"New Worlds Are Our Oyster."
I live in southern Tennessee with my husband of almost 20 years and two awesome teenagers. I work full time at a small credit union. I run a one-woman show at a branch office where I am the teller, vault custodian, new accounts secretary, and loan officer. With a job and family, there is not much free time, but when I'm not busy working as cook, maid, chauffeur, or financial advisor, you will find me either reading or writing. I stick with romance novels because there absolutely, positively, must be a happily-ever-after ending!
An Interview with Nita Wick
PNR: Can you tell us a little about how you started writing; was it something you have always wanted to do?
Nita W.: Hi, Dee! First let me say how happy I am to be here. Thank you for inviting me to be part of our Fae Feature.
Unlike most writers, I did not grow up wanting to write stories. In fact, I didn’t even consider writing until I was in my thirties. For about a dozen years, I read romance novels constantly, at least one a week, sometimes as many as three. A few years ago, I picked up one I still think of as the worst romance novel I’ve ever read. I thought, “How did she get this published? Even I could do better than that.” So I decided to prove it. I found it to be a lot more difficult than I expected.
PNR: Are you able to write as much as you would like? Could you tell us about your writing schedule? What do you enjoy doing when not writing?
Nita W.: There is never enough writing time. I work full time and have a family. Writing time is limited, but the vast majority of my free time is spent writing or doing writing related activities like promotion and stuff. There’s no schedule to speak of unless you consider “every night after supper” as being scheduled time.
If I do have a moment when I’m not writing, I’m probably reading. I gave up most television a long time ago. I just don’t have time to watch all those shows people rave about like Lost and Grey’s Anatomy. I’m sure they’re great, but if I spent any time watching tv, I’d never get any writing done.
PNR: Who or what has been the biggest influence on your writing? Who has been your biggest support?
Nita W.: I’d have to say that some of my favorite authors were the biggest influence. One of my dreams is to write a novel as good as some by Julie Garwood, Teresa Medeiros, Connie Mason, or Victoria Alexander. I am blessed to have a whole network of support. My family is supportive, dozens of friends beg to proofread for me, and I’ve found a host of wonderful online writing friends who support me in too many ways to name.
PNR: Most authors are avid readers; what is your favorite genre to read? What titles would we see in your TBR pile?
Nita W.: Currently I have over 300 books in that pile. There are a stack of Stephanie Laurens Cynster novels. Julia Quinn’s Bridgerton series is there. I’ve got several of Sherrilyn Kenyon’s books, but most in the stack are historical romance or paranormal.
The pile has gone relatively untouched lately. I’m too busy writing to find much time to read. Sometimes I have what I call “reading withdrawals.” Hello, my name is Nita, and I’m a romance novel addict.
PNR: What do you feel are the essential elements of a great story?
Nita W.: First, I need a hero to fall in love with and a heroine I can identify with. Throw in some conflict, some ups and downs. Then it must have a happily-ever-after. I personally would never consider a story “great” without that.
PNR: Congratulations, readers and reviewers are excited about the January 2008 release of HOW FAERIE DUST IS MADE from Wild Rose Press; this is the first in your Roscommon Faerie Tales series. Could you tell us what inspired this magical fantasy series and a little about your vision for the project? What direction will the series be taking?
Nita W.: Thank you. Like just about all my stories, HOW FAERIE DUST IS MADE started with two characters. A man meets a woman in the forest and is distressed to learn she is a faerie. The series deals with issues regarding prejudice and distrust between the humans and faeries and is reminiscent of the bigotry we find throughout history and the world today in issues of race and social class. The Roscommon Faerie Tales includes magic and romance, and the series is focused primarily on how the magic of love conquers all.
I’m not far from being finished with part two, WHEN FAERIES BATTLE. This is the story of Breandan, the brother of Aisling. As wonderful as the reviews have been for HOW FAERIE DUST IS MADE, I honestly believe that readers will like part two even better. Brighid, a spoiled, faerie witch decides she wants Breandan, Fionna’s life-mate. Of course, Fionna won’t let that happen, and Brighid discovers that she has messed with the wrong faerie.
