Erik Clarke is still trying to figure out how to balance work, school, writing, and the ever-elusive “social life”. He’s also still trying to figure out when the outlandish plots and crazy characters he’d scribbled into the margins of his notebooks for years somehow coalesced into an actual novel.
Born in Ohio and now struggling through the constant love/hate relationship that is living in the beautiful but sweltering Arizona landscape, Erik is thankful every day for the incredible, supportive family and friends that surround him—and for the sheer joy that writing two characters to their happily ever after can bring.
I write paranormal erotica books, and it’s one of my favorite genres to read, too. I just love the freedom of it—contemporary books are great too, but in paranormal/fantasy, with all the magic and the mystery, you can really take stories in crazy directions that real life could never offer. It’s really rewarding to be able to create a whole new world, governed by rules that you create, and then fill it up with interesting and new people. Plus, it can be a lot of fun to take these big outlandish worlds and plots and then see how they hold up when you ground them in something very real, like a struggling relationship. Overarching themes like that can have a place in any genre, and it’s interesting to see how each particular one puts its new spin on the old tropes.
Q. What are you working on right now? Can you tell us about it?
Right now, I’m finishing up Wonder, the third book in the Spellbound series. Among other things, it helps tie up a lot of the loose ends that have been left behind from the two books that came before it, Night and Monster. It’ll follow a character who’s new to the series, but a lot of the people from the other two books will crossover, including his love interest, Adam Harkin. I added Adam as a secondary character in Night, but I’ve loved him ever since, so now he finally gets to have his shot at a romance this time around! It’s got a lot of mystery and action, which was a lot of fun to write.
Q. Do you have a favorite story of the ones you’ve written, either published or not? Why?
I’ll always have a special place in my heart for Night, because it was the first book I actually managed to finish and the first to get published, but honestly my favorite would have to be Monster, the second book in that same series. In a lot of ways I made it almost as a response to the first book—the main character, Syler, is very different from Cole of book one. Initially, he’s completely irreverent, basically an asshole, but to my own surprise as I was writing him, it turns out to really just be something of a mask for a lot of very real, deep seated problems he has, and there’s a good guy under all the B.S. That was fun to write, which really helped lock it in as my favorite.
Q. When YOU read, what do you like to pick up?
My tastes run the gamut from science fiction to fantasy to historical, and in terms of romance books that I read, it gets even more broad. Most of what I read actually isn’t romantically-minded, but when it is, my only real requirement is that the struggle between the two characters be at the forefront. Although as a sidenote, any romance where one of the characters has some social anxiety issues draws me in immediately, since watching them get their act together is cathartic and encouraging given my own. Yay introverts!
Q. Tell us one thing about you that might surprise us...it can be a secret...we won't tell. :)
I have a completely unhealthy obsession with American flag apparel. Honestly, I have two shirts, a hat, a wallet, swim-trunks, and shoes that are all full-on stars and stripes. The hat in particular gets lots of mileage. It’s a relatively new problem of mine, but I’m already having to actively stop myself from getting more stuff before my entire wardrobe turns patriotic.
The American Flag seriously made me laugh. :)
My fave part: TELL US ABOUT that book! The cover is GORGEOUS!
Night is the first book in the Spellbound paranormal erotic romance series. It follows the life of a Seer, Cole, after a gift from his friend Luke turns his life upside down. It was a lot of fun to write, mostly because I got to put the main character in such a bind—the ‘gift’ gives him an Incubus’s appeal, and he’s suddenly thrust into this situation where everyone, including Luke, wants a piece of him and he has no idea how to respond. It’s the first novel I actually managed to finish, and I hope everyone gets as much of a kick out of reading it as I did by writing it. It opens up a whole magical world full of all kinds of different creatures and adventures (not to mention some hot romance), and I can’t wait to get deeper into the series and the characters.
Given the powers of an Incubus, could you resist the urge to take the one man you’ve always secretly wanted?
Sex makes the world go round, right?
Or so it seems to Cole Turner, a Seer who can See everyone’s future except his own, when a gift from his Dreamwalking best friend Luke turns his world upside down. Overnight, Cole gains all the allure of an Incubus, drawing suitors to him like moths to a flame. But after a few days of reveling in the fun, reality takes a turn: the mysterious drug he took, known only as “Night”, had to come from someone, and that someone is pissed, on a homicidal scale. Each sexual encounter makes Cole’s attraction grow stronger, making it ever-more difficult to just walk outside. And Luke, the Seer’s go-to in times of need, now wants him like everyone else, a point made even worse by the secret desires Cole has for the friend he had always assumed was straight.
Swamped in sex, powerless to See if the future holds any hope for salvation, and at constant risk of losing both his best friend and his life, Cole is about to find out if he’s strong enough to beat the Night racing through his system—and if his relationship with Luke is strong enough to survive it as well.