Microbrewery owner, best-selling author, beer blogger and journalist, mom of three teenagers, and soccer fan, Liz lives in the great Midwest, in a major college town. Years of experience in sales and fund raising, plus an eight-year stint as an ex-pat trailing spouse, plus making her way in a world of men (i.e. the beer industry), has prepped her for life as erotic romance author.
When she isn’t sweating inventory and sales figures for the brewery, she can be found writing, editing or sweating promotional efforts for her latest publications.
Her groundbreaking romance subgenre, “Romance for Real Life,” has gained thousands of fans and followers who are interested less in the “HEA” and more in the “WHA” (“What Happens After?”)
Her beer blog a2beerwench.com is nationally recognized for its insider yet outsider views on the craft beer industry. Her books are set in the not-so-common worlds of breweries, on the soccer pitch and in high-powered real estate offices. Don’t ask her for anything “like” a Budweiser or risk painful injury.
Why did you choose to write ménage? What intrigues you about this particular genre? I would say that “choosing” to write ménage is the wrong way to describe how I came at this. My first one, VEGAS MIRACLE, was a story that did not start out life as ménage but ended up that way, and is all the better for it. It has a tough element as part of its core story though (marital infidelity, forgiveness and healing) so has not had as much appeal to “traditional ménage” readers.
I guess I tried my hand at it to see if I could pull it off realistically. I’m a stickler for “keeping it real” and if I think it feels natural that three people would an could be attracted to each other and stay that way without too much drama I will write that story. If not, I keep it to two people.
Tell us about your latest ménage release: what is it all about? Where did you find the inspiration? HONEY RED started life as sequel to another book but ended up going on different direction for me. It is the story of Ian, a brewery owner, Hannah, the marketing director for the brewery and a young man they meet who is a wounded warrior and ends up Ian’s brother-in-law….sort of convoluted I know but a very realistic story.
Who is your favorite ménage character(s) and why? I’m a fan of Lauren Dane’s ménage stories but cannot think of a character name that stands out for me. Personally, I’m a big fan of Henri Christophe, the catalyst for the ménage in VEGAS MIRACLE.
In your opinion, what makes a good ménage novel? I like stories that acknowledge the “fantasy” inherent in taking three-way sex into a real emotional connection between the characters. This is not easy and not many books handle it in a realistic way. There is jealousy built in to the human psyche and pretending it isn’t there to me is too much of a fantasy, but that’s just my taste.
What do you think of ménage romance in general? Do you think numbers are important in ménage stories? The more the better or maybe not? I personally do not care for orgy type stories and don’t anticipate ever writing one. I prefer small groups I suppose, when reading and writing them.
What sparks your ménage imagination to the point of writing one? Is there a particular source of inspiration for your ménage stories? I write stories that typically flow from a core conflict. Like I said earlier, VEGAS MIRACLE didn’t even really start life as a ménage story but ended up as one. HONEY RED is also a book that did not begin as a ménage but a m/m love story that felt like it needed a little something…more. However, my ménage with Ellora’s Cave (LUST ON TAP) was a story I conceived as a ménage from the beginning—the original male character ending up coming face to face with a man he had a relationship with many years before after he has made a commitment to the woman in the equation.
What is your favorite gender combination in ménage? More men than women? No women all men? Why? I have written m/f/m and one m/m/m ménage. I am not averse to trying a f/m/f version someday.
Do you prefer to use straight, gay or bisexual male character? Why? What influences your choice? In your opinion, do ménage stories work better with straight, gay or bisexual characters? My m/f/ m stories include bi-sexual men. I don’t have an opinion one way or another about how they work best in terms of the actual sexual orientation of the people in question but more about the ability of the writer to make it seem plausible – which not everyone can.
In your opinion, inside a ménage with more than one man, is the woman character condemned to a passive role? Or can she be portrayed as dominant? Is she just a toy, a doll in the men is hands, or can she assert herself as a woman and an individual? Ever female character I have ever written is assertive, strong and independent. Again, going back to the above answer for me it is NOT about “formula” but about the talent of the author trying to convince me to believe, or suspend my disbelief enough to enjoy the story. I don’t like cardboard characters and think that keeping the woman as strong as the men keeps the story way more interesting.
In your opinion, can a true ménage work in real life? Why or why not? It’s funny you should ask me this. I have gotten into “discussions” (arguments) with people who claim that any type of polyamory is feasible as long as all parties are “bought in” to the concept. Having done my own sort of experimentation with this concept I will tell you that it totally depends on the people involved. Some humans are more wired to be less jealous by nature. Some (like myself) are not. Those of us who simply cannot get past viewing “sharing” a partner as a “threat” to our own well-being and position in a relationship are not going to be able to sustain anything but a more traditional 2-person arrangement. But I get it that there are some people who are not threatened by it and I applaud them and try and get down to the core of their motivations by writing about them.
Do you think there is a difference between ménage sex and ménage relationship? Are the two one and the same? Or can one be without the other? Yes there is a HUGE difference. A “three-way sex moment” is easy. A emotional relationship between 2 people much less 3 is difficult to the point of impossible and is in no way dependent on a successful 3-way sex arrangement. Which, in and of itself, can be a physical challenge.
What do you think of reviews on ménage books? Do you find they capture the essence of your work? If yes, why? If no, why not? As of this writing I have not had the honor of reading one of your reviews of my books. And my opinion about “reviews” are that as an author you must take them all with a grain of salt, and sometimes a shot of liquor. Understand that they are one person’s opinion and, as long as that person doesn’t go out of their way to flame you, can be left alone if not flattering, and read as encouragement if they are.
Tell us about your future projects. Do you have a new ménage romance coming out soon? My schedule for 2013 is pretty full. I will have the 7th book in my popular STEWART REALTY series MUTUAL RELEASE coming out in February which is an exploration of BDSM psychology between two very emotionally damaged people. Then my BLACK JACK GENTLEMEN series will release with a trilogy of books in the late summer. I don’t anticipate another ménage story this year but who knows? Hans, my well-known, 6’5” blond haired blue eyed hot German muse wearing lederhosen and holding my beer may have other ideas.
Where can the fans find you and find your books? All Liz Crowe books are available on Amazon, All Romance Ebooks and Barnes And Noble. Some are on Itunes. Here is a link to my Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/Liz-Crowe/e/B00573TC7M
Please tell us where readers and fans can find you on the net.
Is there anything you wish to share with the readers?
Thank you very much Mrs Crowe for this great interview. Of course, I am a bit sad to know that no ménage story is planned this coming year and lets cross our fingers that your muse will convince you otherwise!
I am very honored that your publisher team extraordinaire (Tri Destiny Publishing) and yourself picked me to be part of your HONEY RED tour promotion and I am extremely happy to share my review on January 11, 2013!
I certainly wish you the best and thank you again for this fun interview!
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