We have debut author Lilou DuPont joining us for an interview. Her book Dangerous Love releases this month. Hi Lilou, thank you for taking the time to visit with us today. Please tell us a little about yourself.
Hi! It's great to be here on My Secret Romance!
I grew up in Connecticut and live in Washington, DC. I studied Cinema Production at the University of Southern California and Erotic Writing at The New School in New York. I am single.
What sparked the idea for your novel? Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
In a Prague cafe, an attractive man sat down at my table. We had a flirtatious conversation and he offered to take me to a gallery. Then, he mentioned that he was German and his grandfathers had been in the “Army” in World War II. I took this to mean that he was a descendant of Nazis.
As a Jew, I was traumatized. Dangerous Love is based on me asking, “What if?” What if I had been overwhelmingly attracted to this man? What if he had been my soulmate?
Can you tell us about your challenges in getting your first book published?
The eBook market is a great place to start! My publisher is Crimson Romance, a new eBook imprint by F+W Media. I saw a call for submissions and thought, why not? I queried the editor. She replied right away with a request for the full. I sent the manuscript on Friday and heard back on Monday. It was that quick. If you are a new author, I recommend that you fully explore your eBook publishing options!
In writing Dangerous Love, you visited all of the settings in your book. How much time did you spend in Europe? What experiences did you walk away with?
I spent about one month in Europe. I visited (in this order) Prague, Budapest, Bratislava, Vienna, Venice, Ljubjlana, and Berlin! Six of those seven cities made it into the book. I followed the paths of my characters, to see what they were seeing, to absorb the ambience. Sometimes, I would unexpectedly stumble upon a place and get a new idea for a steamy sex scene.
In Dangerous Love, Laura and Byron encounter another woman – the darkly exotic Zsa Zsa – with devastating consequences. I wanted this to occur in Germany. Every Berlin location that I cite in my book is derived from firsthand experience, with the exception of the “Apocalypse Hotel.” The manager would not let me in. So, I went online.
What was the hardest part of writing Dangerous Love? What was your favorite part to write?
The last chapter, when Laura introduces Byron to her father, was very difficult for me to write. I could only imagine how my own dad would react if I brought home the son of a Nazi! I basically journaled it for the entire summer. Then, one day in September, while on a train from NYC to DC, I realized that I had just written my ending! I threw out all of the journaling.
My favorite part to write was the chapter, “Sexbombe.” I love how Laura experiences elation. Here's an excerpt:
Something suddenly possessed her. Yesterday, two men had wanted her. Last night, two men had teased, tormented, and desired her. Contrast this to her former self as a workaholic, whose sexuality had all but disappeared. As she gazed down on the houses of this anonymous street, she felt that she was the First Brat of Bratislava.
Do you continue to work in advertising while writing? How do you like to unwind and relax?
I sell print and digital advertising for a major, niche publication. For fun (although it does require work), I organize a popular social group in Washington, DC. We have close to 1,200 members! To unwind, I like walking in the city and looking at art in museums.
You’re currently working on your next book; a spy romance set in Romania. Anything you can share with us?
I have completed a first draft about Marina, a young American spy, under cover during the Cold War as a Romanian demoiselle. She strays terribly off mission and loses both her CIA position and Romanian lover. Years later, the CIA offers her a chance for redemption … and the opportunity to find her lost man. I leave for Bucharest a week from Sunday! Who knows where this will take me?
Lightening Speed Round!
I love it!
Vanilla, Chocolate or Strawberry? Chocolate
Pumps, Sandals or Sneakers? Sandals
Beer or Fruity Girly Drink? Fruity Girly Drink
Boxers, Briefs, or Commando? Boxers
Book or E-Reader? Book
Vampire, Demon or Shifter? Shifter
Soft and Sensual or Up Against the Wall? Up Against the Wall
Beach or Snow? Beach
Jeans or Pearls? Pearls
Tattoos or Piercing? Neither! I'm squeamish.
Thank you, Lilou, for taking the time to be here today!
Thank you for having me!
Lilou DuPont graduated from Bryn Mawr College with a degree in Philosophy and studied Erotic Writing at The New School in New York City. She lives in Washington, DC where she enjoys a successful advertising career and a large circle of friends. Dangerous Love is her first novel. She is at work on her second book, a spy romance set in Bucharest, Romania. Vampires? No. Gypsies? Yes.
One randomly drawn commenter from each tour stop will win Dangerous Love eBook. One randomly drawn commenter from each tour stop will win a $5 eGC to Amazon, B&N, or All Romance eBooks. Please make sure to leave your email adress with you comment. Thank you and good luck!