Sometimes Fate Has A Plan + Giveaway!

by Dani Collins, author of The Dani Collins Erotic Romance Collection

Sometimes things happen for a reason, even though you can’t see it except in hindsight. Fifteen years before it happens, you might even think fate is actually against you.

I spent a lot of years trying different genres on my way to making my First Sale to Harlequin Presents. Along the way, I tried erotica, completing a manuscript for one about fifteen years ago. I only wrote that single one before some other shiny new genre caught my eye, but I submitted it and even had a contract offer at one point, but it wasn’t my ideal publisher. I wasn’t sure I wanted to ‘be’ an erotica writer. I only had the one book and even though I had an idea for a second, it wasn’t my passion the way straight up romance was.

So I shelved it and focused on romance. After I sold to Presents in 2012, right as erotic romance was skyrocketing with wild popularity, I wondered if I should dust off that old manuscript and see if it could find a home. My editor at Mills & Boon in London wanted to read it and she forwarded it to the very new digital first imprint, Harlequin E, starting up out of the Toronto offices. That was last January.

This is where I started to see that fate actually had a plan for me. Harlequin E didn’t exist when I wrote that first manuscript and they’ve turned out to be the dream publisher for it. They loved it and offered me a two-book contract. Good thing I had an idea for a companion novel!

Here’s another thing. One of the reasons I wasn’t ready to ‘be’ an erotic writer fifteen years ago was the very young age of my kids. If I’d accepted that first contract, I would have written under a different name. Today I’m proud to see my name on these titles and excited that my Presents readers can easily find two stories that are the same but different to my Presents books. Same rich, alpha heroes, same cheeky, inexperienced heroines, same passionate love scenes that just happen to go a little (a lot!) further than my Presents.

Speaking of Presents, my August book, The Ultimate Seduction, ties in really nicely with the release of my erotic romances. You see, that first erotic story, now called Mastering Her Role, has a hero with an alter-ego. The second book, Playing The Master, has a heroine with a secret identity. Those were both conceived of two decades ago and edited by a different team at Harlequin.

Meanwhile, my editor in London wound up offering me a very cool opportunity last year, asking me to write a story in a mini-series where the characters attend masquerade balls. That turned into The Ultimate Seduction and wound up scheduled to release at the same time (August) as my erotic romances.

As the pieces all fell into place, I saw a unique opportunity for a contest to promote all of them. Don’t we all love it when a plan comes together?

And isn’t it comforting to know that if you’re going through adversity right now, it might be because the better option, the circumstances that will really make you happy, just need time to fall into place?

Do you have any experiences that frustrated you, but looking back you can see turned out for the best? I’ll send a digital copy of my erotic romance collection to one lucky commenter.

Giveaway! Answer the above question to win a digital copy of THE DANI COLLINS EROTIC ROMANCE COLLECTION. The giveaway will end on July 27th, 11:59 ET and a winner will be selected by random draw on July 28th. Open to residents of the US and Canada, excluding Quebec. For full official rules, click here.

Update This contest is now closed.

 

About The Dani Collins Erotic Romance Collection:

Two lessons of disguise, erotic pleasure, and liberation from renowned author Dani Collins.

9781460338308-COV[1]Mastering Her Role

Arianne has it bad for her friend and neighbour, Jason. Unfortunately, rumour has it that Jason has a kinky side, and Arianne’s inner freak is still hiding in the closet. So Arianne asks Jason to introduce her to his friend Dominic—a sexually dominant instructor in the ways of pleasure. And so Arianne begins her lessons of sexuality, lust, and being thoroughly and deliciously ravished. But behind his mask, Dominic seems awfully familiar…

 

Playing The Master

In a week, timid Ann Parker will belong to the coldly handsome Porter Navarro—a marriage arranged by her vicious stepfather. But when she’s secretly made over and presented to Porter as “Violet,” she is initiated into his world of dark, exquisite delights. One where he is master. But it’s only as Violet that Ann tastes true freedom. And her liberation will cost not only her sensual teacher, but the man she’s grown to love…

 

EXCERPT – Mastering Her Role:

On the telephone he had sounded like Jason with a British accent. More or less.

The relationship between the two men was something of a mystery. She’d pressed Celine after the woman said with haughty amusement, I thought he would have introduced you to Dominic by now. But she’d only received a smirk in response.

Arianne wondered how much he’d be like Jason as she stood outside the hotel-room door. Until Jason had yanked her into his arms and spoken so explicitly, she’d only suspected what kind of man lurked beneath his quiet exterior. The idea of giving herself over to someone like that made her breath stutter, urging her to back out of this crazy stunt and retreat down the hall.

It didn’t matter how desperately she wanted Jason. He was a man who enjoyed highly sophisticated sex play. She’d never reach his level. This was—

The door opened.

