I’m happy to present my interview with J. Richards. Her book Burning Submission
releases July 3rd!
(blurb and excerpt below)
* * *
Hi J., Thanks for stopping by to talk a little about your writing! Let’s jump right in. When did you begin writing and why?
I’ve always wanted to be an author. My creative brain has poured over poems and books and photography for as long as I can remember. In short though, 2015. 2015 is the year I wrote “Yes, Sir” and things kind of snow balled from there!
What is your writing process like?
I sit down with a notebook and think of how my characters will look visually. Then I jot down what may happen in their story, sometimes my work follows the outline, sometimes it runs off on a whole new tangent. Next, I turn on some music, pour some ice coffee and try to avoid checking Facebook!
How important is writing momentum to you?
I LIVE for the days where I am on a roll and ideas come without a struggle. I never try to force momentum though. Nothing good ever comes from that.
Writer’s block—real or hype?
So real! Some days I spend hours staring out over the top of my laptop, praying something will spark.
Any advice to writers just starting out?
Just keep writing. You never know what may come of something. A small idea could turn into your next novel when the time is right!
Do you listen to music when you write? Does music ever influence your writing?
It does! Each of my books seems to have a different genre of music that help bring them to life. “Burning Submission” was influenced by country music, while “Sinners” was punk rock.
What songs or types of music did you listen to while writing this story?
Country music, a lot of Jason Aldean and Brantley Gilbert.
Tell me a little about the characters and the conflict in Burning Submission.
Victoria is a very independent woman who finds herself caught in a drama hurricane. They say bad things come in threes and it seems like she is filling the quota a lot faster than she can handle. Gavin is a man’s man. He volunteers as a fireman as well as owning his own gym. He seems to always be around when Victoria falls into trouble and his calm strength pulls them together. He is patient and strong when she is weak and vulnerable, those characteristics allows her to open up to him in ways she never thought possible.
Where’s the story set? How much influence did the setting have on the atmosphere/characters/development of the story?
Burning Submission is set in present day New Hampshire. The small town in which the characters live, is very much like where I grew up. The small town way of life is something I HATED as a child but learned to appreciate when I moved to the hustle and bustle of buiser places. I think the setting itself had a lot of influence over how the characters interact with each other. In towns such as that, your neighbors are your family and vice versa.
Were your characters difficult to write, or did they seem to spring easily from your mind to the page?
Gavin and Victoria were very easy to write. I think their lives have always been inside my mind, just waiting to be written down.
How often does your muse distract you from day to day minutiae?
I think the better question is, “How do you fit in your daily duties, when all you think about is your characters and their lives?” When I am writing, my mind is consumed by the actions and events of my work.
If you had to write your memoir in five words, what would you write?
Where is my iced coffee?
What do readers have to look forward to in the future from J. Richards?
I have so much in the works! Burning Submission is not a standalone book, its sequel will be out soon! After that, my personal favorite book (to date) will be making its way into the world and oh how exciting that is! I guess after publishing my first piece I got caught up in a whirl wind!
Thanks again for stopping by, J.! Readers can discover more about J. Richards here:
Sometimes submission can be hot…
Vicki’s never had a problem standing up for herself. So when a meathead at the gym grabs her butt, she has no problem punching him in the face. Gavin, the gorgeous gym owner, throws the guy out, and his tender, but insistent demand to tend to her injured hand makes Vicki hot. The buff, sex-god-come-to-life is everything she’s ever wanted, and he’s only too happy to show her how good sex can be.
Gavin is entranced by the feisty woman, even though he already has more than enough on his hands with the gym and his work as a volunteer fire fighter. The last thing he needs is this bundle of contained fury tossed in his lap, but something about her calls to his inner Dominant. Not only that, her body responds to him like no other. But when he discovers someone is stalking her, it’s no longer all fun and games. Submission is all about trust…and after a brutal attack, trust is the last thing Vicki is willing to give…to anyone.
Reader note: contains light BDSM, spanking, and submission elements
An Excerpt from Burning Submission
Sweat runs in tiny, slick rivers between Vicki’s breasts. Trapped in the all-too-tight sports bra, her large mounds do all they can to escape the torture of the treadmill—without success. Vicki watches her reflection in the floor-to-ceiling wall of mirrors of Jones Health and Wellness Fitness Center as her feet pound on the revolving belt, all to the rhythm of the music blasting in her ear.
