I recently had the chance to “sit down” with one of my favorite new authors, Willow Winters, via email. I know Willow as one of my long-distance co-workers in the writing world, and she’s soared to the top of her game with her fantastic writing, incredible characters, and intricate plots. She’s also a parent, like many romance authors and readers I know. And she writes like a beast—after the kids are tucked in bed!

Let’s see what she has to say about her new book, Bad Boy. 

Lexi: Willow–you’ve created a world with your books, something a lot of authors don’t do. But I love it! What’s your world like? And what do you think your main characters have in common? Tell me a little bit about your new release and how it fits into the world of your books.

Willow: In the Valetti Crime Family Series the main aspect of my world that I focus on is the inter-workings of the crime family itself. Being in the familia creates a dark atmosphere, but more than that it’s the feeling of trust when they’re all together.

It’s a life of violence and crime, but one conducted with values that were instilled in them. There are unspoken bonds from everything they’ve endured together. There is an air of danger with everything they do and everywhere they go.

The men all grew up close in a familia that prides itself on its reputation and the close-knit group of honesty and respect.

They’re well known and for good reason.

And of course, they’re hot.

It was difficult writing the fifth book, Bad Boy, because Anthony is a bit of an outcast.  Most of the men are the muscle or the boss the bookie. Yeah they’re all ripped muscle and can take care of business, but they don’t immediately put you on alert. They can charm you into believing they aren’t BAD men.

But not Anthony. He has a darkness around him because of his past (I won’t give spoilers). More than that he has a wall he’s built around him because he’s the black sheep of the family. They all love him, but he’s dangerous in ways that they aren’t. And they don’t quite understand how to handle him.  Which was very heartbreaking to write because there is love there but there’s a lot of mistrust and fear there as well.

Anthony does have his brother though, always. It was wonderful to write about their relationship and to dive deeper into the way the Valetti’s were raised.

L: I know you’re a mom like me. How did you get started writing romance? And how do you keep up a writing schedule at home? 

W: I actually started writing after having my little girl, Evie, this past December. All during my pregnancy with her I read. I only wanted to read romance, and I read EVERYTHING. I would read a book a day — sometimes two.  In January I was staying up late with her and just thinking of all these stories.  They came to me constantly. And I finally sat down and just started writing. I always wanted to do it so I figured, why not? I never thought I would reach this point of success, to be honest. It’s insane to me that I have so many fans. And I love each and every one of them for all of their support. I’ll be honest, some days are HARD. I have my two littles (Jax who’s 2 and Evie who’s almost 9 months) during the day and I write at night. Some days are just simply exhausting and then I hear from a fan and it makes me want to push through and keep writing. And I do. I promise I won’t stop!

L: What’s your favorite romance novel?

W: Oh!  My favorite … that’s so hard.  I have so many favorite books.

I will say, M. Never’s Decadence after Dark is one of my favorite series ever.  I could love on Kayne all night.  And I will be taking a break from writing to read her new one coming out soon! It’s Jett’s love story and I’m so excited. I keep seeing teasers for it on Facebook.

L: If you had one superpower, what would it be? 

W: If I had one superpower, I would want to be able to pause time or clone myself.  Because there simply isn’t enough time in the day.

Lexi: As a writer, what’s the best advice you’ve ever received? How do you follow it day to day? 

The best advice I’ve ever received is to keep writing.  It’s literally the best thing an author can do.  Being an indie author is HARD because you have to know the ins and outs of the business of self-publishing, but you can’t do anything if you don’t write.

On my computer, in my little author chat, there is a bot that responds, “Write more!” whenever anyone types in, “I don’t know what to do.”  That bot has been very inspirational when I’ve had a rough day.

Lexi: You write bad boys. And bad girls, too! Where does your inspiration come from? 

My inspiration comes to me as I write.  I sit back and I think of the hero and heroine and how they meet and then I just type.  I don’t use outlines.  I tried once and I kept going off script.  I just prefer to let things happen as I write the story.

Lexi: Give us a quick elevator pitch. Why should people one-click your book?

If you enjoy sexy as hell and dangerous men getting into trouble for the women they fall for, then you’ll love my books.  I like my action hot and my bad boys hotter. And I don’t hold back on either one in my writing.

Lexi: Well Winter, where can readers find you now that they are ready to fall in love with your books?

They can sign up for my Naughty List to get all the newest bad boy releases, sales, great giveaways and a FREE Bad Boy Billionaire Romance →http://eepurl.com/b2izzf or follow me on Amazon → http://tiny.cc/mg4tdy, Twitter → https://twitter.com/willowwintersbb, my website → http://tiny.cc/cj4tdy or Facebook → https://www.facebook.com/groups/WillowsBadBoys/

Books By This Author

Lexi Whitlow

Lexi Whitlow is originally from the middle of nowhere in a tiny county in Virginia--though now she's enjoying her days as a suburban romance writer in a neighborhood with a big, shiny pool. She spent her early years growing up between Virginia and her grandfather's farm in North Carolina. She's Southern by heritage and a world-traveler at heart. Writing books allow her to travel to distant, unexplored lands in her mind, but she spends most days chasing her six-year-old and shouting at her dog to stop sneaking onto the sofa while she's writing. She holds a master's degree in English literature, and her mom is so proud she's "using her degree." Lexi harbors a not-so-secret love for bad boys. She loves fighters, dirty princes, crooked cops, and criminals. Her husband is a scientist... but he has the heart of a bad boy. She spends what little free time she has crocheting, painting, and occasionally cooking for her family. On big writing nights, everyone is happy eating cereal.

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