PNR: IN THE GLOAMING released in March 2008 from Freya’s Bower, an anthology of faerie stories from five very talented authors, including yourself. Could you tell us a little about the project and how you became involved?
Nita W.: Actually, I received a note from the Managing Editor at Freya’s about the call for submission for IN THE GLOAMING back in September. They were requesting short stories including faerie lore of all types including brownies, banshees, selkies, trolls, etc. Of course, I love all faerie folklore and I decided I wanted to give this one a shot.
I am very pleased to have my story, The Dream, included in the anthology. The other stories are awesome and we’ve received wonderful reviews.
PNR: Readers are captivated by the magical world you have created. Tell us about the challenges you face in world building with paranormal elements and making it work with the ideas you have in mind for the progression of your characters and the series? How much research is involved?
Nita W.: The Roscommon Faerie Tales is historically set in 5th century Ireland, or Eire as it was called back then. While the series is a fantasy, I’ve tried to include historical facts to make it more real and believable. I’ve spent quite a bit of time researching old Ireland and especially the religious beliefs of the times. On my web site, you’ll find some information about this research and many of the Irish Gods and Goddesses referred to in the series.
As for making it work with my characters, that’s the beauty of writing fantasy. Anything goes as long as you can make it believable. I love that aspect of writing paranormal and fantasy. If I want my heroine to disappear—Poof! She’s gone. Aisling does that a time or two in HOW FAERIE DUST IS MADE, much to Conall’s chagrin.
PNR: Could you give us some insight into the mythology of your Fae that is the thread to connect your novels?
Nita W.: Much of the mythology used in The Roscommon Faerie Tales is based on the religion of ancient Ireland. Many of the Irish Gods and Goddesses were thought to be faeries. There are some who believe that faeries are/were fallen angels, so this isn’t so different from other legends and folklore. The Tuatha De Dannan (People of the Goddess Danu,) plays a role in this as well.
Most of the faerie characters in my books are simply from my own imagination and are drawn from a compilation of dozens of stories and legends. The faerie witch practices witchcraft similar to Druid rituals, so there’s a little bit of fact, a little bit of legend, and a lot of imagination used to create this world.
PNR: Do you feel your writing is character driven or plot driven? How do you balance these two elements?
Nita W.: Definitely character driven. My characters show up one day out of the blue and hound me until I start writing. I often find that after the first two or three chapters, I have to stop and sketch an outline to be certain the plot elements are there. Whether my characters like it or not, I have to make sure there’s a plot.
PNR: You write wonderfully appealing characters that readers really connect to; could you tell us about the development of the relationship between Conall and Aisling? What was your inspiration for these characters? Who has been your favorite to write?
Nita W.: With Conall and Aisling, their relationship is predestined. In The Roscommon Faerie Tales, every faerie has a life-mate chosen for them by the Gods. They were made for each other. The trouble is that Conall is human. He doesn’t believe in life-mates and he doesn’t like or trust faeries. I had a lot of fun with him because the physical attraction between him and Aisling was more than he could resist. And it took him a while to realize it was more than just physical. Aisling was a joy to write because she is the kind of person we all wish we could be. She’s kind, gentle, and forgiving. And it was fun to see her have such influence over Conall when he wanted so much to dislike her.
I really liked writing Breandan’s character. He’s the charmer hero who has the women falling at his feet with a smile and few poetic words. But I think so far, the character I’ve enjoyed most is Fionna. She’s a good person with a warm heart, but she has a little less self-confidence and self-worth than she needs. She’s quick-tempered, but restrains her wrath until you push her too far. And then you’d best watch out. I’ve named her Fionna Laighin (pronounced like lion.) She lives up to that name in every way.
PNR: The folklore of the Fae has long captured the imagination of readers. Why do you feel it is such a popular theme in the paranormal romance genre? What is it about this genre that captures your imagination?
