Today's Darklight On... is with Nicola E. Sheridan. Welcome Nicola!
How did you come to write speculative fiction? What attracted you to the genre?
I came to write speculative fiction because I've always loved mythology and fantasy. One of the first books I can remember my Dad reading to me as a child was "the Hobbit", and I think it imbued me with a love of all things magical. Then at University, I studied Archaeology and Anthropology and buried myself in the mythology of the Greeks, Vikings, Romans, and Aboriginals. I just love it - there is very little else I'd want to write!
Your debut book, Magical Gains, is due for release next month – can you tell us a little about this?
It’s set in a world where magic is illegal and heavily taxed to ensure equality for all. When unhappily engaged Primrose finds herself the unwilling mistress of a gorgeous Genie – her stifling suburban lifestyle is shattered. Gauche and awkward, Primrose is thrust into the steamy Free Zone – a place filled with treacherous Sirens, lascivious Satyrs and hygienically challenged Manticores. Here nothing goes to plan, and Primrose finds that three wishes can give her whatever she needs, but when Imran is taken away, she’s not so sure she’ll ever get what she truly wants.
Who are you favourite authors?
My favourite authors are, J.K. Rowling and Karen Marie Moning.
What are you currently reading?
I am reading the final instalment of Karen Marie Moning's Fever series, "Shadowfever". Only a few more pages to go! Pwhaw.
I really liked "Interview with the Vampire", based on Anne Rice's novel for a while, and of course, all the "Harry Potter's." I also adore "Futurama"... does that count as spec fiction?!
Are you a plotter? Pantser? Or somewhere in-between?
Panster all the way I'm afraid. I write what I want, when I want, and how I want. Plots are too confining for me. I like my stories to evolve naturally.
Do have a favourite of your characters?
Oh, I love them all. If I had to pin one down, I'd say Primrose from "Magical Gains" because she's so awkward and easy to embarrass. When I read some of her scenes, I still laugh out loud. The other worthy of mention is Phil the Manticore, he's a ripper! He's very frank, and that lends itself to rudeness - which is funny. I like to laugh.
What are you currently working on?
I'm currently revising the follow-on novel from "Magical Gains" which at the moment is called "Magical Creations". It's based on the sub-character of Omar (who is also a Genie). I will be submitting it shortly. I've also just started the third novel (tentatively called "Magical Redemption") it’s based on a sub-character from “Magical Creations”.
What can we expect from Nicola E. Sheridan in the future?
A movie deal for "Magical Gains" would be good! Haha!
Seriously though, I am hoping to get the next two in the series published, and then maybe move away from Genies and play with some other magical/mythological being instead!
Do you have advice for emerging writers?
1. Don’t give up!
2. Enter competitions. If you succeed in competitions there’s a good chance you’ll succeed in getting published.
3. Get yourself a critique partner. A critique partner is brilliant because they’ll spot when you’re being lazy, and tell you!
What is your favourite part of the process of writing?
I love listening to good music and writing exciting and emotive scenes. I love imagining what characters will do in certain situations – then putting them in one and letting my imagination fly. Let’s face it, I love writing!
~ Magical Gains is out on 7th March from Eternal Press.