Conference Spotlight ~ Dishing the Dirt: Erotic Romance Panel

Welcome to another of our Conference Spotlights from the

At Diamonds Are Forever,  Denise Rossetti moderates Sami Lee, Rhian Cahill, Jess Dee, and Lexxie Couper on a panel aimed at ALL writers called



Erotic romance blends elements of romance and erotica, and is not always strictly either. It straddles the line between and carves out a whole new sub-genre of romance, one that has proven enormously popular with readers – which means new market opportunities for authors. Each speaker is a multi-published author of erotic romance willing and able to share the knowledge they’ve gained about the industry.

Dishing the Dirt  panelists

Sami Lee’s  been (in order); a secretary, sales assistant, bartender, waitress, student, tutor, human resource manager and administration officer, but at heart she’s always been a writer. She enjoys creating emotional, sexy stories about the gorgeous, aggravating men who live in her head and the women who were made to steal them away from her.

Sami lives in Queensland with her husband and two sassy, stupendous, sensational daughters. To learn more about Sami, please visit, join her on Facebook or Twitter, send an email to or visit her blog at

Rhian Cahill  is the alter ego of a stay-at-home mother of four. With motherly duties rapidly dwindling Rhian is able to make use of the fertile imagination she used to keep herself sane for all those years of slavery. Having spent some years living overseas and visiting tropical climates has helped inspire some steamy stories. With the help of Mr. Muse, Rhian spends her days writing and most of her nights as well. When not glued to the keyboard you’ll find her book in hand avoiding any and all housework as much as possible. For more on Rhian visit her website or you can contact her at

Apart from her family and friends, Jess Dee loves two things: romance and food. Is it any wonder she specializes in dee-liciously sexy romance? Jess loves hearing from readers. You can email her at or find her at

Lexxie Couper’s not a deviant. She just has a deviant’s imagination and a desire to entertain readers with her words. Add the two together and you get erotic romances that can make you laugh, cry, shake with fear or tremble with desire. Sometimes all at once.

When she’s not submerged in the worlds she creates, Lexxie’s life revolves around her family, a husband who thinks she’s insane, a indoor cat who likes to stalk shadows, and her daughters, who both utterly captured her heart and changed her life forever.

Contact her by email or find her at her website or on Twitter.

When Denise Rossetti was very small, she had an aunt who would tell her the most wonderful fairy tales – all original. Denise grew up, as little girls do, but the magic of story still dazzles and enthralls her. On the good days, she likes to think of herself as Scheherazade’s sister. On the bad days – not so much.

A two-time winner of Romance Writers of America Passionate Plume Award, Denise’s work has been described as “darkly intense, warmly romantic, and blazingly erotic”. She is published with Berkley Ace, Berkley Sensation, Ellora’s Cave and Avon Red.

Visit her at

Tell us about yourself in 10 words or less.

Sami: Wife, mother, admin assistant, writer, juggler extraordinaire.

Lexxie: Writer. Mother. Far-from obedient wife. Lunatic. Romantic. Geek.

Rhian: Wife, mother, friend, writer.

Jess: Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer, helpless romantic, and all too often… hormonal cow.


What prompted you to put together this workshop for “Diamonds are Forever”?

 Sami: I love erotic romance as a genre and I think it is often misunderstood. Open discussions like this help dispel the myths, and give those new to writing valuable insights you really can’t get without talking to people in the know. Yes that’s us, four cheeky chicks in the know.

Jess: Sami emailed to say I didn’t have a choice and would have to participate. She looks small and cute, but really, she’s scary. You’d also have said yes.

Sami: Hmm, new tagline for my website, cute but scary….


What will participants take away from this session? (OR what is the key outcome or take-home message?)

Lexxie: Erotic romance isn’t a dirty word. Erotic romance is, in fact, the largest and fastest growing sub-genre of romance in the reading world. What better way to turn people on (yeah, I said it *grin*) to the pleasure of reading and writing erotic romance than to talk about it?

