Kate St. James lives in Canada with her adoring family. She keeps trying to kick them out, but they're sticking like glue...for reasons she can't figure. It's not like she's a model wife and mother. Or is she? Therein lies one of the great mysteries of Kate's generation.
An avid reader since childhood, Kate loves spending her days writing about the hot men and adventurous women populating her head. When she's not engrossed in her fictional worlds, you can find her chasing her hound in the hills above an azure lake, ignoring the smoke alarms blaring from the kitchen, or endlessly renovating her house.
Q: Do you live in Australia? A: Someone hasn't read my bio! Nope, no Aussie blood here. You probably have me mixed up with Designer Kate. I'm Writer Kate. Our web addresses are similar, so if you arrived here by mistake, here's a link to Designer Kate's website. (On the other hand, you could stick around, check out my Bookshelf, etc. hint, hint).
For the record, I don't live in Maine, either.
Q: I love your writing, but you don't write fast enough. Why is that? A: Wellll, the truth is I'm always writing and I'm the first to admit that I'm a slow writer. However, I also publish short stories and novels under another name. If you like sexy romantic comedy and heartfelt contemporary romance (that is not, however, erotic), please visit my alter ego's website. She'll be more than happy to keep you occupied between my releases!
Sometimes, if I'm really nice to her, she'll even announce the availability of my books on her blog. However, she's always trying to pretend I don't exist. You'll notice I don't possess such qualms. (Just don't tell her I pointed you to her website; she'll get irritated and try to stifle me, denying my existence). (I can not be denied!!!)
Q: What do you like most about writing? A: I love being my own boss. Of course, I have to answer to my editors, keep up with the market, ignore my alter ego, and not be afraid to take risks or move in a new direction. But I find the writing life a lot more flexible in terms of making me feel like I'm in control (of my daily schedule, if not my mind) than any other job I've had. I also find it way more rewarding. I like that writing is a 24/7 vocation. In other words, it's not just my career, it's my life. I love the creativity, and I love giving my imagination free rein. There's nothing like finishing a project and feeling like you've given it your all—and that it's good! In fact, that's my absolute favorite part, writing the words, "The End."
Q: What do you like the least? A: Sometimes the creative process is frustrating. I'm not one of those writers who sits at her computer, picks up where she left off the previous day without needing to read or edit backward, and then the words flow for the next six hours. I don't see a "movie in the mind." Rather, I feel and hear my characters, and the challenge is creating a visual world on-page. Although I've been known to draft most of a novel before revising it or to draft a story in chunks, generally I revise as I go. That involves a lot of reworking of the same material. However, I've discovered it's the best way to keep myself immersed in my characters and ensure I'm telling their story and not my version of what their story should be. Like I said above, I'm a slow writer. I'd love to be a fast writer, but I'm not, and I've (nearly) accepted that.
Q: What's your favorite fantasy? A: Eating cinnamon buns every day and never getting fat.
Q: What's the difference between erotica and erotic romance? A: Basically, erotica doesn't require a commitment between the characters at the end of the story and is more about the characters' sexual journeys than the development of their relationship. Erotic romance is graphic and hot, however, essentially, the stories are still romances. If you took out the sex, you'd still have a story.
Q: What scent do you find most arousing? A: Aside from chocolate? A man freshly clean from the shower who doesn't drown himself in cologne. Have him chop wood for an hour, and I'm even happier. Make him my husband, and my husband will be happy, too!
Q: What do your children think about your writing? A: My sons are now adults, so how they feel about their mom writing erotic romance isn't the concern it might be for a writer with children getting teased at school. In our family, we've always supported each other's dreams and aspirations. So my kids support my choices, even if they'd secretly rather I write children's books from our dog's point of view. In turn, I support their hopes and dreams, even though I don't want to. I'd really rather the world revolved around me!
Q: Is your love life really like what you write in your books? A: No. It's better.
Q: Do you listen to music when you write? A: No, and I don't understand how other writers can. The concept of creating a compilation CD to suit a particular writing project is completely foreign to me. I have a "noisy" brain, so I need quiet to work. Well, having my cat crawl all over my keyboard really helps, too.
Q: What's your favorite day of the week? A: Hump day!
Q: What's the best writing advice you've ever received? A: "To thine own self be true." This is more like advice I've taught myself and learned through gleaning the wisdom of various critique partners and industry professionals over the years, because my personal road to publication was a long, hazardous, and often extremely frustrating and aggravating one. To succeed as a writer, you have to believe in yourself and learn to let rejections bounce off you. Don't take them personally! If you must, limit your whining time. Wallow in the injustice of it all, but then move on—and in short order. If you allow rejections to creep under your skin, doubts soon follow, and then suddenly you're questioning every word you write. Most unpublished writers go through a serious stage of self-doubt, and a lot of times the worst period is right before you sell. I know it was for me. Unfortunately, a writer's self-doubt doesn't magically disappear once she does sell. Her concerns and problems just evolve and change. The writing business is definitely not for wimps. You have to learn not to compare your personal writing journey to others', because, believe me, you'll always find a way to decide you're the one who's lacking. It's also necessary to develop the skin of a rhinoceros (to field off those rejections) while keeping the joy of writing intact...even if most of that joy comes from writing "The End". As the illustrious Jennifer Crusie says, "Protect the Writing." Well, she says, "Protect the Work," but by "work" I'm pretty sure she means writing. And, wow, is that essential. Because, in the end, a writer's vision and voice is all she truly controls in this crazy and fulfilling business, no matter how much said writer would like to fool herself otherwise.