Oct. 20, 2021

Could-be kissing with Paris Wynters

Could-be kissing with Paris Wynters

Highway to the danger zone


Paris Wynters is a thrill-seeking author who writes adrenaline-fueled romance that celebrated diverse characters. We talk about the importance of representation in romance and the importance of own voices, how writing sweet romance is more difficult than steamy, and how the internal struggles of the characters in romance turn her on (as a writer). We dissect a scene from the first book in her Navy SEALs of Little Creek series, Issued, and it may just be the steamiest excerpt I’ve read to date! 

 

Connect with Paris online:

facebook.com/pariswynters 

instagram.com/pariswynters 

twitter.com/pariswynters 

www.pariswynters.com

 

And check out the latest book in her Navy SEALs series Assigned.

Transcript

Elle 0:01
Paris Wynters is a multiracial author who writes steamy and sweet love East Coast stories that celebrate our diverse world. She is the author of hearts unleashed the Navy SEALs of little creek series love on the winter steps and called into action. When she's not dreaming up stories she can be found assisting with disasters and helping to find missing people as a search and rescue canine handler. Parris resides on Long Island in New York with her family. For fun she enjoys video games, hockey and diving into new experiences like flying planes and taking trapeze lessons. Paris is also graduate of Loyola University of Chicago Paris thank you so much for being here. Welcome to steam scenes.

Paris 0:41
Thank you I'm happy to be here

Elle 0:42
This is super crazy you have a bio and a half I'm like oh like you're an adventure I'm guessing

Paris 0:51
Yes, I like to try new things and it's funny because you know everybody says oh you risk take you know, you're an adventure and my husband will stand there and be like, yeah, now she does these things she researches them to death and then it's like the not like you know, balls to the wall and not safety Sam I'm like right in the middle so I do things but I do things cautiously. But at the same point, I finished them my husband's just like, yeah, throw ourselves out of a plane. Okay, gotcha. Bye. See ya. Stand there good. Okay, well, Sir, did you When was this last checked? Are you sure everything's okay all right. Now let's jump.

Elle 1:33
I mean, I guess is it fair to say that you're an adrenaline junkie?

Paris 1:36
Yes. Yeah, that has always I guess been my thing I was never like the drinker or anything like i mean you know in college I'd be like go to these parties and have water then I would be like the person you wanted somebody to dare to do something yeah hands down. Amen.

Elle 1:56
Okay, that's really cool I mean I imagine that this is a served you well as a writer

Paris 2:02
Hey Yes, I haven't used everything and we've some of the things I guess there's like a sense of humor and stuff that I find that I'm like other people might think is crazy so I really haven't hit that oh well yeah, I'll throw this out there um you know to see if it's just see what people think like my one of my college roommates and I like to this day we still talk about we had there was 123 there were four of us living in an apartment building and you know you always have like that one roommate that like just doesn't clean like they'll you know cook things and they'll you know, eat us the plates and then just like leave them so we got so angry one time that three of us decided we were going to stage that our apartment was robbed and that we were home so we had the people from downstairs come tie us up like we wrecked everything like we destroyed picture frames. This poor girl had like three finals in a row comes home sees this disaster area we totally played it out and then you know she ran downstairs was trying to call 911 they're like no no give us our phones back we totally were dying laughing she was upset and then I'll never forget my one roommate just looks at her puts her hand on her hips and she goes well next time do your dishes.

Elle 3:25
I mean that is a little extreme.

Paris 3:27
I was just out for the prank. I thought it was cool.

Elle 3:32
That is kind of like that's kind of inter cat that's an intricate planning going on there. Oh, it was it was just perfect actually I absolutely love it. So yeah, it's like

Paris 3:41
the things you learned in college that I I never knew what how the penny locker door I never even knew what it was and then I learned that um, you know, it's like hysterical like the things you learn in college

Elle 3:53
well I feel like now I feel like college was useless I didn't learn any of that education was completely useless What was I think? Didn't know were you a writing major in college like is that what no

Paris 4:06
I wasn't I was actually a bio major or pre med.

Elle 4:10
Oh, okay. Wow So how did how did you come to writing

Paris 4:15
um, I always I remember from elementary school I always liked um, I guess it was was a fourth grade we did this journalism thing. And then there were other like writing things I enjoyed, but it was never like I would say a passion at that point. I was always really in love with animals wanted to be a veterinarian or I'm huge a huge science geek. So really into like genetics and stuff like that. Um, you know, went to school for that I always just kind of wrote like, I guess it was in high school, more poetry. And then in college it was fiction but like, you know, by myself never really wrote for anybody else. I'm, you know, the fan fiction And then I started learning about how to write picture books and the use of words and all that stuff and I remember I wrote my first now I guess novel full length and it was just something I did for fun and it really actually had to do with a couple of friends and my experience doing dog rescue and the funny things you know you know we encountered and stuff like that and then from there I just kind of went along the story that story and then I guess somewhere along the line I'm like, Oh, I you know, traditional publishing sounds interesting. Why don't I try this

Elle 5:38
wow wow okay, so how did you how did you get into the dog the dog rescue the search and rescue with the canines? Because that's really interesting.

Paris 5:47
Yeah, um I remember I saw this I want to say with lifetime TV story that had you know my mom was watching and I walked by and and I don't necessarily know if it No it was appropriate it wasn't anything really bad it was kind of like one of those murder mystery that had like a search and rescue dog built into it for some odd reason. Um, but I remember that was the first time I saw it and then obviously being a New York native you know you had 911 But even before that when I was in college I kind of understood and knew about it um, but it was more of a timing thing um, you know, in terms of the amount of time you need to put into and all that then eventually just it all fell into place and so you know, it was one of those things I guess from high school I always had in the back of my mind like oh yeah that would be fun to do you know knew about military canine police canine so Yeah,

Elle 6:50
wow okay, so I mean I imagine that doing that work informs your writing

Paris 6:58
yes um it for let's see search and rescue has come into and you said like three books the little creek series to where the characters do search and rescue but more high angle so like mountain stuff and then call them to action is the actual true focused one that is on search and rescue. That involves the canine handler

Elle 7:24
Okay. All right. Cool. Cool. Cuz I imagine that with I mean with your knowledge base in you know, in search and rescue, and I assume you're working often with law enforcement and you know, so you're probably around that a lot.

