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Friday, November 6, 2009

Guest Blogger - Cassie Exline



Hello - while Em is on vacation we've asked a couple of authors to jump in and blog in her place. We are excited to have Cassie Exline posting today.

~ Jenna

One Author's Journey

By Cassie Exline

Thanks ladies for having me. It's been a pleasure.

Well, I can't claim to have been writing since I could hold a crayon, but I did start when I was in the sixth grade. My greatest influence was Nancy Drew and Trixie Belden. Trixie who you ask? It was a mystery series featuring teenagers and I devoured each book in the series. Guess this sort of ties in with the new series I've written called the Sheryl Locke Holmes Mysteries, except no teenagers.

How I wish that I'd saved those school tablet scribblings. Probably childish and silly, but what fun to read them now. Anywho, once I discovered boys and dating, all thoughts of writing flew out the window. Oh it briefly resurfaced after my first child was born but faded away until my children were in school. Then I wrote short stories for my pleasure. It wasn't until I started working at the newspaper (still working there) that the desire to write ignited like a fire within me. A person can only take so much “only the facts” that she can go literally crazy. lol

To soothe my frustration, I wrote mystery story after mystery story. One of the proofreaders at work volunteered her time in proofing each story. I was in heaven when she told me she was very impressed with my work. She said and I quote, “I had no idea you had all of that inside you.” Still makes me smile.

Even so, I knew I needed more depth with my characters. Either they were so evil they should die and no one would care or they were so sickly sweet that a reader could go into sugar shock. And I wanted better romance scenes. I wanted sexy and spicy, but with taste. So I surfed the web searching for answers. Fate stepped in and I “met” an online author. After several emails, he directed me to Desdmona's FishTank. I was in heaven. Real live writers! My family and friends were already avoiding me because I talked about writing so much. Their eyes would glaze over. I'm pretty sure one of them started wearing a garlic necklace to keep me away.

The Tank was my answer. If an author wants to learn and improve their writing skills, a crit group is the place to go. I'll admit I was surprised to discover that I could write hot sex scenes. No trouble in the spice department. So I worked hard on my problem areas. Apparently I had a few. Who knew! lol

And working so hard in the group helped me with my job at the paper. So much so that I became the main copy editor. It wasn't my choice, but I still write articles now and then. On the plus side though, since I'm in the office more, I have time to work on my sexy stories and mysteries.

My job has given me several story ideas that have been sold to Ruthie's Club. For example: Confessions is about a female reporter who is kidnapped by an alleged murderer. He's been accused of killing his wife and her lover and he wants to tell his side of the story. There really was a guy who killed his wife and her lover and disappeared. There were search parties and his vehicle was spotted and then it disappeared. Let me tell you, we were terrified. Turned out that he committed suicide right after the murders. Of course in my story, there's lots of hot sex and a great twist at the end.

One thing this writer must do is write. Stretch those talents. Get outside the box and comfort zone. I've gone from writing only third person female to first person on to third person male POV and on to first person male POV. I've also varied the genres: stroke, erotica, erotic contemporary romance, erotic mystery, paranormal, female/female. Always strong women as the central character. I've entered several contests and answered lots of submission calls. No matter the result, I write and write. Fine tune, fine tune. Listen to the editors and learn from my mistakes.

My erotic stories are written under Cassie Exline and non-erotic under C.L. Exline.

My new series, Sheryl Locke Holmes Mysteries is non-erotic (close to the erotic line in spots, I can't help myself), but a fast moving compelling mystery with strong characters, both female and male. First up is Amber's Mysterious Death, which is now available at Wild Child Publishing. In editing is Ruby's Deadly Secret. Waiting in the wings are: book three, Opal's Disappearance and book four, Dragon's Pearl. Each ebook will stand on its own, but who would want to miss one. Collect them all.

Check out my website for updates on my writing accomplishments: http://www.clexline.com/

~ Jenna jumping in again...
I've read some of Cassie's work and all I can say is - Love it!! She really brings her characters to life and gives them all wonderful personalities and depth.

The one I have just started is Amber's Mysterious Death. Here's the info:

Blurb:

The game's afoot when Sheryl Locke Holmes spots Amber's husband, Roger, who’d disappeared without a trace after Amber's tragic death. With the help of her sidekick, Dot Watson, Sheryl follows Roger and a trail of amber jewelry which leads to duplicity, mayhem and murder. As different as day and night, Sheryl, Dot and Amber bonded like sisters during college. Their friend's death left unanswered questions and an unidentifiable body. This time Sheryl won't stop until she gets answers—and avenges her friend’s death.

