Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Ashe Barker Makes a First Impression on Wicked Wanton Wednesday


First time guest, Ashe Barker is visiting today on Wicked Wanton Wednesday.  An author of a variety of romantic and erotica sub-genres, from contemporary BDSM to medieval spanking fiction, she writes full length novels, as well as short stories for fans of both F/M and M/M romance.  Ashe also enjoys historical romance because it fulfills her craving for research, which she admits is her guilty pleasure. 

Today, she gives us a taste of her newest contemporary with a romantic, erotic, BDSM, suspenseful flavor.  What fun! 

I’m hungry for something hot and delicious, so let’s start off with a tempting morsel from First Impressions to get our juices flowing.  Stay tuned afterward for a fun interview in the Author’s Corner.  Enjoy!


*****


First Impressions 

by Ashe Barker




She stood before him, chewing on her lower lip. It was an expression he’d seen on numerous previous occasions when he’d played with an inexperienced submissive. It was a sign she was acclimatising to her new situation, the relationship realigning. He waited, giving her time to adjust. At last. “Very well, Sir. I accept your terms.”

“Thank you. Now, I expect you have terms of your own to negotiate. Is that correct?”

“I’m not sure? Do I?”

“Earlier, this afternoon, you asked about having sex. That’s your call, George, and now is the time to make it. I’ll work within the boundaries you set. Similarly, if there is anything you really don't want me to do to you, any place you prefer not to be touched for example, you can tell me and I will respect it.”

Her expression now was one of dawning understanding. “This is you being Sir, isn’t it?”

He nodded. “It’s a part of it, yes. I intend to earn your trust, and deserve your submission. So, what are your terms?”

She chewed on her lip some more and dropped her gaze. Aidan shoved the tights and knickers he still held into his pocket, then stepped forward and took her face between his hands. He tilted her head back so she met his eyes again.

“Your terms, George?”

“It’s all right, all of it. Anything you want to do,” she whispered.

He smiled at her. “George, I know it’s hard, but I need you to be specific if you can. Say the words for me, please. What is it that’s all right?”

“I want you to fuck me.”

He smiled encouragement at her. “Okay, so far so good.”

“And, you can touch me. Anywhere.”

“Anywhere?”

“Yes.” Her voice was stronger now, more positive. “Anywhere. I want you to make me come. If you would, please. Sir.”


Buy Links:

Amazon US         Amazon UK   


*****

The blurb:


First Impressions can be deceptive.

Aidan Blake needs a plumber. Fast. His boiler is dead, his creaky old house crumbling around him. When his elderly neighbour recommends a local trader, George Mahon, Aidan jumps at the prospect of hot water and warm radiators.

But George, short for Georgina, is not exactly what he had in mind. He was expecting something else entirely. A man for one thing, not the gorgeous single mother he finds in his house at the end of a long day of work.

Aidan turns out to be full of surprises too. Who would have imagined the smartly dressed businessman would have a BDSM playroom in his attic and a collection of whips and canes that makes George’s head spin. And her bottom clench, though that’s another matter entirely. What does a girl have to do to get to play with those toys?

Just ask, it would seem. As they enter into a professional and personal agreement which soon blossoms into a sultry, kinky relationship, George continues to be surprised by Aidan's kindness and generosity, not to mention his skill with a spanking paddle.

First impressions aside, the two begin to build something together. And while they peel back the layers to discover their hidden depths, the old house yields up the mysteries of its own secret past. They soon realise that at first glance, nothing is ever quite as it seems.  

*****


Maddie’s Intimate Author’s Corner:

Maddie: As a first time guest on Wicked Wanton Wednesday, let’s get to know Ashe Barker right off the bat.  Tell me five things about yourself that you would want a new acquaintance to know.

Ashe: Five things – right. This is that moment when someone sticks a microphone under my nose and I lose the power of speech. I’ll try though.

1.   My favourite animal is a tortoise. I have two at the moment though I have had more in the past.
2.   I speak a number of languages, including Turkish. I’ve travelled a lot in Turkey and use some settings from there in my stories.
3.   I have a teenage daughter who goes to university next year (fingers crossed for the right exam results). I consider her my finest WIP.
4.   I once chatted to Princess Diana over lunch at an AIDS conference.
5.   My favourite drink is Earl Grey tea, with red wine a close second


Maddie: I bet there’s a story behind the trip to Turkey, we’ll have to discuss that more next time, or watch for it in a romance, coming soon.  J  In the meantime, I did a bit of Amazon stalking and read your bio.  Being a taxi-driver, and a menagerie keeper sounds like exhausting work <wink>  Do you write full time?  How do you balance your personal time with writing?  

Ashe: I write most of the time, though I do have another job too. I’m self-employed, and my other work takes up about six days a month so the rest is writing time.

