Interview & Giveaway with Victoria Dahl

There are a lot of excited Book Pushers today, mainly because we were super lucky to snag and interview with the fabulous Victoria Dahl! Victoria is the author of some of our favorite contemporary and historical romance books such as: the Tumble Creek Trilogy, the Huntington Trilogy, and even had a few short stories in anthologies we’ve loved.

Today, Victoria is here to talk to us a bit about her newest series and release, GOOD GIRLS DON’T. This is the first book in her new HQN series about the Donovan Brothers Brewery.


Victoria, Welcome to The Book Pushers!

Thank you for inviting me! I’m so happy to be here!


The Book Pushers: Tell us a little more about the Donovan Brothers Brewery series and GOOD GIRLS DON’T.

Victoria: This series is about the Donovan siblings, Tessa, Jamie and Eric. Their parents died when Tessa and Jamie were still young, so Eric moved back home to take care of them, and now they all run the family brewery together. They are a close-knit family, but long-standing tensions and lies cause a lot of chaos between them. Not to mention a little hilarity.

Good Girls Don’t stars Tessa, the baby of the family…. Police Detective Luke Asher isn’t about to get involved with an innocent girl with two protective older brothers, but Tessa isn’t as innocent as she seems. In fact, she has some creative ideas about just what she’d like to do with a dark and dangerous police detective. She just needs to hide her personal life from her brothers, solve a burgeoning family crisis, and keep the brewery running while seducing a man who’s trying not to be seduced. Just another day in the life of Tessa Donovan.


The Book Pushers: How many books do you have planned for the Donovan Brothers Brewery series?

Victoria: There are three full books: Good Girls Don’t, Bad Boys Do (October) and Real Men Will (November). There’s also a prequel novella called “Just One Taste” in the Guy Next Door anthology!


The Book Pushers: How much research did you put into the art of brewery? Do you have a favourite beer?

Victoria:  I take my work seriously, so I did not skimp on the research. Not at all. Luckily there are lots of great microbreweries in the West where I live. Right now my favorite brews are Chasing Tail Golden Ale by Squatters Brew Pub and Wasatch’s Evolution Amber Ale. I also love any kind of hefeweizen I can get my hands on. And this year I even discovered that I like some porters. That’s real dedication to my craft!


The Book Pushers: What other projects to you have in the works right now?

Victoria:  Now that I’m done with the Donovan series, I’ve started work on a new three-book contemporary series with HQN. It’s set in Jackson Hole, Wyoming and will feature genuine cowboys and kick-ass chicks.


The Book Pushers: COWBOYS?? *melt*  You write both contemporary and historical romances. Between the two, do you prefer to write in one of the other?

Victoria: I don’t really have a favorite genre to write. It’s nice to switch between the two because it’s a bit like cleansing the palate. After the formal language of an historical, it’s nice to settle into a contemporary. And after a contemporary, it’s fun to get back to the lushness of the Victorian setting.


The Book Pushers: What do you love and hate the most about writing in the contemporary genre? What about historical?

Victoria:  Contemporaries flow a little faster because the dialogue and situations are familiar and easy to imagine. It’s a lot like a conversation with friends. But with historicals, it’s soooooo easy to come up with conflict. All I need is one stubborn/evil/uptight parent and all the heroine’s choices are taken away. Or one mistake and hero has to choose between marriage and destroying his honor!

I don’t think there’s anything I hate about either, honestly. Hmm. In historicals, it’s frustrating to realize you’ve gotten something wrong. Used some word that it would never have occurred to you wasn’t in use at the time. Sideburns, for example, was a post-Civil-War term, but if you don’t know that, you just don’t know it. So that can be a little scary.


The Book Pushers: You create heroines who are not afraid to explore and enjoy their sexuality. When you started writing, did you see that missing in the romance genre?

Victoria:  I’ll tell you a secret that I don’t share with many other people: I’m not a perfect woman. In fact, I’m not very good romance heroine material at all. I’m not selfless. I don’t keep a spotless house. I curse. (A lot.) I’m not the least bit interested in sacrificing my happiness for another’s. And on very rare occasions–when the moon is full and the planets align—I’ve been known to be very dirty. (Ok, I haven’t been innocent in thought or intention for a long while now.) But I still deserve a happy ending. And so do my heroines.

