Today I had the pleasure of interviewing Lashell Collins, author of the Paranormal Trilogy, Lunar Falls, as well as romantic suspense series, The Kelly Family, and the Rockstar romance series, Jagged Ivory!
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Welcome to PNRLovers, Lashell.
Tell us about yourself.
Haha! Well, that’s a really broad question! Let’s see, I’m sort of a geeky, quirky, laid back kind of girl. I’m married to a retired cop who acts as my technical consultant on all of my cop-related romantic suspense stories. Most notably, I take his old work stories and turn them into storylines for my ongoing Kelly Family series. If you haven’t read it, the Kelly Family is about a large family of police officers, and their journeys to true love and happiness. I get a lot of compliments from readers on how real the stories seem, and how well they seem to be researched, and that’s because I take advantage of my husband’s expertise in the field of police work.
I’m a bit of a science fiction nut. I’m a HUGE Star Trek fan. I love Star Wars. In fact, I’m one of those people who totally does not get the controversy over which one is better. To me, they are both amazing and wonderful, and comparing the two is like comparing apples to oranges. It’s two completely different worlds created by two uniquely different men, both geniuses in their own right, and the franchises should each be appreciated for what they are, not pitted against each other in some unfair competition.
I’m sorry, I just went off on a little tangent about two fictional worlds, didn’t I? Anywhoo … what else can I tell you about me? Most people who follow me even a little bit know that I am a music lover who is completely obsessed with Todd Kerns. If you don’t know who that is, Google him and you’ll understand. He is beautiful, funny and extremely talented. Um … I’m a big animal lover; I used to work as a Veterinary Technician before I started writing. I love General Hospital. My favorite food is Chinese. I’m a Capricorn who enjoys long walks on the beach. Jk.
Can you tells us a couple of random fun facts about you that we wouldn’t otherwise know?
Um … I enjoy rollercoasters unless they have a loop. Not a fan of going upside down at all!
I once visited Michael Jackson’s Neverland Valley Ranch. Spent the entire day there. It was amazing and breathtakingly beautiful, and an experience I’ll never forget.
What advice would you give a novice writer to get them off on the right track when publishing romance? Would that advice be different for someone wanting to write Paranormal Romance?
My best advice would be to get different eyes on your manuscript. Do not attempt to edit yourself, that is the biggest mistake in the whole self-publishing game, in my opinion. Nothing causes more harm to your career than a poorly edited book. And that advice would be the same for all genres.
Are you a goals oriented kind of author? If so, what kind of goals have you set for yourself for the next year? The next five?
I never used to think of myself as a goal oriented kind of author, but the longer I’m in this thing, the more I see the benefits of being goal oriented. And I’m sure that’s probably true no matter what profession you’re in. Goals are simply a great way to keep yourself moving forward, and keep yourself on a designated path or on track.
My main goal for this next year is to learn how to set up and stick to a production schedule. Knowing what releases I’m planning for the next year, and working toward only those instead of getting sidetracked with other projects is a big one for me. I have so many stories on my mind, waiting for their moment in the sun, and the only way to get to them all is to prioritize them and learn to stick to a production schedule.
How do you develop your plots and characters? Do you use any set formula, or character maps?
I’m always fascinated by those authors who just sit down and start writing. Pantsers, we call them in this business because they create a story by “flying by the seat of their pants.” My best friend is a pantser and I’m in awe. Every time I’ve tried to write a story this way, it goes nowhere. It’s the only time I ever experience writer’s block. I am a plotter. My process is to plot out the entire story from start to finish before I write a single word. I have to see the whole thing in my head like a movie. That’s the only way it works for me.
As for my characters, I don’t use any sort of set formula. I create my stories with Scrivener, which is a downloadable program for writers of all sorts. Under the fiction option, you’re given what they call Character Sheets that allow you to create a basic sketch of your characters – things like their physical description, their personality traits, their background/history, their purpose in the story and their occupation. Even things like their habits and manerisms. There’s space to include an image, which I always take advantage of and add a picture of the actor/model/singer that I envision in the role. It’s very helpful.
Tell us a bit about your writing day. How much time do you spend researching, writing and promoting? What has to happen for you to feel you’ve had a successful writing day?
That’s a tricky subject right there. I used to spend all of my time writing, like all day. And that’s the way I prefer it. But 2015 was all about marketing and promoting for me. I never used to do much promoting at all. What I’ve learned is that it’s sort of a double-edged sword. Yeah, more people know my name now, more readers are finding my books … but I have so much less time to actually write anymore because promoting is such a huge time suck. And I realize that I’m still new to the whole marketing side of things, but it sort of kicks you in the backside until you figure out how to put it in its proper place. Unfortunately, I feel like I’m still trying to figure that out.
For me to feel like I’ve had a successful writing day, I have to have written at least two thousand words, preferably more.
What, in your opinion, is going to go out of favor in the romance reader world over the next year? What do you think will be the next “big thing”?
Hmm. I think this new stepbrother fad will go out of favor pretty quickly. At least, I hope it goes out of favor quickly, I should say. And I don’t mean any disrespect to anyone who writes stepbrother romance, so please don’t take it that way. But, for me personally, there’s an ick factor there that I can’t get past, no matter how irrational it may be. I get that these lovers are only siblings by marriage, but I can’t get into that. It’s a turn off.
As for what might be the next big thing … I have no clue. Or maybe I do, and I just don’t want to share it!
And now for the silly… given the choice, which of your characters would you become, and why?
Now that’s a toss up. I would either want to be Mercy Holland, from my Jagged Ivory series, because she falls in love with guitar god, Noah Ivory, and lives happily ever after with him. Not to mention her very cool job of being the band’s official tour photographer. Or, I would want to be Dr. Carly Tipton, from my Lunar Falls trilogy, because she stumbles onto this amazing world of werewolves and pack politics, hiding right in her own family tree, that she never knew existed before. It sends her on an incredible journey of self-discovery that ultimately leads to her becoming the mate of the sexy GrandAlpha over all five packs, Gabriel Masters.
And that question was NOT silly at all.
What’s coming down the pike for Lashell Collins? When can we expect to see it released to the world?
Up next for me is book one of my new paranormal rockstar romance series, the Rock Shifter Fairytales. The name of book one is Soul Stealer. It’s about a reporter named Aleigha Daniels who is tasked with interviewing the very sexy and eccentric shifter rock star, Morpheus Wolfe, at his creepy mansion out in the middle of nowhere. Here’s the tagline for it:
What do you get when you cross a smoking hot rock star with a sexy wolf shifter, then throw in a heaping dose of gothic fairytale enchantment? Aleigha Daniels is about to find out!
Soul Stealer releases in just a few days on December 6th, and you can pre-order it now on Amazon, Barnes&Noble, and iTunes.
Can you share an excerpt of your upcoming book, or recently released one?
Sure. Here you go. This is from Soul Stealer…
“What do you do for fun?”
“For fun?” Aleigha looked at him as though she didn’t fully understand the concept.
“Fun. Enjoyment. An activity engaged in purely for amusement … like sex, for instance.” He stared into her eyes, and Aleigha was certain that he was merely attempting to get a rise out of her.
“Sex is not an activity for pure amusement, Mr. Wolfe. It has a purpose.”
“Hmm. Procreation of the species.” He nodded his head as his bright amber eyes bored into hers. “If that’s all you’re using it for, Ms. Daniels, I’m sorry to inform you that you’re doing it all wrong.”
“How I may, or may not use sex is none of your concern, Mr. Wolfe.”
“But it could be, if you’d let me help you out with that little problem of yours.” His smile was almost salacious as his eyes roamed over her body.
“Problem? I wasn’t aware I had a problem.” Aleigha glared at him as she tried to get her temper under control. The fact that she liked the way he looked at her only served to make her angrier.