Paris 7:38
Um, yes and no, so I have both a lifeline and a cadaver dog. So it really depends on with search and rescue who's in charge of a scene what is the scene instead of missing hunter so is that on state Parkland a state park involved or is the cop involved or is the fire department involved that's like one of those three usually

Elle 8:02
wow see even that is sort of like you know, I think search and rescue dogs dog immediately it's going to be the police like I just think you know, like that sort of, like that's kind of interesting that are all they're all these very specific things. Well, if it's

Paris 8:15
there, most of us are volunteers and don't even belong, like my full time job. This teacher and one of our other trailing dogs. He's a lawyer. The fun one, he's a pilot for JetBlue

Elle 8:29
god Okay, this is wow, all right. Okay. But with your knowledge base, I would assume that you could do I mean, really? You can write like thrillers you could write detective or cop drama or whatever. Why romance?

Paris 8:44
Um, I've always loved romance. I like science fiction fantasy as well. And on that side I do like the darker stuff. But I think for search and rescue um, you know, like a lot of people I'm not a police procedural person. I don't like that stuff. It's just I don't like to read it it's to you know, I mean, unless you get into Dexter kind of situation, which I love Dexter series. Um, you know, it's not really for me, and then with search and rescue, you know, that was one of the things even I ran across with a call to action was they marked it as a romantic suspense. But, you know, a lot of with search and rescue there. There's always like this antagonist, a person. And most of the time search and rescue its nature. You know, the hunter who's lost because they came off of a trail. my lifeline dog is looking for Lifeline people. Like if you look at, um, you know, unfortunately, what's going on in Miami

Elle 9:48
right now.

Paris 9:49
Um, it's not, I mean, yeah, depending on some information you may or may not know, but the reason for that, you know, for what happened is not you did not have somebody purposely go in and do something it's not like a bomb exploded yeah you don't have a kidnapping. um you know not to say that when you approach a search and rescue scene you do not know if something has happened. Um, but you know, like for example, there was a missing girl in Lancaster that ended up being a murder. But no one knew that at the time, um, because you have a fair amount of you know, where are you searching? What are you doing? Do you What information do you know, most of the search and rescue really is nature has happened. Okay.

Elle 10:39
So So then, with your search and rescue book, for example, did you use nature as the antagonist or were you? Yeah, of course. Yes,

Paris 10:45
it was, uh, okay, well, most that book is really um, it's, well no, I can't say it's a light romance. It's a contemporary romance um, the female handler goes up to earn her certification and just like little mishaps happen and then you have the romance you have the hero's grandfather is suffering from a degenerative disease the person who goes missing is just a child who wandered off from the town fair which often happens I mean, how many searches have I've been on on to because a child has wandered off from somewhere on whether it's out of their house where somebody you know, they rented a cabin and nobody was paying attention or just away from a camp scene or whatever it is, it happens so and so that's actually what happens and then you do have a storm so there you know, you do have these aspects that you have to In Search and Rescue that you're going up against, you know, temperature weather, what's the person's health like, you know, all these things,

Elle 11:51
and you're also sort of working in that sort of race against time trope too because the longer that somebody is out there the more trouble they can get into oh absolutely yeah. Oh my god that's so cool. What a cool what a cool thing to be writing and to sort of have knowledge of so that you can write it you know,

Paris 12:08
I'd say with technology has been very interesting because I remember we took this one class once and this woman she actually had gotten lost and she had her phone on her and she was recording her experience and you could see even in the span of just five hours even when it was daylight how her behavior and her mindset changed you know because she was at yeah it is when you're out you know when you're in nature and you get lost it's scary Yeah, yeah, cuz you don't know which ways which especially if you don't have like a GPS if you're unfamiliar with the area

Elle 12:46
what was I'm sort of curious like what was the sort of progression of her experience over that five hours like at first was she like Oh,

Paris 12:54
it was out there I think for like a couple of days before I found her Yeah, but like even in the span It was a decrease rapidly she was smart she stayed by a source of water you know, but it was just I think once night hit and even the next morning you saw that a complete deterioration and to fear it wasn't a winter day but it was just the fact of being out there with no one and being lost yeah you know and there was no weather aspect she wasn't hurt or anything like that. Um, which all those things also continue to add Yeah, you could see the distress

Elle 13:36
but even even just in i mean i guess if you're going to get lost that is going to be your ideal circumstance right? Yeah. So even under that ideal circumstance it was still a very scary way Yeah, absolutely. Wow, that's really wild see I'm I'm like in awe of anybody that does any of these sort of like I don't know like you know the this the suspense filled book because I know enough I know nothing. I know nothing

Paris 14:04
interesting because it you know call to action really, it's not too much of a suspect you have that little bit of suspense after I'm not really a suspense romance writer. It's not my forte I like there's always some you know, a book that might have a little bit of suspense in it but it's not like a huge category like the you know, traditional romantic suspense it's really contemporary with an aspect of suspense and seals your Oh, my God, I love I'm working. Like I would rather take a like the new book I'm actually writing he still in my first draft as a mechanic. I like heroes who work and heroines who and I shouldn't say like work into, I'm not into like the white collar

Elle 14:58
level. We're like you're not writing a billionaire romance. That's not Yeah.

Paris 15:04
No, unless it was like the secret billionaire who's really like the volunteer firefighter and you don't know he's rich, and he's like throwing himself into the line of fire and you come out. You know, he's not like throwing his money around. I mean,

Elle 15:20
I guess this sort of speaks to your adrenaline junkie side, right? Oh, yeah.

Paris 15:25
But it's funny because I actually have she's kind of a little bit retired now. She's helping with training. But I'm one of my teammates is her husband works for Tiffany's in a very well to do position

Elle 15:44
because you see, sweet, okay.

Paris 15:46
Yeah. And like if she has a pink room in her house, which is full of pink stuff, and you know, glamour and glitz and everything, and she'll wait around in mud with her dog and has found countless people and like things that you would never know until like, you go to her house, and you're like, Wait, you're the same, like, perception. Sometimes when you hear something. And then like, when you see it, like, especially in the area where I kind of live if you have wealth, a lot of people show that off. So it's just amazing. I'm like, wait, you live in that area? And I would have never guessed it. Yeah. And that's like one of those. That's the kind of like wealthy person I would write about, like, you would never know they were until you're like, Oh, well, you live here.

