Sunday, September 23, 2012

Bethany Michaels, Author of Nashville Naughty & Cuffed

We're excited to join Bethany Michaels at The Buttery Nipple, Courtney Monroe’s bar in “Cuffed”. As we enter, we hear smooth Southern rock playing on the jukebox, glasses clinking and pool balls clacking in the back room. Everyone is having fun! 

Bethany invited us to this cozy bar for her interview. And you all are in for a special treat. First three rounds of Buttery Nipples are on the house!  

Bethany Michaels
Erotic Romance Author

Naughty Reader’s: Tell us a bit about yourself  that our readers might not know.

Bethany:  I’m from a very, very small Indiana farm town but moved to the Nashville, Tennessee area about six years ago. I often slip the name of my hometown into my books as sort of a warm reminder of where I grew up (Easter egg hunt, anyone?). I have a husband and four school-aged children and work full time in logistics, though my degree is in English. I spend a significant amount of time volunteering with my kids’ scout troops and love the outdoors. I’m also a BIG Elvis fan and incorporated that trait into the heroine of my book, Nashville Naughty. I’ve worked with many small and e-presses and am excited to continue those relationships as well as expand into indie publishing.

Naughty Reader’s: What made you want to become a writer?

Bethany: I’ve always loved reading and making up stories, but I actually started writing romance to maintain some of my sanity. Having just added twins to my brood, I had four children under the age of four years old at home. I loved being a mom, but I desperately needed something that was all mine—my own head space. Writing time became “my” time, my own little escape from diapers and housework, and my day job. I started to get serious about writing for publication in 2005, joining Romance Writers of America and Indiana Romance Writers. My first published work was a novella in one of Red Sage’s well-known Secrets anthologies in 2007. That was a good day .

Naughty Reader’s: Please share a bit about your new release without giving away any spoilers.

Bethany“Cuffed” is the first story in my new “My Favorite Fantasy” series. It’s the story of a young woman from a family of moonshiners that has always had a less than positive relationship with the law and law enforcement officers. The heroine has been able to break away from that lifestyle, but she still has a lot of secrets and when she hooks up with a hot cop who knows more than one use for a set of police-issue handcuffs, life gets a lot more complicated. 

Naughty Reader’s: Do you write under a pen name?

BethanyYes. “Bethany” is my real first name, but “Michaels” is a pseudonym. Since I write the sexy stuff and live in the Bible belt, I thought that might work out better, though it’s sort of an open secret amongst my friends and family.

Naughty Reader’s: (Brenda) I know all about living in the bible belt and keeping what you write hush-hush. LOL What types of hero or heroine do you like best?

BethanyI love a strong, confident hero who knows how to have fun. My heroines tend to be strong-willed, know what they want and aren’t afraid to go after it. For some reason, I have an aversion to virgin heroines and never write them, even in my Regency-set historicals. As a reader, I like a little Alpha in my male—men with a bit of dark side. I find really dark characters difficult to write, though.

Naughty Reader’s: Ready for another round? (Tonya waves at the waitress and points at our table) Tell us about a typical day in your life as a writer.

Bethany:  Well, I have a “day job” that I go to at night, so my day is upside down to begin with. My writing time sort of revolves around what the rest of the family is up to. On a normal day during the school year, I go in to work at about 8 p.m. and get off at 4 a.m. Then I have about two hours to write before I have to wake my kids up for school. After the kids and Hubby have left for the day, I sometimes write or edit a bit if I’m on deadline. Otherwise that two hours between 4 a.m. and 6 a.m. is my only dedicated writing time, though I do write as much as possible on my nights off. During school breaks, I bribe the children to let me have 2 hours of quiet time to write. I also write at the park, the doctor’s office, the pool—wherever I can— when the kids are out of school.

Naughty Reader’s: (Tonya) Bethany hun, just when do you sleep?  Do your books have a common theme or are they all different?

Bethany: Sleep? What's that? A lot of my books have to do with things being different than they seem—people, places, situations. I like to play with the idea that reality is just a matter of perception. I also tend to write about family and family relationships quite a bit, in one way or another. All of my book shave a bit of humor in them, even when dealing with more serious issues. As far as genre, I write Regency-set historicals, contemporaries and a bit of light paranormal.

Naughty Reader’s: How long does it take you to write and then edit a story?

Bethany:  I’m a plotter for the most part and once I have an outline and know where I’m going, I can kick out about 1000 words an hour when I’m drafting. After the whole first draft is done I go back and read it for flow, plot and characterization, and make those larger revisions to the story. Then I go back through again and edit for voice, grammar and general writing stuff. All in all, a 10,000 word short usually takes about a week to draft and another two to three weeks to edit and prepare for submission. For a 50,000 word book, I shoot for eight weeks. My indie books then go to a copy editor before they are finalized and offered for sale. I’ll take one last look after they have been copy-edited and make final tweaks before I start formatting them for upload.