For me, a happy ending involves fulfilling, guilt-free sex! Wait, that didn’t sound right. Um…What I mean is that I think all women deserve a fulfilling and fun sex life, free of guilt, whatever their relationship status is. That used to be a bit of a rarity for romance heroines. Maybe she was a virgin before she met the hero. Certainly, she’d never had a mind-blowing orgasm. And masturbation? Oh, I don’t think so, sister. That area is reserved for the hero’s magic peen. And even after she meets the hero, would a romance heroine decide to use him for sex and leave the love out of it? Ten years ago, not so much. But, yea, things are changing! I can give my heroines an amazing sex life, before (if the story calls for it), during, and after the book. So I do. And I’ll never stop.


The Book Pushers: People keep referring to you and a halo in the same sentence, tweet etc what is the story behind that?

Victoria:  I don’t understand the question. I’m an angel, ergo I have a halo. The proof is in the pictures.

As for the story behind it? One night I met a fallen angel named Junior. Yadda, yadda, yadda…the next morning he let me keep the halo. There’s nothing more officially angelic than that.


The Book Pushers:  What gave you the idea to write the naughty novella that Molly Jennings, your heroine in TALK ME DOWN, was working on throughout your novel? And will there be any more of those naughty novels in future?

Victoria:  That was my editor’s idea! After I sold Talk Me Down to Tara Parsons, she called me up and asked if I’d be interested in writing an erotic short story under Molly’s name. Um…YES! We bounced a few ideas around before I finally realized I should write the story Molly had been working on during the book. Secretly dirty sheriff? Heck, yeah! I’d never written an erotic story before, and it was a blast. I really loved it.

As for another, I’m just starting to work on a new idea. It’ll probably be out next year!


The Book Pushers: Do you read Romance yourself? What other genre do you read in your spare time?

Victoria: Absolutely! Ten years ago, I probably read 90% romance and 10% horror/suspense. These days, I try not to read romance when I’m actively writing, so I read a mix of romance, horror, urban fantasy, non-fiction, thrillers and the occasional literary title. I never have enough time for reading, though, and I meet more amazing writers every year. It’s frustrating not to have a few more reading hours in every day.


The Book Pushers: Who is your sexy dream hero? They can be fictional or real.

Victoria:  You want me to pick ONE sexy dream hero? Wow. Just one? Okay, I’m going to narrow this down to a choice of my own heroes just to keep my head from exploding. Hmm. I think I’ll go with Ben Lawson from Talk Me Down. Or…maybe Luke Asher from Good Girls Don’t. Wait! Jude Bertrand from A Little Bit Wild! Oops. Sorry. I’ll clean up this exploding head mess before I go. I’m not good at this game.

Thank you so much for the fun questions!


Thank you for being here today Victoria!! Now for the readers: Victoria has offered up a signed copy of Good Girls Don’t along with some Donovan Brothers Brewery swag! Just leave a question or comment for Victoria to enter. Contest is open internationally and ends September 5th. Good Luck!

82 thoughts on “Interview & Giveaway with Victoria Dahl”

  1. I agree! Not a writer, but reasearch is SO important. The reader often just KNOWS when an author didn’t do the research….sometimes even if he isn’t an expert himself. It’s just a feeling one gets.
    Victoria, I recently read an interview with Daniel Silva, bestselling author of the Gabriel Allon series. He likes to write while lying on the floor. Pen and paper! What’s your way to go about writing a book?

    Is the giveaway international?
    Hope so 🙂

  2. I loved A Little Bit Wild. I can’t wait to try some of her contemporary romance. I will add them to my TBR list. Great giveaway.

  3. This series sounds fun! It’s great that you do research for a story, it helps when the background of a story seems more realistic. I agree nobody’s perfect, yet everyone deserves a good fun fulfiling romp & a happy ending! Thanks for the interview & giveaway!

  4. I just discovered your stuff here recently and I loved Lead me on. Was my favorite!!! Great contest, looking forward to this new series!!

  5. Hi Victoria!
    Researching medical romance is not near as fun as the research you do! I think it’s time for me to branch out. Love your books – historical and contemporary! I just finished It’s Always Been You. Loved it! Can’t wait to read more….

  6. great interview
    love you rbooks so good and spicy i love them so funny i love spicy wiht a mix of comedy in my contemp books
    what do u do on your time off

  7. Love your books Victoria and look forward to reading this one. Hope I win it. Thanks for the chance.

  8. I love how your heroines (contemporary and historical) embrace who they are without apology. It’s fun to read stories about women who know what they want, and are willing to make things happen.

    Write faster – I need more books.

  9. I’m excited because I’ll be meeting Victoria in November. She’s coming to my home town and will be a speaker in one of our chapter’s meetings!

    I have not read any of her books, but after reading the interview, I’d really love to. Hmmm, now, which one do you recommend to try first?

