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Archive for November 2nd, 2010

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Ella Tipton is a survivor. In the wake of an attack that left her nearly dead, she’s spent each day putting her life back together. Once vibrant and outgoing, she’s needed to reclaim the best parts of who she was while retaining the hard won lessons. There hasn’t been room for any romantic entanglements, even if she were ready. Still, it didn’t mean she had to stop sneaking looks at Mister Tall, Dark and Tattooed himself.

Security professional Andrew Copeland isn’t quite sure when his jones for the lovely and decidedly skittish Ella developed. He’s known her for years, has watched her triumph over the pain she’d been dealt. Cope is no stranger to women, but he knows the nervous flush he gets every time he talks to her is different than any attraction he’s had in the past. Determined to get Ella to let him in, Andy does the one thing he can think of to get close: he offers her hands-on training in self-defense.

While Ella’s sure he’s just being nice, the prospect of being able to touch him and gain the tools to push away the last vestiges of her fear is more than she can resist. Soon enough, Cope shows Ella his feelings are far more than friendly and re-ignites something deep inside her. Before long desire and love turn them both inside out.

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Authors struggle with the market, with reader expectation, with pleasing a thousand different groups of people all the while attempting to remain true to the story.  I don’t start off any book with a checklist, X number of sex scenes, X number of fights, or whatever. I have the foundation but I let all the stuff in between come as I get to know the characters. Each book, each story and each group of characters has their own story to tell. And as an author, it’s my job to attempt to be as true to that as I can.

In INSIDE OUT, we’ve got a man most people don’t truly see. He’s the laid back ladies’ man. And we’ve got a woman who sees through all that because Andrew Copeland is so much more.

The soul of Andrew is one that is inherently romantic. It’s why he’s been a love ‘em and move on in a month or two kind of guy. It’s the slow, sweet care he takes of Ella, the way he doesn’t tell her he’s into her, but he SHOWS her. I love that slow reveal of the creamy center he’s got and I love that it’s Ella who sees it.

Their story is intimate. They’re inside the other’s heart and mind. Each of them coming to the realization they’re both worth it. More than that, it’s the most romantic of the three books so far because it’s all about the woo as Cope learns to love himself even as he’s falling in love with Ella.

And Ella is skittish for a reason. She’s not broken, nor has she given up on love. The book opens as she’s getting ready to move on with the next stage of her life and she greets this change with nervous excitement.

I love the way they see each other. Because it’s really through Ella’s eyes that we get to know Cope and through his eyes that we see just how amazing she is. As they both deal with external stuff, they’ve got this delicious thing building between them.

The intimacy between them is what it’s supposed to be for these characters. We know Cope is hot and great in bed and all that. Ella knows it and is hesitant about him, concerned about their differences in experience.

She doesn’t fall for his abs. But his love letters send her to her knees. And it’s through those letters we get to know there’s far more to Andrew Copeland than muscles and tattoos.

Some books are dark and edgy, the emotions between the characters are intense and oftentimes the sexuality between them is also dark and edgy. Laid Bare is that book, for instance.

But not every book is that. Not every book SHOULD BE that. INSIDE OUT is about two people finding themselves through the eyes of someone else. It’s a sweet, romantic story and I loved writing it.

I hope readers find as much to love about Andrew Copeland as Ella does.

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Thank you to Lauren Dane for joining us today! To find out more about Lauren and her books, please visit her website here.

One lucky reader will win LAID BARE and COMING UNDONE (the first two books of this series). To be entered in the drawing, just leave a comment below 😀

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