Normally, I host guests on Wednesdays. What with the holidays and all, somehow I didn't manage to book anyone. I figured I'd interview one of my characters to fill the gap. Ruby Maxwell Chen is the heroine of my taboo erotic romance Nasty Business. Since she always has something to say, I'll hand the blog over to her!
Interviewer: Thank you for taking the time to talk with us.
Ruby: It’s my pleasure. I’m happy to have the chance to tell readers my side of the story.
I: Well, let’s begin with some background. You’re the CEO of the Maxwell Companies, a multinational industrial conglomerate. Yet you’re only in your mid twenties. How did a woman so young find herself in a position of such power and responsibility?.
R: My father, Liu Chen, founded Maxwell Companies more than twenty years ago. From a very early age, he groomed me to become his successor. At eighteen, I began a formal apprenticeship. He taught me everything he could about corporate strategy, finance, negotiation – all the skills that I’d need. Of course we didn’t expect that I’d be taking over so soon. After the car accident, though, I had no choice but to step into his position, although it’s incredibly difficult to try to match his business acumen. I do the best that I can.
I: You’re renowned throughout the business community as a tough negotiator. How do you feel about that?
R: I’m proud of my reputation. I’ve earned it.
I: You don’t mind what they call you? “Ruthless Ruby”?
R: (Laugh) As long as my bottom line looks healthy, it doesn’t bother me. A lot of that gossip is simply envy.
I: But – there are rumors that you use your considerable charms to influence your negotiations. That you take advantage, sexually, of your male colleagues.
R: Just rumors. Gossip, as I said. In any case, men have been doing that, taking sexual advantage, ever since women entered the workplace. Why shouldn’t I even the score?
I: Okay... let me change the subject. When you first met Rick Martell, what did you think of him? What were your first impressions?
R: Honestly? I was so turned on that I could hardly talk straight. He’s not particularly outstanding in the looks department, but that man has incredible sexual charisma. Everyone seems susceptible to it, even my straight-laced personal secretary Margaret. It must be something biological. Pheromones or something similar. In any case, I had to keep tight rein on my emotions and reactions during that first interview. Of course, I had met him before, the previous evening, not knowing that it was him...
I: Really? What do you mean?
R: I’d rather not talk about it. For one thing, I don’t want to destroy the suspense for readers.
I: So now that you know Rick better, what do you think?
R: He’s brilliant, but devious. He enjoys playing games, and even more, he enjoys winning.
I: Sounds like you.
R: No comment.
I: Who do you think was the winner in your conflict over the factory in Malaysia? You both swore that acquiring it was essential to your companies.
R: In one sense, neither of us won. The factory turned out to be a poisoned acquisition, laden with hidden debt. We were fortunate that we discovered this before either of us invested. In reality, though, we both won. As you know, if you’ve read the book, each of us learned some valuable lessons about our own desires – and about each other. We were changed by our encounter and our conflict.
I: If it’s not too personal to ask, what did you learn?
R: I came to see that yielding is not necessarily a weakness. And that trust is difficult, but possible. Also, I realized that my self-image as a cynical, hard-hearted dominatrix was a bit unrealistic. I met a real dominatrix and saw how I was only an amateur by comparison.
I: What about love? Any insights in that area?
R: Now you are getting too personal! If your readers want to know about that topic, they’ll just have to read the book. Now I hope you’ll excuse me. I have a board meeting in fifteen minutes.
I: Of course, Ruby. Thank you for consenting to the interview. And good luck with Mr. Martell.
R: You’re welcome. But don’t give the story away!