An author with a pen name! Welcome a returning author who wants to talk about her alter-ego
Nicola Cameron is a married woman of a certain age who really likes writing about sex. When not writing about sex, she likes to knit. Well, it’s true!
Okay, okay, the full version: Nicola Cameron has had a healthy interest in sex since puberty, but it wasn’t until 2012 that she decided to write about it. Turns out that the skills picked up during her SF writing career transfer rather nicely to erotic romance and erotica — who knew? She currently has a Romance on the Go(TM) story called “A Boon by Moonlight” out with Evernight Publishing, and her debut novel Storm Season (Book One in the Olympic Cove series) was released in April.
When did you start writing and why?
When I was a kid — my sister and my father were both great verbal storytellers, very witty and funny. I didn’t inherit the verbal facility, but I did love telling stories, and writing them down just grew naturally from that. I didn’t plan on becoming a professional writer — I was going to be a neurosurgeon. But flunking Organic Chem in college plus an epiphany in the hair care aisle at Walgreen’s got my frame of mind back onto the right track, and here I am.
If you are a parent how does being a parent affect your writing and writing habits? Or does it?
I don’t have kids, but I do have four cats who insist on being fed and watered first thing in the morning before I do anything else. They also like sitting on the arms of the chair and acting as furry armrests while I write. On warm days, this can get to be a bit overwhelming. My husband is incredibly supportive of my career, and I know I’m truly blessed with him.
Who is your favorite author and why?
All time favorite is Sir Terry Pratchett, because he’s effortlessly funny and then can turn on a dime and talk about serious topics. I would happily buy and read his shopping lists just for the footnotes.
What do you hope to accomplish with your writing?
I want to entertain people. I’m not in this to write the Great American Novel — I just want to write stuff that will keep people engrossed for a couple of hours. If it makes them think a little, even better. Also, I’d like to earn enough where the Bodacious Brit can retire and I can support him in the manner to which he’ll quickly become accustomed. I’m giving that way.
Traditional or Self publishing? Why?
They both have pluses and minuses. My first short story collection, I self-pubbed because I knew how to produce a professional ebook and how to promote it. That being said, I’m very happy with Evernight Publishing because they’re a class act and have been extremely good to me. If you have a publishing house that is willing to invest time and effort in promoting you, that’s a godsend. I think it really depends on what you’re writing and what the market looks like at the time.
Talk about your journey into the wide world of publishing
Been a professional writer since 1995, mainly wrote short SF and urban fantasy as Melanie Fletcher until 2012, at which point I expanded my horizons and started writing paranormal erotic romance under the name Nicola Cameron. I like having a foot in both camps — if I want to write straight SF, I can write it as Melanie. If I want to write something steamier (and I do), I can write it as Nicola. I have no problem with people knowing I’m Melanie/Nicola — the names are just to keep the genres separate.
Tell us about your book (s)
Here’s the blurb for Storm Season: Ian West had his summer all planned out — go down to Florida, stay in his family’s beach cottage on Olympic Cove, and work on his science fiction novel. But his plans get thrown for a loop when gorgeous twin sea gods Bythos and Aphros show up in the cove and inform him he’s their fated consort. As if that wasn’t enough, something in the Gulf of Mexico is turning mermaids into legendary monsters and gods into demons. Now, Ian not only has to navigate the complicated waters of a ménage relationship with twin sea gods, he also has to stop an insane deity and save the whole damn planet. No pressure.
What inspired you to write these books (or in this genre)?
I’ve always been interested in Greek mythology, and some of the latest ecological disasters (global warming, the BP oil spill, hurricanes, etc.) made me wonder what they would think about what humans are doing to the planet, and how they might try to alleviate the worst of our screwups. Storm Season and the Olympic Cove series grew out of that — yeah, it’s got a lot of hot sex in it, but there’s also a very strong subplot about ecological responsibility and what we owe our planet.
Tell us why we should love or hate your main character?
Ian is an everyman, a guy who lost his wife and is trying to write his first SF novel as a tribute to her. Suddenly, these two gorgeous sea gods show up in his cove, seduce him, and throw him into a paranormal maelstrom that will affect the survival of humanity. He’s confused, overwhelmed, and almost dies at one point, but he still manages to step up to the plate in the end and deal with the Big Bad. I love Ian because he has tremendous heart — he’s brave as hell, incredibly loyal, very tenacious, and isn’t afraid to defend the people he loves even though they sometimes drive him up the wall.
Do(es) your book(s) have a soundtrack?
A lot of Florence + The Machine’s “Ceremonials” was used in the making of this book, as well as the BBC Sherlock soundtracks.