Kate Pearce has the unenviable task of being my final Birthday Bash blogger, and having to follow some of my terrific guests. But I think it is only fitting. You see, Kate’s Eden’s Pleasure and Antonia’s Bargain were the very first erotic romances I’d ever bought and I was hooked. I loved that she would make such proper gentleman and ladies from the very proper Regency era have such a wicked, earthy, steamy … well, there aren’t enough adjectives for her writing. Needless to say, I went back and bought more eroticas. Where my stories had always been romances, thanks to Kate, I felt free to let my characters express their sexuality much more openly. (Therefore my characters thank you too, Kate.)

Kate has not only sold her work to Ellora’s Cave, but she’s also been with Kensington Aphrodisia, Cleis Press and Virgin’s Black Lace/Cheek lines. (Oh, and like Tuesday’s guest, Lorelei James, Kate can write some pretty hot nekkid cowboys too!)

So since Kate started me on this path, I’m thrilled that she gets the last word.


When Leah asked me to write something for her birthday blog bash I was, quite frankly, terrified. What the hell could I say that hadn’t already been said before by all these wonderful contributors? So I thought about it some more, and decided I’d tell you how I ended up being an erotic romance writer quite by accident.

In the beginning, I made up stuff, lots of stuff, so much stuff that my school reports were full of the sort of comments that make parents worry about their child’s future. And I didn’t care. I knew I could pass the exams, I just didn’t bother to show during the school year that I actually had the ability. But I passed them anyway and somehow, to everyone’s surprise, (except mine) I ended up at university doing an honor’s degree course in history.

Along the way to adulthood I’d considered several careers: ballet dancer, singer in a band, actor, Donny Osmond’s girlfriend, nurse…and of course made up wonderful imaginary lives for myself doing those things. The irritating thing was that everyone around me told me to stop day dreaming and get with the program. They brought up disagreeable subjects like, ‘work’ ‘money’ leaving home’, and ‘taxes’ and I hated it.

College was fun and I came out with an excellent degree-in a field no one wanted, so I ended up working for the government in the local IRS office. First off, I can’t add up and secondly, I can’t add up-my math is truly appalling and yet, there I was, giving out tax advice to the unsuspecting public and feeling like I’d taken the wrong path and was rapidly disappearing down a long dark tunnel. And of course, the amusing thing is that after I worked for the IRS I could get lots of other jobs-as long as they were in finance.

I tried to write but I wanted to be Jane Austen and I wasn’t good enough and all those years of everyone telling me not to daydream and to get on with reality started to beat me down. Until I moved to the USA and discovered the huge romance section in my local bookstore (about 2 hours after we arrived) And I had the perfect excuse not to go back to work-I had no work visa! I was finally free to try something new! But what? Part of me yearned to return to academia and fulfill that particular dream of becoming a professor, but the rebel in me said “Hey! Write a book! You’re always making stuff up, it’ll be easy!”

It wasn’t easy but, God, writing that first book was the most thrilling and exciting thing I’d ever done. I loved every word I created, I loved my characters and somehow the straightforward historical novel I thought I was writing morphed into a romance novel of truly epic proportions (140,000 words of epic) And you know what else happened? Suddenly all the vague floating parts of my peculiar reality made sense. Writing was the missing link. No longer could anyone tell me off for day dreaming, I was a writer.

I still love that book-“Mosaic” a thrilling piece of unpublished fiction about Dark Ages Britain and the fall of the Roman Empire. (note to others-apparently that isn’t a very popular time period with editors, who’d thunk it?) And of course, once I’d written one book, I had to write another one, didn’t I? This time, with a bit more knowledge about the market thanks to RWA, it was a Regency. Doesn’t everyone have a Regency and a medieval tucked away somewhere in their writing closet? I know do.

And the other thing that happened, was that my books kept getting sexier and everyone kept telling me they loved that. So eventually after 2 agents and 5 full rejected manuscripts and a sense that I needed to do something, I sat down and wrote a short erotic historical called Eden’s Pleasure. I was so shocked at my own naughtiness that I promptly hid the manuscript under my bed. I only took it out when coaxed by a mentor back in 2004. it was published by Ellora’s Cave in 2005 and there I was, an erotic romance author, quite unexpectedly.

At first I was slightly embarrassed by myself, but that has worn off. I’m proud of that label now and proud to have just published my tenth erotic romance between three different publishers. I’ll be writing historical paranormal romance for NAL next year as well (Tudor Vampires anyone?) but I’ll always write my erotic novels as well 

So tell me-how did you get started writing or reading romance? I’d love to think that I’m not the only day dreamer out there 

One commenter will win a copy of my latest book, Simply Shameless from Kensington Aphrodisia.