Elle 16:37
I've never heard of a pink room before. This is absolutely.

Paris 16:43
Our favorite color. So everything in the room is

Elle 16:47
I totally got we were 2020 are in New Yorker here. So like I totally, I totally get what you mean there. So I'm kind of curious, right? When did you remember the first romance book you ever read?

Paris 17:01
I don't Well, I should say I remember. A sort of, I read the Thorn Birds. And I do not know if that's classified technically as a romance. But I know romance is a big aspect to it. And I know it was a very no no romance. Yeah,

Elle 17:19
I remember the mini series. That's how

Paris 17:22
I watched the miniseries evolve when they replayed it, because I want to see it. Um, but yeah, that would have been my first book that hooked me on to and I do like the, whether it's forbidden or angsty kind of romances. You know, and I think that kind of really set the stage for me.

Elle 17:41
Oh, so Okay, so what was it that you loved about?

Paris 17:46
Um, I just thought it was very, I liked the that. I want to say a little bit of that anks that the hero went through like, because he questioned a lot of like, his beliefs. And it was for, you know, there was a whole it wasn't very, like, rom com II where, oh, I met somebody and I fell in love. And then you have this little situation that it was really like, a challenge. Like it was like that internal struggle, right. And I like that it wasn't, you know, it wasn't cookie cutter, or I shouldn't say cookie cutter. It wasn't clean. It was a real like internal struggle. And I was like, wow, that's good. You know, and then obviously, when lines are crosses, I go Yeah, this is even better.

Elle 18:38
You like the taboo? Oh, yeah. Okay, so so when you started writing, did you always know that it was gonna be romance was your genre?

Paris 18:50
No, when I started actually, my first two manuscripts were you young adults. One was a like Dexter meets Lord of the Flies. So when I say dark, I mean dark.

Elle 19:06
Sounds good.

Paris 19:09
And then the other one was an urban fantasy. also kind of on the darker side, and then I wrote a romance as my third one.

Elle 19:18
That's so funny. Okay, so I write urban fantasy in addition to romance. So this is like super interesting to me. I love the dark. I love the fight scenes are like my favorite things to write. Um, so I'm very curious. What do you enjoy writing the fight scenes?

Paris 19:36
Um, yes, it depends on the fight scenes. It depends how its approached. For this particular one. It was fun because it was a Kitsune a best one. So it wasn't just like, you know, a hand to hand fight but it was also a fox to wolf in those two forms, fight and From dog experience, you know, it's Yeah, okay, you know how dogs are gonna fight and what they're gonna do and how's the wolf gonna approach it versus the fox and you do have the difference in size and so it I'd say that one was a lot of fun for me to write. I used to train in MMA too. That's actually how I met my husband. So some of the hands hand stuff was fun, too. But he surprised. Yeah, he picks up more because he's had more experience in it. And he's like, Okay, see, this isn't gonna work here. Switch this around or that around?

Elle 20:36
Well, that's good. That's helpful. That's definitely helpful. Okay, I've got I love this because I'm sort of curious, like, do you how do you feel about writing the steamy scenes because I know that you write you write sweet, obviously, too, because you've written these ways, and you write very steamy and so when you're writing the steamy stuff, did you or for the first time, did you find it difficult?

Paris 20:56
Oh, no, not at all. Um, actually, believe it or not, it comes naturally. To me. The one romance that I wrote that was sweet was actually really hard.

Elle 21:07
Okay, we're unpacking this. So tell me more. Why do I is difficult,

Paris 21:14
because I lean naturally, I want to include that steam on this, this sweet romance that I wrote actually came up as an opportunity. And it was a diversity opportunity to introduce, so I'm part Mongolian to introduce people to that culture and that's the reason I took on the project. But it fell into the rules of Hallmark originally what the publisher was publishing through it was one of those they were trying to get it so that I forgot which Hallmark movie came out that was set in Iceland but that was kind of the theme for what like hallmark movies and some like lifetime love movies and all that kind of were falling into so they wanted it written a certain way so that it kind of fell into the realm of could be adapted for film got it um, so that's why I took on that project and it was hard it was like oh, especially because it had to fall into the like one kiss everything else is like lucky if they hold hands and I'm like Oh come on.

Elle 22:22
I mean I get I guess there's writing a sort of sweet or writing close the door which you know i funny I've only spoken to one writer who even writes close the door I'm dying to talk to like somebody who just strictly sweet like for this podcast because I think that would be so fascinating. Because I do think to a degree in terms of writing intimacy those of us that write steam kind of have it a little bit easier

Paris 22:48
it was you know what it was it was more of there were things that I'm like oh yeah, okay, so this is the first time you know they'll have like that little brush of the hands or this is you know, when they hold hands or the could be kiss or which my favorite could we kiss is drives me crazy to this day. I want to throw my phone out the TV every time I see it. The Top Gun scene where he leans in and she's in the elevator and then he just like walks away and I'm like, oh you because he like lean so close up and she's all like, Oh, yes, kiss me and then he's like, okay, and like turns and walks away and like and does it purpose like Yeah. You have those you know, you have some of those moments. But it's like to make it to the point where I guess the climax on a sexual level would be like, you know, the first chaste kiss it can't even be like kiss with tongue.

Elle 23:54
So many roles here. Oh my god.

Paris 23:56
Yes, and where hands can fall and can't fall. You know, because what ends up at what ended up happening for me is I got really involved in the story and it was like, Oh yeah, I have to weave these other little things in but it has to be like in this kind of way. Um, so it's like it was different and it was an interesting challenge and I know I could do it. You know, now having completed it, but um, I would say I definitely I learned a lot on how to build some of that into the other you know, the steamy books, but I do prefer like if somebody kisses I want to write but they kiss. I just enjoy it more and I definitely enjoy reading about that stuff more though. I have read some sweet romances that I've just loved.

