Last year I was part of a collection of Valentine’s Day novellas for the Wild Rose Press titled THE CANDY HEART ROMANCE SERIES. There were over 40 WRP authors represented in that collection, one of them, ANITA KIDESU, my guest today. Anita is one of the rare – and for me enviable, writers who have a dual personality – she not only writes in several genres, but she does it under two names ( love that!) She’s got a new Wild Press Release out that’s a sequel to her Candy Heart’s Book, Surprise Me, SURPRISE ME AGAIN. After the interview, there’s a little gift for you all in the form of an exclusive excerpt – and believe me: you’ll want to read the book after the excerpt! Here’s Tina:
Anita Kidesu, The Writer
What drives you to write: I’m not sure, I just know that if I don’t get to write for a while I get antsy. I miss my characters.
What genre(s) of Romance do you write and why? I actually write under two names. As Anita Kidesu I write erotic romance. I’m not sure how that happened, except my characters “told” me what they wanted and I decided they knew best. As Tina Susedik I write romantic suspense/mystery/humor. I know it sounds strange, but my writing is different with both names. As Tina, the erotic part never comes up.
What genre(s) of Romance to you read and why? When I first started reading romance, it was Kathleen Woodiwiss, so that meant historical. Now I read most anything except science fiction, paranormal. I do find I tend to like mystery or suspense in my stories.
What’s your writing schedule? Do you write every day? I try to write every day. In the mornings I take care of bookkeeping, promotion, etc. Unless I have something going on at school (I volunteer at my grandchildren’s school) I write in the afternoon. If I have time, I will write in the morning. I try to write at least 2,000 words a day.
Give us a glimpse of the surroundings where you write. In the winter, ( I live in Northern Wisconsin) I move between the couch in my living room to the couch in the basement. Because of a back and neck injury I can’t sit at my desk for long periods of time, so I prop my laptop on a pillow and write on the couch. In the summer, I love, love, love to write outside. I sit on the deck, or go to a park, or go camping and write. Just to be outside.
Do you listen to music while you write? Yes, I do, but it has to be instrumental. I use it more as background. I have a cd player that holds five cds. I can replay those five cds over and over because I never really listen to them.
How did you come up with the plotline/idea for your current WIP? Last year I was part of the Candy Heart Series with The Wild Rose Press. My candy heart was “Surprise Me.” As I was writing the story, I knew Josie and Carson’s story wasn’t over, so I wrote “Surprise Me Again,” which was released on Feb. 10th. As I was writing, that one, I realized I needed to write a story for their sons. That one is now with my editor and is unnamed right now. As I was writing the boys’ story, a female character popped up, and I realized she needed her own story. I have that one roaming through my head right now.
Which comes first for you – character or plot? I think plot comes first. I always have these ideas popping up in my head and I come up with characters to go with it.
Which three words describe you, the writer? Wow, that’s a tough one. Dedicated, always learning, pantser
Anita/Tina, the Person
Tell us one unusual thing about yourself – not related to writing: Another tough one. I think I’m rather boring, but I love photography – especially nature photography.
Who was your first love and what age were you? Easy-peasy. Duane Strong. Third grade. We shared a kiss on the school bus.
If you could live relive one day, which would it be? It would be a toss up between my wedding day and the birth of my kids, although I do without re-living the pain of childbirth. I would love to relive the total full-out feelings of bursting with love as I looked at my children for the first time.
Do you like guys in boxers, briefs, or commando. All of them
If you had to give up one necessary-can’t-live-without-it beauty item, what would it be. Mascara. As a redhead, my eyelashes, while long, can barely be seen. Sometimes all I need is to put on mascara and my whole face shines.
What three words describe you as a person? Caring, smart, loving ( Peggy here: I’m sosososos happy you said, “Smart.” Many women don’t own that word and should. Brava!)
If you could hang out with any literary character from any book penned at any time line, who would it be, why, and what would you do together? I would love to meet LaVyrle Spencer. I love her books. They are so real. Vivid characters. I would love to find out how she created her stories. We would go out to supper, then find someplace to have wine and talk writing and life.
Bonus round – fun stuff!!!
Favorite sound: Rushing water
Least favorite sound: People chewing
Best song ever written: Thank You by Led Zepplin – it’s my husband and my song
Worst song ever written: Too many to mention
Favorite actor and actress: I have to admit I have a crush on Harrison Ford. Actress – I’m not sure.
Who would you want to be for one day and why? The first thing that came to me was a woman traveling on the Oregon Trail. I love history and I recently wrote a book involving the Oregon Trail.
What turns you on? A man’s smile
What turns you off? Arrogance
Give me the worst five words ever heard on a first date? You’re kinda small on top. (Peggy here: I can think of sososo many retorts to that! Hope you gave him several!!)