How did Kate Pearce get here?

41 thoughts on “How did Kate Pearce get here?

  • July 30, 2009 at 4:17 am

    TUDOR VAMPIRES??? I want it!!!! LOL!!

    I simply must check out your books Kate. Looks like I've been missing out on some seriously yummy stuff!!!

    in Germany

  • July 30, 2009 at 4:24 am

    Valerie – you have been missing out. Kate is seriously yummy. Grab whatever Black Lace/Cheek books you can since Virgin Books has said they're going to stop making them. (Boo Hiss) I'm so glad Kate's got another publisher although I'm bummed they're not eroticas. But yes, Tudor vampires sound really intriguing, don't they?

  • July 30, 2009 at 4:25 am

    Yep, I'll admit to having one.
    My first completed manuscript, a 100,000 page multi-cultural Regency with every plot ever existing in it.
    I think most beginner writers make that mistake (and some experienced writers – why we have editors).

    Kate, you should like a hoot,
    definitely someone I'd like the hang with!

  • July 30, 2009 at 4:30 am

    I started reading romance when I was a preteen. My mom would choose the books that I got to read. Mostly Harlequin Presents. I have been an avid romance fan ever since.

  • July 30, 2009 at 4:55 am

    First, your books sound wonderful! I have seriously been missing out!

    My reason for reading romance is kind of a long story. To keep it short, my daughter got very sick with a serious heart condition just about 2 years ago when she was 20 months old. When she finally got to come home from the hospital, I could not go back to work because I had to take care of her. So now I am a stay at home mom to her and my 3 boys.

    She cannot go out at all in the winter(northern Indiana=COLD winters) because she cannot risk getting sick. And being inside with her I needed something to occupy my mind, so I picked up a Lora Leigh book, and the rest is history. So maybe not such a short story? 🙂

    Amy M

  • July 30, 2009 at 5:06 am

    Hmm. I can't remember how I got drawn into reading romance. I used to read lots of mysteries. Then I started to read a lot of vampire books. Then suddenly, I was buried in paranormal romances, and alternating those with contemporaries and erotics.

  • July 30, 2009 at 5:31 am

    I was drawn into romance really early. I think when I was eleven or so. My mother was (and still is) buying this weekly magazine that had a romance novella in it. So every week I couldn't wait for her to arrive home and give me my novella. Then for my first real romance books I started reading classics like Jane Austin and when I was about 14 my mother joined the book club and bought Susan E. Phillips' romance – I was hooked. I've read every romance our library had. Ever since I started working I've been buying tons of books, most of them romance 🙂

  • July 30, 2009 at 5:34 am

    Many decades have passed since I began reading romance novels that I don't remember why I even started. Maybe it was the power of the first historical romance I read which was 'Forever Amber' by Kathleen Winsor, originally published in 1944. Of course, I didn't read it until the early 60's and it is an excellent book, like GWTW, it stands the test of time. If you can get your hands on it, I highly recommend it! That being said, I never read another book by Miss Winsor and she did write several more.

    BTW, GWTW was the 2nd romance novel I read, so is it any wonder I have stuck with the historical genre every since?

  • July 30, 2009 at 5:58 am

    Hi, Kate and Leah! I started reading romance probably in junior high–Beverly Cleary, Sweet Valley High, Silhouette First Love… Graduated to the grown-up ones in high school, when a geometry classmate lent me a book whose title I can no longer remember 🙂 Been reading ever since, with a break in college.

    Please don't enter me–I have Kate's Simply series 🙂


  • July 30, 2009 at 6:07 am

    I got started on romances in a sort of strange way. My aunt was a big fan of these romance magazines, do they even still have them? Anyway, she had subscriptions to a few and when she finished them she would pass them on to my mom, who hated the things. I loved to read, and picked one up one day to see what they were all about. I got hooked, but wanted something a bit longer than the short stories in the magazine, and so I started looking for actual books. My aunt has since passed away, but I will always thank her for passing those magazines on to me.

  • July 30, 2009 at 6:07 am

    I started reading romance as a teen, mainly Harlequin/Silhouette books. Early last year I accidently bought an erotic romance and the rest is history!

    Great post Leah and Kate!


  • July 30, 2009 at 6:32 am

    Hello Kate and Leah,

    I started reading romances when I was in my teens. Life got in the way and I quit reading for a while. It's only been this past year that I've really got back in the swing of things with my reading. I'm loving all the new authors I'm reading and even the new genres. I'm having a ball and can't wait for the next adventure. Have a great day.