Nita W.: I think it may have something to do with how widespread the folklore is. Virtually every country has some kind of faerie-like folklore. We’re all familiar with Ireland’s leprechauns and Scotland’s banshees, but did you know that Iceland is often referred to as “the land of gnomes”? It’s the same all over the world. Tales of unicorns and mermaids, selkies and brownies, seelie and unseelie fascinate readers and tantalize the imagination. Anything mystical and magical has an inherent romantic quality. It’s only natural we’d look for these mysterious beings in our romance novels.
The genre sparks my imagination more than any other because in the world of legends and faeries, dreams can become reality. There’s no limit to the daydreams. My imagination can truly be set free. The only boundaries are the ones I choose to set.
PNR: How would you describe the sensuality level in your books? Do you find it difficult to write love scenes?
Nita W.: I’d say the sensuality is spicy but not hot. I’ve never had any trouble writing an explicit love scene. The key word there is love. I think most readers will find that I put a lot of emotion into my stories and books. For me, there needs to be a connection between the two people. I guess I’m just too much of a romantic. But I’ve yet to write a story where the bedroom door is closed to the reader. Heck, that’s the good part! Readers will find detailed love scenes without the graphic or coarse language.
PNR: Your work so far has been written in the fantasy genre; is there a genre you haven’t written but would like to try?
Nita W.: Actually I have two historical novels as well as my paranormal stuff. My western historical, THE WAGONMASTER, will release later this year at Freya’s Bower. And I also have an English historical. I’ve had a couple of offers, but I haven’t settled on a publisher for that one yet.
Much to my own surprise, I’ve got a contemporary in progress now. It should be novella length when it’s finished. I never thought I’d write contemporary, but when those characters showed up and demanded I write their story, I had no choice. After that surprise, I guess I can’t rule out any genre, but I do know one thing. I don’t think I could ever write a book without a happily-ever-after.
PNR: Could you tell us about your current projects, what can readers expect to see in the coming months?
Nita W.: As I mentioned, I’ll have THE WAGONMASTER coming out later this year. Edits will start this month. When those are completed, I’ll know more about the release date.
Next up on my writing agenda is the completion of WHEN FAERIES BATTLE. Hopefully I’ll get that done soon so that it can be released by the beginning of 2009.
Plans are in the works for IN THE GLOAMING II, and I hope to have story for that. I can’t pass up the opportunity to work on another faerie story. I just love the paranormal genre.
PNR: Thank you, Nita, for taking time out to talk to us. Where can readers find out what’s new and how can they contact you?
Nita W.: Thank you so much for having me, Dee. I’d like to invite everyone to visit my web site at www.nitawick.com. I have excerpts posted of my work, even some that are not yet published. There are reviews of IN THE GLOAMING and HOW FAERIE DUST IS MADE. For the ladies, there are some sexy pictures I use for inspiration for my heroes. (It’s research, I tell you.) Keep up with news on my blog, or you can sign up for my newsletter. Both links are on my web site. Oh, and you can learn how you can have a chance to win a Sony Reader for your ebooks, too! I have a guestbook and an email link. Hint, hint. I’d love to hear from my readers.
As always, I wish everyone a happily-ever-after.
Wild Rose Press
January 4, 2008
The Roscommon Faerie Tales: Book 1
A colony of faeries lives among the lush green forests of Roscommon, Ireland near the Arigna Mountains. Their lives would be peaceful were it not for the humans who live in the area with them. The humans dislike faeries and their magic, and the two races are often at odds. But faerie or human, love makes no distinction. And both will soon find that love is the greatest magic of all. Conall may be human, but he is Aisling’s life mate. She’s certain of it. After all, a faerie knows these things. Can her magic end the feud between their families? And just how is faerie dust made?
March 25, 2008
Faeries come from all cultures and countries and range in appearance from lovely to terrifying to looking like an everyday person. Some are benign, some malevolent. Based on actual faerie lore, this anthology incorporates the work of five spectacular authors who have penned tales of iridescent ice beings, fey men who love you into forgetfulness, frightening creatures who wear caps of human skin, enchanted lovers from a long lost era, and the land of faerie dreams.
Step into the world of glamour where the beautiful, the dreamy, the vicious, and even a bit of the sexually bizarre will captivate you--but beware of the fey's beguiling ways!
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