether I'm reading a book or writing one, for me it's all about the characters. If you don't care about the protagonists, the most air tight plot ever still won't save the book.

Hope Tarr said...

Cool, Pam, thanks! THE TUTOR has disappeared from brick-and-mortar store shelves but you can still get print copies on line at retailers like amazon or the ebook at eHarlequin.

Hope Tarr said...

Leni, you have the right of it. I'm a Libra, so balance is something I'm always *striving* for. Good to have goals, yes?

Hope Tarr said...

In that case, Misha, welcome aboard the romance fiction train. I think you'll find it's a fun, upbeat community of readers and writers.

Hope Tarr said...

Thanks, Carole, you're so sweet. This is fun!

k_sunshine1977 said...

hope, i love your work....your blazes are on my keeper shelf! i'm excited about your releases on carina press!

i imagine the balance between romance and erotica must be a very delicate thing - that's part of the talent of being a writer, i would think....

k_sunshine1977 at yahoo dot com


I really enjoy the excerpt and the character was great. I'm a follower.


Hope Tarr said...

Thanks so much for putting the cyber sunshine in my day, K. It's an honor to be on a reader's keeper shelf esp given how many romances, Blazes in particular, are published in a year.

Hope Tarr said...

Thanks, Loretta. Glad you liked it. Sometimes it can be tricky to pick out a scene that captures the vibe of the book without giving too much away.

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