Rhian: It should also help answer any questions people have about e publishing, as we’re all with digital first publishers.


Will there be hands-on exercises or audience participation?                 

Lexxie: Well, I’ve employed a male stripper for the workshop. What, Sami? I’m not allowed. Oh, okay then. Bum.

Jess: Psst, Lex, never mind the workshop, send the stripper up to my room. (Strictly for research purposes, of course.)

Sami: Ignore those two. You see what I have to deal with? Don’t bring any five dollar bills, just your enthusiasm and your questions—no query too bizarre or embarrassing. No matter what you’re thinking, one of us has probably been there, done that *evil grin*


Do you use examples (from your own books, other books, movies etc)?

Rhian:  More than likely, as we’ll be discussing our own personal experiences in erotic romance.

Lexxie: Definitely. Just be ready to watch me blush when I have to say the word “boobies” aloud. (Kidding. I’ve never used the word boobies in a book. Oh wait, yes I did. In Savage Retribution, but that was when…)



Which members will benefit most from this session?

Jess: Any member who reads, writes or enjoys erotic romance. (But you’re gonna have to leave your inhibitions at the door.)



What is the best part/aspect of conference for you?

Lexxie: Meeting fellow romance readers and writers. I love talking to new people and catching up with those I’ve already meet, whether through Twitter, Facebook or just plan old fashion face-to-face.

Rhian:  I agree that conferences are a brilliant way to meet new friends and put a face to the name of all those people we chat to on the Net. I love meeting my favourite authors too, and sharing my passion for all things romance with like-minded  people.

Sami: This year? not having to travel far for it! I love it when the conference ventures into my home state. Hopefully Queensland will turn on some sunny weather for everyone.


Any advice for conference first-timers?

 Sami: Leave space in your luggage to take stuff home with you. You get so much more than you can possibly imagine! (plus you’ll end up buying heaps at the bookstore)

Lexxie: Wear comfortable shoes. And don’t be shy. Chat with whoever you’re standing/sitting next to. I’ve yet to meet a horrible person at RWAus conferences. Everyone is lovely and friendly.



What is your latest/current/upcoming book release and where can members find out more about you?


Jess: I have two releases coming up: Office Affair, on the 1st of May, and Colours Of Love, Book 2 in the Speed series on the 24th of July. Be cautioned: both are erotic, romantic ménages. For more info, check out my website at



Rhian: I have books available through several publishers like Ellora’s Cave, Etopia Press and Noble, but my first Samhain release, Truth or Dare, was released in January 2012. It’s part of the Party Games series I wrote with Lexxie, and the follow up book, Spin the Bottle will be out later this year. Check out my website at for more detail.


Lexxie: My latest book is Love’s Rhythm, a highly romantic erotic romance about the world’s biggest rock star and the one woman he could never forget – his high school sweetheart. Release date: April 17th. Samhain Publishing are also releasing Sunset Heat, my erotic novella about a love triangle between an Australian fire-fighter, an American photographer and a British wildlife cinematographer. Members can find out more about me at

Sami: My next book is an erotic ménage a trois novel entitled Erica’s Choice. It will be released by Samhain Publishing on August 21st (right after the conference!). Then in September I have a novella releasing, one of a three-part series I’ve written with Lexxie and Jess set in the fictional paradise of Bandicoot Cove. Yes, we Aussie women are taking over the world, mwhahahaha! Jump on my website for more info


Thank you, ladies.

Our next Conference Spotlight is with Sarah Rose on 30th April.

Leave a comment


  1. Looks like this will be one hawt panel. But going by your banter, it’s going to be a fun one too. 🙂

  2. Sami Lee

     /  April 25, 2012

    Gotta try and make things fun Eleni *wink*

  3. Sounds like a hoot and a half (I initially typed hoot as hott, and it will probably be that too!)

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