Guest Author Day with Nancy Fraser


I have the pleasure of having author Nancy Fraser today on the blog talking about their latest book, Eye of the Pharaoh. Don't forget to enter the giveaway at the end of the post where the author will be giving away a $20 Amazon/BN Gift Card to one lucky person. This tour is sponsored by Goddess Fish Promotions.

Now let's chat with Nancy.....

Thanks for stopping by to talk a little about your writing! Let's jump right in.

When did you begin writing and why?

What an absolutely perfect first question! I sold my first book, a contemporary romance titled Courting Trouble, in 1996. As a matter of fact, TODAY, is my twentieth anniversary as a published author. Woot! (There’s virtual celebratory cake over on my blog being served by scantily clad men!)

Why did I begin writing? Now that’s a funny story. It was on a dare. A co-worker was an avid romance reader. One day at work, she offered me one of her books for lunch break. I thanked her but said, “No, I don’t read romance.” Then, stupidly said, “Anyone can write one of those.” She dared me to try.

That weekend I wrote 2 chapters (having never read a romance novel) and delivered them to her on Monday. She accused me of copying them from a book. So, on lunch break, I wrote another half-chapter. She covertly mailed them off to Harlequin. Two months later (yes, the turnaround time was shorter then), they asked to see the entire manuscript. I finished the book and it was rejected. However, at that point, I was hooked and haven’t looked back since.

Do you have a favorite genre? Is it the same genre you prefer to write?

I love reading just about any type of romance. I’m also partial to reference books about unusual time periods/events. I often spend as much time researching as I do writing.

As for which I prefer to write, like my reading my writing is what you might call “eclectic”. I write across five different genres. I’m partial to what’s termed the “vintage” historical (post WWII up to the beginning of the twenty-first century). I’ve set a number of my books in the time period, especially my holiday-themed stories. Earlier this month I released a Halloween-themed novella, Bewitched, set in the mid-1960s. However, if a story or theme strikes me, as happened with Eye of the Pharaoh, I’m willing to dig in and create the best story I can.

Do certain themes and ideas tend to capture your writer’s imagination and fascinate you?

I’m often held hostage by my hero and heroine’s desires. I usually have a very clear idea of what I want to do but it gets muddled by one or both of them screaming at me to go in an opposite direction. Real life situations, be they romantic or not, usually spur me to action. I once met a woman who’d served as a surrogate for her older sister against her brother-in-law’s wishes. Less than five years after the baby was born, the older sister died of cancer. Now the surrogate and the brother-in-law share custody of the little boy. There was no romance involved since the father was already remarried, but I figured … what the heck … let’s turn this into a romance. Their story (twisted by me) became my 2015 award-winning contemporary, Home is Where the Hunk is.


Do you have a favorite author who introduced you to the genre?

Oh yes. Elizabeth Lowell. At one point, I owned every single one of her Silhouette/Harlequin romances. I even talked my hubby (at the time) into taking a road trip to track down two of the books I was missing from my set. Talk about a non-stalking, stalker! My absolutely favorite all time romance is Chain Lightning, by Elizabeth of course. It is the ultimate perfection in romantic fiction!


What advantages or challenges does a writer in your genre face in today’s fiction market?

Too many quality authors for not enough market. Readers (bless their hearts) are usually open minded and willing to try a new author if the author writes in a genre they enjoy. However, as with all of us, they have their favorites. In today’s tight economy, if there’s only $20 to spend and your favorite author has a new book, another author is out of luck.

The advantage is the readers (again, bless their hearts) are loyal. Once they’ve found you and been entertained by you, they’re yours for life. I have a core group of readers I fondly refer to as “Grandma Nancy’s Girls”. They’re not officially a street team, but I can count on them to share my posts, buy my books and post reviews.


Tell me a little about the characters in Eye of the Pharaoh.

As an author and a woman I am attracted to all sorts of romantic heroes. Sure, they should be drop-dead gorgeous and sexy as sin but, more importantly, they should be compassionate, witty and intelligent. And possess an imperfection or two. That was my goal in creating Dr. Joshua Cain, Professor of Archaeology and Art History. In Eye of the Pharaoh, Dr. Cain spouts ancient history with the ease of a confident educator. With the exception of the fictitious Anukehaten, guardian of the Queen-Pharaoh Hatshepsut’s tomb, and the ancient curse of the pink stone and statue, all historical references shared by Dr. Cain are accurate depictions of Egyptian culture and history.

My goal for my heroine, Teri Hunter, was to create an attractive, equally intelligent professional with some quirky habits. Teri is a walking motivational quote, often dredging up one of those commonplace office posters when she needs a bit of emotional reinforcement. She’s even taken her personal mantra from one of her favorites: Wake Up. Kick Ass. Repeat.

She’s often heard quoting the likes of First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, author/clothing designer Donna Karan, comedian Louis C.K., and even Albert Einstein. My personal favorite comes from author Mason Cooley: Romance is tempestuous. Love is calm. It’s a mantra I strive for when creating every happily-ever-after.


Where’s the story set? How much influence did the setting have on the atmosphere/characters/development of the story?

The story begins at Princeton University where Josh teaches. However, we quickly move to New Orleans (one of my favorite cities) to add some flavor to the story. I wanted to set a somewhat ominous mood, so I put them up in a rather unique B&B (instead of Teri’s preferred Marriott), and made sure Josh had his usual room overlooking the cemetery.

