Welcome Cassi Armstrong to our live chat session, in our very own Coffee Time Romance chat room. This is and will be the very first live interview ever in here and you are our special guest today. I hope that you will love that distinction being the first, also in here for me, to conduct a live interview in our own chat room.
Lainey: So, hello Cassi.
Cassi: Why thank you, and hello to you too Lainey!
Lainey: OK here we with go with the first question our readers might want to know for you Cassi. How did you get started writing and your first published story?
Cassi: How did I first start writing? I was actually a sophmore in college…and it kind of stemmed from off a growing obsession with romance novels. That probably doesn't sound terribly romantic for a romance writer, does it?
I actually didn't start reading anything from my genre until my sophmore year. And my first story was published by Whiskey Creek Press Torrid, September of 2006. I guess that is only half of the story to how I started writing. I pretty much, after reading a lot, decided to try my hand at it. I had so much fun, and it was so different from what I normally did that it became a hobby.
Lainey: That is ok, as you said it is a start and quite a young one at that! I think our readers should know that you are still pretty young and still in school, correct? Where do you go to school and how old are you if you do not mind me asking?
Cassi: Yes, I don't mind you asking. I’ll be 24 the 14 th of April. And I go to Cleveland State University.
Lainey: Well happy almost birthday then Cassi since today is the end of the month and March 31st for all our viewers.
Cassi: Thank you!
Lainey: Now the next logical question shall be, what is your major and when do you graduate?
Cassi: English, with a concentration in creative writing. I’m set to graduate May of 2008. It would have been earlier, but I have to take a French course, which they unfortunately only offer in the spring…
Lainey: That is still great, what are your plans after you graduate?
Cassi: Join the military, return to school for a degree in Engineering… and of course, write another novella, or perhaps a novel - since I’ll finally have plenty of time on my hands..
Lainey: Wow, that is fantastic Cassi. I am so happy for you and your chosen career and to be able to write at the same time and keep that going as well.
Cassi: It’s all a work in progress of course…but I look forward to it. Yes I never wanted to do the ordinary.
Lainey: Now to the complete works you have had published, can you tell our readers about those so far?
Cassi: Sure. In September of 2006 I published Love in the Bahamas, which is part of Torrid Teaser Volume 12, which I share with Mary Chapman’s Dance with Me. And released earlier this month, The Man Upstairs, which is a part of Torrid Teaser Volume 23, which I share with J. T. Schultz’s Kiss of the Wolf.
Love in the Bahamas is about a woman, tormented by past love gone bad, who finds new love in a most unexpected place. The Man Upstairs is a little different. The entire story revolves around cooking (and the main character’s inability to cook). It’s a story of a woman overcoming her insecurities to welcome love.
Lainey: Those definitely sound like very different stories. Can you tell us what you have going on right now? Are you working on another story or do you have another coming out anytime soon?
Cassi: I'm currently working on another story. I haven't decided if I’m going to publish it yet or if I am going to use it for a scholarship, that’s being conducted through my school.
Lainey: Well it sounds to me like you can do both. Scholarship first then publish it later.
Cassi: I might end up doing that in the end. It’s just that the department that is hosting it likes to publish anything that is a part of a contest …that might complicate things in the end too.
Lainey: Well I would think they can publish it as part of a contest but you could also publish it later like a Re-release with another publisher, your own or something.
Cassi: That might be possible.
Lainey: Something to figure out and find out all the regulations for it and go from there maybe?
Lainey: Now what is there you want to tell all of our readers and fans of yours, is there anything you think they would be interested in or need to know about you or what you want to do?
Cassi: I guess I can say that since I love Sci-Fi, one day, if they stick around , they'll really love what I have in mind. At least where I want the direction of my career to go. Sci-Fi as in folklore and curses … *smiles* mixed of course with romance in one form or another, because I'm a firm believer that one can never get too much of romance.
Lainey: Wow, that sounds exciting and a nice progression in your own life as with your writing in a different genre as you go. I do have another question for you as it goes along with what you just said. If you continue to go in a different genre will you use your own name still or maybe go with a pen name instead for it?
Cassi: I think I may continue to use my own name, but then I’m not sure what the future holds , so I can’t say whether or not I’ll ever use a pen name.
Lainey: That makes sense but it always gives you that option in the future to do so.
Cassi: Yes. I think, if I ever were to write something extremely personal , I might use a pen name. I've been thinking about writing a few things that I’d consider extremely personal for a while.
Lainey: Then that fits well in your life, it gives you an option to write what you want and yet use another genre and name also.
Cassi: It’s quite grand when you put it that way.
Lainey: Many use a form of their name or initials and others decide a totally different name suits that genre better, that will be for you to decide.