The man who filled the open frame wore black from silk shirt to snug leather pants tucked into tall, well-worn boots that reminded her of Jason’s. She couldn’t be sure of his identity by looking at his hands or face. He wore leather gloves and a silky kerchief thing, cut with eyeholes. It hid the upper half of his face and hair, like a pirate.

Below the mask was a blond goatee. Jason’s hair was dark as a raven’s wing. This man was about as tall as Jason, but Jason had green eyes, while the ones staring at her were brown.

Stop comparing him to Jason, she scolded herself. He looked like the kind of man who wouldn’t put up with that sort of divided attention.

“Too timid to knock? Come in,” he said in that subtle accent, so crisp with authority. He braced the door with a straight elbow, remaining in the space so she would have to duck beneath his arm and brush his body to get by.

Her purse felt slippery in her grip, and she was pretty sure she was going to faint.

When she hesitated, he said, “Would it help to know I don’t intend to touch you? You wanted to meet me, so we’ll talk.”

She managed to swallow and nod then pressed through the tiny opening, feeling the brush of soft silk against her bare shoulder. She hadn’t known what to wear and had settled on this lacy sundress. It was too virginal, she realized. It screamed of inexperience. Timid. Newbie.

But she was here now, looking around the elegant suite. This was a chic boutique hotel, and he’d booked them into one of the best rooms, a suite on an upper floor. It had a lounge area, a small bar and a door to the left that would be the bathroom. The bed sat on a platform three stairs up, next to the hollow of a three-sided window alcove. Across the foot of the ornate king-size bed draped a fringed, peacock-blue sheet. A footstool, also ornately carved and upholstered in red velvet, stood beside the bed next to a discreet black suitcase.

Wondering what the case might contain made her abdomen tense. She jerked her gaze to the drawn sheers over the window that allowed some of the afternoon sun to penetrate, bringing a glow to the polished wood detailing above the empty fireplace. The room was comfortably warm. The air-conditioning, off. No hum. No music, either, just silence as he waited behind her.

She knew she ought to turn to face him, but it was easier to continue studying the room. In one corner stood a screen, black, with an inlay of tile chips. Perhaps it belonged to him, since mosaic nudes in Kama Sutra poses decorated it. Something red hung over the top of it. The rest of the furniture appeared to be hotel issue. Lovely, but not provocative—not like that screen or the suitcase.

“I said I wouldn’t touch you but I have a custom, Arianne. People who play sexual games need signals between them to express readiness to begin and closure at the end. It builds trust. You will kiss me now and again when you leave.”

Was he kidding?

She pivoted slowly, trying to find something reassuring in the cut of his jawline, but he was pure wickedness, lounging so negligently beside the door. She didn’t think she could do it and wound up shaking her head at him.

“I was under the impression you wanted to reset the boundaries you’ve placed on your sexuality. Have you changed your mind?”

 

About Dani Collins:

Dani’s first Harlequin Presents, Proof Of Their Sin, won the 2013 Reviewer’s Choice from Romantic Times Book Reviews for Best First In Series. This summer she has five books from Harlequin, starting with this June book, An Heir To Bind Them. In August, watch for The Ultimate Seduction, the second book in the Harlequin Presents 21st Century Gentlemen’s Club mini-series. Also in August, she debuts in erotic romance with HarlequinE. Look for The Dani Collins Erotic Romance Collection containing two titles: Playing The Master and Mastering Her Role. She also has an online novella with The Chatsfield series, The Secret In Room 823.

Enter Dani Collins’ Masked Desires Contest for a chance to express your secret desires from behind a masquerade mask.

Stay current with Dani’s new releases by joining her newsletter or visiting her here:

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Comments ( 19 )
  1. Kimberly Maloney
    July 14, 2014 at 9:44 am
    Reply

    Something that frustrated me, but ended up turning out for the best, was moving across the US to Arizona. It allowed me to get away from some negative influences in my life, meet some great new people, and get some experience teaching.

  2. Dani Collins
    July 14, 2014 at 10:36 am
    Reply

    Kimberly, that’s a brilliant example!
    Moving is such a huge shift in our lives. Every little thing will be different so yes, it can be exciting and sometimes scary. I’m so glad it worked out to for the best for you 🙂

  3. Colleen C.
    July 14, 2014 at 1:29 pm
    Reply

    Same goes for me… the first time I moved… it was a big adjustment, but after awhile I was able to let go of some of my shyness… start to do more for myself… feel good about myself and what I could manage on my own.

  4. bn100
    July 14, 2014 at 3:46 pm
    Reply

    probably

  5. Dani Collins
    July 14, 2014 at 10:20 pm
    Reply

    I’m seeing a pattern! I’m glad your move turned out so well, Colleen. 🙂

  6. Marcie R
    July 15, 2014 at 12:56 pm
    Reply

    Frustrating – when people see me for who I used to be and not who I’ve become.
    How is this for the best? At least I can ‘see’ how I changed and be proud of who I am even if others can’t move beyond.

