The Divas have been noticing an interesting phenomenon over the last year or two. On days when we have book releases, we unfailingly wake to find a notification on Facebook that a review has been completed and we can access it over at…Guilty Pleasures.
I’m not sure if you know what a thrill it is to wake up to a review of your new book. Of course, if it’s a bad review, it’s not so thrilling. But when it’s a good review, or a review where the reviewer has taken the time and energy to give a detailed and heartfelt report about the book, well, it’s an awesome feeling.
And on release day, Guilty Pleasures ensures that we get to experience that awesome feeling at least once.
I seriously love this site, and I love their reviewers.
As writers we are cautioned over and over to remain utterly professional when it comes to reviewers, to say a simple thank you for the review and to move on. Well, it’s impossible to do that with Guilty Pleasures – because all of the reviewers we’ve had the pleasure of meeting are just too darn nice to keep our distance. We love reading their reviews of our work, and we love chatting with them on social media.
We Divas rate the Guilty Pleasures Reviewers:
I, for one, am eternally grateful Didi started this amazing blog/review site, and I’m delighted she joins us here today.
1) Tell us about DiDi. Ahh my life is a bit boring…but since you asked I’m TEXAS born and raised. I successfully raised a daughter all on my own, well with the emotional support of my parents, it really does take a village. Reading has been my passion since I was young. When I had my daughter I stopped reading to devote my all to raising her. When the first Twilight move came out, as a bonding event, I went with my daughter, my Momma and my sister-in-law. I had not read the books and oops! still have not. BUT watching the movie I found myself wanting to read adult vampire romances (can you tell I’m Team Edward) AND combined with the fact my daughter was now in high school, with a busy social life, leaving me at home alone, I had time to read again. I went to Barnes & Noble and found HOW TO MARRY A MILLIONAIRE VAMPIRE by Kerrelyn Sparks. I ended up going through all of the book in the series, I read one book a day. I was hooked into reading paranormal romance, I devoured everything I could get my hands on. While at B&N some hot as hell book covers caught my eye, they had sexy cowboys on them but were $15. So I held off. One day I was on a bus ride with my daughter’s dance team and decided to download the Kindle app and look up the sexy cowboy book, it was under $5 so I bought it. It was LONG HARD RIDE by Lorelei James and WOW I was instantly addicted. My sheltered little brain was shocked for a bit too, I was like THEY WRITE MENAGE in books? THEY WRITE ANAL SEX in books?? OMG I want more!!! So I flew through her Rough Rider’s series and then started looking up books on Samhain, which is how, THANKFULLY, I first found y’all, the wonderful, naughty, amazing DOWN UNDER DIVAS.
(Jess says: So, anyone noticing Twilight popping up again?)
2) Tell us about Guilty Pleasures: The history, the blog/review site, the success and how it’s grown in both size and popularity. AHH Guilty Pleasures started out as a kinda joke. My friends Becky Condit, Kimber Oliver and I were tired of snarky, mean reviews so we were going to start a review site that “reviewed” mean reviews….it was called “WTF? Book Reviews.” Early on we realized that our original goal wasn’t a good one because it would just bring attention to the mean reviews so we decided to review for real and changed the name to Book Pimps Reviews. Our goal was to review with respect, fun and to talk like we talk in real life. So in our reviews you would find dropped ‘gs and improper use of grammar, but you also would feel like you were talking to friends. After a couple of months Becky decided she wanted to start a blog to focus on MM romance, so she left us and started Mrs Condit and Friends Review Books: http://mrsconditreadsbooks.com/ I changed the blog name for the last time to Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews and Kimber and I were reading/reviewing books like crazy. Readers started taking notice and the site grew by leaps and bounds, we were overwhelmed. At this point I do want to say if it wasn’t for advice from the wonderful Francesca at Under the Covers Book Blog: http://www.underthecoversbookblog.com/ and Julie at Yummy Men and Kick Ass Chicks: http://yummymenandkickasschicks.com/ I wouldn’t have known how to build followers. Both of these ladies answered a HELP email from a stranger and gave me invaluable information.