Once the characters “left” their own place and time, it was important to set a scene that truly spoke to 1920’s Egypt with numerous archaeological digs, tomb raiders, questionable collectors, and out-right thieves.

The setting was instrumental in showing both the main characters’ strengths and weaknesses. While Josh is commanding and in complete control of their surroundings (based on his intellectual knowledge), he’s still vulnerable when it comes to his two daughters and not knowing how this time travel is affecting them back in their own place and time.


If you had to write your memoir in five words, what would you write?

Road her broom with panache!


How often does your muse distract you from day to day minutiae?

Probably 13 hours out of 16. Even when I’m doing dishes, I’m plotting the next scene. I’m one of those who has a notebook beside my bed and on the end table next to the couch. I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve written thoughts or dialogue during commercials. The only person that can distract me completely is my three-year-old grandson William…and only because if I don’t keep my eye on the ball all hell is going to break loose.


What do readers have to look forward to in the future from you?

Fall and winter seem to be my busiest times. I have a contemporary erotic romance titled Kilty Pleasures coming out in December. It’s part of the “Men Who Wear Kilts” series from The Wild Rose Press. Then, in January, I have another vintage Valentine-themed novella, Paging Dr. Cupid, on tap. I’m currently working on a new story, Waking Up in Oz, and it will be part of a new historical series based on situations where the hero and heroine find themselves “stranded”. It’s set in the mid-1970s and is a humorous re-working of the Wizard of Oz theme.



GENRE: Time Travel/Paranormal

Publicist Teri Hunter has her hands full promoting Professor Joshua Cain and his new non-fiction book, The Pharaoh’s Mummy. She’s not even sure it’s possible to turn this absent-minded, modern-day, Indiana Jones into a best-selling author.

Dr. Cain’s PhDs in archeology and art history have prepared him for almost anything on the lecture circuit and among ancient ruins. He’s just not sure about a book tour...or the sexy publicist sent to monitor his every professional move.

When an odd request falls in their laps while in New Orleans, Josh and Teri find themselves transported to 1920’s Egypt where they must resolve an ancient curse in order to be sent home. Will the dangers facing them hinder their success and threaten their very lives? Or will help from an other-worldly guardian keep them on-track and safe?

Excerpt:

Wake up. Kick ass. Repeat.




Teri Hunter mouthed the motivational phrase she’d chosen for her personal mantra as she stepped across the threshold into the dark and musty storeroom.


A dim light shone from a glass-enclosed workroom in the far corner. Taking a tentative step forward, she faltered when the floorboards creaked beneath her feet. Something fast and furry brushed against her ankle. A shiver ran down her back, yet she fought the urge to retreat.


Do one thing every day that scares you.


This was obviously today’s obstacle. Were it not for her professional commitments and intricately organized schedule, she’d have no doubt bolted for the door and returned to the safety and illumination of the main building.


‘Sorry, but the storage area doesn’t have overhead lighting. Preservation of the antiquities. You understand.’ The dean’s words echoed in her head. What little outside light there was had become nearly non-existent due to an impending thunderstorm.


Drawing a deep breath, she took a second step and then a third, winding her way past a half-dozen crates, some open, some not. To her left she heard a rustling of paper; to her right the distinct sound of footsteps.


Her apprehension grew, the hair on her forearms stood at attention. She’d barely made it halfway across the room before bumping into something large and solid. Reaching out, she laid her hand against the oversized object. Slowly, she raised her head and came face to face with the painted mask of an Egyptian noble. The chipped finish gave the death mask a deranged look.


“You come here often, big boy?” A nervous giggle followed her softly-worded, albeit silly, question and she pressed her fingertips to her lips to stifle an outright laugh before lowering her hand to her side.


Go big! Home is boring.


Silently she cursed her habit of dredging up poster-worthy quotes to mask her fears.

Author Bio and Links

Like most authors, Nancy Fraser began writing at an early age, usually on the walls and with crayons or, heaven forbid, permanent markers. Her love of writing often made her the English teacher’s pet, which, of course, resulted in a whole lot of teasing. Still, it was worth it.

Published in multiple genres, Nancy currently writes for four publishers. She has published twenty-two books in both full-length and novella format. Nancy will release her 25th book in early 2017. She is currently working on a Valentine’s Day novella, her next Rock and Roll novella, and a story about a racy Scot titled “Kilty Pleasures”.

When not writing (which is almost never), Nancy dotes on her five wonderful grandchildren and looks forward to traveling and reading when time permits. Nancy lives in Atlantic Canada where she enjoys the relaxed pace and colorful people.

Media:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/nfraserauthor  @nfraserauthor

Giveaway

Nancy Fraser will be awarding a $20 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.



a Rafflecopter giveaway

Comments

Nancy Fraser said…
Thank you for hosting this leg of my tour. I look forward to coming back later in the day to answer any questions your readers may have.
Lisa Brown said…
Congrats on the tour, the book looks great, and thanks for the chance to win :)
JC Jones said…
Great Post. I loved the interview
Rita said…
I enjoyed the post, thank you.
Nancy Fraser said…
Thanks to all who stopped by. Good luck to everyone in the draw.
Great post - thanks for sharing!