Today I welcome Nicole Sager to my blog! I've quite enjoyed her series "Companions of Arcrea." It's non-magic fantasy with interesting and fantastic heroes and heroines, quite a hidden jewel.
Hello, Nicole! Thank you so much for visiting my blog! Can you tell us a bit about yourself and your books?
Thank you so much for hosting me! I’m an avid reader and coffee drinker (almost always have a mug in my hand). I write Family-Friendly Inspirational Fantasy—some might categorize it as speculative fiction—and also work as a part-time nanny.
What led you to writing your books?
I have always loved telling stories and discovering the perfect turn-of-phrase to describe something I want others to grasp. I started writing my stories down at about age 12 (including a one-of-a-kind interactive picture book), and haven’t stopped since! The Arcrea books in particular came about when my little brother told me about an imaginary land and told me I could write about it if I wanted to. I already had the name Druet in my back pocket, waiting for a hero to claim it, and once I dropped him into this Arcrea the rest of the story took off!
Who is your favorite character and why?
I tend to find that with each book there is one character who is easier to write than the others, but aside from Druet’s place in my sentimental little heart, I don’t think I have an absolute favorite… Characters like Falconer, Bradley, and Dain were favorites to write, because of the puzzle-solving and humor that went into their stories. I also love writing children. As a nanny, it’s fun trying to convey the various antics I’ve seen displayed by a number of younsters.
What were some of the biggest surprises that came from being an author? Were there challenges you had to overcome?
One of the biggest surprises has been seeing God tie so many stories together. Things I’ll randomly write into one book will end up becoming a huge or significant piece of the plot three stories down the road! There’s no way I could’ve planned that far ahead in most cases, and so it serves as a reminder that God is helping and guiding me. Writer’s block is always a struggle. Several times I’ve had to “rip out” a good ten or more chapters from a book (ooh that awful Delete button!) and rewrite, only to rip out four or five of those. It’s taken a lot of prayer and patience to complete each book, but God always comes through.
How you do like to relax and recharge?
Reading! I enjoy a number of genres, but mostly Historical Christian Fiction. If you’re on Goodreads, feel free to add me as friend and stay in touch there! https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6538148.Nicole_Sager
What environment do you tend to write in? And what is your dream environment?
I have a desk in my room that sits under a window (with shutters instead of blinds – such a nice touch!), and my laptop lives there. I have a desk drawer full of book notes (usually propped slightly open) and a cup of coffee to one side. Always. Sometimes I turn on Emily Black’s Kingdom Series and Knight Series soundtracks. I would love to have one of those cozy living room settings with a fire going, a throw over my legs, and snow falling outside. That’s pretty specific to one season, but you get the idea! I love cozy!
What are some of your favorite things? (Raindrops on roses, whiskers on kittens, etc.) Where do you draw inspiration?
I love chunky mugs and coffee, babies and giggles, journals, Autumn, and mountain views. Inspiration usually comes from talking through a story with my siblings, scribbling anything that comes to my head in the way of notes, or perusing Pinterest! (Come visit me there too! https://www.pinterest.com/heartofarcrea/)
Can you share some plans or hints for the future?
I’ve started editing a 4-book series (geared toward ages 8-12) that I wrote before Arcrea, in hopes of fine-tuning and publishing those. To any Arcrea fans, I haven’t entirely left the kingdom behind! I have a secret board on Pinterest where I’ve been gathering ideas for another book, and Kellen (Renny’s brother) is begging to have the rest of his story told. In other news, I randomly sat down at the computer last week and wrote a half-page introduction that came out of nowhere. Quite frankly, I’m intrigued…
Thank you once again for hosting me today. I’ve had so much fun! Be sure to visit me at the links above, or hop on over to my website. (http://arcreabooks.wix.com/nicole-sager) You can also find updates, sneak peeks, and fun on my Facebook page. (https://www.facebook.com/arcreabooks) I would love to hear from you! Happy Reading!
Thank you, Nicole! May your endeavors be blessed!
Also, here is a fan art piece I did of Lathan, one of the awesome heroes from Burdney.