Elle 24:51
Right? Right. So okay. Oh my god. There's so much to talk about here so much to unpack. I'm very I'm kind of I'm curious about Writing so the reason why you picked up this sweet line Well okay, I've got so much running through my head right now I'm sort of staggering around. Take a breath. Okay, cuz you're this the scene that you sent me is like probably the steamiest I've ever, like read on this show so far. And I've had BDSM books so, you know, it's a different sort of steam like that's a little bit more of, I guess. I mean, though, it was a kink for sure. But I think that that there like BDSM is a little bit more of a kink than sort of like, Yeah, I don't know it's kink. It's, anyway, I guess, a little bit more taboo what you sent me I'm not gonna spoil it. I'm trying not to spoil it. But I think yours especially now that we've gone through the whole 50 Shades of Grey phenomenon. Like I feel like BDSM is probably not as taboo as other things that one can do when one is engaged in this experience. So I don't know like I I just find it completely fascinating that you wrote a sweet romance knowing like how steamy you write. Yeah, yeah, that's wild that's wild

Paris 26:16
so it's actually trying to also it was funny because I when I talked to my agent about it, she's like, all right, so this is how you brand yourself because branding is so annoying, like, yeah, it's crazy. She's like here what you do is you're focusing on this so that you can write this or this so I'm like, Alright, that works.

Elle 26:34
Okay, so wait, how so you didn't write then you wrote this book under your under your the name that you use for your seamy book. So what did she like? What did she say?

Paris 26:45
Even though that particular book kind of still falls outside the scope? Um, we rebranded Paris Wynters as that I write what is it steamy and sweet romance, East Coast romance stories for everyone. Just because I do write multiracial stories.

Elle 27:08
That was my next question. Because you do say you're a multiracial author and diverse world and so you are writing a diversity into your books as well.

Paris 27:17
Yes, and different ones. So like, my newest book that is releasing next month, um, you know, it's the third book in the Little Creek series. So you do have those diverse characters, but in this particular one, um, it's a disability, because I do suffer from one as well. So, you know, that's the aspect that I brought in there.

Elle 27:38
I think that that's so interesting, and also important. Because, you know, when you are writing in a disability into the, into your work, it's sort of like you really have to think about, you know, for a minute, well, how does, you know, how does this character have sex depending on like, what the disability is, you know, and it's something I took a intimacy coaching course. And it was a sort of somatic experience program. And one of the things that we did talk about is like, you know, you can achieve orgasm, without any sort of genital manipulation you know, like it just sort of like some some other body part takes the place of, you know, a penis or a clitoral or a G spa, or whatever it is. And I just found that so fascinating. And I think that is such an overlooked area. Within the romance community I could also just be not finding the books because of my own biases or whatever. But it seems to me that that is something that is really overlooked in romance and something that's a very important subject I think to be writing on.

Paris 28:42
Oh, absolutely. And I think you know, that you mentioned I know I've read one book and I can't remember the book I know it was a spicier, maybe it was a BDSM where and it but if it wasn't written in the way that let's say that, you know, you'd ideally want it to be written if that was an aspect that you were, you know, bringing more into the romance world, but it was about a heroine who could achieve an orgasm just through nipple manipulation. Um, but it was kind of like the Oh yeah, I could get off just by doing that, you know, but it was interesting to see that somebody had actually bought that in you know, and it was it and I only seen it once and again, I think like you other people may have done it but you know, it's just I can't really remember something worth that's all it was you know, or you know that it was solely like hey through this kind of manipulation you can achieve orgasm and nothing else was touched or Yeah, you know, that doing that almost bought them to orgasm, and then they started having sex with them and they had the most amazing organ, you know, like something where wasn't that I don't really remember. Recalling outside of this one book,

Elle 30:01
yeah, yeah, cuz I think the most that I've read is like disfigured, you know, in terms of like a scar on your face or, you know, some sort of, you know, half your chest is mutilated, or, you know, from a war wound or whatever, you know,

Paris 30:15
I have a critique partner who just recently had. She's agented, she found her agent and she, her let's see what I believe her heroine is it I forgot what they have, but they have some kind of spinal issue that they are in a wheelchair. But since birth, but that she's an own voices author, um, there is a little bit of steam, but I do believe that there wasn't any. Well, at the point I read the manuscript, and she might change it. There wasn't really a sex scene involved in that. But that is some of the things that I have seen where, whether it's closed door, or maybe leaning towards sweet, um, you know, those are some of the aspects I had seen rather than, you know, I Hey, have you dealt, you know, delve into that? Yeah, I think so. Yeah. And I hope those come because they are out there. And they are interesting aspects.

Elle 31:17
I do too. I mean, I would love to read that because I think it would be such an incredible First of all, it just be an incredible step for the genre to step out and do steamy romance. For somebody who is having sex a different way. You know, but like you said, Own Voices, like I as much as I like want to, you know, they always say we'll write the book you want to read and it's like, but I also there's also an own voices as part of that, where I'm like, I can't write that, because that is not my lived experience, and I certainly wouldn't want to get it wrong.

Paris 31:46
Oh, absolutely. Yeah. And I think the other thing is, there is some, you know, there is calls for diversity and stuff like that, but there's still somewhat of a block, depending on publisher, um, for certain things. I mean, I know that at what was a conference I went to, I actually overheard a particular publisher say that on somebody in a wheelchair would make their readers feel bad, and they didn't want a main character in a wheelchair. And I was like, are you serious right now? Like, the kind of person that might if he turned around and said it to me, my fist would land in your face so bite my tongue and walk away.

Elle 32:39
Wow, I mean, wow, to say that out loud at a conference. Yeah. That was ballsy. Holy shit. Yeah, it's uh, you know, it's so funny because I you know, there there is in the industry, even though self publishing is like huge, right? You know, I do know a lot of authors still want to go the trad route, and I feel like there's like the gatekeepers kind of use these excuses. Well, no, my readership isn't gonna want to read that it's gonna make them feel bad. You know, and it's sort of like Well no, if you write it a certain way, you know, I mean, there are plenty of romance novels out there where you know the the heroine has been a victim of sexual assault.

