Thursday, March 3, 2011

All Things Romantic Suspense: Interview #8 - C.L. Exline

Well, I'm late to the party again, but here all the same, please welcome my poor guest, C.L. Exline, who's been patiently waiting for her interview, to my blog.

What made you decide to write erotic romance and not just sensual romance?

I stumbled across a site called Stores Online. While a member I got to know some of the authors. There was one writer that I really admired. About that time I was told about a critique group and joined. One of the moderators was THE guy I thought was so awesome. Can we say, “Elvis is in the building”? That’s how I felt. I was instantly a giggling school girl. The group was great and I learned a lot, the group was geared for erotica writers, so that’s what I wrote and had published. Later I toned down my writing to fit the site I submit to.

I love that you write for a small town newspaper. J How different is it to write non-fiction versus fiction? (btw, I admire you for the ability to go between the two, my non-fiction is so dry and boring!)

It is hard to stick to just facts, no fluff, real facts are boring. J I write a column that features past events from 25, 50 & 75 years ago that were published in our paper. That’s fun. I’m also the editor for a race track column, hunting column, and agriculture column. How’s that for diversity? J

I love your series title - Sheryl Locke Holmes, how did the title and series come to you? What is it about?

One of my friends was into writing fan fic. Hers was about Harry Potter. That’s not for me, but I did get to thinking what if Sherlock Holmes had a daughter or a descendant to bring her into present times. Wild Child had a submission call for a mystery and Sheryl Locke Holmes was born. Sheryl’s best friend is Dot Watson, her roommate from college. Dot is a tech geek. Another close friend is Amber who designs jewelry. The first book in the series is named for her— Amber’s Mysterious Death. Each book title in the series has a gemstone in it and that stone is the name of a character. Whether the character lives or dies, you must read the book. Sheryl does say Sherlock’s famous lines: “Elementary, dear Watson” and the “game’s afoot.” Those sayings are a focal point in the third book—Opal’s Disappearance.

As with all our amazingly talented cohorts in crime, you write romantic suspense. Is that the only genre you write? If so, why? If not, what other genre's have you branched out to and what has been your favorite so far?

It’s my main genre, but I also write paranormal, but there’s always a mysterious aspect to it as well as romance. I can’t write without something strange going on. Except writing erotica, that’s plain saucy.

When does inspiration usually strike you? Do you find yourself rushing for the nearest piece of paper and pen, or do you find you can usually remember the idea or scene?

Inspiration strikes at the oddest times. My most recent lightning bolt moment was when I was at a funeral. I couldn’t wait to find a pen and paper to write it down. Until then I remembered what I wanted to write, but it was nerve wracking. I do keep a journal with me to record thoughts and/or ideas just to be sure I don’t forget.

How do you handle negative criticism? What advice do you have for a writer receiving it for the first time (boy, I think that first time hurts the worst!)?

You mean after I hire a hit man? J Just kidding but there have been moments… Seriously it’s hard, I’m sure we all feel a pang of instant pain, but we need to step back. The critique group I belonged to made us wait seven days to respond to comments on our stories. Great training. Once the hurt subsides, perhaps there’s something that can be used to strengthen the story. But after the story is accepted and published, then it’s just one person’s opinion. If my publisher and editor was pleased with the story, that works for me. We can’t please everyone.

What are you currently working on? Has it been challenging to write? If so, why?

Butterfly Dreams and yes, very challenging. I wanted to write straight romance, didn’t that happen. I tried really hard, but for me I need more substance in my stories. No dead bodies in this story, but plenty of suspense and always romance, plus humor.

Thank you so much, Cassie, for stopping by and for being so patient! If you want to know more about my guest, please stop by her Website: and Blog:

Also, come back tomorrow for an excerpt from her neat story about Sheryl Locke Holmes!



  1. Thanks for having me, Elaina. Your place showcases my book cover perfectly. I feel pretty, oh so pretty.....

  2. Thanks for stopping by! And again, sorry for all the delays *blush*. I agree completely about your book cover! It sure will look pretty on my sidebar there for the month ;-)

  3. Great idea about the sidebar. Noticed the other blog tour authors. Very clever,

  4. Can I get that number for that hitman, Cassie? ((((wink))))Wonderful interview ladies.

  5. Thanks for stopping by Jerri. the number is Dial M 4-my-hit-man. lol

  6. This is strictly for research, Cassie. LOL

  7. Of course it is, Jerri (((wink wink)))

  8. This conversation never happened ladies...

  9. Great interview and I love your cover! The red is fantastic and you're right, the blog sets the tone.


  10. Thanks for stopping by, Kissa. Elaina has a great place.

  11. Thank you for coming by, Kissa (love your name)! And thanks for the compliment, Cassie! *hugs*