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Nicola R. White comes from a small city on the east coast of Canada where ghost stories and superstitions abound. Although she is a lawyer by profession, her passion is reading and writing fiction. In 2016, Nicola’s debut novel, Fury’s Kiss, won the $10,000 Kobo Emerging Writer Prize in Romance. She is currently producing her first graphic novel.
Nicola is a member of Romance Writers of America and Romance Writers of Atlantic Canada. She is a frequent guest and speaker at literary events such as Word on the Street and Hal-Con, the largest sci fi/fantasy convention east of Montreal.
(My Custom Author Interview from my spotlight post on July 10th, 2018.)
- Q: Have you always been a fan of Greek Mythology, or was it something new to you?
- I have always loved mythology of all types and wanted to be an archaeologist when I was a kid. I knew the basics of Greek mythology when the idea for Fury’s Kiss came to me, but I had to do much more detailed research for the book. As the series has grown, the world building has gotten very complex and I’ve learned a ton of interesting history and mythology.
- Q: Are there plans to bring the rest of the series to Audio?
- Yes! I hope to release the second book in audio by the end of this year, and then pick up the pace of production after that to get books three and four in listeners’ hands as well.
- I am SO excited!
- Q: Are there any more titles planned in this series or a potential spin-off in this world?
- Right now there are four books in my New England Furies series, with three more planned.
- I wonder who those are going to be about?!
- Q: I loved the character of Mrs. Hadley. Was she based on or inspired by anyone you know?
- Mrs. Hadley is based on my grandmother. She is not quite as eccentric as Mrs. Hadley is, but she’s a close second. She always has great stories to tell and knows the latest neighborhood gossip. She loves to try new things, even in her mid-80s, and you can count her to say something inappropriate and hilarious.
- Those are always the best!
- Q: Is there a hidden joke written into the bar? Especially with one of the men at the bar having the last name of Priest. One of those jokes that involves women of a certain hair color and a priest walk into a bar.
- The bar is actually modelled after a bar where I worked as a bartender while I was in university. The description of the interior is very similar to the real thing and some of the characters that come into the bar are based on real people I met while working there. There was no particular meaning behind the last name of Priest, although I liked the irony of the name being attached to a “bad guy”. However, there is someone who gets killed off in this book who shares a name with an old ex!
- Q: As readers and listeners we all have our favorite lines, but what were some of yours. It may be the equivalent of asking a parent to pick their favorite child, but they know.
- This is a tough one! I had a lot of fun writing Mrs. Hadley and she is a fan favorite, so pretty much any of her lines could qualify. I also had fun imagining the unintentionally funny things Ruby might say, like confusing her Navy SEAL uncle with an actual seal (the animal). Finally, I really like the last lines of the book, although I won’t quote them here and spoil it for readers/listeners.
(Prepared Author Interview from the Audiobookworm blog tour in July 2018.)
- Tell us about the process of turning your book into an audiobook.
- Fury’s Kiss was the first audiobook I produced. Since I self-published this book, I wanted to do the same with the audiobook. I used a marketplace service offered by Audible.com for authors and narrators to connect and produce audiobooks that will be distributed through the site. Potential narrators submitted auditions and I selected the wonderful Elizabeth Tebb!
- Was a possible audiobook recording something you were conscious of while writing?
- Absolutely! I always think about the possibility of my books being adapted into all sorts of different mediums, whether audio, film, graphic novel, or something else I haven’t thought of yet.
- How closely did you work with your narrator before and during the recording process? Did you give them any pronunciation tips or special insight into the characters?
- Elizabeth and I kept in contact by email and touched base every month or so, but I don’t like to micromanage anyone so I trusted her to let me know if she needed support from me. I provided her with a character sheet and notes about accents and pronunciation of some unusual names, but that was pretty much it! When she was done recording the book, I listened to the chapters and provided feedback for minor revisions.
- How do you manage to avoid burn-out? What do you do to maintain your enthusiasm for writing?
- My problem tends to be the opposite of burnout – I always have more enthusiasm than time! I usually have several projects on the go at one time so that I don’t get bored with any one project in particular. Right now I am working on a comic book and a game script in addition to my usual romance writing schedule. For me, burnout is more of a problem in relation to my day job, so I have taken steps to make sure I have enough energy for my work as a writer (which is my real passion).
- Are you an audiobook listener? What about the audiobook format appeals to you?
- Of course! I love the way a good narrator can make you feel as if the story is coming to life. I also like the convenience of being able to multitask while listening to a good book. My favorite place to listen to audiobooks is in the car.
- How did you celebrate after finishing this novel?
- I don’t know that I did actually celebrate at the time. I am a lawyer by profession and I finished the first draft while I was studying for the bar exam. I started writing this book as a way to de-stress while I was in law school and didn’t start seriously thinking about publishing it until I had re-written most of it several times over. The real celebration happened when I published Fury’s Kiss and it won the Kobo Emerging Writer Prize a few years later.
- In your opinion, what are the pros and cons of writing a stand-alone novel vs. writing a series?
- As a reader and an author, I prefer a series to a stand-alone. From a reader perspective, if I like a book, I want more! From an author perspective, books in a series are easier to sell and readers seem to prefer them. It’s fun to create and explore a world in detail, although the con is that it can get hard to keep track of everything (especially if the series is based on mythology, like in the New England Furies series!).
- What bits of advice would you give to aspiring authors?
- Don’t give up! Even if it seems like things aren’t working out the way you hoped, writing is really just a numbers game. If you keep working at it long enough, you will eventually enjoy some degree of success, whatever that looks like for you. Learn as much as you can about the business side of publishing and never sign a contract you don’t fully understand. Finally, don’t compare yourself to other people. Roosevelt was right when he said that comparison is the thief of joy.