Jones’s is the only gym close to her house and has a really great set-up. A few steps from the front door, a giant smoothie bar welcomes all who enter. Every kind of protein-packed juice concoction is offered for after-workout pick-me-ups. A supplement section to the left of the bar is stocked with workout gear and graphic tees to bring in extra income for the owners. Everything is always clean and inviting. Much better than the last gym she was a member of.
Vicki watches her legs move, causing her to feel like she’s in a trance. One toned thigh and then the other, the black compression capris keeping the jiggling of her hips and ass to a minimum; thank God for small blessings! Her racerback tee hangs loose, giving glimpses of her sports bra as her body sways slightly side to side, her thick ginger ponytail swishing back and forth. The ends of it tickle across her shoulder blades.
The timer on the treadmill blinks at her, indicating her thirty minutes of torture is up and she can now begin her favorite part of her day: lifting heavy shit and putting it back down. Slowing the treadmill to a stroll, she lets her heart rate come down naturally. She forces air in through her nose and out through her mouth.
She takes another glance at herself in the mirror. Her face is flushed a deep red from her efforts. She rolls her eyes at the image, hating her pale skin tone. Something behind her catches her attention: the tall man serving up smoothies from behind the bar. He has the deepest brown eyes that Vicki has ever seen on a person and his shaved head gives him a powerful, sexy look. His smile is brilliant as he hands some pink-colored drink to the man across from him.
The guy has more muscles than should be legal to carry. His sculpted biceps flex as he leans his elbows on the counter of the bar. Vicki’s stomach flutters at the sight of such a beautiful man, and her feet miss a step. Tripping over her own shoes, she fumbles for the handrails and pulls the safety magnet, bringing the treadmill to an abrupt halt. She jumps her feet to the side bars and leans over the display.
She scans her face in the mirror, heart beating wildly with the near death dash. She glares at herself. Clumsy! With another big exhale, she pushes off the treadmill. Grabbing her water bottle, she heads for the free weight section of the large gym. The long row of dumbbells sits against the large mirror. Benches and a few squat racks are spread out around her. Several larger men huff and puff as they test their personal bests.
One man to her right slams a loaded bar into the ground with an exaggerated grunt. The noise makes her jump. Vicki twists her upper body to look over her shoulder at the beast, and he grins. She wrinkles her nose at him before she turns back to face the reflective glass. She parts her feet, bending her knees slightly, stretching out the muscles she has taken the care to warm up. She presses a few buttons on her iPod to make the music fill her brain and block out the buffoons behind her. She grabs two twenty-five-pound dumbbells. Again she shifts her feet for balance. Her knees begin to bend, and a big hand smacks her left ass cheek.
The sting of the hand isn’t too bad—actually, in a different setting, she would welcome the bite of a good spanking—but the idea of someone putting their hands on her body without permission sets her blood to boil. With a scowl, she looks past herself in the mirror to see the smug man’s face, his nasty eyes still glued to her rear end. Vicki throws the weights in her hand to the padded floor. Pivoting like a professional basketball player, she tightens her abs and lets her fist fly into the man’s face.
“Fucking bitch!” he growls and steps toward her. He towers over her five-foot frame, but she doesn’t care. Squaring her shoulders, Vicki prepares to punch him again.
“Seriously?” she asks him, cocking her head to the side in a taunt. “Sexual harassment and you wanna add verbal abuse to the list?” Fluttering her eyelashes like some sweet five-year-old, she goads the beast before her.
“I’ll turn you upside down, little girl.” One more step and his chest brushes hers.
“Whoa! Whoa! Whoa!” A deep voice yells from behind the guy she is planning to pummel. “What the hell is going on?” It’s the god who was serving smoothies. He puts his big hand on the asshole’s chest and shoves him backward. He looks at the guy and then turns those dark chocolate eyes on Vicki.
Her already-hot blood turns up another few notches. This is a different kind of heat burning through her though, one that pools in her lower belly and begs for attention. “He smacked me,” Vicki says. Yanking her gaze from those dark brown eyes, she glares over his shoulder at the buffoon who thought it was OK to put his hands on her.
“I was giving her a compliment!” The guy tries to validate his actions. “She’s got a nice ass, and it begged me to give it a squeeze.” His eyes roam down the rest of her body. The look makes her feel sticky. Lunging forward, she tries to punch him again.
An arm as thick as a baby oak tree grabs her middle and stops her mid-jump. He pulls her to his chest with a deep chuckle. “Easy, I’ll handle it!” He speaks softly, as if trying to calm a child pitching a fit. “It’s my pleasure as the owner.”
Owner? Vicki turns her head to look up at him. His arm is crushing her body to his midsection. She watches as he speaks to the moron who touched her.