Oh yeah, there's a lot of those

And it's like right there on the page sometimes and if anything I mean that you know, certainly tears at my heartstrings and I feel terrible for that character. But it only makes me root harder for her to come through it and find the end you know, so I don't I don't understand like what's different? Oh, yeah,

Paris 33:42
yeah. But it's you know, very interesting because I've learned that there are still you know, publishers will still at the end even when they go to acquisitions that you know, you still have a whole bunch of people in the room from different departments and with a lot of research and buying trends and you know, I think it still comes down to certain you know, just redoing A lot of you know, what are we actually buying and, but then again, it also comes down to what's marketed I mean, I saw somebody post on Twitter, I believe it was the other day or maybe it was Instagram that they went to Barnes and Nobles for the first time since you know, everything was shut down. And they were amazed just the level of old the YA books that were in Barnes and Nobles that they never heard about, because the publishers just didn't put the marketing dollars behind them. And it's like, well, how many other books have we not heard about because of that, you know, enrollments and it's, but then those marketing dollars are what also drive those buying trends. So even for romance, you know, the biggest sellers for covers are the men on the cover. You know, if you have a female centric cover, it's like the least Selling

Elle 35:01
yeah yeah and you know what's really interesting too is I actually see this as a real sort of Flashpoint for the marketing because if you are the first one out of the gate to do something like unique and different that actually does speak to an underserved audience I have a feeling there'll be a lot of at least mainstream press coverage of that which then can sort of spiral into that because I'll tell you what getting like mainstream press coverage and romance is like oh yeah oh my god so difficult like that is like so difficult and that's even for you know, published authors you know, who have tried tried publishers behind them. Nevermind indies like who you know mainstream won't touch Oh, yeah. But just to for like a Harlequin or whoever to come out with something with a line that that celebrates that diversity. You know, that sort of diversity? I don't know I have a feeling it would go I have a feeling the press would go bananas. Oh, yeah. Like I think there's an opportunity to hear somebody take it absolutely. There's an opportunity to take this opportunity.

Paris 36:12
Oh, definitely.

Elle 36:14
Um, okay, so I want to just talk about your Navy SEALs of Little Creek series because there was something in the description that I just was like, Oh my god, this is fucking brilliant. Um, you put it in that so you're you're kind of have this kind of like strangers getting together as like, like that's what like Oh god, what did I just forgot? Like, imagine a call like a matchmaker. Yeah, like it's like a matchmaker. But it's absolutely like something different because it's like that forced marriage right? The forced marriage trope

Paris 36:44
where it's like what was a mail order bride pizza match making the yeah

Elle 36:49
so there's the spouse matching program that is written into your Navy SEALs have a little creek series okay first of all double checking not a real thing right? No not wanting to double check that okay, where did this idea come from? Because I think it's fucking

Paris 37:07
well there was always I mean since I was younger like I grew up in a military family I have military friends all that stuff you always hear that you know divorce rates are always so high and then you know you always heard the well if they wanted you to have a wife they would issue you on blah blah, blah. You know, Oh, yeah, yeah, whatever. Haha. But then I forgot I came across I forgot what I was actually reading about. Um, but I came across some articles where they were talking again about the divorce rates in the climbing divorce rates, especially among special special forces. But then just in the military in general, and then I remember like my mouth falling over. And, of course, I also heard like stories from people I know about like some of the reasons like vive they got married, like yeah, you had these Oh, hey, like asked to get married after the second day, going off to Vegas getting married quickly. I think even an army wives one of them got married, like really fast. But then I heard things about like, they would make deals with good friends of theirs to get married to get like better housing to get moved into a better housing.

Elle 38:18
That is a thing.

Paris 38:21
All these other little intricate things? And I'm like, Ah, okay, so then, like, the two just kind of came together. And I think there was a recommendation email, like from Amazon or something that came through those and it was like, mail order bride this and as I would it be funny if, and that's like, kind of how that idea sprang about kinda like the Yep, we want to do to have one, we'd issue you one. And then Oh, the military is having all these problems with this in this. Oh, and I remember the article was also one of the following articles I was reading was about this husband and wife, um, I forgot if he was a seal, or a Green Beret, but they were going through and doing like marriage workshops to help like with some of the things that you'd experience in Special Forces and all that kind of stuff. So it was just a combination of like, reading real world stuff, and, you know, kind of putting a couple of things together and I was like, that's gonna be fun.

Elle 39:22
I'm kind of now I'm really curious because this you're writing a really awesome, fun sort of trope, I guess, like a new trope. But but because it's not a real thing. Did you get any pushback from readers? Because I know sometimes readers can be like, that would never happen.

Paris 39:39
Um, yeah, there's always some in reviews that would, you know, be like a and even like, when we were out, it was out on submission to some publishers it's just like, Oh, well, this is you know, too much of you know, a push from reality, you know, suspension of disbelief for it to happen and, you know, I hate to say it as being in search and rescue reading half of the search and rescue books they put out there, I'm like, you have no idea what you're writing about. And this is what you're publishing. Like, there's just so many like, I'll never is some I, there's a big search and rescue romance that I didn't even know was published until it was ripped apart at a convention, or Well, I guess it was a training summit that

Elle 40:28
I was at, for a search and rescue training summit, not a romance book. Yeah,

Paris 40:33
we were out there, training dogs and stuff like that, and just training for ourselves. And they were talking about this one book, and they were like, a lot of them were pissed about the level about how search and rescue was portrayed. You know, obviously, then, you know, here, here comes the certain handlers, especially the men on this ad, that's because it's romance. You know,

Elle 40:58
the courts say, yeah,

Paris 41:00
there were a fair number. I mean, just in general, there was a lot of like, Are you serious? Like, this person couldn't even like, open the internet and read and you know, all this other kind of stuff. So I was like, okay, you know, what, this is the biggest aspect that you can't believe is that, like, the military would come up with something like that, meanwhile, look at all the other things they do. Alright, so you know what, it's not your cup of tea fine, or whatever. But I, you know, to me, it's like, there are tropes that I'll read that I kind of laugh at, but at the same point, it's not really why I picked up the book, it's, it might have been interesting, but it might be a trope that I like, like, whether it's forced proximity enemies to lovers, um, and then if I can get behind the characters if you're saying that they were matchmade and you know, when to first call, you know, be one of the first colonists on Mars. I'd be like, okay, I mean, technically scientifically, we're not there yet. But hey, whatever. Take me along for

Elle 42:02
the ride. Why not? Absolutely. Well, I guess that's it. Like I'm not reading this to become proficient in whatever it is the romance writers writing about I'm reading this for the romance and the happily ever

Paris 42:14
so what do you care if they you know, got put together because the military came up with some program.

Elle 42:23
Okay, I want to dig into your steamy scene because it is, um, what book is this from? I forgot to actually

Paris 42:29
that is from issued. So that is the first book in the series. So

Elle 42:34
this is the first book in the

Paris 42:37
Navy SEALs, a little creek series,

Elle 42:39
a little creek series. Okay, cool. And can you set the scene up for us? Where are we in the book? What is their sort of background? Where How did we get here?