3) You have many awesome reviewers over at Guilty Pleasures. How did you find such True Gems? THANK YOU! I love and appreciate each and every one of them. If not for them GP would not have grown. Each reviewer is very passionate about books and love to talk about them. How did I find them? Most I met through an online yahoo group for readers, and we became friends, so I roped them in. It came to a point where we were overwhelmed with review requests so I put out “NOW HIRING” reviewers posts and carefully selected additional reviewers. I really can’t define how I pick them, it’s just a feeling and I have been blessed enough to go from being a stranger to them to considering them great friends. We are spread out all over the United States. Many of us have made a point to meet each other in person if we are lucky enough to get the opportunity. Bottom line I was extremely lucky in finding such a great group of women and I wouldn’t trade the friendships I’ve made for the world.
4) You’ve just been sent an ARC of that book you’ve ALL been waiting for. How do you decide who gets to review it? THAT is a tough one. Fortunately each reviewer has a distinct taste and it’s not often more than one wants the same books. BUT when that happens I either put their name in a hat and draw or have them pick a number and use random.org =)
5) How did you become involved in the wonderful world of romance books? Looking back I realize I loved reading as young as 6 yrs old, but of course as I got older I wouldn’t admit it. THEN one day when I was about 14 yrs old and sitting in the bleachers, bored, waiting for my younger brother to finish baseball practice one of his friends mom’s asked if I liked to read, I said I used to and she handed me WAYWARD WIND by Dorothy Garlock. It was a historical romance and I was hooked.
6) Do you have preferred genres – you know books you gravitate to? Currently, I love Erotic, Paranormal and Contemporary. Cowboys, Billionaires, Motorcycle Clubs, ALPHA men period do it for me. I tend to stay away from cliffhangers, serial (the kind where it’s like a chapter is released at a time) and New Adult.
Okay, now let’s have some fun…
1) You are granted your wish to a night to remember with just one man (or woman). Who would it be? Blake Shelton (as long as part of this wish keeps his wife Miranda from killing me, she has that East Texas crazy, I will cut you if you mess with my man thing going on. I love Miranda but don’t want her to open a can of whip ass on me)
2) Ooooh, wait. Now you have your second wish granted. A night with TWO others. Who would they be?
(And remember, this is an erotic romance writers’ blog. We’re not talking about a pleasant evening chatting over dinner…) OH MY! Blake Shelton and Luke Bryan =)
3) So, you’ve just heard terrible news report on the radio. There’s a cyclone coming and you have ten minutes to get out of your house, get in your car and drive as fast as you can. You just have time to take five items with you.
What are they, and why have you chosen them? My phone, my tablet, my favorite picture of my daughter and my dog. Why? Because those are the things I can’t live without.
4) Ooh, remember that time you’ve tried so hard to forget? That excruciatingly embarrassing moment, when you wished the floor would open up and swallow you. When you blushed fifteen different shades of scarlet. Go on then. Don’t be shy. Tell us all about it… Oh this happens quite often. A recent really embarrassing one is..this past December I was working temp at an office where I hoped to become permanent. I was on the phone with a customer who asked how the weather was. I said “Oh it’s a bit nipply.” what I meant to say is “Oh it’s a bit nippy.” My supervisor, an older lady, was right by me, looked up and then busted out laughing, I couldn’t even try to play it off.
5) Ice cream or chocolate? Ben & Jerry’s Chocolate Therapy Ice cream
(Jess says: OMG, why can we not get that flavor here?)
6) George Clooney or Brad Pitt? Brad Pitt as seen in the recent Esquire magazine
7) Angelina Jolie or Jennifer Aniston? ME!!! lol Angelina Jolie
8) Eric or Sookie? GASP! Another I haven’t read or watched…
(Jess: *Shaking head sadly*)
9) Steak or salmon? Steak baby!!! I’m a TEXAS girl J
10) Heels or sandals? Flip flops, not only am I a TEXAS girl, I’m a BOI (born on Galveston Island)
11) Harry Potter or Twilight? Twilight
12) Dogs or cats? Dogs
13) Snakes or Spiders? Spiders (as long as they aren’t from Down Under, y’all got some scary spiders down there)
14) You are offered your final meal. You can have anything you want. What would it be? A can of whip cream served on Blake Shelton.
(Jess says: Awesome answer.)
I want to thank y’all so much for interviewing me. I am honored to have been asked by some of my FAVORITE authors. I will be traveling to RomCon on Thursday but I will make sure to stop by and say “Howdy!”
(Jess says: Thank you for coming. You know we love you too. And enjoy Romcom!)