This will soon be a weekly issue on the blog with different interviews from different people in that category.
This week’s category is..
A Day In The Life Of..
Today's author is one of my all time favorite authors ever! I started off reading her books many years ago, and she's come a long way since then. She's also written several new books since then, and almost everyone of them was utterly amazing!
She has several new releases coming out this year, and one is coming out pretty soon! Check out this awesome interview with this awesome author!
A Day In The Life Of.. Kristen Ashley! Some time
ago, I needed an alarm clock and bought the fanciest one I could find
considering I like fancy things.
trouble with that was, fancy technological things flummox me. And these
days, in order to simplify things for folks, they do instruction manuals with
mostly diagrams. I’m a wordsmith, I need the words. Diagrams don’t help me. A
stick figure pointing at a button with an exclamation mark over its head tells
words, I had this alarm clock for years and never used it once. Thank goodness
it found time on its own or it’d probably flash 12:00 for eternity.
a techno-savvy friend came to town for a visit and he spent an hour with the
danged thing, trying to figure it out. He showed me how to use it and now I’m
woken up by the sounds of waves crashing or birds tweeting.
to say I’m woken up but I don’t get up. This is what I consider “Axl Time.” My
cat is a morning cuddler and he gets annoyed when I don’t provide him with his
appropriate quota of love and attention in the morning. In other words, forty
minutes of us lying in bed while he purrs and I dream up the chapters I’m going
to write that day in my head.
in truth, I cuddle my cat as an excuse to have a lie-in and dream up chapters
I’m going to write that day in my head. It’s my job. And obviously it far from
topped up on affection (read: I have a good idea of what I’m going to write that
day), I get out of bed, do the brushing teeth, washing face, making bed thing
(and I make my bed every day, bar none – it gives me the heebie-jeebies to
think of getting into an unmade bed) and I head out to do the two most crucial
things of my day: feeding the cats and loading up on caffeine.
these two things are accomplished, I will make a passing stab at being a normal
human by changing out of my pajamas and putting on clothes. However, my
“pajamas” and “clothes” to other people would likely be interchangeable.
Drawstring lounge pants and tank tops are the usual fare. If I’m feeling fancy,
I’ll put on a pair of cargo joggers and tug on a t-shirt. But I’m one of those
extremely fortunate people who can put this minimal amount of effort into facing
the day…and then face the day.
armed with a Diet Coke, a mug of java and my phone, I head up the stairs to the
Rock Chick Lair to start the day.
If it’s a
Monday, those are my “admin days” which means the usual social media and also
any in-depth emails that need to be seen to. I further use this time to reply
to fanmail, update my website, and work with my “as-sister” (my sister who’s my
assistant, and I wish I could claim the cleverness for that word but I stole it
from the lovely Elizabeth Hunter) to get signed books purchased from my website
to their new owners.
not Monday, every day I still get on social media, but as soon as that and any
time-sensitive emails are seen to, I get to work writing.
that’s it. Depending on where I am in a story and how tight a grip it has on
me, my work day can start at 7:00/7:30 am and end at 7:30/8:30 pm. I try to pry
myself away from the keyboard in order to make a decent dinner and have some
non-writing downtime at around 5:00ish but that simply never happens. Just
never. Usually, I look at the clock, see it’s 6:30/6:45 and think, “I should
consider quitting.” And an hour later, that might happen!
it does, I straggle downstairs, make some dinner, sit with the cats and watch
TV or open a coloring book and start coloring (sometimes both).
it’s bed and back to the book in my head…until I fall asleep.
Do you have music you
listen to while writing, if so what are your favorite
listen to music or have any kinds of distractions while writing…unless I’m
writing a scene that includes a song and then I listen to that song repeatedly
while writing said scene or revising the chapter. Recently, I was writing a
scene where I “had to” (in other words, just did and bawled through it
repeatedly) listen over and over again to Tracy Chapman’s “Fast Car.” My cat
Starla eventually got up and flounced out of the room, not hiding the fact she
did this in disgust. Though I don’t know if she was tired of hearing Tracy or
me bursting into tears and chanting, “This is so good, but they’re killing me.
They’re just killing me.”
than that, I need complete silence.
Do you have a favorite
chair to sit in while writing, or an area that is special to you?
normally only write at my desk in the Rock Chick Lair. If there ever comes a
time when I’m not crazed to get things done, and can be a little bit more
leisurely about work, I’d love to see if I could take my laptop to a café or
even just outside by my pool and get some writing done, but mostly to get in
“the zone,” I’m in my Lair.
Lair is being redesigned. Now that all my back library is in print, we’ve
outgrown it so we’re having this delightfully talented designer redesign the
entire space, including building a huge new desk for me. We’re clearing the
room of everything but cabinets and shelves…and that desk. It’s going to be Zen
writing Nirvana. Creative space to the max. And my Rock Chick throne to rule my
empire! The whole installation and reorganization is giving me heart
palpitations, but once it’s done, it’s going to be amazing! I can’t wait!
Do you have a special set
of clothes set out for writing?
about comfort. Fortunately, I don’t have to dress to impress my cats. They like
me as long as food is out, water is fresh and treats are served between 11:00
am and 12:30 pm (yes, they have it scheduled). Other than that, they don’t care
that I’m a slob while I’m writing.
Do you have a special type of drink you drink while writing?
I have to
have a beverage available to grab at all times. I have a mini-fridge in my
office that I get antsy about if it isn’t stocked. Usually, it’s coffee in the
mornings, ice brewed coffees, Sparkling ICEs, Perrier (and if I’m feeling
saucy, I’ll squirt some Crystal Light into my Perrier) or just plain water
throughout the day. I may not pay a lot of attention to food while I’m writing,
but I have to have a drink to reach to so I’ll stay hydrated!