“Dave, your membership is canceled. Don’t bother asking to come back. I don’t tolerate that shit.” The owner’s face is calm but serious. His arm around her is unmovable when she struggles to step away from him.
“Come on, Gavin! I won’t do it again. This is the only gym within thirty minutes. You can’t kick me out!” The big jerk whines like a teenager missing prom, and a wicked grin splits Vicki’s face. She lifts a hand and makes a small, waving gesture.
“I won’t put my members at risk. Get your stuff and get out. I’ll reimburse this month’s fee.” Gavin’s arm finally releases Vicki, and she takes a few steps from him, turning her back on Dave, not even caring that his membership is being canceled. Serves his dumb ass right. She wiggles her fingers in a wave as Dave storms off, but she hisses through her teeth at a sharp burn in her knuckles.
Gavin grins and his head tips to the side in the same playful manner she used a few moments ago. “What happened, Million Dollar Baby?” he teases. “Let me see.” He holds out his hands and makes the “give them to me” motion.
Vicki rolls her eyes at the gesture. “His face was just harder than I expected it to be. I am fine.” She pulls her hands into her chest and forces a smile up at the taller man. This close up, he’s even better-looking than she originally thought.
“Nope.” He smiles and grips the wrist of her injured hand with his right, pulling slowly but firmly.
“Uhh.” Vicki breathes, tensing her bicep and resisting his pull.
“Stronger than you look.” He grins again. His pull on her tiny wrist still increases but slow enough so he doesn’t hurt her. Both of their eyes are on her straining arm. With a huff, she gives up and lets him have her hand. He turns it and gently peels her fingers open. “Just a few cracks. Let’s get some ice on here before you swell up and can’t use it tomorrow.” His big hand engulfs hers as he leads her to smoothie bar.
Lifting up the counter hatch, Gavin ushers her through the opening, then shuts it softly behind her. A feeling of being trapped in an open place begins to overwhelm her. Vicki tugs against his hold on her wrist and he allows no give. Turning to face her, Gavin gives her a playful smile before finally letting go. Before she can take a sigh of relief, his big hands grip her sides, just above her hips, and he lifts her up with ease. He sets her ass on the top of the bar, and his eyes meet hers.
“I can’t sit up here!” she squeals and tries to slip her bum from the slick surface. Gavin raises an eyebrow, his fingers pressing a fraction tighter into her skin.
“You can, you will.” He moves his hands when Vicki stops squirming. “It’s my bar and you need medical attention.” His smile is so cheeky. “Plus, I do what I want.” He gives her a wink before turning to the ice chest and shoveling a few cubes into a clean sweat towel. Twisting the fabric so no ice can escape, he presses the self-made compress to the back of her hand.
“Thank you,” Vicki mumbles. She uses her other hand to keep the ice in place and shifts again. The gym goers all stop and give her strange looks. “I’ll just get my stuff from my locker and call it a day.” She begins to push off the bar again when that large hand stops her. With a long exaggerated sigh, Vicki looks up.
“Not yet.” Gavin’s face has become serious again. “I’d like to talk about what happened, if you don’t mind, Victoria.”
“Um, it’s just Vicki, and I really am fine. I can handle myself.”
“Just Vicki, huh?” he asks, his long fingers stroking the outside of her kneecap. “Is that what your Mama named you?”
“No.” She shakes her head. “But everyone calls me Vicki.”
“I am not everyone, Victoria.” Gavin’s voice is as rich and dark as his eyes. The kind of voice you either shiver back from or find deep comfort in, depending on who you are. Vicki is drawn to his voice like a moth to a flame.
“Wait? How do you know my name anyway?” she asks, trying to distract him.
“Your membership profile. Everyone has one, and I try to remember names and faces to make people feel more welcome.” He grins and his fingers trace down her shin. Goose bumps rise in their wake. “Is it working?”
Vicki scoots back on the bar. “Is what working?” Flames of a nature that Vicki isn’t used to lick up her thighs and start burning in her center. His body, easy smile, and those damn fingers are beginning to mess with her train of thought.
“The welcoming gym owner thing?” He smirks.
“Oh, ah, Yeah. Sure is!” Why are her emotions turning in circles on her? Maybe her cycle is coming early this month. “Look, Gavin.” His name feels so good her in mouth. “I really appreciate you helping. I didn’t expect you to kick him out, but I am really glad you did.” She looks up into his eyes. “I am not upset and am fine to go.”
He looks her right in the eyes and says, “No.”
To enjoy the rest of this book, grab your copy July 3rd!!