Paris 42:48
So the first book is about Jim and Taya Jim is forced into the military's new matchmaking program. And he's kind of angry about it. Um, you know, he had a marriage that didn't go so well the first time. Um, but he's also like the go to boy for his commanding officers, you know, he's the, you can count on me kind of person. I'm even be grudgingly. Um, so he goes into it, the heroine, um, she had some unfortunate life events that happened to her in New York, and she kind of wants to start over, saw this as an opportunity to start over and joins the program. Um, so they're kind of being that he's still active duty, she has to move down to where he stationed and moves in with him since he has the house and everything like that. Um, so they have, you know, sparks, but at the same point, bump heads a lot. Um, so this particular scene, they've had sex already, they know, they're attracted to one another, um, this particular scene, their intimacy, outside of sex has already started to grow. So she had gotten hurt on the search and rescue thing and he's been nervous and, you know, kind of also trying to support her and, you know, in turn, emotionally support, not like financially, um, you know, and also kind of learning to, in a sense, be married the correct way. So he has a nice little support system of friends who kind of put them in his place every now and then. So, this particular scene, she was actually out writing, she has a broken arm and she went out riding her motorcycle, um, which I've had friends who do and it's not exactly the smartest move. I'm not

Elle 44:59
possible. But it's possible

Paris 45:03
absolutely so you know she has these other things from home going on um you know her father was a police officer was killed and you know it just she was inside her head a little bit and she that's just one of the ways she gets out of her head which you know writing and you know myself my husband rides in is just one of those clear your head kind of things sometimes. So that's what she went and did and she comes home and the place is completely dark he's sitting there waiting for her. He has he's upset about it in some ways, but as she looks around, she notices things are off Jim is very like everything has its place the napkins are completely straight. And she notices the kitchen is a little bit in disarray which is a completely unlike him. So then it comes out. He got word, his best friend was killed overseas. So it's one of those things where this particular scene really isn't about the attractive Hey, I want to have sex with you. It's one of those sex was the escape. She he needed to he needed something to forget. And she recognizes that and steps into offer something to help him kind of escape for a bit.

Elle 46:35
And this makes what happens in this scene. Like even more, I don't know like like ballsy on her part really. I mean like this is this was like a huge step that she took I think

Paris 46:48
um, and what I liked about this scene why it's so that's how this whole scene happens and you know one of the reasons it was my favorite scene is because there were very few books where I've ever seen like a heroine maybe move too fast and and be like, oops, I'm sorry, yeah, um, or kind of wait for the male or the hero to give sis What is it consent?

Elle 47:17
Is that right?

Paris 47:17
Um, so you know, especially for Jim, one of the reasons I liked it, too is because you do have this like, strong tough person who is acts timid, you know, you know, he doesn't fully accept his interests or I should say what he'd like to explore sexually what you know, he enjoys, and through the book there, I won't ruin it. But there's a certain other reasons why he's a little hesitant to. So it's, um,

Elle 47:51
do we get to sort of unpack this later, too? Like, is this something Oh, yeah.

Paris 47:55
more comfortable and asking for the things he likes and stuff like so it's really kind of like I've always seen where it's usually like reverse. Yeah. And I can you know, it, I kind of want to do it, you know, this way where it was the the hero who wasn't completely on board with what he likes or has some kind of hangups about it. Were there, however, and it's just kind of like, I've had lovers. I know how, you know, and I'm okay, you know, whether she has her limits on what she feels comfortable doing. She has, you know, she's okay, exploring, she's comfortable in her sexuality, and with the certain things too, so with him, he kind of likes us play and she's had lovers who have and she's totally fine with it. And so it was fun to kind of switch the roles around and have her be like, Hey, you know what, it's okay, I got you if you're interested. We'll take it slower, you know, however it went and you know, it was just fun to you know, switch the roles around there. Right.

Elle 49:06
Cool. Okay, I'm going to I'm gonna I'm gonna give it a read. Are we ready? Yeah, here we go. Has shaftless glistens, and even in my hand, it exudes power and purpose. I drag my tongue across the head, playing with the slit at the top and the tip of my tongue until he playing with the slit at the top with the tip of my tongue until he gives me with a salty droplet of pre calm, my groan matches his when I swallow it. I want him inside of me. I want to touch my own aching slit, but I only have one hand at my disposal, and I need it to hold his dick steady while I be that with the tension. The taste of his skin tightens things low in my body and my mouth waters. His fingers are lost in my hair, his body shuttering and shaking above me. I feel powerful, and I grip his ass urging him to thrust into my mouth while I arrived before him hungry for contact of my own. My hand cups his balls briefly before traveling beyond them. I love playing with a man's prostate, it makes them come so much harder. One partner described it as a deeper kind of release. And that's what I want for Jim tonight. I want the pleasure to take control and overpower everything, even the grief. I want it not just for him, but for myself. When my wet fingers tears his ass, he stops thrusting my nails trail along his muscular cheeks and I suck him deeper. He resumes thrusting and I explore him again. When just the tip of my finger enters him, I pull free and duck my head lapping his shaft and balls tire. Oh fuck, he stumbles a little. When I suck at the delicate skin of his sack of fine tremor works along his body. I wrap my mouth around his balls and paint them with my tongue. His legs shake and he rests his forearm forearm against the ledge of the granite for balance. I duck lower and let the tip of my tongue lap the tight rows between his ass cheeks, my neck arching with the need to reach my finger moves in small circles while I work him with my tongue. A deep rumbling growl of pleasure explodes from his chest. But the sound breaks the spell and he pulls me to to my feet. His chest rises and falls as if he's been running and he looks scared. Huh? You went there. I think this is this was so unexpected to sort of like read I think I've read maybe a couple of books that have gone there with Anil Fae and, and you know, each time I kind of found this, those particular books that that used and apply, definitely fell in the realm of I don't know that this man is consenting to what you're doing. You know, and not like he was like a ghast. But it just sort of seemed like this thing of Oh, and now she's touching my butt. And usually there is some sort of, you know, there does need to be some sort of stop moment to before moving forward. You know, um, and so, it you know, it was, it was really sort of neat to read this. And know that I haven't read this very often.