“Oh, you have a very big problem.”
“Is that so?”
“What’s my problem, Mr. Wolfe? Please enlighten me.”
“You’re a little uptight, Ms. Daniels.”
“Uptight? I’m uptight?”
“I think you’re mistaking uptight for professional, sir! I am not a groupie! I know you’re supposed to be some kind of rock and roll guitar god, but I’m not impressed in the least. I find you rude, arrogant, and highly inappropriate! You get off on this whole super scary shifter persona and try to make yourself seem really deep and intellectual, when in reality you are nothing more than common shifter riffraff!”
“Ah, there it is. Well, that didn’t take long, did it?” Morpheus eyed her with an expression of triumph.
“What are you talking about? There what is?”
“Your true feelings, Ms. Daniels. I knew they would show up eventually.”
Aleigha was instantly pissed. “You know nothing about my true feelings, Mr. Wolfe. You don’t know anything about me!”
“I know you don’t want to be here doing this interview. You’re only here to save your father’s show. I suspect you don’t want to be anywhere near me at all, and why would you? I’m a monster, right? I’m the beast you’ve been warned about. But tell me something, just to satisfy my own curiosity.” He leaned in close to her, causing Aleigha to draw in a deep breath and hold it as his amber eyes seemed to look into her soul. “Is it just me who terrifies you, Ms. Daniels, or is it all shifters?”
Where can our readers find you online? Do you have a newsletter they could join?
I can be found at the following places. And yes, I do have a newsletter. Here’s the link for that too:
Wildfires and demons? No sweat.His bodyguard? She’s the real danger…
Noble. Dutiful. Serious. All words that no one would ever use to describe sea dragon shifter Joe, the Crown Prince of Atlantis.
As the Heir to the Pearl Throne, he’s supposed to be preparing to rule a vast underwater empire…... Continue reading at Amazon.com...
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
You Can Run, But You Can't Hide!!!, September 16, 2019
This review is from: Wildfire Sea Dragon (Fire & Rescue Shifters: Wildfire Crew Book 3) (Kindle Edition)
The book started one year after where the previous one, WILDFIRE UNICORN left off.
Joe, Heir to the Pearl Throne, Crown Prince of Atlantis had been keeping a huge secret from his friends. He never told them about being able to see into the future. He had a premonition about his mate dying and so he swore never to go looking for her. But fate had other plans for him. She was assigned as his bodyguard cause his parents (FIREFIGHTER SEA DRAGON) feared for his life.
Seven Novice, a Knight of Atlantis was tasked with finding Joe who'd been MIA and his loved ones were worried about him. She was to escort him back to Montana as the new fire season started and become his bodyguard. She found him but he pushed her away just as she realized they were mates.
Joe found himself in danger from an enemy that wanted to get to his friends especially Blaise. He caught up with his friends and their first thought when they saw Seven, was that she was his mate...Which was... Read more
To get amnesty on a remote farm planet, ex-con Tassar has to marry an alien – specifically, a strange looking creature called a ‘human’. When he sees gorgeous, delicate Leilani, though, all of his plans change. He wants more than just a marriage of convenience. He wants her forever, but only when sh... Continue reading at Amazon.com...
So worth the wait, September 16, 2019
This review is from: When She's Ready: A Sci-Fi Alien Romance Novella (Kindle Edition)
I’ve been impatiently waiting for this to come out as an ebook ever since Ruby mentioned it this past spring. So worth the wait! Loved the characters and the epilogue was wonderful! I can’t wait to see another glimpse of everyone in another book. Please let it be soon!
The truce between the vampires and the shifters is long over. So when the two factions stumble upon a lost fae warrior who has no idea what she is, all hell breaks loose. Charity hasn't had it easy. Growing up in a bad part of Chicago, left by her mother at sixteen, she's a survivor. So when she get... Continue reading at Amazon.com...
29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
Oh, Be Still My Ever Laughing Heart, September 10, 2019
This review is from: Warrior Fae Trapped (A Demon Days, Vampire Nights Novel) (Kindle Edition)
Have you ever found an author[s] whose books don’t just transport you away for an afternoon but have that magical ability to take your cares away? Like, you might be having a cruddy day, someone yelled at you at work, it’s raining for the umpteenth day in a row and you just want to escape it all? Lo’ and behold [for me] K.F. Breene happens to be my favorite “cheer me up” author.
Her witty quips and self-deprecating character humor bring a depth to the story that a lot of authors struggle to bring to life but she manages to do with great panache. Her newest installment in the DDVN world, “Warrior Fae Trapped” is no slouch, either.
This book is all about Charity, a poor as can be college student trying to keep her head down and her grades up who receives a random invite to a posh party one night. And if it can go wrong, it will. Charity learns very quickly that shapeshifters and vampires are not a thing of myth and legend and both factions are trying to claim... Read more
I am a latent wolf shifter. Or so I thought.Then life as I knew it changed in a flash—or more accurately, an electrocution.I’ve woken up in a strange place, surrounded by strange people who hate me. They’re in the middle of a war, and I look like I belong on the wrong side of it. If that’s not enoug... Continue reading at Amazon.com...
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Holy damn! I can't wait for the next one!, September 1, 2019
This review is from: The Hidden (Shadowed Wings Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
Seriously! The first book just released tonight, and I already can't wait for the next one! This is one of the best books I've read this entire year by far! The heroine is amazing. She's so snarky and yet soft sometimes. She's so kickass that you can't help in love with her. Sometimes she stands her ground which is great but sometimes she just wants to bitch slap the inner pigeon inside of her. Ha ha. Seriously, this was amazing and I can't wait for the next. How long until release?!?
"I am obsessed with this series! Easily top 5 of Academy RH that I have read."- ★★★★★This academy is like no other…My name is Lexi Cameron and until three weeks ago, I thought I was human.It was all a lie.I’m a demon, and I’m signed up to attend The Demon Academy. I soon find out it’s the darkest, ... Continue reading at Amazon.com...
This review is from: Sinful As Hell: A Reverse Harem Bully Romance (The Demon Academy Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
Oh!! This is definitely in my top 3 list of Gem’s books! This was so fun and I absolutely LOVED her take on the whole Academy scene! Alexandria is awesome and fun to read about. The Demon Academy is like no other. Death threats, danger, and sinfully attractive men are too far away!
The Lucifer sons are men you love to hate. They’re hot *fans self* This book immediately caught my attention and it was pure hell trying to put it down to work and do life. Best part about it? This is ONLY BOOK 1! There are more coming! *swoons* I highly recommend this read! It is incredible!
I am destined to kill my fated mate.Fate is a meddling b*tch. First, it decreed that my mate would be Tarron, King of the Seelie Fae. He's gorgeous, arrogant, and for the longest time, I hated him. Until I didn't.Problem is... as soon as I start to fall for him, fate meddles again. Apparently, I’m f... Continue reading at Amazon.com...
This review is from: Queen of the Fae (Dragon's Gift: The Dark Fae Book 3) (Kindle Edition)
I absolutely loved this book!!! When I tell you that the lead character Mari has all the characteristics that a strong female lead should have she does in spades. This book is a wild ride, with all the twists and turns that are to be expected and a journey that will be the end of 2 realms if the evil woman isn’t stopped in time.
I'm not what everyone thinks I am. If they discover my hidden origin, both the gods and demons will hunt me to the ends of the universe. But I don't carry my dark secret alone. The sea demigod, my sworn enemy, now carries it with me and lea... Continue reading at Amazon.com...
This review is from: Half-Blood Academy 3: Magic Fury: an academy reverse harem fantasy romance (Kindle Edition)
I love Marigold and her mouth. She is always witty and speaks her mind regardless of who it is to. Sadly it’s her I don’t care I’m not a punk person that puts her on Ares radar. Of course we always assume that Gods or Angels are the good guys. But I’m a firm believer in it’s not that black or white. They don’t have emotion like we do so they don’t care like we do. So I wasn’t surprised to see Ares turn on Earth when it no longer held his interest. And since Lucifer is the devil of the world of course he would take advantage of the opportunity to get a piece of Earth.
The demigods are the only ones born of earth and they truly care about Earth’s survival even if they don’t so much as care about the people that inhabit it. I feel like though that Marigold is stronger. She just has to embrace all of her. Accept all of herself. And stop being afraid of herself. Because she is a Succubi and she could use anything at her disposal to get stronger. And if I was her I would. Of... Read more
After spending the vast majority of my life lonely, I came to this town to find answers about my mother, and instead, stumbled upon a secret society full of monsters I never knew existed outside of dark tales.Now I've built a sanctuary, gotten in the middle of an ages-old feud between various monste... Continue reading at Amazon.com...
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
This is the longest it’s ever taken me to read a book because I had to, August 31, 2019
This review is from: Gypsy Truths (All The Pretty Monsters Book 6) (Kindle Edition)
...get up and walk around every three pages
Gear up people because the end is nigh and I promise you...you didn’t see this twist. Or if you do please teach a class on being a clairvoyant.
This wraps up the story. You’ll get a lot of tied off quilts from this massive book. I can say, after such a BRUTAL fight scene that lasted a good chunk of the book, the ending felt like a cool down lap.
It was nice to see the boys get the scripted flipped on them. And don’t worry that’s not a spoiler because whatever you just perked up about? That’s not the twist. It’s crazier.
It’s dense. It’s really dense. Kristy Cunning is someone who packs a whole lotta plot into not a lotta space so I still haven’t picked up on half of the Easter eggs and...breadcrumbs she left us.
You guys the best review I can give is...I’m going to read this series from the beginning starting right now.
I dreamed about losing my innocence to a vampire.
I’d never met him before.
And then I saw him the next morning.
He’s my new college professor.
Could this be a coincidence? I’m not sure.
Is it scary? Definitely.
He’s way too sexy and I’m drawn to him.
But the darkne... Continue reading at Amazon.com...
This review is from: Bitten By My Teacher (Kindle Edition)
This was very disappointing. I didn't even make it through the first chapter. I usually give the book 3-5 chapters before I call it quits, but yeah...not this time. What bothers me the most is that it had 4-5 star reviews. Don't waste your money.
SHE RUINED EVERYTHING... I WILL MAKE HER PAY.Her mom robbed my dad of his job. Destroyed his life. Now I have to look at her every day. The girl next door. A human. A hot little nerd.She doesn’t belong here—not in Wolf Ridge, not at our high school, definitely not in my life.She doesn’t know what I ... Continue reading at Amazon.com...
61 of 61 people found the following review helpful
An OUTSTANDING first and TOTAL MUST-READ paranormal New Adult ROMANCE!, September 4, 2019
This review is from: Alpha Bully (Wolf Ridge HIgh Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
Sensuously alluring prose, so descriptive this reader felt a part of every action, thought, and touch. Perhaps it is the characters, so well-developed and realistic despite their paranormal abilities, that I know I taught their doppelgangers. Or is it the compelling complexities of the action-packed plot that drew me into this story so deeply, I had to finish it in one sitting? Perhaps it was the combination of all of these things which left me totally sunburned and dehydrated because real life faded, and every breath I took pulled me deeper into the amazing world author Renee Rose’s has created for ALPHA BULLY. While I am unashamedly a fan of most everything Renee Rose has authored or co-authored, her foray into the trope of a new adult (NA) paranormal was a delightful surprise and left me hoping that ALPHA BULLY will be the first of many novels set in Wolf Ridge. The strength of her heroine, Bailey, and the depth of the change that love brought to Cole was so well told, my... Read more