I’m thrilled to have as my special guest today the “cynfully” sizzling Cynthia Sax. As you know, I’ve become a big cyborg fan, and Cynthia has an awesome new series, Cyborg Sizzle, a unique blend of sci-fi romance and D/s. I highly recommend it!
Cara Bristol: Let’s talk cyborgs. You have a new series, Cyborg Sizzle (Releasing Rage, Breathing Vapor). Why did you choose to write about cyborgs? What’s the attraction?
Cynthia Sax: I will always be a cyborg romance reader first and foremost. I loved the cyborg romances written by Laurann Dohner, Eve Langlais, Mina Carter and many other brilliant writers. The inner conflict cyborgs feel between their human sides and their machine sides, emotion and logic, free will and obey commands is extremely sexy.
I decided to write my own cyborg stories because 1) all three of my fave cyborg writers took a break from their series and 2) I wanted to explore a couple of areas in a little bit more detail. I wanted to know why a being manufactured to be the perfect soldier would rebel and I wanted to talk about how cyborgs could reproduce. Yes. (grins) I talk about cyborg babies in my stories.
Cynthia Sax: Not all of my stories have domination and submission in them. The themes are driven by the characters. Cyborgs are warriors, manufactured soldiers. If beings disobey their commands on the battlefield, they could die. It makes sense that, when they give orders, they expect to be obeyed, even in their sexual relationships. It also makes sense that they’d reprimand their loved ones for disobedience and that these reprimands would be physical. Warriors prefer action over talking.
I noticed you’ve been published by Ellora’s Cave and Loose Id, among others. Cyborg Sizzle is Indie, correct? Do you see yourself as a hybrid published author or have you chosen to go Indie all the way? Why did you choose to self-publish?
Cynthia Sax: My cyborg stories ARE indie. I happily wrote SciFi erotic romance for Ellora’s Cave until they had their problems (they’re still selling my books but they aren’t paying me). Publishers basically own the characters and the worlds writers create. It is almost impossible to take them with us when we change publishers. Thankfully, all of my series were completed with Ellora’s Cave, but I couldn’t use my complex world or any of the alien species or the characters in a new series. I had to start from zero.
I learned from that experience. I expect I’ll work with publishers in the future with my contemporary erotic romance stories. With my SciFi erotic romances? Likely not. I want to have control over how many stories are in a series. I want to own my worlds. I want to ensure my readers are happy.
Cynthia Sax: According to Amazon, I have 92 stories published. (shakes head) How did THAT happen? Many of those are short stories and novellas. The cyborg series are longer.
I have always written. I wrote daily in diary when I was a child. Those first entries are in crayon. Yes, I started that young. I wrote for a couple of newspapers, some blogs, and then finally, romances.
I don’t have another job at the moment. I’m very fortunate because my dear wonderful hubby pays our bills. That allows me to focus on writing.
Cara Bristol: Ninety-two books! That’s amazing. You’ll have to do something BIG for your 100th book release. What is your writing process/schedule like?
Cynthia Sax: I’m a pantser. I write by the seat of my pants, not having a plot. I usually have the first scene in my head. I also have a solid concept of my main characters, what their goals, motivations, conflicts, strengths, weaknesses, etc. are. The first draft is a mess. It usually takes me at least 4 drafts before I can submit it to an editor.
I write fresh words in the morning. I can usually write 2,500 words or 10 pages before my brain melts down. Then I focus on revisions, edits or promo. It is a 7 day a week, 12 hour plus ‘job’ for me but that’s because I love it.
Cara Bristol: What makes a good erotic romance hero? What turns you off?
Cynthia Sax: I’ve seen great erotic romance heroes with almost every characteristic, trait, occupation, etc. you can imagine. What is important to me is that I understand him. I (eventually) want to know what his goals are, what he’s thinking, why he’s doing what he’s doing.
I have my personal preferences, of course. I like alpha males, often warriors, bonus points if they’re scarred. If I’m going to fantasize about a male, I would like him to be able to pay the rent. (grins) I’d also like him to be well-equipped. I’m not going to dream about guys with tiny body parts.
Cara Bristol: What about the heroine? What makes a good heroine?
Cynthia Sax: Again, I should understand her. Writers always talk about sympathetic heroines and that is what that means. The heroine doesn’t have to super nice all the time. Nice people tend to be boring. But if she does something nasty, we want to know why. As many readers picture themselves as the heroine, readers should think ‘I’d do the same thing if I was her.’
Cara Bristol: I think that’s good advice. Reading is a vicarious experience; I know I like to be able to identify with the heroine. Please share something of the private Cynthia. Who are you/what do you do when you’re not writing sizzling hot romances?
Cynthia Sax: The dear wonderful hubby and I love to travel. That’s our drug of choice. Every year we try to see one more place, even if that place is a small town within driving distance. I find travel really helps with writing SciFi romance. I see different cultures, different habitats, different things, and I also experience that stranger in a strange land feeling that many SciFi heroines experience.
Five people alive or dead, you’d like to have dinner with: Barbara Cartland, John Steinbeck, Jane Austin, Charles Dickens, and Stephen King – Can you imagine the discussions?
Finish the sentence: If I could do “it” over again, I would: Stick to one subgenre of romance. It is challenging trying to make both SciFi and contemporary romance readers happy. We won’t talk about how I started in paranormal and dabbled in post apocalyptic. (grins)
Favorite food: Nutella!
Pets: None. We have partial ownership of Max, the neighborhood guard cat, but he doesn’t sleep at our place. We travel too much for pets.
A favorite movie: I’ve watched The Fifth Element a zillion times!
Vapor is the most advanced cyborg the Humanoid Alliance has ever developed. He’s a finely honed weapon, a warrior without parallel, half man and half machine. No lock can contain him. No being can stop him. Whatever he wants, he takes.
He wants Mira Breazeal, the Designer’s daughter.
She’s his one temptation, his sexy target. Vapor shouldn’t crave her caresses, steal her kisses, make her scream with ecstasy. The cyborgs want her dead and they would question his loyalty if he didn’t kill her. The humans would shoot him on sight if he dared to touch her.
Their love is forbidden. Their desire could be lethal. One human and one cyborg will risk everything for a moment of passion.
Order Breathing Vapor Now
About Cynthia Sax
USA Today bestselling author Cynthia Sax writes contemporary, SciFi and paranormal erotic romances. Her stories have been featured in Star Magazine, Real Time With Bill Maher, and numerous best of erotic romance top ten lists.
Sign up for her dirty-joke-filled release day newsletter and visit her on the web at www.CynthiaSax.com