TQ: What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?
Nicole: I think my most interesting quirk is the fact I don't really have any quirks. I became a writer after doing my PhD, which stripped me of all romantic notions of writing. I can write anywhere, wearing anything, at any time. A lot of authors seem to be like sports figures, who have lucky socks, or rituals they have to enact, etc. I'm like a guerrilla writer--anytime, anywhere. I do have to have a laptop, though. ;-)
TQ: Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?
Nicole: Oh, gosh. That's such a hard question. I'm definitely influenced by Philip Roth's manic style, and Portnoy's Complaint and Sabbath's Theater are two of my all time favorite books. In terms of other direct influence from the genre, when I was young I soaked up tons of Susan Cooper, Charles de Lint, Mercedes Lackey, and David Eddings. More recently, I read Pullman's His Dark Materials about 40 times in a row. I was seriously obsessed. I think you can see pinches of these influences in my work. The book that got me writing, though, was one of Charlaine Harris's. I loved her "everywoman" type heroine, and thought I'd like to create my own.
TQ: Are you a plotter or a panster?
Nicole: Definitely a plotter. I plot everything.
TQ: Tempest's Legacy struck me as darker than the prior 2 Jane True novels. What's going on here?
Nicole: I think that this book had to bring home the stakes, for both Jane and the reader. Part of the challenge of writing a first person character is that the reader can only know what the protagonist knows. In book one, especially, Jane is clueless. She's like, "Pretty clothes! Shit, a sword!" In book two, she knows a bit more at the start and a lot more at the end, especially about how dangerous the supernatural world can be. So, in book three, I wanted all her illusions destroyed. Her mother's world is very dangerous, and Jane really learns that in Tempest's Legacy. But I also wanted to make it dangerous in a human way. None of the atrocities depicted in the book are things that humans haven't done historically, and many of them very recently. We don't live in a "nice" world, and I didn't want to make Jane's any cleaner or prettier for being magical.
TQ: "Jane True" is such a simple name. How did you pick that name? Should we look for any meaning there?
Nicole: Jane has a lot of meanings for me. My mom's middle name is Jane, and my mom is a very strong, very awesome woman. And I know another woman I really admire, from Canada, who is named Jane. Jane's lovely, and a real pixie of a woman, but she works out in the middle of nowhere as a nurse. Oftentimes she's the only person staffing these clinics that are the only medical resource in hundreds of miles, so she's both doctor and nurse. Her stories are riveting. Here's this pretty, sweet little woman, who is super smart and fun, and she's had to do these things that will curl your toes. In other words, underneath that adorable, sweet exterior is pure iron. She's so brave and strong, and she does what she does because she feels she has to. So I wanted something simple--Jane's the opposite of the sort of UF heroine who has a really outrageous name, with three syllables and a lots of y's--and Jane popped in first, then True came a second later. The name actually came to me after only a few seconds thought.
TQ: Who would you pick to play Jane in a movie version of the novels?
Nicole: I think that girl from Zombieland would be okay... The older one? I don't know anyone's name. Or someone unknown. Better yet, I want Jane to be anime! ;-)
TQ: Do you and Jane have anything in common?
Nicole: The hedonism, for sure. And some of the humor, although mine is darker for the most part.
TQ: The Jane True series is considered Urban Fantasy. Are there any any genres or sub-genres in which you'd like to write?
Nicole: To learn more about any side projects, you'll have to ask Denise Townsend. ;-) She's working on some very sexy selkie erotica.
TQ: What's next?
Nicole: Eye of the Tempest comes out in August! I'm super excited for it! Then we'll have two more, as yet untitled, Jane True books. I'm running out of things I can attach to "Tempest." I keep threatening to call the last one "Tempest Bledsoe."
TQ: Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.
Nicole: Thank you for having me! :-) I love coming to The Qwillery!
Jane True Series:
Living in small town Rockabill, Maine, Jane True always knew she didn't quite fit in with so-called normal society. During her nightly, clandestine swim in the freezing winter ocean, a grisly find leads Jane to startling revelations about her heritage: she is only half-human.
Now, Jane must enter a world filled with supernatural creatures alternatively terrifying, beautiful, and deadly- all of which perfectly describe her new "friend," Ryu, a gorgeous and powerful vampire.
It is a world where nothing can be taken for granted: a dog can heal with a lick; spirits bag your groceries; and whatever you do, never-ever-rub the genie's lamp.
If you love Sookie Stackhouse, then you'll want to dive into Nicole Peeler's enchanting debut novel.
Tracking the Tempest
Valentine's Day is fast approaching, and Ryu - Jane's bloodsucking boyfriend - can't let a major holiday go by without getting all gratuitous. An overwhelming dose of boyfriend interference and a last-minute ticket to Boston later, and Jane's life is thrown off course.
Ryu's well-intentioned plans create mayhem, and Jane winds up embroiled in an investigation involving a spree of gruesome killings. All the evidence points towards another Halfling, much to Jane's surprise...
After a peaceful hiatus at home in Rockabill, Jane True thinks that her worst problem is that she still throws like a girl - at least while throwing fireballs. Her peace of mind ends, however, when Anyan arrives one night with terrible news . . . news that will rock Jane's world to its very core.
After demanding to help investigate a series of gruesome attacks on females -- supernatural, halfling, and human -- Jane quickly finds herself forced to confront her darkest nightmares as well as her deepest desires.
And she's not sure which she finds more frightening.
Seton Hill’s MFA in Popular Fiction. Yes, folks, she’ll be mentoring up and coming urban fantasists as they try to break into the publishing world. Or, as she likes to call it, “infecting them with her madness.” In the meantime, she’s still writing Urban Fantasy for Orbit Books and taking pleasure in what means most to her: family, friends, food, and travel.
What: One commenter will win a Mass Market Paperback copy of Tempest's Legacy by Nicole Peeler.
How: Leave a comment telling The Qwillery which supernatural creature you would go out on a date with if you could? Please rememeber - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.
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Who & When: The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Tuesday, January 11, 2011. Void where prohibited by law.
*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*