My first professional writing contract was a stage adaptation of Bram Stoker's novel Dracula. I was paid $500, my name was left off the credits, and the director "forgot" to add me as co-author on the copyright. Sigh...Live and learn.
Following that experience, I left creative writing behind, primarily because of a head injury that I suffered in an auto accident. It was a tough time, and turned my world upside down.
After graduation from college, the first job I landed was as the manager of a comic book store. In all honesty, I'd never read a comic and was completely unfamilar with manga. It was a mind-expanding experience, and after years of boring technical and academic writing, my imagination came to life once again.
I rediscovered reading for entertainment, and consumed authors such as Neil Gaiman, Marjorie Liu, Laurell K Hamilton, and many more. I was fascinated by the explosion of paranormal romance and the growing sophistication in the comic/graphic novel industry.
The time came when I sat down to write my own book. It was ugly. Really. But something happened. What started as a heart-rending love triangle ended up with the heroine happily in bed with both of her heros. I thought I was wacked and freakish, and was ready to give up until I stumbled across Emma Holly and Morgan Hawke and Angela Knight. I found a home for my muse in erotic romance.
Now I happily throw cowgirls and werewolves out into outer space, and my fallen angels fall in love with mischievous fae. Poorly suited lovers are matched up by Nature's Imperative, and beautiful winged aliens come to Earth, falling in love with little warrior women.
Sometimes I think I've got the best job in the world! But then the edits come...