I tend to think of writing as my day job and spend all day Monday to Friday on authorly things – writing, promo, research. As I work at home it’s easy to take time off when I need it, so I’m usually around to pick up my daughter from school or go shopping. I find the work-life balance these days is much better than when I used to work full time at a ‘proper’ job. I earn more too, which makes everyone happier.


Maddie: You write both contemporary and historical romance, I even saw a historical manage in the mix, very eclectic!  Which you do prefer?  Which is harder?  What are the challenges you’ve found along the way?  

Ashe: I’d say historical is harder, but only because I have to keep checking facts, getting dates right, not misplacing major historical milestones and use appropriate vocabulary. Some stuff readers will forgive, but getting an important event wrong or allowing a modern idiom to come out of the mouth of a medieval knight is just careless and I try to avoid it. Shared by the Highlanders, for example, was set in the reign of Mary, Queen of Scots so I tried to make sure I didn’t say or do anything which was out of step with historical fact. The story refers to the birth of Mary’s son, James (who was to become James I of England), all very well documented stuff so readers would know if I got it wrong. I rely almost entirely on the internet, backed up by what I can remember from A level History at school.


Maddie: I’m in agreement.  I love the historicals and the research is fun and interesting, but it is a lot of work.  I wonder if readers realize just how much. 

What inspired your latest storyline, First Impressions?

Ashe: First Impressions is a contemporary erotic romance, the story of a female plumber. My character, George, (short for Georgina) was inspired by a fabulous woman I met whilst picking up my daughter from school. Natalie always showed up at the school gates in overalls and steel toe-capped boots, so we got chatting and I asked if she was into DIY. Turns out she retrained as a plumber when she lost her job in a supermarket and had never looked back. She was self-employed, working hours to suit herself and her children, and earning decent money.

I like to write about self-reliant women with talent, determination, skills, and George definitely fits that image. She’s good at what she does and there’s pretty much no job she won’t tackle.


Maddie:  I’ve noticed you’ve worked with a variety of publishers.  What do you look for when selecting a publisher?  Have you ever considered self-publishing?  Why, or why not? 

Ashe: I like to work with different publishers for the variety as much as anything. I prefer smaller publishing houses, where I can get to know the key people. It’s a relationship, a partnership of sorts, not just a contract.

I do flirt with the notion of self-publishing from time to time, but in truth I can’t get excited about some aspects of it. Formatting, for example, or dealing with the distributors. I like to have input to covers, but I’m no artist. All these services can be bought in, and many self-pubbing authors do just that. I find working with a publisher leaves me free to do what I love – writing. I might self-publish some day, but I have no plans right now.


Maddie:  Your covers are great, but your historical covers blow me away.  I love the detail.  How much are you involved with the selection process? 

Ashe:  All my historical covers were designed by Korey Mae Johnson at Stormy Night Publishing. She does  a superb job. As an author, I do get a chance to say what I would like, but I usually leave it to her. As I mentioned already, I’m no artist. I want my books to sell  and the cover is a key part of that so I trust Stormy Night to put a great image on the front. So far they haven’t let me down.


Maddie: Do you have an interesting writing quirk or process?

Ashe:  No, I think I‘m pretty boring really. I am a starter finisher though. I tend to have only one WIP on the go at a time. I start a book and unless something with an urgent deadline comes up – which is rare – I prefer to finish it before moving to the next. I know lots of authors have multiple WIPs at various stages of completion, but I just wouldn’t be able to cope with that. My head tends to be full of the current plot and characters and I find distractions just derail my thinking.


Maddie:  I have to admit being a bit jealous of you focus, I have characters from different books, time zones and centuries screaming at me at the same time, which brings me to the next question.  If you had to freedom to set up the perfect authors nook where you could create without interruptions, where would it be and what would it look like?

Ashe:  I have a nook. It’s my caravan on the edge of the Lake District in north west England. It’s set in a gorgeous tranquil park, lots of peace and quiet to be productive. I’m there most weekends and always have my laptop with me.


Maddie:  The tranquility and peace explain how you crank ‘em out so fast.  So, what’s up next on your writing calendar?

Ashe:  I think my next job will be to produce some extra content for the first story I ever wrote, a trilogy called The Dark Side. I wrote it in 2012 but it is to be relaunched next Spring by Totally Bound so will be getting a revamp. I have another MM story in the next Brit Boys anthology, due out around Christmas time, and I’m also fermenting a plot based around a highwayman, which will be my next historical probably.


Maddie:  Sounds like you’re a busy author, lucky us.  Thanks for chatting with me today, Ashe.  It’s always nice to get to know a little about an author beyond a gorgeous cover and their compelling words.  Come back any time you have another wicked, wanton work to share J  You’re always welcome.


Follow Ashe online at the following links:

Author links