Monday, June 02, 2008

An Interview with Mr. Romance 2008 Chris Winters

Chris, congratulations on being chosen Mr. Romance of 2008 and thank you so much for agreeing to do this interview. Please tell us, why did you decide to enter the contest, sponsored by Dorchester Publishing, in the first place?

Thank you very much and glad to do the interview! Well, I first started last year, and made a lot of friends. I also learned that this was a complete different world, and in this world its more than just the romance competition. It was fantasy, it was friendships, it was about the craft of writing! The romance competition was just a small part of it.
This year though, my good friends: Christine Feehan, Dayna Linton, and Anette Batista with sponsored me. Christine Feehan last year sponsored me along with Crossing Realms. It was so good to see them again!
Along with the sponsors, I also did the character of Zander of Star Shadows. I enjoyed the book, and got into the character, which is surprisingly similar to me.

During the Romantic Times Conference and as a Mr. Romance contestant your job was to talk to as many attendees as possible. Did you ever find it difficult to be so open and friendly with so many people?

Not at all. With an East Coast shell and a West Coast open mind-set, I am always open to people. I hardly get embarrassed or let me pride get into the way. I don’t mind answering questions at all.

During the pageant you were asked to portray Zander from Colby Hodge’s book Star Shadows. What did you do to prepare for the role?

I bought the book, and read it. After reading the book, I went out and bought some some materials that resembled the character. I even took pics and passed them onto Colby to get her ‘approval’. She said, it looks groovy, and then afterthat, it was all Zander from there!

I know that you are a computer applications developer by day and an actor/model on the side. Tell us a bit about your life in both worlds and do you think being Mr. Romance will help advance your modeling/acting career?

Well, doing application development and web site design takes patience, creativity, and mind processing. I enjoy doing application development more than anything. On the acting side, its what I really enjoy. I like being many, many people or things. Modeling is cool, and I hope to make it a more full time thing. Its becoming increasingly that way now.
Mr. Romance helping my career? Im sure, with all appearances, or productions I am in helps me to a degree. Im hoping once I get my regular productions complete, I will start the Mr. Romance ‘tour’. HA HA! I not have started on that yet! Whew!

Dorchester publishes all types of romance books that include historicals from medieval times to the old west, paranormals with vampires, werewolves and shapeshifters, urban fantasy, contemporary stories and also futuristic action romance. What kind of hero would you like to play on the cover of a Dorchester release?

Well, I’m real excited to see what they have planned for me, which will be a huge challenge because, that is un-explored areas. It would be really nice to configure myself in a way to represent a character. I did it before, and I am excited to have Dorchester reveal that character. It would be awesome to do Zander, for Colby Hodge, because I’ve did that character, and researched him, during RT. I would like to continue the efforts in bringing his character out. I’m not just saying this to promote her book, but Star Shadows was actually a great book to read. I actually got a bit upset when she killed off one of Zander’s hope-to-be. Getting back to the answer, I really would like to be the representation of Zander. THAT would be cool! Not only could I go into book stores and see myself floating on the books, but it would be better to make appearances with Colby and sign books. Now, of course (chuckles) I would not dress up and act him out right there and then because that would be… a bit odd I think? No?

Was there any part of the competition that was difficult for you?

I think just being in it! It’s very taxing on one’s soul and mind, after a week of not getting rest! (chuckles). I do have to mention about the pose down I did. That can be difficult, because you want to portray how everybody views romance. Everyone thinks romance is candlelight dinners, or a way a man takes a woman, wraps himself around her. Its more than that… Its fantasy, little things you do for a gal, and the things that show interest, in her- not how you look with her. For example, I remember doing my rehersals: All the guys laughed at me because I showed each and every one of the models how I would like “us” to be seen. Not how “I” liked to be seen, but “us”. I had a couple of seductive modeling photos I did with a few women and explained how hot it would look if we played it out. The girls loved it. The guys thought I wanted to give out my number and stuff. It took only one time, and explanation, and the gals went right along with it. I said all they had to do is follow my lead. Let me touch them. To touch a woman, is to touch her, not grope her or force her into a romantic position—you “carry” her there!
Anyway, on stage, the guys were still practicing how their pose down should be. I mentioned to a couple and said: “Don’t practice, there’s no need to. When you are with that girl, make it as if you entered her room. Seduce her with your magnetic male properties. Be her alpha male.”
when I went on stage, I touched those girls, and they went right along with it. I could feel the goose bumps. I can feel their lovely smooth skin. Their breathe on my face. They could feel my breathe on their neck. The kissing and nudging was a part of it, because that ‘is’ romance. I heard once from a blog that I purposively broke the rules by kissing the models. I don’t recall those rules, but if it takes showing romance and seduction on another level, then I want to show it. I think the crowd loved it because the third model actually, wanted me to do the same thing to her. That to me, show romance and seduction. It was the moment. I remember the cover models told me that my pose down is what women liked, what everyone like and expected—to take a female to that place where I wasn’t at the competition anymore.. We were in another world: our own.

How did you feel when they announced your name as Mr. Romance 2008?

