Cocktails with Scarlet Hawthorne: Writing the Heroine of DEADLINE Plus TWO Giveaways!
Good evening, dear readers! 
Thank you for joining me for my Happy Hour feature, Cocktails with Colette, which I have on Thursday evenings occasionally to introduce you to my author friends. Normally, I use a picture of a dirty vodka martini, but in honor of my guest tonight, I am sharing a postcard for St~Germaine, as Scarlet Hawthorne's favourite drink is the St~Germaine Cocktail (which is quite yummy, I must admit - recipe below in "Meet the Author" - use champagne). So pour the cocktail of your choice as I introduce our guest.

Scarlet is currently in the middle of the blog tour for her new release Deadline, and she joined me for Coffee last month for the cover reveal. Part romance, part mystery, and part police procedural, Deadline has been on Amazon's "Hot New Release" lists since its debut! In honor of this, Scarlet is offering an additional giveaway here on Cocktails in addition to the blog tour giveaway for three signed paperbacks. Just leave a comment below to be entered to win one of three Kindle versions of Deadline! (Be sure to leave an email address so we can contact you when you win!) But don't forget to enter the Rafflecopter for the signed paperback and extras!

Tonight Scarlet will be talking about the heroine of Deadline Gillian Tate. This is an amazing character you will for whom you will be rooting - both in the romance and the mystery!


Gillian “P.G.” Tate – heroine of Deadline
Creating the character of Gillian Tate was easy. Conveying her to the page, not so much. Typically, I write in deep, deep third person point of view, which still has a narrator; but the narrator knows all of the thoughts and feelings of the character and, of course, shares that with the reader. I usually include so much inner monologue that it’s practically first person!

With Deadline, I wanted to challenge myself to do something completely foreign to me by using a “panoramic” point of view. The narrator shows all of the action but doesn’t read minds, like watching a film. So I had to communicate Gillian’s personality, thoughts, and feelings – really who she is – strictly through her behaviour.

Gillian Tate grew up in an upper middle-class family in Connecticut. Although definite WASPs, her parents sent her and her older sister Catherine to a Catholic high school, where Gillian became friends with Sarah, her future literary agent.

Catherine and Gillian were “both chunky teens” and remained extremely close until Catherine moved to California for college. Then their extremely controlling parents – especially their father – did not approve of Catherine’s lifestyle choices and cut her off, and Gillian did not see her sister again for many years. Losing Catherine caused Gillian to be lonely and even more insecure, particularly now the focus of her domineering parents. Self-conscious about
her appearance and seeking the affection she did not receive at home, she married her prom date right out of high school, which caused a rift with her parents but also got her out from under their collective thumb.

Eventually, Gillian moved to New York City and got a Masters degree in English. She pursued a career in writing for years without achieving success. Then she met another author who encouraged her to write erotic romances. Her first such novel – an MFM ménage – became an international bestseller and turned her into an overnight sensation.

Now Gillian believed her dream of becoming a writer had come true, but all of the popularity and media attention could not quash her insecurities – especially when her public personae “P.G. Tate” became fodder for the tabloids. She cannot see that she has blossomed into a beautiful, voluptuous woman because she is “not a size six,” and the tabloids won’t let her forget it – nor the fact that her husband has dumped her. No amount of book sales or adoring fans can suppress her insecurities.

When she goes to the Adirondacks to escape all of her demons and get back to her passion of writing, she once again relaxes into the familiarity of her true self.

Now, how could I translate all of these qualities without writing in her point of view or revealing any of her thoughts? Much of it comes out in dialogue, but I also had to focus on her behaviour and mannerisms. She is most comfortable in dresses, which “hide a multitude of flaws,” since she still sees herself as a “fat cow.”

Also, I see her as having worn braces on her teeth. I did myself, as did my daughters; and one thing I have noticed with girls who had braces is that even for years after they have them removed, they cover their mouths with their hands when they laugh or smile. I didn’t want to have Gillian constantly covering her mouth, so I gave her a mannerism that I also picked up. When she is feeling uncertain or insecure, she hides her teeth by pulling in her bottom lip. Conversely, when she feels confident, she exposes her teeth, smiling brightly (even when alone), bringing attention to her mouth by licking her lips, or actually doing the reverse of hiding her teeth, instead scraping her top teeth across her bottom lip.

These are just a few of the cues I use to paint a portrait of a girl who grew up without affection or positive reinforcement to become a woman who needs to be wanted and reassured that she is desirable. Maybe Sheriff Taylor is the man who can fulfill the needs she is not even aware of herself.

Don't forget to leave a comment below for a chance at a Kindle eBook, and be sure to enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway!

He wants her body and heart, but a killer wants her soul.
 Add to Goodreads

After her erotic romance novels become international bestsellers, writer Gillian Tate cannot enjoy her long-sought success once her husband files for divorce and she becomes the target of threats from a religious fringe hate group; but when she tries to find peace in the solitude of a remote lakeside cabin to complete the third novel in the trilogy, not only does she meet the man who can fulfill her secret desires, she also finds she hasn’t escaped danger by leaving the city. 

When the Adirondack town's police chief Sam Taylor learns of the threats and checks in on the notorious author, he is surprised to find she is nothing like he would have expected from her erotic novels but everything he has imagined in his own fantasies. 

Can he and the woman of his dreams escape her waking nightmare? 

*Adult Content: This erotic romantic suspense includes scenes of bondage between consenting adults.*

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon AU | Amazon CA | B&N

Paperbacks can be found HERE Hawthorne began writing short stories at the age of eight, poems at ten, and wrote her first novella – a romantic tragedy – at twelve. Today she enjoys creating characters who discover integrity and their authentic selves through their sexuality. She has been a speaker at national conferences discussing how power exchange can enhance relationships and refuting the negative stereotypes of BDSM promulgation in the media.

An award-winning and bestselling author in a variety of genres under other pen names, Scarlet was a featured author at the 2014 BDSM Writers Conference in New York City and contributed an excerpt from her upcoming romantic suspense Retrograde to the first BDSM Writers Con Anthology. Always eager to challenge herself as a writer, Scarlet utilized a “panoramic point of view” narrative style, rarely found in fiction today, in her latest novel Deadline. lives with her two dogs and their Master in a lakeside community in the New Orleans area. When not devoting herself to writing or what Erica Jong refers to as the requisite "zitzfleisch," Scarlet spends her free time drinking wine and eating cheese, taking long candlelit bubble baths, and playing with her dogs around the lake.
Her next release is the contemporary male/male romance Between the Notes, expected in spring, 2015.


  1. The book look great! Thanks for the chance to win :)

    1. xxo Thanks so much! Good luck in BOTH contests!

  2. Ooh, that excerpt is wicked! I love the protagonist who still sees herself as that chubby, invisible girl and the man who's able to change her self-image through love. Sounds like a fabulous story!

  3. Interesting and I love the author picture. Best of luck!

    1. xxo Thanks! My husband took that picture of me.

  4. Book looks great. Thanks for the giveaway.


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