Naughty Reader’s: Do you have to be alone to write?

BethanyI prefer to write alone, but I’ve learned to take my writing opportunities where I can find them! When the kids were really young, I would often write at the McDonald’s Playland. Music helps block out all the distractions when I have to write in a crowd.

Naughty Reader’s: How do you go about naming characters?

BethanyI kept one of my baby name books and refer to that whenever I need a character’s first name. I sometimes use that for the last names, too, but I also use the phone book. Nicknames are interesting to me, so if it’s the kind of character who might be laid back enough to go by a nickname, I think about what that would be, too, and whether there’s a backstory to how he/she got that nickname.

Naughty Reader’s: Is it easier to write about the characters if you find pictures of them before you write or do you write then find character pictures?

BethanyI really don’t use any visual cues like pictures or collages when I write. I’ve tried finding pictures of my hero and heroine beforehand but find it tends to muddy the characterization for me and makes the character harder to write consistently. The person I picture in my mind is never the same as the one in a picture from a magazine. I prefer the characters that live inside my head. 

Naughty Reader’s: How do you pick locations for your stories?

BethanyI like using locations I’ve been to because then I can drop in lots of little real facts or references to places that make the setting seem more authentic. For example, I fell in love with my adopted city of Nashville and set a series of books here. I set some scenes at famous Nashville landmarks like the Grand Ole Opry and the atrium at the Opryland Hotel. If I’m using a location, I haven’t been to myself I research extensively first.

Naughty Reader’s: What are you working on now and what should readers be looking forward to from you in the future?

Bethany: As I mentioned, I’m really excited about playing in the indie publishing arena. I will continue to work with a couple of small presses I like, but I am very much enjoying the freedom to write what I want, get the cover and release dates I want, and to be able to price my own books as an indie author.

I’m launching a new indie series of short novellas called “My Favorite Fantasy” in a couple of weeks. Each stand-alone story plays on a different kind of erotic theme but is definitely a romance with a happily-ever-after. The first story is “Cuffed” (cop/bondage theme) and will be available at most ebook outlets by October 1st. The others in the series are “Tripled” (ménage), “Played (toys)”, “Exposed” (celebrity sex) and “Cured” (doctor fetish). I’m also writing novellas with a group of friends for Siren publishing under the name The Sextet. My cohorts are some talented, multi-published, award-winning ladies! We’ve done several anthologies and are now writing stand-alone novellas on a common theme. For example, I’m working on a novella with a toy theme, tentatively titled “All in a Night’s Work”. A couple of the ladies have already published their “Toy Stories” so you’ll want to check those out!

Naughty Reader’s: Where can readers find out more about you and your books?

Bethany: My website is and that’s the best place to keep up to date on new releases, links and news. I’m also on Facebook  and Twitter @bmichaelsauthor. The website for The Sextet is
My indie works as well as my small-press backlist can be found at most ebook retailers like Barnes &Noble, Amazon, All Romance eBooks, Sony, Diesel, Kobo, Smashwords, etc. 

Naughty Readers: Bethany, thank you again for chatting with us this week.

Readers, Bethany is featuring a contest. The winner will receive either an eBook copy or a trade paperback copy of Nashville Naughty (US addresses only for the paperback) or an eBook copy of Cuffed on the release day. (International) Enter through the Rafflecopter below and good luck!

Cuffed, My Favorite Fantasy - Coming Oct 1!


He broke the kiss as suddenly as he'd instigated it and stared right into my eyes. His were flinty and hard, but darker now with desire. Desire for me.
"Turn around."
"Do it." the tone in his voice left no room for argument, and frankly with my nipples already hardened to painful little points begging for his touch, I wasn’t in the mood to argue.
I turned around and instantly felt the familiar bite of police-issue handcuffs click around both wrists, trapping me.
I twisted around. "What the hell are you doing, Ridgeway? Is this some kind of joke?"
“Does it look like I’m laughing?”
What he was doing was unbuttoning his shirt. Once that was done, he removed his belt and set it onside the front seat of his cruiser through the open window.
He shrugged out of his shirt leaving him in just the regulation white t-shirt and his stiff blue pants. The t-shirt clung to his flat belly and seemed to barely contain his biceps. He could do underwear commercials, I decided. If the whole cop thing didn’t work out.
Travis held my gaze as he tugged the t-shirt over his head and tossed it aside. My mouth went dry even as other parts of me went wet.
God, he was something to look at.
“No, you don’t look like you’re laughing,” I said as I wet my dry lips. “You look like you’re about to get naked.”

Watch for the second book in the My Favorite Fantasy Series.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Hi Bethany! Your My Favorite Fantasy series sounds really good. Thanks again for visiting with us this week. Four kids - my hat off to ya. We're a blended family of seven, but they are all grown and on their own. ~Brenda

  2. Great interview, but that schedule's a killer! Good luck and enjoy everything that comes along.