What’s your version of a perfect day? Camping with my husband. Going for a hike or bike ride. Reading at the campsite, then sitting around the campfire.
Here’s a little sumthin’ sumthin about Anita’s new book, SURPRISE ME, AGAIN
Charged with trespassing and indecent exposure on Erik Stenson’s private beach, Carson and Josie Sandberg return to South Padre Island to take care of the ticket. However, their reunion with Erik is not what they expected. An invitation for a drink turns into a weekend of passion that fulfills fantasies and leaves all parties wanting to explore a threesome outside the bedroom. Will time, distance, and family issues stand in the way, or will they be surprised again?
“What about you?” Josie said. “Have you ever been married?”
“I was. Years ago. It didn’t last.”
A flicker of sorrow passed over Josie’s eyes. “Can you tell us what happened?” She frowned into her drink. “That is, if you want to.”
“It’s okay. I married Jessica about…” Hell how long had it been? Where had the time gone? “I guess nearly twenty years ago. Like you, we met in college, fell in love, married. Things were good for a few years.”
Josie leaned to her side, allowing the waiter to place a plate before her. Ignoring her food, she folded her hands under chin and kept her attention on him. “What happened?”
“We wanted children. Jessica ached for children. It became an obsession.” Eric took one of the large shrimp from the platter in the middle of the table and began peeling it with trembling fingers, giving him a chance to get his emotions under control. Lord, how he’d wanted children, but not enough to end his marriage.
“After a few years when we didn’t conceive, we looked for answers. By that time Jessica was convinced she was the problem and fell into a deep depression. Nothing I did helped. She wouldn’t agree to see a counselor. My mother finally convinced us to seek a fertilization doctor.” Eric threw the shrimp on his plate and took a long swallow of beer. “Turns out I was the problem, not her. Seems those mumps I’d had as a kid did a number on my little swimmers. Killed them all.”
“Hell, that’s awful, man,” Carson said while Josie placed her hand on Eric’s.
Their sympathy nearly did him in. He swallowed around the lump in his throat and squeezed his damp eyes.
After all these years, the pain was still buried under his heart only to surface on dark, lonely nights and like now as he recounted the story. They were the first ones he’d opened up to. None of the other people in his threesomes had even cared to ask.
Carson took a sip of his beer. “What happened then?”
“I wanted to adopt. Wanted to create a family with Jessica. It didn’t matter if the children were of our blood or not. The doctors had talked about in-vitro. Turns out Jessica didn’t feel the same way.” He took deep breath and tried to calm his pounding heart. He wiped his palms on his shorts.
“I came home one day with information on adoption and some on in-vitro fertilization only to find her and her stuff gone. She had left me a note, telling me she wanted children from her own body. Wanted to create them naturally. Didn’t want to be married to a man who wasn’t a man.”
“The bitch,” Josie said, her eyes filling with tears. “Oops, sorry. I shouldn’t have called her that.”
“Don’t worry. I’ve called her that and worse.”
“How the hell did you handle it?” Carson asked. “I would have been devastated if Josie had done that to me.”
“I drank and buried myself in my writing. I wrote my first novel during this time.”
“If I recall, that book was rather cutting against women,” Carson said.
Eric shook his head and chuckled. “Yeah. I enjoyed killing off my heroine. Coincidentally, she closely resembled my ex.”
“Did you get in trouble for it?” Josie asked, peeling her third shrimp.
“Since I use a pen name, I don’t think she even knows I write. Besides, she was too busy finding another husband to father her eight children.”
Carson choked on his beer. “Eight?”
“Yeah. She really did want kids, but I’m not sure I would have agreed to that many. I was also told she’s gained about a hundred pounds.” Under Josie’s quiet scrutiny, he dropped his gaze to his plate.
“It still hurts, though, doesn’t it?” Josie asked.
Eric shrugged. “It’s not as bad as it was. I sometimes think about how I could have kids in college or be a grandfather by now.”
A little more about Anita:
From the time she was a teenager, Anita would sneak her grandmother’s romances and read them until all hours of the night. She never thought about creating one herself, but fell into it with a few friends. On a long road trip, they started talking about their favorite authors and why they like their books. To kill time, they started making up their own characters and plot.
From that point on, Anita had story ideas and characters filling her head. Finally, to shut them up, (or so she thought), she started writing them down, surprised at how erotic her characters wanted to be. Her first book with The Wild Rose Press, “South Seas Seduction,” was published in March, 2015. Her short story, “Surprise Me,” part of the Candy Hearts Series, was published in January, 2016. The continuing story, “Surprise Me Again,” was released on February 10, 2017.
Now, in between being a pharmacist, taking care of her two cats, and spending time with her family and friends, she writes. Her stories are about love and romance on the edge.