Sexpert, the very cool sex advice site, just posted a “juicy interview” with me (love that). I knew I loved this site when I saw that Anka Radakovich, the legendary NYC sex columnist, is a main contributor. It’s legit. Check it out!
Sexpert.com is thrilled to have the scoop on the hot new romance novel Sweet Muse, from Ava Cummings, a writer new to romance, but comfortable with the glitz and glamor of magazine editing in Hollywood. We had a chance to catch up with Ms. Cummings to ask her a few questions about her book, her life and what she thinks is the most important element of a romance fiction book.
INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR AVA CUMMINGS:
Sexpert: What do you consider the sexiest part of your new book?
AC: The “Night of Dares” in Chapter 7 has to take the cake for the sexiest part of Sweet Muse. My main character Anna gets swept up in a night of increasingly risqué—and sexy—dares with the city’s hottest (and cockiest!) nightlife reporter. Let’s just say you’ve never read a shower scene quite like this one. There are a few others not to be missed, as well: the scene in her boss’s office…and The Plaza night with her love—the sexy beyond belief, yet tortured artist Damien Wolfe. She finally lets go, opens her heart for the first time, and falls for this man that sees her in a way that she has never seen herself—and what happens is very emotional and intimate.
Sexpert: What do you think is the most important element to ‘get right’ in a romance story?
AC: You’ve got to have page-turning chemistry! And not just physical, but emotional, too. Physically, you have to create hot, steamy situations that really get the fan going—envisioning those fantasies we all have, yet that we might not ever act on. And then the emotional piece is just as, if not more, important. Letting the reader in on how your character is feeling, what’s going on in her head—and heart. Women are emotional creatures. Sure, the physical is a turn on, but not without the emotional, too. It’s all about the main character’s journey to love and taking the reader along for that ride, that discovery process.
Even more, though, I think it’s important to make it a “real girl romance.” What I mean by that is that I’ve always loved romance novels, but tired of the typical plot line where the innocent girl gets taken by the billionaire CEO and he figures everything out for her. I want to shine a light on real girls…who figure it out on their own! The girls, like you and me, who have real guilt for not always making the best decisions, insecurities for not having it all figured out, and shame for just being ourselves.
In Sweet Muse, I really wanted to incorporate this—showing the full spectrum of the agony of figuring yourself out in your 20s. I like stories about women coming of age and owning their experience. Maybe in some way I can inspire women to own their own journey and be themselves, whoever that may be.
Sexpert: How did your magazine editor past inform the book?
AC: I worked as a magazine editor in fashion and at the celebrity magazines in the late nineties to mid 2000s, during the last hurrah of print publishing, before everything went digital. When we still had expense accounts, took town cars all over the city, and controlled the cultural conversation. It was a high-stakes, fast-moving New York world and a rich place of extremes that I wanted as a character in the book in its own right. Many bits and pieces of my experiences are woven into the plot. However, I never had a boss just like Bernie Roberts. Although, I heard stories from friends who did, and I definitely worked with some crazy personalities!