Paris 52:15
Yeah, it was definitely you know, I've come across some where it was either, like you said, or there have been somewhere like, the hero was wanting to try it. So he was like, 100%, like, Yeah, let's go for this or has had or it's been a part of, you know, things he's liked. And he just wasn't sure if his partner would like doing that to him. Right. So this is kind of like the in between where, you know, it's not Jim's first time doing it. But it's one of those where, because of experiences with his ex wife. Now he's been kinda hesitant to explore that part again.

Elle 53:01
Okay. Okay. Oh, that's really fascinating that there's gonna be some sort of like, I don't know, I want to, I guess trigger around this. This experience even though he's had it before, you know,

Paris 53:12
um, it's not really, it's more of Being Well, he's been made fun of for his interests in other words, so it's not like oh, in the, the experiences bad boat. When divorce comes, you know,

Elle 53:26
there's a bit of a shaming, right? There's a bit of shaming.

Paris 53:30
Oh, you know what? She wasn't exactly it wasn't, I would say an amicable divorce. So there was like, a whole bunch of other things. And this is another one where it's like, bam, right at, you know, so,

Elle 53:41
right. Okay, I'm gonna keep going. I relax in his grip, allowing emotion to guide my lips to his chest. I kiss him above the heart and rest there until it's wild beat morphs from a hummingbird mid flight to that of a butterfly. His shoulders relax, and with my chin resting against his breastbone. I look up at him through my lashes. I'm sorry, I was moving too fast. He shakes his head no, I, Jim blows out of breath and tries again. I like he trembles with the admission, his eyes wide and vulnerable as if he expects my ridicule. Instead, arousal hits me like a one two punch and I don't fight it, allowing it to transform my face so he can see that the need in me matches the need and him. You can trust me. He studies me for what feels like an eternity. But in the end nods The motion is almost imperceptible, see, I felt like Okay, now we're getting to the heart of the matter here. We're getting to the lake and the heart of the intimacy which would be trust. And I was like, I was like applauding whatever is this I was applauding I was like, that's it. It's about trust. Yeah. Which was awesome to sort of read and then also see it kind of like explained which was really, really beautiful. I thought, Oh,

Paris 54:58
thank you. Yeah.

Elle 55:00
Okay, um, one more little bit. Well actually, let me go to more because I just really liked this next I'm like reading the whole scene that you gave me. I'm just gonna go just because I really liked your descriptive passages and this one, which is sort of cool, okay. I placed my hand against his chest and circle him pressing a kiss against his shoulder, his arm, the center of his back. His tattoo is a tapestry of color up close, and I spent several moments tracing the graceful black outlines with my tongue. I loved that tapestry of color. He holds on to my wrist as if he needs the lifeline. I kiss down his spine, and over the globes of his ass while my hand travels down his chest and back to his cock, I grip it in an explosion of air, he lets my wrist go so I can stroke him while i'd bite and lick my way closer and closer to his tight entrance. With a cry sounding like defeat, he drops to his knees, my good hand strokes him well I use my cast at arm to gently urge him to bend at the waist. When he's finally on his hands and knees before him I bury my face in the muscled sea of flesh and lap him like a cat with a bowl of cream. There's just so many beautiful like that the imagery here was absolutely gorgeous so I just wanted to read that because I was like, oh my god you know, you know particularly because there is a lot going on here you know, and I think that sometimes I know for me I don't want to speak for everybody else but for me I can get a little bit like in the weeds with the choreography. Yeah, yeah, you know, and you kind of then lose the, the emotion and all of that that goes along with it. And that's actually a bit more of a driving force for the pun than the actual sex itself.

Paris 56:43
Oh yeah, it's it's definitely um, I totally know what you're saying because I've read scenes like that and I think I've honestly written them myself. But it's one of those where it is a fine balance of how do you do this and then I know I had to rewrite that scene because I remember my editor like was a little lost and she's like, but what about her cast it had like she forgot. Like in reading it she's like, Oh yeah, that's right. She doesn't have access to both her hands so I need to mention that here or there to remind the reader

Elle 57:16
right right right yeah, no, it

Paris 57:18
is I mean it's you have to build it in and how do you do that without making it seem like yeah,

Elle 57:24
I think you know these see these can get really really complicated I think to write you know, just because there is so much going on not only physically but also emotionally and then you also have to stop and think well wait a minute, where's the reader in this too because I think that in even in scenes between the two people on the page there is a third person in the room with them and that's absolutely you know, so and and so you always have to be that also has to be you have to be aware of that presence as well while you're writing and then it can be really difficult balancing act. Oh, absolutely. Okay, I just wanted to read the very last paragraph because I was like, Oh, yeah. He relaxes and to me bit by bit Jim. Jim let himself go and gave me control not only of his pain, but of his pleasure, the tough his nails navy seal is so dedicated to the role of alpha male, I never thought he'd allow himself to be vulnerable especially with me. There we go. It's like you know, exploring vulnerability in the alpha male i think is such a treat.

Paris 58:33
It is and I kind of feel bad I put him through the wringer a little bit

Elle 58:40
so we're at poor Jim Yeah.

Paris 58:44
Yeah, it was like I mean I had to tell him that I had I'm a little too tough effort and and it's funny because I you know, it's one of those where I actually like a tough hero like when I read on and I think sometimes you know like with him he was just tough and I had to tone them down a little bit um, you know, and I think it also comes like with things that I have a tolerance for that you know, other people don't um, you know, like if let's say, you know, like what my son can turn around be like, make me a sandwich woman and I'll like laugh and be like haha you know like and I find it funny but you know, other people will be like, Wait your son says that to you? And I'm like yeah, whatever you know, it's just me It's not like I don't say things to him either. But you know, it's just like an it's a joke. You know, some I'm a little more I don't get offended as easily that stuff right? So I guess I have a well, also with you know, search and rescue and coming across the things you do, I have a thick skin so I also have a dark sense of humor. So it's like one of those Sometimes that stuff needs to be toned down and like, I have to soften my heroes a little bit. But yeah, I do like making the tough guys vulnerable, but not, um, you know, like a cutting them off at the knees level, you know, like, an emotional vulnerability.