  • July 30, 2009 at 6:39 am

    Hi Leah, Kate!
    I am playing catchup since I only started a few years ago. I have to admit I hadn't picked one up since I read The Sleeping Beauty Chronicles by A. N. Roquelaure (aka Anne Rice). My sister made horrible fun of me for being dirty so I felt kind of shameful for loving them so much. Years later I picked them up again and it started from there, now I am an addict and proud. I even have her reading some and it is sweet torture making fun of her for coming over to the dark side with me 😉

    (book junkie)

  • July 30, 2009 at 7:12 am

    hello Leah and Kate,
    I started reading romance novels as a teen my older sister would read a book then hand it down to me to read.Now I mostly read paranormal romance,urban fantasy.Looking forward to the Tudor Vampires though

    I haven't read any of Kate's books,it seems I'm also missing out on great books.I'll have to check them out.

    Leah I can't believe its the last day of your Birhtday Bash.When I got back from holidays I heard about the bash and its been fun..thanks for introducing me to a whole bunch of great authors.

  • July 30, 2009 at 7:51 am

    My mom gave me Rosemary Roger's SWEET SAVAGE LOVE when I was a teenager. That started my journey to reading romance. Though I took a break from reading for pleasure when I went to college, I finally found my groove again and devour any romance books. And the steamier, the better.

    armiefox at yahoo dot com

  • July 30, 2009 at 8:24 am

    Wow! I just got up and so many comments already! I love hearing how everyone got started reading romance, I picked up the habit from 2 of my big sisters who used to read them out loud to each other and giggle-needless to say I was enthralled even though I had no idea what was going on half the time. They got into trouble when I asked my mum what 'phallic' meant LOL

    Amy M-I have 3 big boys and a little girl too-my second son has cerebral palsy so I know all about those long hospital visits and stuff-I also used to read romance novels to get me through those days.

  • July 30, 2009 at 8:35 am

    Many years ago a friend of mine introduced me to the Dark-Hunter series by Sherrilyn Kenyon. Now I'm always looking for new authors and series in this genre.

  • July 30, 2009 at 8:37 am

    I wear my I STALK KATE PEARCE tee shirt with pride, lemme tell ya.

    if I didn't write, my head would explode, simple as that. little bits of Inez all over the place. Really quite messy.

  • July 30, 2009 at 8:47 am

    Must agree with Leah – Kate Pearce is an excellent way to end a fab month!
    Thanks for sharing your path with us!

  • July 30, 2009 at 8:48 am

    I started reading romance almost two years ago. It started when I picked up a copy of Karen Moning's Darkfever, thinking it was urban fantasy. That book led me to her Highlanders and into the romance genre.

    Now, I seldom read anything else.

  • July 30, 2009 at 8:52 am

    Since I'm a huge fan of erotica I've definitely read some of Kate's books. She's absolutely fabulous! Haven't read Simply Shameless yet, but am hoping to (wink, wink).

    And I started reading romance when I was 12. I was home sick from school and ran across a Kathleen Woodiwiss book my mom was reading. I loved it and never enjoyed being sick more than I did that day.

  • July 30, 2009 at 9:36 am

    I started reading romance in high school. My cousin's friend lent us books by Julie Garwood and Jude Deveraux.

  • July 30, 2009 at 10:21 am

    My neighbour (my dad's age) would read romances on his front porch every night after work while supper was cooking. I loved to read and naturally picked one up in my teens so I could sit with him quietly. The kicker? I learned 20 years after his death that he was actually my biological father! I should write my OWN novel, ha ha (but I'll keep with being the reader instead)!

  • July 30, 2009 at 11:03 am

    I have always been a reader. When I had read most of the stuff in our bookstore and about the middle of my freshman year of highschool my mom gave me my first romance novel. I fell in love with them and have been reading them ever since.

  • July 30, 2009 at 11:04 am

    Hi Kate, I started reading romance stories when I was around 14. Went through all the Barbara Cartland and Georgette Heyer books I could get my hands on. I was another convert to more erotic romance when I read Sweet Savage Love too. My first EC book was Elizabeth's Wolf by Lora Leigh, which got me totally hooked on ebooks as well as all kinds of erotic romance stories.

  • July 30, 2009 at 11:29 am

    Hi Kate,
    I started reading romance novels around age 12. I ran out of books to read, so my mom gave me some of hers.

  • July 30, 2009 at 11:54 am

    I've always loved romance and have read it for as long as I can remember! Thanks for stopping by! I loved reading what you had to say!

  • July 30, 2009 at 12:15 pm

    We all started reading romance quite young didn't we? I didn't really get the whole picture until I moved to the USA and found a whole section devoted to romance-I was thrilled and knew I had found my peeps 🙂
    I didn't write my first romance until 2000.

