The Next Big Thing

I’ve been passed this set of questions by my friend and fellow author Ian Watson, as part of THE NEXT BIG THING, which is an interesting initiative mostly circulating in the world of science fiction, fantasy and horror, but we all know a touch of sex adds spice to any piece of writing…

1) What is the working title of your next book?

La Dolce Vita

2) Where did the idea come from for the book?

7 years ago I published OHH LA LA!, an anthology of contemporary erotica by French women authors with Thunder’s Mouth, coedited with my French editor Franck Spengler. The book had been selling continuously ever since, and consistently backlisted, to the extent of achieving minor bestseller status albeit drip by drip, particularly on the export side, where it has been one of the top sales at Amsterdam’s Schipol airport bookshop non-stop for 5 years! The imprint has since been subsumed into the Perseus’ Group Running Press list, so I suggested to them a follow-up covering Italian authors. It took two whole years for them to agree and the book is now at galley stage for publication April 2013.

3) What genre does your book fall under?

Literary erotica

4) What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?

So many women, so many beautiful Italian actresses!

5) What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Hot sex under the hot Italian sun

6) Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

Running Press have acquired world rights, excluding Italy, and the book didn’t go through an agent

7) How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?

5 years since the concept, until the right editor finally began noticing how well the previous volume had done and even then it took a further 2 years for him to convince his marketing guys and editorial board. Assembling the stories took six months through approaching all my favourite Italian women authors.

8) What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

Naturally, the French version OO LA LA! but also the many anthologies of literary erotica I’ve compiled over the decades, particularly THE MAMMOTH BOOK OF INTERNATIONAL EROTICA.

9) Who or what inspired you to write this book?

The fact that European erotica is so much more interesting than most Anglosaxon one, so much more sensual and emotion-laden and abundant and well-written

10) What else about the book might pique the reader’s interest?

Sex always piques!