  10. I’m 40% of the way through the e-version of the book. I was HIGHLY amused and scoffing a little at the foolishness of the men in the book, thinking Tessa, a Victoria Dahl heroine, was a virgin. *snicker* still gets me. I also laughed when Tessa asks older brother Eric when was the last time he had sex considering I just finished the novella in “Guys Next Door” about 2 weeks ago.

    Congratulations on the releases! Looking forward to your Hole series. 😉

  11. the title is very enticing. i hope ill be able to read it 🙂
    how do you come up with titles and stories? is it a god given talent that you can easily write something?

    thanks for the giveaway

  12. A question: are you going to do more regency historicals like “A little bit wild”? Though I have to say, the kinds of plots you write work better for me in a contemporary setting.

  13. Whoa! So many comments! I’ll be back in an hour or so to answer more, but for now…

    Hi, Sasse! I used to write exclusively in longhand in notebooks, then I would edit as I transcribed, but I slowly started moving toward using my laptop. Now, I write almost exclusively on the computer.

    Hi, Kim H! Thank you. I adore music and it helps me come up with ideas for my book, so I spend a lot of my free time listening to music and downloading new playlists. In fact, music is the only thing that gets me through housework. I also love hiking. And vegging out in front of the TV. 😉

    Thanks for the warm welcome, everyone! I’ll be back in a few.

  14. @Kelly S: Oh and I LOVE but wasn’t surprised that the social media mentioned in the book is Twitter and not any others (yet?).

    If you don’t follow @VictoriaDahl on twitter, you really should. Warning, often NSFW unless you have your own office and hide your tweet stream during meetings.

  15. Ohh these sound great I’ll have to go check them out.

    I’ve a question 🙂 Do you have an ereader? If so which one? As ereaders become more common do you think it is having an impact on your reader base?

  16. Oh my God! *Lethal jumps up & down like a complete idiot* I’m not a big contemporary romance fan but I absolutely ♥ Victoria Dahl & her CRs. Thank you so very much for this giveaway!

  17. I read Just a Little Bit Wild last week and I absolutely loved it. Adored that the opening scene wasn’t with the hero. Adored how everything played out, and I loved, loved, loved Jude.

    So far Victoria Dahl has never disappointed me, and I’m so looking forward to this.

    Have to say though, best beer in the world is definitely Belgian beer…

    Westmalle! Westvleteren! Orval! Grimbergen!


  18. Hi Victoria,
    I love your books, and I think you’re hilarious on Twitter. I can’t wait to read Good Girls Don’t.

  19. Sounds like a great read! Thanks for the awesome giveaway
    Question: how r u inspired? and how long does it take u to write a book?

  20. Hi Victoria! I thought this was a great interview and I really enjoyed it. I admire your dedication in your research! I’ve never acquired a taste for beer or ale. Thank goodness there are other alternatives! 🙂

    What is the most rewarding experience you’ve had since you became a published author?

    Thanks for the chance to win Good Girls Don’t.

  21. I’ve just started getting into contempories so I’d love to win this. My question is what is how angry do historical readers get if you make a mistake? I’ve always wondered if authors get emails ranting about the wrong use of a word or something like that.

  22. I’m back! Sorry to go missing for most of the day. Kids, exercise, writing, kids, dinner, laundry. Ugh. Why can’t i be a romance-writing princess?!?

    Ingrid, I can’t wait to meet you in November! If you want to try my contemporaries, you should start with either Talk Me Down or Good Girls Don’t. They’re both the first book in a series, though my books are always loosely connected and you don’t have to read in order. For historicals, maybe A LITTLE BIT WILD. See you soon!

    Jel, my books always start with one pivotial scene in my head. Maybe just a snippet of a scene. With this book, it was when the hero is under the impression that the heroine is a virgin and is trying to explain why he can’t sleep with her. From there, I work back. Who are these people?! Why are they in this situation? What’s going to happen next?

    Hi MD, I plan to write more historicals. In fact the book that follows A LITTLE BIT WILD just came out. It’s called IT’S ALWAYS BEEN YOU and is in bookstores now!

  23. I was a VDahl virgin until Talk Me Down…I’ve been onboard ever since. Can’t wait to read this new one!

  24. One of the things I love most about your books is the heroine’s guilt-free approach to sex, both of her past and having it with the hero. It’s so refreshing to find in romance novels since it’s so prevalent in real life. Or at least in my real life. 😉

    I’ve been salivating for GOOD GIRLS DON’T and the Donovans – can’t wait to read it!!!!

