I'm celebrating the release of the firefighter anthology INTO THE FLAMES by welcoming the woman who put it all together, Nina Pierce!
Liz: Putting an anthology together is a ton of work. What made you decide to give it a try?
Nina: Readers love anthologies. But what isn’t to love about 7-12 book bundles for $0.99 – even if that price is a limited time. It’s such a bargain. I do have books in two other multi-author bundles, neither or which I organized. One was a great group experience and that bundle continues to do fairly well.
I’d been approached a couple years ago about being part of a firefighter bundle which didn’t work out, but the story percolating in my head stayed with me. It got me thinking that I could be the one to spearhead an anthology. I started contacting authors and was completely stoked with every enthusiastic “yes” I got. And before I knew it, we had a great group of authors and an anthology was born!
Liz: I'll admit, I'd never written a fire fighter themed novel before and when you approached me I was pretty much not inclined BUT something about the potential challenge of it caught my fancy and my muse really took hold on the book I included. Are you a fan of the "uniformed hero" style romance novel? Have you written them before? Will you write them in the future?
Nina: You mean there are romance heroes who don’t wear a uniform? LOL! Yeah, I love me the alphabet guys. I have novels with DEA and FBI agents (and one with the space equivalent of the FBI) and a couple with police officers. There’s something about that uniform that just screams alpha hero!
I have two series that I want to complete with alphabet heroes, and another partially finished firefighter story … so yeah, there will uniforms in my future. ;~)
Liz: You are one of the most supportive and honest people I have yet met in this business. You really inspired me to write FireBrew. Who is someone who inspired you or kept you going as an author and how did/do they do it?
Nina: You’re sweet to say that. This publishing business is so tough. Mentally and emotionally. If I can do anything to make someone’s path a little easier, then I want to do what I can. I’ve got a lot of experience with things that worked and a whole lot of stuff that completely blew up in my face. No sense in someone else repeating my mistakes. I’m also a teacher down to the very core of my soul. At one time it was science. Now it’s publishing. I’ll talk about publishers, marketing, self-publishing, basically anything books … with anyone who will listen.
And inspiration? I really can’t name just one person. I watch a lot of successful authors and analyze how they became so successful and try to emulate those things that work for me. I also have a very supportive family who believe some day one of my books will be made into a movie. When people believe in you like that it’s not hard to keep persevering.
Liz: Name your top 5 books of all time and why.
Nina: The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough – It’s the first romance I ever read and it hooked me on the genre forever. But what’s not to love about the Australian outback and the forbidden love of a handsome priest?
Fat Tuesday by Sandra Brown – This was the first romantic suspense novel I read and the way the author wove the story was brilliant. I’ve read a lot of Sandra Brown since then, but this book will always be one of my favorites.
Children of the Earth series by Jean Auel – I know you said a book, but the writing in this series is just incredible. The stories are sexy and heart wrenching and sitting on a prominent place on my all-time favorite shelf.
Freedom Series by Anne McCaffrey – Most people know her from her Pern series, but I originally read this series over two decades ago and still ache for the characters in these stories, humans and aliens alike. It’s set on several planets in a distant galaxy and the imagination it took to create the worlds still blows me out of the water. LOVE. LOVE. LOVE.
Black Dagger Brotherhood by JR Ward – I know, I know, I’m totally cheating by naming series and not just books, but there’s no way for me to pick one book in this series. I rarely get past the third book in a series before I feel the author is repeating the same story with different names. But this series? Aw man, I just love the casual way JR Ward writes. And the swoon-worthy characters she’s created? Let’s just say it never bothers me when one of them wanders into my dreams. Well, let’s just say I finished my 13th book and I can honestly say there were only 2 books I didn’t absolutely devour!
Liz: How are you published? Indie? Traditional? Self? Why?
Nina: I had the good fortune of starting my writing career with Liquid Silver Books. I was with them for 3 or 4 years and they were the most supportive group of people. I learned from some very patient editors how to tighten my stories and really develop my characters. I left them only because they were small at that time and I wasn’t making much money. (But I HIGHLY recommend them as a publisher still to this day.)
I jumped from there to a bigger publisher that brought me nothing my heartache.
I’ve finally pulled all my books from my last publisher and am now totally self-published (which, in my humble opinion is the same as indie). I don’t see any of my books going to publishers in the near future. There seems to be some strange fluctuation happening in publishing and sales are falling for nearly everyone. Several smaller digital publishers are closing their doors. Unless the tide changes and I think I can make more money with a publisher, I suspect I’ll keep self-publishing my stories.
Liz: What's next for you after INTO THE FLAMES?
Nina: Wow, that’s a loaded question. Honestly, I don’t know. I have an incomplete series I just got back from a publisher. One of my many projects is to clean up the two stories and write two more to complete the series. I have readers who have been asking me when I was going to finish it. I also have ideas to continue a couple other books I thought were going to be stand-alones, but whose characters continue to niggle at me.
But none of that is going to happen if my personal life doesn’t settle down just a little. In the meantime, I’ve started to do some freelance writing for blogs and websites, which I’m really enjoying.
So the answer is … who knows. ;)
Even though it’s been 10 years since USA Today bestselling author, Nina Pierce, first put fingers to keyboard, it still amazes her that she hasn’t written all the stories swirling around in her head. But then again—the woman is never at a loss for words! A former science teacher, she now spends her days making stuff up, killing off imaginary people (who may or may not look a lot like her nasty neighbors) and finding her characters their perfect soul mate. Married to her high school sweetheart of thirty years, Nina believes everyone deserves a little sexy romance in their life!
Nina enjoys hearing from her readers. You can reach her at Nina@NinaPierce.com. You can also keep up with all her newest releases on her website (http://www.ninapierce.com) or by following her on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/nina.pierce) or twitter @NinaPierce.
INTO THE FLAMES IS LIVE!
Get your copy at any one of these ebook retailers for just .99 for a limited time!