Nicky Charles Interview!
Posted by amoscassidy
Hi, Nicky Charles 🙂 Thanks for stopping by.
Here is the interview…
1. When did you know that you wanted to be a writer? Was there a single moment of clarity or did the knowledge just creep up on you?
I still struggle with viewing myself as a writer. I always enjoyed writing in school, but never considered it as a possible career. It was just something I liked to do. ‘Real’ authors were these distant, somewhat famous people, not an ordinary person like me.
When I stumbled upon fanfiction, the idea of writing began to take shape. One day, while doing laundry, an idea for a fanfiction story popped into my head and I quickly jotted it down. It was well received and I started writing every spare moment I had. Then, a friend and fellow fanfiction writer, Jan Gordon, wrote an original story called Black Silk. As I was reading it, an idea for a story occurred to me and I wrote my first novel, Forever In Time. Since then, it’s been full steam ahead!
2. Tell us about your writing schedule. Do you write everyday? At the weekends? Or like me – whenever you get the chance?
Writing is squeezed in whenever I have a few spare minutes. I work full time at a job that has lots of overtime and projects that I bring home with me. I try to get in an hour or so before I go to bed but that doesn’t always happen – some nights I’m just too tired to feel creative! Weekends and holidays are about the only time I can devote several hours in a row to writing which is why I’m basically a ‘one book a year’ kind of author.
3. What inspires you?
Things I see. I’m very visual so an interesting picture can get my creative wheels turning. An old house, a person staring into space, a crumpled newspaper in an alley – it doesn’t take much for me to spin a tale out the simplest of things.
4. Where did you get the idea for your latest novel – how was it born?
My latest project stems from the end of one of my novels, The Finding. I was writing away, nearing the end of the book, and tying up all the loose ends when quite unexpectedly I found myself introducing this dark, brooding character named Damien. I had absolutely no plans to create him, yet there he was! And, given that I’m a nosey author and he was obviously a tortured soul, I had to figure out why! That led me to writing Bonded, which gave Damien’s backstory and then Betrayed: Days of the Rogue. Now, I’m writing a third book that features Damien and am hoping to finally be able to provide him with a happy ending!
5. If you could choose any book in the world to have written which one would it be and why?
Hmm…I’m torn between two. The first would be the Harry Potter series as Rowling did such a fantastic job of ‘universe building’. The second is Collision Course by S.C. Stephens. It’s such a gut wrenching story and I was literally sobbing near the end. To be able to create characters that touch the reader so deeply is truly an amazing thing.
6. If you could be any character from a book who would it be and why?
Hermione from Harry Potter. She’s smart, gutsy and she’s magical. I always wanted to be a magical being when I was growing up!
Or perhaps, Amelia Peabody from the Elizabeth Peters series of the same name. Amelia is an archaeologist in turn of the century Egypt (I love archaeology), a sleuth and she has this amazingly hunky husband named Emerson! Oh, and she also has a ‘Master Criminal’ as a secret admirer.
(* Elizabeth Peters passed away in August and the literary world is certainly diminished by her loss.)
7. What advice would you give to other writers out there who are thinking of self publishing their work?
The first thing I’d tell them is to get a suit of armour. This isn’t for the faint of heart and, if your feelings are easily hurt, or if you are easily discouraged, you might want to think twice. Writing is not a get rich quick scheme. Getting noticed can be hard and bad reviews can hurt. However, it is also incredibly rewarding and when you get fan mail or a positive review – well, it’s quite exciting!
Next, get a good support group. You might want a beta reader to bounce ideas off. Most definitely a good editor who can catch typos and punctuation errors, problems with continuity etc. and, if you don’t like doing graphics, you’ll need someone to help with cover art.
Then start to research who you want to self-publish with. Consider how royalties are paid, how they want the book formatted, if your copyright is protected, who do they distribute to, do they offer any form of promotion, what kind of technical support is offered. Approach publishing your book like a business and make sure you read the fine print. If you have to pay a company to publish your book – run the other way!
Personally, I’m very comfortable using Smashwords. Smashwords gives you excellent exposure through Barnes and Noble, Sony, iBooks, Kobo, Diesel and others. They pay 60% royalties. Their “Style Guide’ gives step by step instructions for formatting while the Book Marketing guide provides solid advice. Plus, they have a very supportive team.
Self-publishing is fun, plus it allows you a great deal of control over what happens to your ‘baby’. Yes, it is work to learn the ‘ins’ and ‘outs’ but it’s very rewarding, as well.
8. Who is, or are, your favourite author(s)?
I have several and they span several sub-genre of romance:
- Elizabeth Peters writes an amazing historical series called the Amelia Peabody Mysteries. (didn’t she die recently?)
- S.C. Stephens who is a master at angst.
- Nora Roberts has great romance trilogies.
- Jan Gordon, my friend and editor
- Cherise Sinclair writes the best erotica I’ve ever read.
- Lora Leigh’s Breed series and Elite Ops are also some of my favourites.
9. Do you write for a specific genre or do you like to dabble in several?
Thus far, I’ve stuck to paranormal romance but who knows what the future might hold. And, of course, I still dabble in fanfiction when time allows!
10. Okay some quick fire questions. Don’t think to hard just answer.
Super Villain or Super Hero?
Super Hero – they always win!
Ice-cream or chocolate?
Chocolate – no contest!
Damsel or Dominatrix?
Damsel – I want to be rescued by a hunky romance novel character!
Underwear or commando?
Beach or the Alps?
Depends on the season. When I’m freezing through a Canadian winter it’s the beach. But when I’m sweltering in the summer, it’s the Alps. The grass is always greener….
Edward Cullen or Lestat?
Who??? Honestly, I had to google this! I am SO not a vampire girl (except S.C. Stephen’s Conversion series). I haven’t read or watched Twilight and only vaguely know that ‘Edward’ is one of the characters from overheard conversations. I had no idea who Lestat was. I’ve heard of Anne Rice, however I’ve never read her books and don’t know any of her characters or the names of her books.
Keep the One Ring or throw it in Mount Doom?
Another ??? and off to google. (Gosh, you must think I live under a rock and only come out to write!!) I don’t watch movies, but Tolkien is in my TBR pile when I retire. (Does that redeem me a bit?)
Audio or Paperback?
Paperback – I get distracted too easily if I’m just listening, and need a book in my hand and my eyes ‘glued’ to the page in order to keep my attention.
Horror or Romance?
Romance!! (I hate horror – there’s too much ‘bad’ stuff happening in the world. I don’t want to be ‘brought down’ during my free time and look for something that is fun, hopeful and uplifting for my reading/viewing pleasure.)
Phew! Okay that was fun!
Find Nicky Charles…
The Shifter Shop: https://sites.google.com/site/nickycharlesbooks/home/the-shifter-shop