  • July 30, 2009 at 12:19 pm

    I got some romance novels from my older sister when I was a teen, I think one of them was a Kathleen Woodiwiss…Some years ago I found paranormal and erotic romance and my TBR pile has become a mountain!

  • July 30, 2009 at 12:22 pm

    I started reading romances when I was about 12. They were my mom's and as soon as she finished a book I would get it.

  • July 30, 2009 at 1:47 pm

    While Kate's were my first erotic romances, I started reading romances when I was about ten or so (if you count Victoria Holt novels as romances.) Then I picked up a copy of Scarlet Pimpernel when I was about 14 and fell in love with historical romances. (I'll take the 1935 version of the movie over any of the modern ones.) When I was 18 I picked up my first Kathleen Woodiwiss – The Flame and the Flower. OMG I was hooked. (Although I do read other genres too, romances are my go-to comfort read.)

  • July 30, 2009 at 4:09 pm

    I confess I started reading romance rather early i was like 12 or so picked up a book and loved to read ever since i learned how was all uphill from there i picke dup every book i could get my hands on even the dirty ones that moms dont want their babies reading till they r 80 i started reading erotica on line on a website wher eppl submitted stories was hooked ever since i been working on writing a book for a very long time havent finished it not sure i want to truelly finish its one of those things its like ur baby you wana work on it and coddle it till your 80

  • July 30, 2009 at 4:20 pm

    Thanks for having me here today Leah and HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

  • July 30, 2009 at 4:34 pm

    Kate I have just started reading your books and I love them. I have your first two Shameless books and your books from Ellora's. Are you planning on writing any m/m or m/f books in the future? Or any books set in different time periods?

  • July 30, 2009 at 6:16 pm

    I can't say what romance got me into reading that genre but I was caught in grade 11 geography with a book called Candy… it was verrrrrra naughti… made into a movie with John Astin and Richard Burton but the book and the movie is very hard to find. It was very taboo and involved mucho sex…. then I just progressed I guess from there… LOL thanks for finishing out an amazing month for Leah

  • July 30, 2009 at 6:31 pm

    I've yet to read a pure romance, but I always loved books that has romance in its subplot!

  • July 30, 2009 at 6:37 pm

    Wow, what an awesome story! I mean, not the part about slogging away at the IRS office, but sticking with it through thick and thin to do what you really want — that it is very encouraging. I am a big dan of your hot nekkid cowboys, and would love to read your historicals! And Tudor Vampires! Woo hoo! Sounds *hawt*!

    So, how did I get started? I don't write them mind you, though I do dearly love to edit them. I think my story is a pretty common one among women my age — it all started with Forever by Judy Blume. Then I was raiding my parents' bookshelves. In high school someone gave me the Story of O. But it is only in the last 6 months or so that I have found erotic romance and it is like coming home!

    I love it that you brought the Bash full circle — being Leah's first read. Leah, thanks so much for this wonderful month of interviews. And HAPPY BIRTHDAY!


  • July 30, 2009 at 7:15 pm

    Hey Mari-um 'most' of my books have a bit of m/m in there at some point-particularly Simply's Sinful, (out last Feb) Wicked (which comes out in early Oct) and Insatiable (Which comes out next May)

    And I almost forgot I have a contemporary novella coming out in March 2010 with Aphrodisia in an anthology called 'Some like it Rough' that one is a menage story and has a cowboy in it squee!

    Thanks again for all the lovely comments, I wish I'd had time to comment on them all individually, but I have 4 kids and 5 books to write LOL and thanks to Leah for having me!!

  • July 30, 2009 at 7:42 pm

    I started with a couple of books that my mom had. I was maybe 12? I knew she didn't want me reading them so I'd read while she was at work and make sure the book was back in her nightstand when she got home. Shortly after, I went to a rummage sale with my great aunt. The woman had oodles of harlequins and silhouettes. My great aunt bought me a stack for at her house (Again mom wouldn't have let me) And then I went back and bought more. At the end of her sale, she brought the remaining books to my great aunts house for me. Thankfully I spent alot of time at my great aunts.
    My intro to erotica came with Robin Schone, Susan Johnson and the Secrets books.

    lynda98662 at yahoo dot com

  • July 30, 2009 at 8:33 pm

    Hi Kate and Leah, having older sisters is great for many reasons… including borrowing their reading material like romances! Though I got into my love of the spicy reads all on my own:)

  • July 31, 2009 at 2:41 am

    I had read Silhouette in high school but had not been reading regularly since college. Went to a used book store and found JR Ward's books and then Kate Douglas's Wolf Tales and then got online to find EC and Samhain, initially focused on print but now ebooks mainly.

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