Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Author Hot Seat Welcomes - Toni Sands

The author hot seat specials are designed to help readers get to know both popular, and up and coming authors, a little better. The questions are broken into sections - About your writing, about you, fun stuff and finally. Some of the questions are easy, other may need a little more thought and some may cause our author friends to hesitate before answering—still, they all answer. 

Today in the hot seat we have Toni Sands. Toni is currently on tour for her latest release, Knight and Trask: Secrets and Spies. Welcome to the hot seat Toni, I can't wait to hear more about you.

About Your Writing:

Tell us about your latest book. What was your inspiration for writing it, is it part of an ongoing series, the characters, the genre etc?

Knight and Trask: Secrets and Spies is set in the late 1990s and inspired by the James Bond movies of that era. Except! Katie Knight is not your typical bikini-clad Bond girl. She’s Agent Trask’s equal. I loved writing their banter as well as their steamy scenes. If the book does well, I’d love to write a sequel.

How many books have you written during your career so far and which is your favorite?

Writing as Toni Sands, it’s one full-length novel plus novellas and short stories. Under my Jill Barry pseudonym, I have six published books. My favourite Toni Sands is Orchid Pink as I find that late Victorian era fascinating.

Have any of your books received negative reviews and how did you handle the situation?

Every author is vulnerable to a negative review now and then. The trick is to read the positive ones and count your blessings.

Do you believe in writer’s block and if so, how do you overcome it?

I have no personal experience of writer’s block. And I’m not being precious! I have always had more ideas than time to write them.

What is the one genre you would never write and why?

Hopefully I’m not too bad at writing from the male point of view but I don’t think I could make a good enough job of writing male love scenes. Though I’d never say never!

Have you ever written a book that you’ve regretted publishing and why?

My first ever novel, Suddenly You Know, was originally published print on demand via a scheme that seemed a good idea at the time. I’m pleased to say the revised version is to be published by Endeavour Press as an ebook but it’s a contemporary romance by my alter ego Jill Barry.

If a reader said they wanted to write a book, what advice would you give them?

Stop thinking about it. Start writing it. If it’s an erotic romance, study the Xcite website and read books by successful authors.

About you:

Tell us what a typical day in your life is like?

Quiet. My partner works at home so we swap tennis and show biz news en route to the kettle. I have a variable start time for my writing but normally will write for five or six hours. It could be more if I didn’t get distracted by social media and stuff.

What sort of things put you in a bad mood?

Stupidity. Cruelty. Inconsiderate drivers. Train and bus passengers who treat public transport like their own living rooms. Theatregoers who check their phones every 15 minutes. I bet you’re sorry you asked me now.

Do you have a bucket list and what’s one thing you still want to do that you haven’t done?

A modest bucket list involving visits to Scotland and York. I might achieve a trip to Australia before I finally check out.

What makes you laugh?

The kind of gentle yet clever humour written by John Finnemore, and anything involving Andy Hamilton, e.g. Outnumbered.

What is the most embarrassing thing you’ve ever done?

Ages ago, when working as a Butlin redcoat, I had to join in a Goodnight Campers routine. Let’s just say, I started off on the wrong foot… *shudders*

Do you like to read and what are you reading at the moment?

I love reading and the current choice is Stolen Grace by Arianne Richmonde.

If you couldn’t write anymore, what would you do instead?

Read more. Catch up with dozens of DVDs. Visit more museums and art galleries. Walk more. Listen to radio plays and to CDs. See more of my friends and family. Do more baking.

Fun Stuff:

If you could go out with one famous person who would it be and why?

After thinking for ten hours, I’m going for movie star Clint Eastwood because he was my crush for about three decades and he’s a pilot and loves music and has had a fascinating life.

Do you have a habit that drives your partner/friends/family nuts and what is it?
Um! Just one?

In your opinion, what makes a person attractive?

Twinkly, kind eyes.

What is the strangest food you’ve ever eaten?

Dried reindeer meat. I’d prefer to forget it, thank you.

Would you rather have a classic 1969 convertible Mustang or have the use of a beach side condo any time you want?
I love the sea.

And finally:

Would you rather survive an apocalyptic event (yes, even a zombie apocalypse) or die instantly without knowing what happened to your family and friends?

I’m going for the survival option.

Knight and Trask: Secrets and Spies

Set in the 1990s, this is a swift-moving sexy story of two spies who dare to break the rules and risk disgrace, all for the sake of love.


Special Agent Katie Knight’s boots ricocheted against rock face. Panting, she landed on grass, aware of the instructor checking his stopwatch.
‘OK, Knight. Ten seconds off last time. Cool,’ he said.
Slowly Katie sucked in her breath, watching Trask land like a panther. If he had a forename, only his mother knew it and his personal life remained an enigma to his colleagues in this hush-hush team. Katie didn’t do love at first sight but Trask’s aloofness disturbed her beyond belief, her body refusing to acknowledge the relationship taboo between operatives.
            She removed her blue safety helmet. Allowed the breeze to whip her toffee- coloured hair across her cheeks. Trask checked his time and scowled.
            ‘You’re never satisfied,’ she called. She’d learnt that much on Day One.
            He met her gaze. ‘Would I be in this game otherwise? Would you?’
            Katie shrugged, body high on adrenaline, thigh muscles tingling. She couldn’t argue with the guy. She thrived on honing her ability to tackle whatever danger lurked in her bizarre part-commando, part-concubine world.
Chateau Rose, nestling in the lush Loire Valley, must have looked as magnificent in 1699 as it did three hundred years later. The stately building no longer housed French aristocrats playing games of power and passion. Today it played temporary home to an elite group of British agents for whom death meant just another adversary to annihilate. So far she’d tackled theory. Talked serious stuff about her fears and frustrations with her mentor. Pushed her body to its limits, the exercises always juicing her, heightening her appetites.

Buy Links:  

About the Author:

Toni Sands lives in Wales and writes as much as she can when she’s not watching tennis, walking by the river or cooking. She writes erotic romance for Xcite Books.
You can find her on Facebook
Her Amazon author page link is

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