Siobhan Daiko has something special when it comes to writing sex scenes of olde, something that makes the writing stand out: the ability to convey gritty realism. Capitalising on a writer’s strengths can only lead to one thing: great stories.
Siobhan says: Veronica is my third collaboration with Johnny in just over a year, and what a year it has been. From helping me fill a gaping plot hole in The Orchid Tree to an even greater one in Lady of Asolo, working with Mr Hudspith, il maestro, has been one of the best experiences of my life. It’s his whole approach, you see – he’s caring, instructive, encouraging, funny (sometimes rolling on the floor hilarious) and he’s a hard taskmaster when he needs to be. I have absolute faith in him and have learned to trust in his excellent suggestions completely.
The decision to write a series of erotic novellas came about one dismal November afternoon when I was struggling to write a sequel to The Orchid Tree. My heart wasn’t in it and I told Johnny so. We’d joked about the possibility of my writing erotica as he was editing the sex scenes in Lady of Asolo, but when I was scratching my head about what to write next he made the suggestion more seriously and insisted I would be good at it. Well, when someone, especially a person who knows what they’re talking about like Johnny does, prompts me to do something and gives me a compliment at the same time, I generally always take them up on it.
He said the scenes with Cecilia in Lady of Asolo were bang on the money – no sappy clichés just gritty realism. And for Johnny, he said it was the gritty realism that made those scenes stand out, and that I should seize the opportunity to expand on that. I could clearly see where Johnny was coming from. I love to use older language in a cheeky way, and the idea of writing about a Venetian courtesan had already piqued my interest. I started researching the life of Veronica Franco, a fascinating feisty character. The force of her personality struck me when I read her poems and letters, and I’m immensely grateful to Johnny for helping me to bring her alive on the page.
I’ve already started researching the life of my next Fragrant Courtesan, Theodora, and will definitely rely on the fantastic editing of John Hudspith for that one too. Thanks, Johnny. You’re simply the best! Thank you, Siobhan, ***Advisory: sensuously erotic, this novella contains frequent scenes of explicit sex, sexual language, and the imaginative use of Murano glass.***