  7. Alexis A.
    July 15, 2014 at 3:10 pm
    Reply

    When I was fifteen I was a little overweight and decided to try out for a few sports to try and be more active and lose some pounds. I knew before I could tryout I needed a physical so went to my doctor. Things didn’t turn out like I had planned, that day I found out that I was diabetic, in fact my blood sugar was so high that day that my doctor actually said he was surprised I wasn’t in a diabetic coma. I ended up being rushed to the hospital where I spent five days having test run on me and learning how to deal with my diabetes. Unfortunately I didn’t get to try out for the two sports I had planned on trying out for, but in the end I kinda ended up saving my own life.

  8. Justine
    July 15, 2014 at 3:13 pm
    Reply

    College was frustrating, but it was definitely a time of growth!

  9. Vicki R.
    July 15, 2014 at 3:38 pm
    Reply

    For years I was in a job where I was made to feel I could not change things, I was trapped. I was frustrated to the point that I was miserable – every day. One day I had enough and just quit. Not long after someone I had met thru that job called out of the blue offering me a job. That was 5 years ago and I couldn’t be happier. It’s amazing how things work out!

  10. Vickie Fuqua
    July 15, 2014 at 5:44 pm
    Reply

    I divorced my first husband 26 years ago. It was a difficult time but the best decision I ever made. 3 years after my divorce, I married my best friend and soul mate whom I have known since we were 13 years old. We have been married now for 23 years and our children are all adults now. The honeymoon has started all over again. : )

  11. Crystal B.
    July 15, 2014 at 6:09 pm
    Reply

    I have tried to loose weight 3 times in the last 10 years. Each time I hit a wall where no matter what I did the weight just would not continue to come off. Do frustrating! I am now on my fourth effort. I am taking all the things I learned in the last 3 tries and applying them all this time. I have learned so much, however, the biggest lesson is to not give up and to take my time.

  12. Margaret Herman
    July 15, 2014 at 6:36 pm
    Reply

    When I lost my job working in an office. I miss working in an office for the stability of it. Margaret Herman

  13. frances
    July 15, 2014 at 7:12 pm
    Reply

    I am going thru cancer I have been going thru this journey almost for 5 years bit I am still here thank you lord

  14. Sharon H
    July 15, 2014 at 8:39 pm
    Reply

    In 2004, I was let go from a job I enjoyed but didn’t like working for the bureaucracy and politics of the boss (she had a pattern of bullying two or three people each year to get them to quit). 18 months later, I landed with my current company and today, I got a major award for just doing my job to the best of my ability!! Sometimes, when a door closes, a window opens and the sun shinestthrough!!

  15. Jocelyn
    July 15, 2014 at 10:30 pm
    Reply

    During my college days I was determined to graduate “on time” even though the Business school curriculum required that each student complete 3 internships along with a full complement of classes. At the last semester two of my required classes were scheduled at the same time on the same days of the week. I had to take the classes but could be in only one place at a time. After trying to split my time between the two, I was forced to take one class during the next semester. It turned out to be the best semester of my college career. I completed the class and was able to devote the proper time and attention to my studies, but I also got a chance to take some other classes that I might never have made the time for. You know the learning because you are interested, type of class. One of my professors asked why I was so set on getting out of school and starting to work when “you will be working for 40 years”. Taking an extra 3 months turned out to be the best college time for me.

  16. Debbie Rice
    July 16, 2014 at 2:10 am
    Reply

    Just trying to do something new, but I figured it out!!

  17. Marie
    July 16, 2014 at 1:06 pm
    Reply

    When I was pregnant with my first child, I went into premature labor at 31 weeks. Despite the doctor’s best efforts, labor progressed and I delivered my son 9 weeks early. I had to leave the hospital without him since he had to stay in the NICU. The following 5 1/2 weeks were very trying and frustrating for me. I knew he was getting the best care in the NICU but it was hard not being able to be with him all the time and have him at home with me. Looking back, it all worked out for the best. He is a happy, healthy, very intelligent 7 year old now 🙂

  18. Laura Satya
    July 16, 2014 at 6:22 pm
    Reply

    I went through a very hard break-up shortly before my 19th birthday. I thought I loved this guy with everything I had, and I was bummed about it. A friend of mine said she knew someone who could cheer me up, so a week after my birthday, she introduced me to my husband. After 25 years of being married to the someone who cheered me up, I don’t even remember the other guy’s name : )

  19. Elissa
    July 28, 2014 at 9:05 am
    Reply

    This giveaway is now closed and congratulations to the winner by random draw, Sharon H. Please check your inbox for an email from me.-Elissa from Harlequin.

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