How I Came to Write an Erotic Horror Novel by Gail Bridges (@GailWBridges)
You’re Writing WHAT?
Not long ago, a friend asked about my new novel, Inn on the Edge. She wanted to know: Why erotic horror? Why not straight-up romance? Good question! It made me sit down and think about the genesis of my story, way back when the idea was nothing but wisps of unformed ideas, insubstantial yet demanding attention. My friend had good timing – the release date for Inn on the Edge was finally within shouting distance.
The story goes like this:
Soon after my first erotic novel was published, I had a conversation with Carrie Jackson, a lovely editor from Ellora’s Cave. I was lucky enough to sit and speak with her at the Emerald City Writer’s Conference in Bellevue, Washington in October of 2013. Although she is not my personal Ellora’s Cave editor, she took the time to share with me what the publisher most wanted to see – at the top of their wish list: erotic horror.
Apparently, erotic horror is fiendishly difficult to write. Carrie told me that authors are daunted at the prospect. Ellora’s Cave doesn’t get nearly the submissions they would like in the genre. “How about you write one?” Carrie asked.
As if that would happen.
But I couldn’t stop thinking about what Carrie had told me. Erotic Horror? What a difficult, wonderful combination! How to combine two such opposite-seeming things in the same story? How could I create a scenario where the main characters are scared shitless, fearing for their lives … and yet have plenty of time for hot, wild sex? How could I write such a story and make it realistic?
I had to try.
First, I needed a great setting. It didn’t take long to think of the wonderful old lodge on the Washington Coast where, long ago, I’d spent a romantic weekend. Such a place would be the ideal atmospheric setting for a horror novel.
Once I had the setting, the story came together piece by piece. I’d populate the Lodge (re-cast as a Bed-and-Breakfast Inn) with eager, bright-eyed newlywed couples. My story would be rife with erotic, passionate undercurrents – who better to get things going than four couples gathering together just after their weddings?
Next, I needed a bad guy. He’d be horrible and likable at the same time, a demon who would lure my unsuspecting main characters to his Inn and keep them captive. My antagonist slowly took form in my mind: he’d be a new kind of sex demon, scary, charming, charismatic, yet unable to touch his captives. But now I had a new problem – who was this demon who would play such a large part in my novel?
It took a while to find my demon. My bad guy didn’t take shape until about a month later when my husband, my grown daughter, and I were eating take-out Thai food. I mentioned my Demon-in-the-Inn idea.
“Sounds interesting,” said my daughter.
“But I’m having a problem getting a handle on the demon character,” I said around a mouthful of noodles.
“What’s his name?” asked my husband, “Start with a name.”
I just stared at him blankly.
“It ought to be something foreign-sounding!” said my daughter.
“Yeah – like this…” said my husband, shoving the Pad Thai container toward me.
My daughter shook her head. “Pad Thai? Are you kidding? Not good enough.”
“Okay.” He thought for a moment, then grinned. “What was the name of that Ethiopian place we ate lunch at last week? That sounded foreign!”
We looked it up. Adey Abeba.
And that was it. I knew immediately, no looking back. It was the name of the capitol of Ethiopia, and referred to a certain charming yellow flower that grew abundantly there (which plays a small part in my novel).
I changed the spelling: Adi Abiba. He was now Mr. Adi Abiba, proprietor of the unique Bed-and-Breakfast destination Inn on the Edge. I could see my demon clearly, so very clearly! He was tall and imposing and he wore flowing robes. He had an infectious laugh and a gaze that could skewer you. It took only a moment for Mr. Abiba to became a fully-formed character.
And then … I was off to the races! I now had everything I needed for my erotic horror novel, Inn on the Edge. All I had to do was write it.
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Angela and her brand-new husband Josh have just arrived at their honeymoon destination, a romantic bed-and-breakfast hotel on the breath-taking Washington coast—the Inn on the Edge.
But everything isn’t as it seems. The lessons that come free with the room aren’t for painting the lovely coastal scenery—the lessons are for better sex. Angie and Josh, shocked and titillated, immerse themselves in every sensual offering.
It doesn’t take long for things to go horribly wrong. They discover that the old man running the place is a sex demon, who has been stealing their sensual energy. Worse, he’s dangerously in love with Angie and he has plans for her—plans involving an heirloom wedding ring.
Inside Scoop: This book contains scenes of unbridled demon-inspired passion—girls with girls, boys with boys, twosomes, threesomes and more! A Romantica erotic horror romance from Ellora’s Cave.