Originally published here.
Welcome Deborah and thank you for taking the time to chat with us.
What genres do you write and do you go by different Nom de Plumes?
I'm writing romantic suspense now with my Mind's Eye series.
I write historical romances set in the American west under Deborah Camp. I have written contemporary romances for Harlequin and other publishers under the names Elaine Camp, Deborah Benet, Elaine Tucker, and Delayne Tucker. They are all available on Amazon.
My Mind's Eye series is #1 THROUGH HIS EYES, #2 THROUGH HIS TOUCH. I'm writing #3 now and it will be released this spring.
What do you like to read?
I love to read romances -- sexy ones! In 2014 I discovered Mia Sheridan and I love her books -- especially "Archer's Voice." I like Lisa Renee Jones' Inside Out series and her Tall, Dark, and Deadly series. I like Kitty French's Knight series. I also enjoy Roni Loren's books. E.L. James is tops on my list with Abigail Barrett (The Boss and The Girlfriend) in second place.
I appreciate good stories, fascinating characters, and competent writing. As for historical romances, I'm a big fan of Leigh Greenwood, Alexis Harrington, and Lorraine Heath. It was a very good year for me as a reader!
Let's talk about the day to day creative process. Take us through a typical writing day for you.A typical day? I wish I had those. Most of mine aren't typical. I write every day, but I'm usually writing on several projects because I also write nonfiction articles for a small business magazine. I do most of my fiction writing in the evenings and on weekends. I keep a notebook nearby to jot down character names, descriptions, ideas for upcoming scenes, dialogue, etc. Normally, I set a 10 page goal for myself every day I write on my novel. I don't stop until I reach the goal. That might be at eight o'clock in the evening or it might be one o'clock in the morning! It depends on how the writing is going or if the scene I'm writing is particularly challenging. I create on a laptop. I try to write the book straight through and then go back and edit, edit, edit, rewrite, rewrite, rewrite.
I have a writer friend who helps me edit as I go and questions my choices, etc. Another friend proof-reads it. Hemingway said to write when you're drunk and edit when you're sober. I don't drink alcohol much, but I do feel a little "drunk" when I'm on a roll and the story is rocketing out of me so fast my fingers can't keep up with it. And I am totally sober when I'm rewriting and editing because, truthfully, that's when the magic happens!
Generally . . .
Like everyone else, writers go through phases and I went into a different phase when I read "Fifty Shades of Grey." I love that series of books and I'm re-reading them for the sixth time right now. I'd been in a reading and writing slump and those books super-charged me and gave me the courage to go ahead and write a series that had been kicking around in my head for a decade. I hadn't tried to write them before because they were a new direction and I was rejection-shy. When I'd mentioned the series before to literary agents and editors, I was given the cold shoulder.
Now, I don't know if E.L. James had smooth sailing with writing and selling her series or if she suffered through some rejections. I do know that she received as much criticism for that first book as praise. Probably more criticism. However, when you write for women, you tend to get that a lot -- snide comments, critical slams, general pooh-poohing. We're still hearing it about that book -- and a lot of the turned-up nose criticism is coming from women! Go figure.
Armed with renewed courage and with Christian, my new "book boyfriend," heating up my blood, I set to work on my own series -- the Mind's Eye series -- featuring an alpha hero paranormal detective and an unassuming, courageous paranormal heroine. Levi Wolfe and Trudy Tucker are made for each other -- but they don't realize it at first. Even after they surrender to the raging emotions they stir in each other, they butt heads and struggle with their complicated relationship. Levi can talk to the deceased victims and Trudy can see through the eyes of killers, kidnappers, and other evil-doers. They make a formidable detective team!
I wanted to write a series that shows the struggle psychics have coming to grips with their own abilities and the choices they finally make as to how to use those gifts. I'm also a sucker for the misunderstood, wounded hero (ala Christian Grey!), so Levi is saddled with childhood abuse, some of which stems from his psychic gifts. Trudy has a loving family, but they couldn't protect her from herself. Most of her life she has tried to deny or block her psychic abilities.
When setting up a series, I think it's important to create deep, rich, interesting characters that have many layers. I've certainly achieved that with Trudy and Levi! They have a lot of layers left to peel away!
I'm writing the third book now and I simply love spending time with this couple and diving into their fascinating relationship and the dangerous cases they take on. Suspense writing is something new for me, so it's gratifying to read the reviews that talk about the great suspense plots and pacing in these books. Whew! What a relief.
I do have a main squeeze and he's been "it" for many, many years. He's a hunk, if I do say so myself! He likes that I'm writing sexy books again because he's my homework. I try things out on him and he enjoys it. I also listen to audiobooks every night before I go to sleep and some of them are freaking hot! I was listening to Sylvia Day's "Captivated By You" recently and after hearing a sizzling scene in the backseat of a limo, my guy (who I thought was asleep) said, "Holy Christ, Deb! What is that?"
So, being a romance writer can be fun and reading or listening to them can also be fun! I'm inspired every day by other writers, avid readers, my own life, and love in general! I hope you are, too.
Getting to know my readers is a great joy for me.