Romance By Catherine

Friday, May 22, 2009

Today I have a very special guest. Author Helen Hardt is celebrating her third erotic release, Thai'd Up over at The Wild Rose Press. Thanks so much for joining me today, Helen.

Tell us about your new book out now:

Thai'd Up is my third erotic short story for the Destination Pleasure series in the Scarlet (erotic) line at The Wild Rose Press. This one crosses into the double rose rating. My previous two, Seduced in Seoul and Passion in Paris, are rated single rose, though my free read, Seoul Pleasure, which is a companion story to Seduced in Seoul, is a double rose. Double rose means the story contains explicit and graphic love scenes and may contain subject matter that is offensive to some readers, including extreme explicit language, anal sex, BDSM, fetishism, ménage, and/or experimentation with same sex. As you can guess from the title, it's mild BDSM that makes Thai'd Up a double rose.

Visiting Bangkok to do an interview for her employer, Heidi Clarke is intrigued by the wild and raucous nightlife. When a handsome and engaging stranger, dressed as the Phantom of the Opera, offers to escort her into a BDSM club, she's too curious to refuse. As the man behind the mask introduces Heidi to new and exciting pleasures of the flesh, she can't help but wonder who he is. Or if she really wants to know.This was a fun one to write. I actually came up with the title first. Once I had that, I knew I had to write a story for it!

I love it when a story comes together like that.
How do you respond when someone says... "Oh, you write THAT kind of book.

"Truthfully, no one has ever said that to me, LOL. I do know, however, that there’s a stigma attached to erotic romance. I’ve written extensively on my website, in interviews, and in my local chapter newsletter about the differences among porn, erotica, and erotic romance. I consider what I write to be romance. Yes, there are explicit sex scenes, but they serve a purpose other than to arouse the reader. They exist to develop the relationship between the hero and heroine and to help move the plot along to its happy ending. Or in the case of an erotic short, its "happy for now."Any kind of romance, including erotic romance, is a feel-good read, and I'm glad to be writing it. There's a reason why romance sales are flourishing in our current economy ;).

What are your goals as a writer?

To be a New York Times bestseller, of course! Well, eventually. Right now I'd like to make a name for myself and move from epublishing to New York publishing. I'd like to make enough money writing so my husband doesn't have to work. He has supported me all these years, and I'd like to do the same for him.I'd also like to continue to grow as a writer. I want each story that I write to be a little better than the last. I'm constantly finding ways to improve. A writer never stops learning!

How many books do you read a month? Are they all romance?

I read a lot. Two to three books a week, usually, and sometimes more. No, they're not all romance, though the majority are. I just finished reading Columbine by Dave Cullen, which is a deep look into the tragedy at Columbine High School ten years ago. I live in Colorado, so this hit close to home for me. As for romance reading, I read everything except inspirational and romantic suspense. I have a Sony e-reader for my ebooks, and I still read lots of print, too. When I'm not writing or editing, I'm reading! Reading is a huge part of a writer's self education, in my opinion. Who better to learn from than other writers who have been successful?I completely agree.Do you have anything new in the works?I have several other releases planned for this year. First up is a western historical novella, The Outlaw's Angel, which releases June 5 in the Wild Rose Press anthology Lawmen and Outlaws. After that comes Blood Wolf, which was one of the winners of the Got Wolf? contest sponsored by The Wild Rose Press. It's coming in October. My first Ellora's Cave story, Slow and Wet, will release in November as part of their "Wet" theme. My last Destination Pleasure erotic short, Montego Lay, is in the initial editing phase, so I don't know when it will release yet.I have several works in progress, including a Native American historical novella, a cougar story, and an erotic fantasy complete with Greek Gods. Several of my full length novels were requested by editors at my local conference a few weeks ago, so I need to get them polished and out the door.

Where can we find you? Your book?

Visit me at and You can also find me at, the blog I share with my local critique partners.Thai'd Up is available at, along with Seduced and Seoul and Passion in Paris.

Thank you for having me, Catherine!
Thanks for stopping by, Helen.


Helen Hardt said...

Hi Catherine -- thanks for having me today ;).


Rachel E. Moniz said...

Hi Helen and Catherine!

Yet another story to add to the summer reading list!

Best wishes for a successful release! :-D


Skhye said...

I stopped by to wave... And wanted to add, nice mask. ;) You've got a few fascinating topics you're writing about, Greek gods, Native Americans, and Thailand! May creativity whisk you away to a new place of discovery. ;) And have a wonderful Memorial Day.

Helen Hardt said...

Thank you, Rachel!

Helen Hardt said...

Hi Skhye -- I find Native Americans particularly fascinating. And Greek Gods, too. Research is half the fun, though it digs into my writing time. You have a great Memorial Day, too!

Catherine Bybee said...

Would love to chat... but, Phantom and Christine just jumped into an elevator...

Be back soon. grin

Viola Estrella said...

Hi Helen and Catherine! I had the pleasure of reading Thai'd Up prepubbed and can't wait to buy it so I can read it again. Great answers, Helen. :-)

Catherine Bybee said...

Ohh nummy! I never saw myself saying this to anyone on line... let alone a woman, but... "Thanks for the quicky, Helen." LOL

Hot! Very, very hot!

Helen Hardt said...

LOL -- I'm always good for a quickie, Catherine!

Helen Hardt said...

Viola, always great to see you, my fellow Vixen!

Mary Ricksen said...

I live vicariously through reading. And I'm very grateful for the great read. Your story is one of the reasons that my mental sex life is phenomenal.(TeeHeeHee, grin)
May you sell a whole bunch of books and please, keep 'em coming!

Helen Hardt said...

LOL -- Mary you always make me smile ;).

Thanks so much for your support, hon!

Cari Quinn said...

Congratulations on your release day, Helen! I also got to read Thai'd Up before it was published, and have to say it's my favorite of Helen's shorts - which is saying a lot! Bangkok is just such an exotic, sexy locale...and Heidi and her mystery man definitely bring the spice. :)

Looking forward to all your '09 releases!

Helen Hardt said...

Thank, Cari! I'm so glad you like TU!

Kaye Manro said...

Great interview, girls-- I can't wait to get my hands on this one!

Congrats on your release day, Helen!

Helen Hardt said...

Thank you, Kaye! I know I can always count on your support ;).

Renee Knowles said...

Congrats on your release day! I can't wait to read it. I have the same goal as you: to make enough to support my hubby for a while :) Here's to the NYT list lol.


Catherine Bybee said...

Whoo hoo... toasting to the NYT's list. Nice to be on top. lol

Thanks everyone for stopping by and waving. I picked up Thai'd up today and have to say...
"Where is my DH?"

Ah... Okay... gotta go!

Catherine Bybee said...

Way to go... Thai'd Up is on the top ten list at 9:20 PM LA time.

Margaret Tanner said...

Hi Catherine and Helen
Great inerview. The story sounds hot. I've been to Thailand and I din't meet any men like that.

Christina Phillips said...

Huge congrats on the release of Thai'd Up, Helen! Looking forward to reading it. And I love your writer's goals, they're very similar to mine!!!

Dayana said...

Hey, Helen! Stopped in to see what you've been up to. Congrats on all your new releases. I have to tell you, I absolutely love your titles. They are really eye-catching and act as a short blurb because you have no doubt what the read will emcompass, LOL

I look forward to reading more from you. You are AWESOME:)