Elle 1:00:17
Right? I do have it. Right. Right. But even then like to tease that out, you know, I think is, is, you know, is unusual, you know what I mean? Like, I like I do think that to some alpha males, which is why I think I enjoy reading them, but at the same time, like, I don't enjoy reading them, like, they have to be very particular writers like writing in that alpha writing alpha males that that I can read, because they can turn into such a caricature of a deck. Yes. Like, you know, and so there is a very, very fine line between writing an alpha male and writing an asshole.

Paris 1:00:53
Oh, absolutely. And, and I think, you know, Jim, there were some readers who said, Oh, you know, like, first, you know, Jim came off as and an alcohol. Um, but as they continued reading on, there would be these other parts of him that they see. So you know, one of the things he has a brain injury, and you know, he's kind of standoffish about it, because he doesn't want to accept it. But then he has a friend who steps in that goes, You fill that prescription? And it's like, no, it's in my closet. He I'll fill it later. And he's like, yeah, go get it, we're going together. Um, you know, so you have this level of, you can see certain things from where they're coming from. And I think with Jim, a lot of people said that made him more acceptable, in a sense, like, it wasn't just being a jerk at times, for the sake of being like it. Like it was his personality since birth, like it's coming from somewhere, whether he can accept his limitations, or he can't accept that he's injured or he blames himself for something. Um, you know, there was always a deeper meaningful, it wasn't like, oh, because somebody hit my car. I feel like, you know, being a jerk, you know, you know, okay, this is like emotional state. Yeah. Okay. We can we can understand, you know, as long as he changes his ways, but, yeah, I definitely agree. There are definitely some that I'm like, really? Like, what's your reasoning over here?

Elle 1:02:20
Right, right, right. Oh, wow, this support gem? Oh, yeah.

Paris 1:02:24
Yeah. Because each thing like, you know, each character is their, their own character. And it's, if I couldn't write another Jim if he asked just because it's just so him.

Elle 1:02:38
Yeah. Yeah, no, absolutely. Absolutely. I'm curious, are you are you a plotter or a pantser?

Paris 1:02:45
I am a plotter. Okay. Um, sometimes I get too crazy in terms of plot. You know, like, I'll have like a 25 page. But something but for the most part, I need direction. Okay. You know, I like to know my style. I don't really pants.

Elle 1:03:00
Okay. All right. I was just kind of curious because, um, you know, you have a lot of, it seems like you have a lot of really great backstory built into your characters that actually, I think Panthers tend to have that more, I'm told,

Paris 1:03:13
right, like, I actually write out their backstories I have a document that will have like their backstories and then try to I guess the best way somebody ever that I was taught by someone was to write out your backstory and pretend you wrote it on a mirror and then you slam that mirror on the floor, and you pick up the shards and you sprinkle them throughout.

Elle 1:03:35
Oh, I like that. Oh, I actually really like that. It gives a really great visual of how of like what to do and how to do it because then you're not sort of giving the info dump you're definitely letting your characters you know, letting your readers learn more about your characters and their background and why they do what they do. So cool. So Paris, what's up next for you? What do you have coming up?

Paris 1:04:00
So as I mentioned before, I have the third book in the series is actually releasing in June sorry, July 22. So that'll be the third member of their unit who is involved in the matchmaking program and then I am still first drafting a steamy romance involving a mechanic lover Yeah.

Elle 1:04:29
Um, so where can readers find you on the internet?

Paris 1:04:34
So I made it nice and easy. All my social media is usually at Paris winters or backslash Paris winters and my website is just Paris winters calm. I'm on Facebook, Twitter, tick tock and Instagram you are

Elle 1:04:48
on tick, tick tock doing for you.

Paris 1:04:52
So Tick Tock is more of a play around for me. There are some things I've done as a you know, like Book wise like, let's say book top. But I'd say the last two videos have been like, you know, Loki edits. I'm just like playing around, you know, it's just getting used to it and I think like one of the videos that I did that had like the most likes was Who was it? Jackson Kenner from the originals? Like edit that I did so I just play around on it. I wouldn't say it's like strictly book talk. It's just like me having fun. Yeah, I like the videos. I like following people and watching what they do. And I'm a big gamer, so I'll follow like all the gaming people too.

Elle 1:05:38
Okay, all right. Yeah, I'm still trying to sort of like figure out what the hell I'm doing. Yeah, I've tried I've tried some of the book Taki things like with my books, and I'm like, this just feels to it. Like it just felt like I don't like I like Instagram because I can kind of like throw fun pictures up and mean yes, you know, promote other writers works, which I guess I can do on Tick Tock too, but it kind of I don't know, it seems it seems

Paris 1:06:03
a little like it has a different vibe. Yeah, it's a very different

Elle 1:06:07
vibe. And it's sort of like okay, okay. Mostly like I mostly enjoy the goofy ones. Yeah.

Paris 1:06:14
Yeah, I mean, like somebody told me about what was it ice plaid at barbarians. So I started like going on tik tok and watching it and I mean, I think the thing that drew me to like, and I guess this book has taken off because of tik tok. Yes, yeah. Yeah,

Elle 1:06:31
it had once

Paris 1:06:32
I was watching, we're like, the people cracking up reviewing the book, like talking about the book, but like, were hysterical. They couldn't even get the words out. So of course, I'm like, okay, What's so funny? You know, and then like, they give these things, but it's just like, I guess the enjoyment like laughter is contagious, right? So if you're like, literally crying, laughing, trying to talk about a book, but then saying you couldn't put it down, even though it was that ridiculous of a concept. That gets me to go pick up the book, and because you have, like, I enjoy laughing, you know, like to that kind of point and I have a silly sense of humor. You know, like, Girl, what is this?

Elle 1:07:17
So did you pick up a copy of the book?

Paris 1:07:19
Um, yes, I've read through half of it. And I can understand like, I've kind of, in a sense, laughed out loud to me. It is, you know, like, I'm like, people criticize me for a military matchmaking. This thing is just so out there like, you can't even you know, but at the same point, it reminds me of like shark Nieto. It's such a crazy story. But you know, you kind of follow it because there's some level of enjoyment that you're getting out of

Elle 1:07:52
it. Cool. I might have to go pick that up. I have not seen the discipline of barbarians. Tick Tock. I will be exploring that tonight as well. First, thank you so much for doing this. Really fun having you.

Paris 1:08:08
Oh, thank you. It was such a fun time and I really enjoyed being on here and thank you so much.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai