Tammy Dennings Maggy is a Midwestern girl who lives in California. After an amazing career as a veterinarian, Tammy is now pursuing her lifelong dream of becoming a published author. On September 13, 2011, the first book in her “Now and Forever” series was released. For the Love of Quinn (Book 1) had been her baby for two, long years. Tammy thanks the Goddess daily that she listened to her my friends and family who encouraged her to get off her butt and send it in to the publisher. “Writing erotic romances has been a fantastic experience and one I hope to continue for many more years to come,” Tammy says.
Recently Tammy released the second book in her series titled “Now and Forever.” She is published through Siren Publishing Allure and maintains several blogs to help promote other authors. She sat down with me and answered a few questions. Read the interview below. Be sure to check out the excerpts as well.
About “The Island”
After losing her brother in a fatal motorcycle accident, Quinn’s life spins out of control. Shutting herself off from friends and family in Michigan, she buries herself in her work, wishing for the pain to end. In her dreams she’s finally able to find the peace her heart craves on The Island.
Driven to recklessness over a heartbreaking betrayal, Jacob races his motorcycle on a rain slick California freeway. Near death in the hospital, he’s given a choice. Stay on The Island or go back for a second chance at love.
Destined to be together, but repeatedly torn apart, these two lost and melancholy people draw the attention of the Goddess Fate. As Quinn and Jacob’s lives hang in limbo, the soul mates are given a very special gift from the Gods, and the chance to finally have their love of a lifetime.
What inspired you to write your first book?
I’ve written all sorts of things since childhood and some still to this day are unfinished. I’m working on that, but the very first book I finished and published was For the Love of Quinn (Now and Forever 1). That one started out as a fantasy, a “what if” situation from my own life.
At that time I was in a loveless marriage to someone who spent more time with his Xbox buddies on line than with me. I was lost and alone, 2500 miles away from my family in Michigan and had no one to confide in. So I did the next best thing. I made someone up, my Knight in Shining Armor if you will. I came up with an entire fantasy scenario where this man followed me to Disneyland of all places determined to win my heart.
That one scene which was near the end of the book was how it all began. The more I poured my heart out into Quinn’s story, the more I was able to work through my pain, loneliness, and heartbreak. Of course the more I wrote, the louder the characters got in my head. That’s how the entire world of the Now and Forever series developed.
Do you have a specific writing style or approach to writing your books?
I write whatever pops into my head and usually a story is being told to me out of order. I do start with a basic open outline with names, dates, and plot points. This gives me the freedom to add as much or as little I need to make the story flow. I guess you could call me a “plotting pantser!”
How did you come up with the title?
Some of the titles just came to me and others are from my poetry. The Island(Now and Forever 2) came about because to me, the Island is the main character of the book. It’s the place where Quinn and Jacob are blessed by the Gods, where they start healing from the wounds of their pasts, and start their happily ever after together. It sort of reminds me of that old show “Fantasy Island” where people go to find themselves.
Is there a message in your novels that you want readers?
In all of the books of this series the basic tenant is true love conquers all. I know, simple statement but it’s true. I believe we are created in pairs and even though we may take many lifetimes to find each other, eventually we do—and when that happens, it’s truly magical.
I didn’t believe I would ever find my own soul mate. It’s probably why I write about it. Now that I’m living my own happily ever after, it proves to me without a doubt I’m right. The heart wants what the heart wants and it wants to be reunited with the one that can make it complete.
What motivates you to write?
Life—my own search for myself and the happily ever after. I’d been through so much in my life that writing has always been my escape and my coping mechanism. I write in order to get centered deep in my soul. I guess you could say it’s also great therapy. I wonder what I should charge…LOL
Did you learn anything from writing your books?
YES! For this latest release, I learned how to keep the book shorter. The first book was considered EPIC…okay, HUGE novel at over 219, 000 words. With The Island I learned to focus on one couple and get to the HEA. The first time I wrote this book, it was a little different. The villainess kept stealing the show. I had to give her another book in order to keep The Island focused. I learned not to be afraid to continue the story into another book if need be. By doing them around 50K words, they are just right for people to read in a sitting or two. That’s what the readers want nowadays.
What book are you reading now?
Oh, that is a bit complicated to answer. I have several going at once. On my Kindle 3G I’m reading Always the Baker, Never the Bride by Sandra D. Bricker. On my Kindle Fire I have two books open: Balls to the Walls Detective Inc. by May Water and Big Girls Do It Married by Jasinda Wilder. I’m also reading the Fire and Ice series by George R. R. Martin in paperback.
Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
So many new authors have caught my eye and their filling up my kindles fast! Just to name a few: Leanore Elliott, Alexandra Anthony, Ally Thomas ;), Maya DeLeina, Amber Lea Easton, Robin Badillo, Tyler Robbins, Kendall McKenna, May Water and Natasha Blackthorne. There are so many more that it would take days to list them all.
I’ve “met” many authors and have had them on my blogs as guests. This way I get a sneak peek at their works and more books for my TBR pile. So many books and so little time!
Who is your most popular character? Why do your readers like or dislike them?
Hmmm…it varies but the secondary characters have really grabbed attention lately especially Julia Santos. She’s the villainess of The Island. When I first told this story as short called “A Christmas Miracle for Jake,” Julia came onto the scene and literally too over. People wanted to know more about this vixen and whether or not she really was as cold-hearted as some of the other characters saw her. I mean there had to be some redeeming qualities for Jake to love her so long ago…before Quinn that is!
If you’re not writing full time now, do you see writing as a career in the future?
Yes I do. I’m a full-time small animal veterinarian now…19 ½ years running! That’s a long time and I would like to go part time doing that and spend more on my writing. Maybe even retire from veterinary medicine altogether and concentrate on other passions. My hubby would like to open his own pub and restaurant. That would be exciting!
Who designed the covers?
Book one was done by JingerBrutonHaeston
Book two was done by Christine Kirchoff
Who is your publisher and what are a few things you like about their business platform?
Siren Bookstrand is the publisher for this series. Their contracts are fair and very straight forward. If you have any questions at all, there is someone there who will answer them or find out the answers for you. They’ve set up private groups for authors to get together online to support each other and where they can give us important business information all in one spot. Siren also has a reader yahoo group where we can go and connect with readers too.
I really love the editors who’ve been assigned to my books. I’ve learned so much from them as to what to do and not do in a romance. They’ve helped me develop my skills as a writer and I can never repay them for that. I have to say I was the Head Hopping Queen with that first book, but now I can catch it a mile away. With the last round of edits, I got so much praise that I laughed and cried at the same time. When others can see your vision and understand what you are saying and where you are trying to go with your characters, well, it just makes it all worthwhile.
As an author, we have a part in the whole process from writing the blurbs, picking excerpts, and giving final approval of the cover and the manuscripts. If we don’t agree with what the editors suggest, we don’t have to change things. But…they are usually right! LOL
Are you an Indie author? What do you like about it?
I self-published my first book of poetry and I loved every part of the process. I love the control I have over how to publish, when to publish, and whether or not I’ll do just an ebook or put it out in print at the same time. Now that I’ve done both routes of publishing, I would have to say I prefer Indie by just a slight margin. Working with Siren and having them provide the editors, cover artists and formatting the books in all ebook formats, you really appreciate all it takes to get a great quality product out there.
The costs of professional editors and cover artist can be up there, but I’ve met a few folks along the way who are in those lines of work and are also reasonably priced. Yay! So my next Indie project will be the ultimate test. I did the poetry book all myself because let’s face it. It’s not that hard to edit and format that genre yourself. My prose on the other hand will be a bit different. I’m going to want a cover that pops and an editor who is tough and thorough to bring out the best in my writing.
Can you share a little of your current work with us?
WARNING! Please note explicit language and adult content is below. You must be 17 or older to view the following full sample.
An Excerpt from “The Island”
His eyes found hers once again and she began to fall. She didn’t care. Thoughts of going back or staying there on The Island disappeared. All she wanted to think about, to feel, and taste was Jacob. Quinn pulled his mouth back to hers. The sweet taste of the berries, mango, and papaya dazzled her taste buds as their tongues teased and danced with each other, fighting for control one moment and surrendering to each other the next.
Jacob finally freed her tits from the laces of her bodice. Watching him tug at the strings with his teeth made her heart beat faster and she giggled before she could stop. He winked and kept up the slow pace. Quinn giggled even more. “I stand by my first assessment. You’re a tease, Jake.”
“Baby doll, you haven’t seen anything yet.” He pushed her dress down to her waist and simply stared. “I’m not the only tease here.”
“What are you talking about?” Quinn slid her fingertips up and down his arms. His muscles twitched and pulsed at her touch. She wanted those arms wrapped around her and to never let go.
“You are the most beautiful woman I’ve ever met. You don’t flaunt it, but every move and noise you make turns me on. I wanted to take this slow, but I can’t.”
“Stop thinking so much and kiss me.” She pushed herself up to meet his mouth once again as they moved on the bed so she was now on top of him. Jacob’s hands slid up her thighs, leaving hot trails with his fingertips. Her body quaked and her pussy clenched as a rush of fluid soaked her panties completely.
Jacob hooked his thumbs in the band of her underwear, snapped them off, and tossed them onto the floor. His hands slid up her body, pulling the dress up and over her head in a flash. He sat up, holding her in his lap, nuzzling first one breast and then the other with his stubbly chin and cheeks. The roughness of his skin against her rock-hard nipples sent her rolling toward another orgasm. She clung to him as he suckled harder on her right nipple while kneading her left breast with his hand. Quinn arched her back and bit her lip before crying out. “Jake, please don’t—”
He pulled back quickly, moving his hands to cradle her face. Concern filled his eyes. “Did I hurt you?”
Her eyes glistened with tears. “No. Please don’t stop.”
* * * *
The catch in her voice nearly broke his heart. The raw passion was there. Her body given freely to him, and yet she still questioned his desire for her. He knew that pain all too well. Here with Quinn though, it all faded away. She did that for him and he wanted so badly to do the same for her. He wiped away the tears that spilled onto her flushed face. He kissed her softly and held her close. “I want you, now and for however long we can be together. I need to be with you. I won’t stop as long as you want the same.”
Quinn slid off his lap and knelt up on the bed, pulling him up with her. She held his gaze as her fingers unfastened his shorts and then slid them down over his hips. Jacob quickly took off his tank top before crushing Quinn’s chest against his. She smiled and his heart beat quickened. “I need you, too. Make love with me, Jake.”
He slid out of his shorts as Quinn eased back onto the pillows. Jacob took in her entire sun-kissed body, naked before him. God, she’s so beautiful. Quinn welcomed him into her arms as he joined her on the pillows, his mouth finding her left nipple this time as his right hand trailed down her stomach.
She arched her back and moaned as soon as his fingers found her throbbing clit. Another wave of fluid gushed out of her and over his fingers. Jacob brought them up to his mouth to taste her. “Mmmm. You taste fucking fantastic. Your sister was right. Wanna try?”
Quinn giggled and licked his fingers clean. That move sent his body over the edge. His cock was bouncing with his need for her, a fact that didn’t go unnoticed by his lover. She reached inside the nightstand for the box of condoms, spilling several over the bed. Jacob smiled as he placed one in her open palm. Quinn slid her hands down his abs to his pulsing member. She wrapped her fingers around his shaft and squeezed a little, eliciting a gasp from him. Carefully she tore open the wrapper with her teeth and quickly covered his cock with the ribbed latex sheath. He thrust his hips forward, causing her hand to slide up and down his shaft. “Oh, now who’s teasing?” Jacob moaned.
He eased Quinn all the way back onto the pillows, and slid down her body toward his prize. He wanted more than just a taste. He wanted to feast on her cunt until she begged for him to take her. He positioned himself between her thighs and looked up to see her watching him, her chest rising and falling rapidly. He winked before popping her clit into his mouth and sucking hard. Quinn nearly bucked him off but he held her hips in place, enjoying her squirming and sighs. It wasn’t long at all before he was rewarded once again with her sweet nectar.
He teased her a bit more with his tongue and then slipped one, two and then three fingers inside of her hot folds. Her pussy clenched repeatedly over his fingers and her body convulsed over and over again. Quinn’s skin flushed from her tits to her toes, because of him, because of what he was doing to her. He wanted more, so much more. He couldn’t wait any longer. He wanted to bury his cock deep inside her, go over the edge, and never come back.