I didn’t even know I won, I was already so out of it, ready to pass out from not eating and rest, and not to mention, my mind processing about the movies Im supposed to do a week later after the show! When my name was called, I was really shocked. I thought Fred Williams or Fish would have gotton it. Fred Williams and Luke Walsh, I loved. They were the exact same duplication of me, personality wise.

Any advice for future Mr. Romance contestants?

Be real. Don’t practice. Don’t try to be someone or something for a woman. Its not looks, its not the way to try hard, it’s the way you are, a real human being, genuine. Its that man who walks, gracefully, looking at her, smiling. Its that man who brings her a cup of coffee, or even sits and laughs with her. Its that man who listens to her, not talks her ear off. Its that man, who extends his hand to her, accepting hers.
I’ll definitely will be there next year, to help any hopefuls out. Im not perfect, but I am Mr. Romance!

What’s up next for Mr. Romance?

Well, big things are happening! I just completed a music video that will be on MTV soon, the group is a hard core group named WE WERE GENTLEMEN. I am also in production with two indie movies: Window With A View and Mountain Mafia. I also completed a short comedy called Check, Please! I did some print work for a transit company, Hampton Inn, and SunnyDays magazine. Still to this day, on Discovery Channel, the A Haunting: Ghost Soldier is still playing! There’s a lot more in store, but I cannot say right now, but I can say, that I’ll be doing more RT cover model stuff in the coming year!
I’ve got an empty coffee cup that you drank out of. Do you think I can sell it on ebay?

No. Enjoy it first, when I get famous, I’ll give you more to sell!

Anything you want to add?
I enjoyed this interview. If anyone wants to see me work, you can google my name, go to my website (, and check my out at IMDB.COM. I just want to say in short: I love everybody! Remember: Smile! Its makes you look good!

On a personal note, I got to spend a lot of time with Chris at RT and I can say without hesitation that he is a very genuine person and deserved to win. And yes, I'm saving the empty coffee cup for when he's famous!

If you've got a question or a comment for Chris please post it. And who knows you might be lucky enough to win a set of Chris Winters autographed pictures and a set of Colby Hodge books. A winner will be chosen at random from the comment list.


AuthorM said...

wheeee! CHRIS!


Great interview.


Carolyn said...

I loved reading this article!

Chris: You have essentially two jobs right now, that's got to be stressful. (Something a lot of authors can identify with!) I'm projecting, but it must be hard to deal with two very different careers. Any tips? Any advice about transitioning to the job you love? Not that you don't love web development.


Angie Fox said...

Great interview! I've never been to RT and had no idea that you were out there meeting so many people. Makes me want to go next year. :)

Tez Miller said...

Set of Colby Hodge books? Yes, please! Haven't been able to find Twist on shelf in Oz, and I can't find it on eBay Australia, either.

Have a lovely day! :-)

Sonja Foust said...

What a great interview! Chris, you sound like a totally classy guy and I liked your thoughts on romance, and how women like to be touched. I'd say you're pretty much right on. ;) Thanks for sharing all that with us. And thanks, Cindy, for posting the interview!

Helen Scott Taylor said...

Great interview, Chris!

It was lovely to meet you in Pittsburgh. A deserving winner of Mr. Romance!

Cindy Holby said...

Sarah J. McNeal said...
I liked the picture of Mr Romance in a suit instead of bulging muscles in a pose. The interview was very revealing about his personality.

All good things
Sarah McNeal

Genella deGrey said...

Hi Chris! Waving*

You are so right, Cindy! Chris is a genuine person. I'm very happy he won.


ddurance said...

Chris is adorable and such a gentleman by all accounts.

Chris, where do you see yourself five years from now and what would you like to have accomplished during that time?


Cindy Holby said...

Here are some answers from Chris

Hello all!
To answer Carolyn:

Its not easy transitioning two jobs. My life is best described as such (as written in one of my blogs):

"To experience my life at times, is like standing beside a subway train, at full speed, whisking right by you as you see many faces, colours, clothing, advertisements, and metal."

I actually have three jobs right now: software and web development, writing my novel, and acting and modeling. All have a cost, all have a consequence, but all have a satisfaction.

tips provided are: flexibility, never give up, and the word "stress" OR its definition should NOT be part of our vocabulary.

This one's for Deidre:

Five years I cannot prognosticate where I am going to be, but where I would like to be is where my goals are going to obtained. If thats a mind bender, how about this:
Its wild how sometimes you can 'see' into the future or know something might happen in your life, if yo keep thinking it. This is what Im going through. I feel it, therefore I know its going to happen. May not happen now ro later, but it will. All my goals, then I can help people in return.
In 5 years, I can tell you this: I will be smiling- regardless.


Carolyn said...

Chris: Another question for you from Carolyn (thanks for your answer, by the way)

You're writing a novel? Will you tell us what it's about? That's so exciting!!


Cindy Holby said...

Chris has been slammed with work stuff so I'll answer the novel question. He's working on a sci-fi novel called The Invisible War. It's an awesome concept. He'll be posting about it soon.

Dawn Chartier said...

Chris -
I know an author and her vampire character came with her to a convention/signing...Everyone loved it!


Scifibookcat said...

I've been reading all of the comments about RT and it looks like it was a blast but also a lot of hard work for you. Congratulations on winning and good luck with your book (I love SciFi :))