Do you have a special type
of cup you use while drinking said drink?
Whatever mug is up next in the cupboard!
Do you have favorite shows
you like to watch, if so what shows?
more “what’s your current obsession?” when it comes to TV. And right now, it’s Homicide
Hunters. I have decided to think that this is not about the actor who plays
the young Lieutenant Joe Kenda’s eyelashes. I’ve decided to think watching Homicide
Hunters is for research and inspirational purposes (and not just a handsome
man’s eyelashes). I tell myself these true life crime stories give me insight
into investigative and interrogation tactics.
face it, it has a lot to do with the fact that real-life Joe Kenda is a badass
and actor Joe Kenda has amazing eyelashes!
Do you have a special place
you go to get inspiration?
open to anything in life inspiring me. Music. Movies. Television. Nature.
People. This actually happens so much, I had to find a way to turn it off. And
it took years to find that way (see below)!
Are there certain people
who help you get inspired or give you ideas?
above answer, anything can inspire me. I think it was Stephen King (don’t quote
me on that!) who said you can’t be a good writer unless you read. I’m a romance
novelist because I love and have devoured romance novels for decades. I can
say, if the novel was good or bad, every single one probably inspired me in
some way to eventually do that for myself one day. My mental catalogue is full
to bursting with ideas because so many romance novelists over the years filled
the well in a way that it will never (I hope!) run dry. So I can say that the
romance novelist collective as a whole inspired me. And they keep doing it.
Do you just use your
computer to write or do you jot down notes on paper as well?
I have a
notebook I jot down notes in. That’s it. No computer usage for that kind of
thing at all. I don’t outline or put ideas down on paper, stories and notions
are all in my head. But while I’m doing a reread of a series to prepare for the
next book to come or while I’m writing, I jot down copious notes to make sure
that I have continuity of characters and stories and in order to refer back to
while I’m writing, or if I’ve opened a loop, I make sure to close it before the
book is done.
How do you begin writing a
story? Is it outlined, do you have the end, beginning, and middle picked out?
Or do you just sort of go with the flow and see where it leads you?
I go with
the flow. Books play out like movies in my head and I just type out what I see
and hear and I’d add to that, I try to instill in my words what it makes me
feel. My mind may have raced forward to something or the idea for a book starts
with a scene later in the book that I have to write to, but I don’t do any preparation
If you could be any Disney
Princess, who would you be and why?
from Beauty and the Beast, because her beast was flawed and she fell in
love with him as the Beast. In fact, in the animated version of this, it’s
almost a disappointment when he turns into the “handsome human.” This is what
we all should look for and hope to get in return. Someone loving us for who we
are, even the mistakes we’ve made or the baggage we carry or the times when
we’re not at our best. Someone who sees beyond all of that to the beauty that
is just us. And someone who allows us to give them that in return.
When life gets hard, what
is something that soothes you the most?
probably say my writing…so life doesn’t get hard very much because I always
have that release, that escape.
said, writing is now not just my calling, but also my career. Thus I’ve learned
that I need to find ways to shake the stories from my head and clear it from
all the things I have to do. With writing, releases, sales, promotions,
travel, events, conferences, talks, website updates, new contracts,
re-releases, merchandise sales and yadda yadda yadda, my mind can start to be a
swirling mess of all things Kristen Ashley, which can get overwhelming
sometimes, and difficult to escape. Because, well, I’m Kristen Ashley!
recently discovered adult coloring books. I’m late to that game. Even if the
idea fascinated me the first time I saw it, I told myself I didn’t have time to
color. All the things I needed to do, I need to do them. And anyway,
what’s the point in coloring?
realized that I actually couldn’t afford not to find the time to do
something like color. And now that I’ve started doing it, I really love it.
There’s nothing to concentrate on but the design, the color I’m using, where I
want the scheme to go and how pretty it becomes with each piece that’s filled
find inspiration so much in pretty much everything that comes at me, my mind is
always twisting and scheming and morphing stories even when I’m not cognizantly
letting it do that. Coloring is one of the only ways I’ve found that allows me
just to set my mind free of anything but filling in the spaces and transforming
something, making it go from interesting to alive and pretty. I love to flip
through what I’ve done and just see mindless creativity. And I’ve found that
it’s cool because it doesn’t scream at me to dive into it, get it done. It’s
just…there. There for me whenever I want to open up a book and my tin of
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turned back to him. “You seem to have a good deal of stamina.”
“Amélie…Mistress, I don’t think you’re
getting’ that I seriously find you not hard on the eyes.”
She bent closer, as intended for this
part of their session, some of her fair falling on his chest in another caress.
She did this letting her amusement show, if not all of the emotion she felt at
“I wonder, mon chou,
if you think you can butter me up with compliments.”
“I don’t know. Maybe. Though not sure
why I’d bother since I didn’t give you one and you just made me shoot a
huge-ass load the like that have never come from my cock.”
“And he gives another compliment,”
she said through a smile.
“You earn it, I’ll say it, he
replied, his lips twitching. “That is, if I’m physically capable of speech.”
She was still smiling when she
reached out a hand and delicately traced circles around his nipple.
His eyes darkened.
Her good humor increased.
“You’re of course aware I should do
something about you being so audaciously cheeky.”
Another darkness crossed his face.
“I shouldn’t allow you to be cheeky
“Impudent,” she explained.
The look fled. “You mean, in uppity,
hot-chick speak, a wise-ass.”
Amélie couldn’t help it, she laughed
“She’s got a pretty laugh, too, to go
with that pretty accent,” he murmured and she saw his eyes on her lips.
I could get lost in this one, she thought. Lost and never found.