Cassi: I've thought about that … I actually thought about using a pen name for my current publication and my first one. But I decided not to at the last minute.
Lainey: That is ok, you can make that decision at any time and when the time is right or calls for it in your life.
Lainey: How about you give us any web sites, blogs, email or anything else your readers can see and contact you at?
Cassi: I don't have a particular website up yet. But I do have several blogs, there’s http://torridtempations.blogspot.com, http://cassiarmstrong.blogspot.com, if any of my readers would like to contact me via email, my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org, I also have a space on myspace. It’s basically my name, if anyone has trouble accessing it, just email me and I’ll respond ASAP. I’ll most likely post it on my blogs when my website is up.
Lainey: So is your myspace www.myspace.com/cassiarmstrong ?
Cassi: I believe so…*laughs* I've tried looking at my site, but I always get a funky URL given to me. But my real name is used on the account and if anyone needs to search for me through email, it’s email@example.com, I guess I create a lot of work *laughs* I'm also on Facebook. My ID for Facebook is Cassi Armstrong, and I'm in Cleveland State University’s Network…it seems so strange that I have to tell people how to find me rather than give an actual URL. Facebook may not be a good way to contact me…I do check my email and I’ll respond if anyone sends me an email. I think I might have to leave it at that at this point *laughs*
Lainey: That is ok and those are plenty of ways for people to contact you and also see your sites including blogs.
Cassi: I think that'll have to do for now. Do you have any other questions?
Lainey: Thanks so much for being here today Cassi, I truly enjoyed your company and will hope to see you on our boards and in our chat room and E-Loop chats now too. Well I can only ask , is there anything coming up to promote your latest release like a scheduled chat or anything?
Cassi: You most likely will see me. No, I don't currently have anything coming up, but I do chat in Whiskey Creek Press Torrid’s blog every 15th of the month. Their blog is http://torridtempations.blogspot.com. Actually that is my day to host the blogspot. So feel free, anyone feel free, to stop by, leave a message if you want or start a conversation about something with either myself or one of the other authors.
Lainey: Do you also go in our chat room every first Sunday of the month for Whiskey Creek Torrid chats?
Cassi: I feel kind of bad to say, I've been unable to do it. I've tried to get in there several times. I’ll have to come in tomorrow… I guess I've been a bad writer in that sense. I haven't kept up with that little part of the bargain, coming to chat rooms to discuss my books, which I would LOVE to do. I saw that you have tomorrow at 8 PM…I haven't even been to the ones on my publisher’s site… I really did mean it when I said I had trouble finding time to come into chat rooms. It actually got to the point, I temporarily forgot the password to log in the author section…*laughs* I probably shouldn't be laughing. Maybe when the semester is over, I’ll find more time, a lot more time. I actually can’t wait.
Lainey: Well now you have come in here so if you can make the monthly chats here in our chat room you will be ok the first Sunday of the month. And you are logged in here, so it is easy next time you use it *smiles*
Cassi: *laughs* It wasn't that hard to log in actually.
Lainey: So see, now no real excuse for how hard it is to get in here except your time away from work and school.
Cassi: Yes. I don't have any major papers due, at least until the 13th, so I should be able to make it in. I don't know about May 1st yet that is finals week. I saw that WCPT is going to be chatting in your chat room May 1st.
Lainey: Yes but they will be here tomorrow so maybe you can just surprise them then and not worry about May’s chat *smiles*
Cassi: *laughs* It probably will be a surprise. Hopefully the chat topics won’t make me blush too much…
Lainey: That is ok, we can also come in and join you. If you need some support I will be here too, how about that?
Cassi: *laughs* I’ll probably need it, you probably would laugh if I told you that while I wrote the sex scenes in my stories, I had to make sure I was by myself … But since I'm getting off topic…Is there anything else you would like to know about me or my writing?
Lainey: I think we covered most of it but maybe you need to tell our readers just what kind of romance are in both of your stories, say steam or heat level…*smiles* while we were talking about that a sec ago…
Cassi: hmm…there’s definitely steam in both of my stories. I’ll say that while parts of it is graphic, there’s no B&M in it…I think that’s what it is called. *laughs* hmm…there’s a lot of innuendos in them. I think the best thing my readers could do is just go out and buy a copy of both books for themselves and discover just how steamy both of my books are. And they might not want to be out in public while they're reading it … they might start fantasizing as if it was really happening.
Lainey: Well on that note I would say our readers definitely can read this interview, then go out and check out your books for themselves to find out for sure *grins*
Cassi: *smiles* Yes.
Lainey: I guess I should let you go now since you’ve been so kind being here for a while today with me. I had a fun time though.
Cassi: So did I.
Lainey: I will see you out of here so you do not get lost… *laughs*
Cassi: *laughs* It was nice chatting with you. Bye.