Delwyn Jenkins/DJ Michaels
Describe yourself in one word:
What is your background with regard to writing?
I have a BA (Literature and History major) and a Diploma of Professional Writing and Editing. I wrote for ten years focussing on the Fantasy genre and I got to the point of being agented and having publishers reading my full manuscript. Then as often happens, real life took over for a while. When I came back to writing I was well and truly in the romance groove (although the love of fantasy has never really left). I was at a Romance Readers convention in Sydney when I shyly mentioned to an author that I wrote. She advised me to join RWA and get a critique partner (which I did) and the rest is history – well, four years of history at least.
When did you first begin writing with a view of embarking on a career as a published author?
Always. I never just wrote for myself. I think it was because I started writing when I was doing my Diploma course, and at that level they talk to you about the business side as well as the creative side. Having said that, I was woefully underprepared and technically lagging – and my writing was nowhere near publishable standard.
Tell us a little more about your newest release, Enforcer’s Craving.
It’s the first book in a six book series, all of which are closely linked. There is a big story arc over the entire series, but each book has its own romance, and its own beginning, middle and end.
Enforcer’s Craving is described as a futuristic ménage erotic romance, quite a mouthful if you’ll excuse the pun. But, I’m keen to know, what led you to writing futuristic erotica?
I’m going to be giving away an author secret here. As I said before, I love fantasy, but the world building is really tricky. It’s always easier to have a character new to the world, so the reader can experience the world through that character’s eyes (and the character can ask the questions the readers are thinking). So that’s the primary reason my female lead is a Melbourne girl who’s been kidnapped and taken to a far away planet. I’m also intrigued by the idea of what an advanced, sophisticated society might look like without technology. How limited would they be? Where would their imaginations take them? In the world of Enforcer’s Craving there is a technologically advanced society on one side of the world, but the side my heroes inhabit is technology free. Yet they still have a clean light source, temperature controlled living spaces, medicine and so on. And then there’s the dragons. What fantasy girl wouldn’t create a world where dragons rule the skies?
The heroine in Enforcer’s Craving, Chelsea, has been kidnapped and taken to an alien planet and is awaiting her fate when as fate would have it she is rescued by two very sexy male dragon riders (lucky gal)! Tell us, who is your ideal man (alive or passed)?
My ideal is more of a concept than a person – and I suspect the list is the same a most women. Kind, respectful, romantic, smart, funny and so on. Additional to my list though is the warrior element. I like a man who will stand up and be counted on, not just physically but emotionally as well. I spent ten years in the Navy, so that protector archetype is pretty much ingrained. Now, if you’re talking inappropriate cinematic crushes…Thor.
If you weren’t writing, what would you be doing?
Gosh, I don’t even want to contemplate that! I worked for a while as a freelance editor for a university, and I enjoyed that very much. I also worked as a sessional teacher for my local TAFE and that was a great job. I’d like to think I’d be doing something along those lines if I wasn’t living my dream of being a published author.
One thing you’d like readers to know about the romance genre…
There’s nothing shameful or bad or ‘less than’ in the romance genre. We write about relationships and there isn’t a person in this world who doesn’t wish they were in a relationship, or swears they’ll never be in a relationship again, or wants to be in someone else’s relationship, or is thrilled with the relationship they have. Love doesn’t just make the world go around, it makes being in the world so much better and so much richer. Romance gets put down time and again, yet romance is responsible for half of the books sales in the US alone. Seriously, hug a romance author today!
Biggest accomplishment to date:
It’s no surprise my answer is ‘being published’. I tried for so many years, and when I joined RWA four years ago I worked hard to get my writing up to scratch. I entered a few competitions to get experience and feedback, and in August last year I pitched for the first time to an editor face to face. I also sent my novella off to my first choice publisher to see where that took me. In November last year Ellora’s Cave offered me a contract (a six book deal) and Momentum offered me a two book deal for a different series. In the space of five weeks I went from nothing to having two publishers and contracts for eight books. Talk about headspins!
What’s next for you?
I’ve just delivered the second book in the Watchtower Chronicles (called Claimed By Earth) to Momentum, so no doubt edits will be coming back to me in the next month or so. My second book for Ellora’s Cave (called Heart’s Enchained) is almost ready to go. I’ve got a rough draft of book three and four of that series to work on, and I haven’t written a word of book five and six (yet). I think I’ll be out of mischief for a while – more’s the pity.
Confessions of an Author:
Favourite snack whilst writing?
I often have lunch and afternoon tea while clacking away at my laptop. Midafternoon snack would be coffee and something sweet, late afternoon snack would be potato chips and a bottle of water.
Is there something we’d be shocked to know about you?
I’ve already mentioned it, but most people are shocked when they find out I was in the Navy – I don’t look very military these days and I’m terrible at being told what to do.
What do you find easiest to write? And, the hardest?
Usually, the easiest for me are sex scenes. If I’ve done my homework and created complex, three dimensional characters putting them into a sex scene adds another layer. I find out a lot about them when they’re naked and sweaty. The hardest part of writing for me is sustaining an overarching story line – I always worry it’s not going to be interesting enough to my reader.
Favourite travel experience?
I love Europe, and I’m madly in love with Italy. We went on a gondola ride in Venice and we packed a picnic dinner (complete with wine in Styrofoam cups). It was fabulous.
Also, hang-gliding in New Zealand should rate a mention. I’d love to do that again.
Favourite fictional character:
As a literary character (not as a real person because he’s really quite awful) I love Heathcliffe. So dark and tortured.
Number one thing to do on your bucket list:
Go to Russia.
Milk or dark chocolate? Milk
Red, white, bubbly? I’m a non drinker so I’m more of a water/pepsi kind of girl.
Salty or sweet? Sweet (unless it’s late afternoon)
Beach or mountains? Both. I grew up near the mountains and I now live near the beach.
Give or receive? Receive! Gimme gimme gimme
Dragon Alliance, Book One
Chelsea is kidnapped from her Melbourne home and taken to an alien planet to be sold at auction. Luckily, she a gets a last-minute reprieve and is rescued by Tarkan and Ari, two sexy male dragon riders. Tarkan and Ari have long resigned themselves to the fact that they will never have a woman of their own. But when Tarkan lays eyes on Chelsea he concocts a plan to ensure she not only commits to them, but will fight for their right to be together.
Chelsea has many challenges in her new world but her biggest and most immediate concern is finding her best friend. Alone and without support, she turns to the only two people who have offered to help.
If Chelsea accepts the bargain, the Enforcers will do whatever it takes to rescue her best friend. Chelsea is attracted to them, but can she risk herself and her heart with two men she barely knows?
A Romantica® futuristic ménage erotic romance from Ellora’s Cave