  25. Kelly S, I’m so glad you enjoyed the Twitter jokes! I coudn’t resist.

    Hi Emmad! I have a Kindle, which I adore. I buy all my fiction books in Kindle format now. Though I prefer paper books for research and anything that includes pictures or drawings or diagrams, etc. And e-reading is definitely changing the industry! I don’t trust anyone who says “in five years…” I don’t think anyone knows what it will be like in two years, much less five or ten. It’ll be an adventure!

    Hi Therese! I wrote three historicals and three paranormals before I was pubished. The second historical won the Golden Heart and went on to be my first sale. The paranormals never sold at all! But I did transition into contemporary based on the humor and sexiness I’d developed in th paranormals.

  26. I’m a self-professed Victoria Dahl twitter stalker. *waves madly to Victoria* Actually, I want to be just like her when I grow up, minus the writing historicals part. I love them immensely, but don’t have the voice for writing my own.

    I can’t wait to go book buying crazy and add the rest of your books to my collection. Just, uh, don’t tell my husband. He’s a crazy man who thinks I have too many books. Inconceivable!

    Question for Victoria: what’s the craziest story idea you’ve ever had? Also, do you laugh out loud, cry, etc while writing?


  27. Thanks to the Twitter-verse I was recently exposed to the awesomeness of Victoria Dahl! I am currently glomming her previous books and I would love to win a copy of Good Girls Don’t. I love the evolution of guilt-free sex for romance novel heroines. It is about time!

  28. Vivian, I’m often inspired by music. I love music and i can be instantly intrigue by a good line in a song. As for how long it takes, I can write a book pretty comfortably in 4-6 months. I have written a book in two months, but that was brutal and soul-killing! None of those times take into account the brainstorming and characterization, however. That usually takes a few weeks.

    Hi, Karen C! Wow, that’s a tough question. I think the most rewarding experience I’ve had was being invited to Book Expo America this year. Because it wasn’t just other writers there. There were readers and librarians and book buyers and sellers. People from my publisher who worked overseas, who I’d never have met otherwise. It wonderful to spend so much time with a huge group of people who all love books. But anytime I meet a reader who’s been moved by my books, who tells me that a certain character meant something very important to them… That’s amazing and makes all the work worthwhile.

  29. Victoria Dahl you interview well. Thank you for sharing yourself with us. You are officially on my list – don’t despair that’s a good thing.


  30. Hi Victoria

    I have a Kindle as well and also love it. Have actually found I spend more on books now lol. But I can also whip it out if stuck in a que anywhere. Only issue is around Geo Restrictions but I’m hoping they’ll eventually get sorted.

  31. I can’t wait to read this. My hubby brews his own beer so I know quite a bit about that topic. As for heroes, Jude is definitely one of my favorites. My other fav is. Chase from Lead Me On. He was just so delicious. Jane was a fool to keep pushing him away. Best wishes with the new books.
    jen at delux dot com

  32. I would pick Ben Lawson, too! But I wonder which heroine of her own creation that Victoria Dahl most relates to?

  33. Hi Victoria !!

    Would love to read your book!

    I just wanted to ask,how do you choose a character’s name ??



  34. Hi, Joseri! In general, people usually confine their complaints about mistaken facts or misused words to Amazon or such. (They often aren’t correct, but… Ahem. LOL) But I do get the occasional email disputing something in the book. I’m actually okay with that. No problem. But the most vehement emails are usually about the heroine’s sexuality, and that makes me angry. People have said to me that women “back then” didn’t have those feelings. That even if a woman felt physical arousal, she wouldn’t understand it. She wouldn’t recognize that it might have to do with attraction to a man. I say bullcrap. Women in Victorian times had the same body parts we do now, and even if she might not understand sex or biology, a woman is capable of recognizing that her body responds to attraction. No one has ever asserted that a young man needs to be TOLD to masturbate to thoughts of a woman. Or shown where to touch himself. Those emails really…rile me. 🙂

  35. Elisa, yes I do cry and laugh while I’m laughing! Even more so when I’m re-reading what I’ve written.

    Sue, that’s a great question! There’s a little bit of my life experience in every heroine, but i’d say I’m most like Molly from Talk Me Down. She’s not me by any means, but she definitely has my sense of humor and attitude toward life.

  36. Great interview and I love your idea of a happy ending where the heroine enjoys her sexuality.

  37. This books sounds like a great start to an awesome series!! I would love to win a copy 😀

  38. I have read and enjoyed Victoria’s historicals and contemporaries. I think it’s interesting that she didn’t use a different name on one of them.

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