Excerpt:

With the next flash of light, Sheryl caught a glimpse of a familiar face and gasped. Oh my God. It couldn’t be. She had to have been wrong.

Disoriented, she stumbled backward, bumped her hip into the corner of the desk, and fell to the floor. When she tried to get to her feet, she cracked her head on the desk. Stars whirled in front of her eyes, alternating with that face she'd seen. She blinked and blinked to stop the kaleidoscope whizzing around. But the next flash came and she saw no one. Thunder rumbled, lightning lit up the heavens and the windows.

Suddenly, a dark figure stepped out of the shadows and ran across the room.

Dot gasped.

Before Sheryl could give chase to the person dressed in dark clothes, the overhead light came on and Roger stood at the doorway. She searched the room. Now, Dot was nowhere in sight.

“I knew you’d come,” Roger said.

“Where have you been the last couple of years?”

“You need to let this vendetta go and move on. I did.” He glanced around the library.

“Amber was one of my dearest friends. I want to know who murdered her.”

“Don’t underestimate these people.”

“Who, Roger? God knows you don’t have the balls or the brains to have done that to Amber. Tell me who?” She watched a wave of crimson creep up his neck.

“I tried my best to protect her.” He sat down in the desk chair and sighed. “It’s true, it’s my fault she was murdered. They wouldn’t listen to me.”

“Who, Roger?”
*****

Want more? Buy here.

Thanks for popping in Cassie!!

14 comments:

Secretia said...

You girls are such exciting authors!

Secretia

Sarah Levin Colter said...

I read all the Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys and Trixie Belden books, too! I loved those books as a child.

Good to meet you, Cassie! Stop in more often!

Cassie Exline said...

I'm very pleased to be here at Coffee Fueled Erotica. Coffee is my fuel of choice. lol To think I almost deleted Trixie Belden figuring no one would connect with her, so glad I didn't.

Pleased to meet everyone.

Sarah Levin Colter said...

Trixie Belden and her friends got me through a lot of long, cold days when I was a child. I enjoyed reading the Bob Whites, Honey Wheeler and the whole gang. :) I'm glad you brought those books up today! Now I'm thinking about going to Amazon.com to see if I can find a few of them to read to my grandson. :)

Cassie Exline said...

Honey! I'd forgotten Trixie's best friend's name. Oh and the Bob Whites. I wrote a mystery series featuring whippoorwills. Trixie and her friends influenced me a lot as a kid. Would love to own each book. There is a website for Trixie Belden, but not sure if you can buy books from it or not.

Sarah Levin Colter said...

I found several of them on Amazon.com. http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=trixie+belden&x=0&y=0

Do you still have the mystery series you wrote, Cassie? I would love to read it. :)

Cassie Exline said...

Sarah, you're my new bestest friend. lol No, I didn't keep the original and oh how I wish I had. Well maybe not. It had to have been bad. Later on I wrote another series with adults and the whippoorwills. But didn't keep the one with the teenagers.

Jenna Alexander said...

I loved Nancy Drew!

Randy said...

Great column, Cassie. Believe it or not, I actually liked Nancy Drew. All the other guys were reading Hardy Boys, but I thought Nancy was a lot hotter. Then when Pamela Sue Martin played Nancy Drew on television, I was completely hooked. It feels good to get all that off my chest.

Cassie, you know I'm also a big fan of yours. Keep writing the great stories.

Cassie Exline said...

Thanks Randy! So glad you stopped by and commented. You made my day.

Cassie Exline said...

Thanks Secretia, we are exciting all of us.

Cassie Exline said...

Jenna, thanks for asking me to guest blog. I love it here.

Smut Girl said...

I'm super late but yay! I've known Cassie for *mumble*cough* years now and she is fabulous. I got to know here writing through Ruthie's and she really stood out.

Love the excerpt and the fun.

Sorry am so late :(
xoxo
sommer

Cassie Exline said...

Sommer! You're never too late to one of my parties. So glad you made it, girlfriend.

Cassie

P.S. Sommer is an awesome writer, check out her work at http://smutgirl.blogspot.com

She'll melt your socks off.