Girl Talk with Sandra Bunino
The hostess with the mostest and author of “Marooned in Miami” and the fun, flirty blog series, “All Things Girl”, Sandra Bunino is my guest today. I met Sandra through social media–either Six Sentence Sunday and / or Twitter, probably a combination and a few mutual Tweeps.
Most wouldn’t think a Jersey girl with a shoe fetish and a moldy Pacific Northwesterner would have much in common, but the more we compared notes the more similarities we found. I used to live in Jersey, Sandra used to be an accountant. We were both trying to figure our this whole publishing business. We both loved to tease and tweek the virtual cheeks of the same young author from Long Island, bless his good-natured heart. And on and on…
Today I’ve got her in my clutches to answer a few questions:
So, Sandra, let’s start with some humble beginnings. Who in your younger days encouraged you to write or made you think maybe you could?
I wrote a cute Valentine’s Day inspired short story for a creative writing assignment in high school (my first romance story). It was about was about a girl who was crushing on a boy and hoped he would notice her on Valentine’s Day. The day went by without even a second glance from him. Dejected she opened her locker at the end of the day to find a long stem rose. She turned around to see him smiling at her and you guessed it – it ended with an HEA. My teacher suggested I submit the story to a writing contest. I didn’t take her advice, however her suggestion gave me the confidence to continue writing. Here’s a fun fact: Roses are written into every story I write!
I love motifs! Now that you’re out a high school (by a few years…shhh), when and where do your best ideas come to you?
My best ideas come while traveling. There is just something about leaving your everyday routine that gets the creative juices flowing. I wrote most of Marooned in Miami at a hotel pool while traveling on business.
As you always say, “Following is sexy” in reference to Twitter. How much time do you spend on social media? Does it help or distract you from your writing goals?
I do spend a lot of time on social media. I’m a firm believer of developing and expanding one’s platform and reach as an author. Time spent on Twitter, Facebook and Goodreads can pay off if done right. Twitter especially has been a terrific resource to me as an author. It’s not only a great (and free) advertising vehicle but also a way to speak (tweet) with your target audience. I say “with” instead of “to” because posting a string of promotional tweets is a sure fire way to turn people off. Engagement is important. While I cannot tweet with every one of my followers, I try to check out blogs and websites of a few followers daily and comment if I like what I see.
As a writer, social media is indispensable. I found my publisher, website designer, consultant, and editor through Twitter and Facebook. I’ve also made fantastic contacts with authors, readers and book reviewers. Authors should allot time each week on building their presence on social media; it’s an important part of the promotional equation.
What aspects of your life are most neglected because of your writing?
That would be the laundry but I’m not too torn up about it (I just keep buying towels).
What’s the biggest misconception non-writers have about writers? What do you do to disavow them of such notions?
My pet-peeve misconception about romance writers, especially erotic romance writers, is that we are all consumed with sex. This is simply not true, I mean, I’m sure I speak for many of my peers out there when I say – yes, we like sex. You really cannot effectively write about it if you didn’t. But obsessed and fixated on it? No. My answer to those clueless people who give me the quizzical look when I try to explain is simply, “Do you think murder mystery writers are running around killing people, chopping up their bodies into little pieces and dumping the remains in the woods? Uh, no, I don’t think so.”
What’s your “brand” (whether achieved or building)?
My brand is as my tag line states: Sweet. Sexy. Sizzling. Romance.
I use a lot of warm tropical colors and rose visuals in my online presence. Speaking of roses, my Twitter avatar, Rose Petal Girl, certainly gets a lot of attention (following is sexy! @sandrabunino). <<–Lila’s note: I love her “following is sexy” tagline!
My novellas are set in some pretty sexy locales such as South Beach, Las Vegas, Santa Monica, New York City, Martha’s Vineyard and Mexico so my brand ties in nicely with my writing.
Random change of subject. Describe what’s on your nightstand.
Hmm, so on my nightstand is a bottle of water, hand lotion, my alarm clock…*yawn* did I put you to sleep yet? Ok, luckily, what is on my nightstand is not as interesting as what is in my nightstand. LOL! Yes, my nightstand contains my secret drawer of fun. Shhh, don’t tell anyone but I’m a vibe collector and I love my LELOs. They are just so colorful, not to mention, um, powerful.
I also have the biggest purse I can carry and I do carry everything in it, except my LELOs, they stay in the nightstand.
Okay…other than the LELOs (heh-heh), what’s your guilty pleasure?
Many people don’t know this but I love shoes. Okay, most people do know that about me but I had to stick it somewhere. What many people don’t know is that it took me many years to earn my graduate degree because I went to school at night while working and raising my family. My current favorite pair of shoes are my leopard print pumps, sorry, I just have to end with a ROCKIN pair of shoes. 😉
More About Sandra Bunino
Sandra Bunino began a love of romance stories while penning a creative writing assignment in high school. The story ended with the heroine receiving a long stem red rose in her locker on Valentine’s Day. Since then, all of her stories feature the hero presenting the heroine with roses. Sandra is constantly searching for different ways to achieve a heart-pumping, stomach-flipping, breath-catching reaction from her readers.
These days, Sandra lives on a wooded mountaintop not far from New York City with her family. Living so close to the city affords her the best of both worlds and provides wonderful writing material. She occasionally pretends to be in a Sex in the City episode and has renamed her best girlfriends Samantha, Charlotte and Miranda which she blogs about often.
Sandra’s first release is an erotic romance novella entitled Marooned in Miami and is currently hard at work on the sequel. Sandra always looks forward to hearing from her readers and she may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also follow her on Twitter @sandrabunino.
If you’re wondering what more is on the horizon for Sandra, look no further. Here’s the latest:
- Sandra Bunino Interview! (violetwilliamserotica.wordpress.com)
- I’m a Guest Blogger Today (lilashaw.com)