This week on Finding Fiction Friday, I'm pleased to bring you Nikki Noffsinger! Since she can do a much better job of introducing herself than I can ... let's meet her!
Being a mother of 2 sometimes makes one wonder, "Are the monsters running around the house scarier than the ones I write about?" I haven't answered that question just yet! My name is Nikki Noffsinger and I am the author of Cursed Awakening published by XoXo Publishing with cover art by Kayden Mcleod. I write all sorts of stories but my favorites are all inspired by my love of fantasy and the paranormal. I started at a tender age loving both books and horror movies and writing paranormal romance gives me a vehicle. I am proud to also be part of the XoXo Publishing team.
As a mother, I am also very excited to announce that my publisher has contracted two new Children's Books that I've written, a very exciting change in direction, but one I am very proud of, and hope will be of interest to parents and their kids! More news to come about that and covers will be revealed soon, as well, and posted to the Coming Soon page of my site as soon as they're available.
First, let’s get to know you a little better, Nikki. How did you get started writing, and what made you decide to take a shot at getting a story published?
Well Aaron, I was really shy as a child and I never really felt like I fit in and I was desperate for attention. Writing became the vehicle in which I found a voice and found a way to tell stories that I liked reading.
We know what your bio says. Tell us one thing about yourself that you think might surprise us.
When I was sixteen, my younger sister and I were just at that age where we were butting heads. One night our fighting (which was her fault btw) had gotten us grounded and I was furious so I spent like the entire night writing a story called: Sister Mine, about Siamese twins who were separated and while one sister was very good and the other was truly psychotic. I tied it with a big ribbon and put it on my sister’s pillow and went back to my room and waited. It seemed like I waited forever until she began shrieking. It was the one and only time I used my writing as a weapon.
What was your first publishing experience like? How did it feel to hear you were being published?
My first publishing experience was a nightmare. I wrote a story and finally got the nerve to just put myself out there and lo, Publish America was there to feed upon me and that is what they did. At first I thought my dream had finally become a reality and it was short lived. When I got my author’s copy-my story had been hacked to pieces. Whole paragraphs were cut off and sentences were clipped. Then they were asking for more than thirty dollars for a soft cover edition of my book. It was then that I started digging and found out the truth-they were a vanity press and I had signed over my precious creation to them. I’m still fighting to this day since I’ve not received a dime for the book nor have I bought into any of those offers they send. These people prey upon authors and I work endlessly to get the word out there. RUN AWAY FROM PUBLISH AMERICA! I have about four more years on my contract with them unless I want to pay 300 dollars for it.
After your first work came the “Lost to the Night” anthology. How did your participation in this project come about? And tell us a little about that short story, “Night Lessons”.
Denyse Bridger asked me from the get go to be part of “Lost To The Night”. The inspiration for “Night Lessons” actually was inspired by Van Halen’s “Hot For Teacher” because that was what I was listening to. The story takes place in a fictional small town where all the young women have got a thing for the English Lit teacher that teaches Classic College Literature but what they don’t know is that the sexy Professor Dante Notte is a vampire. Dante doesn’t mind being a flirt but he’s grown rather bored with the women who throw themselves at him physically and mentally until a little bookworm crosses his threshold and she’s the first person that has awakened him in over century. However, Ariel Mathias has a secret of her own and she can’t afford to let her guard down because more than just her heart can be broken.
The novel “Cursed Awakening” came out next, in 2012. What attracted you to write a shifter novel?
After I wrote Renegade Night and sometime before I had written my story for “Lost To The Night Vol.1” I was wanting to try my hand at a shifter book but I had way too many ideas. Then one afternoon, The Oprah Show came on-and usually I don’t watch but for whatever reason I did that particular episode. It showed the plight of the Native American Reservations and people. I was horrified at how really poor our Native Americans are having to live. Then the next evening, I watched this special on 60 Minutes about women of the LDS church and those who had fled. It was those two stories that intertwined and inspired Cursed Awakening. I had always known if I did as shifter book I wanted a Native American theme to it anyhow because I have a great love of Native American history and lore.
“Lost to the Night Volume 2” was just released a couple of weeks ago! You continued with the shifter theme with your story “Feral Fate”. I think it’s safe to say we can expect more shifter stories from you?
Yes, Aaron I would love to continue with the Wahpetons and even come up with some new ones. In addition to Feral Fate, I am working on the second novel to follow Cursed Awakening which features the mighty clan chieftain, Shiloh Red Cloud and Nyx’s other older and rebellious sister, Lahni.
What about being published and the book industry in general has most surprised you?
I guess the question should be what hasn’t surprised me. I always thought that writers write books, then they send in those books to publishers or they self-published their books and if you were good enough you and you know what I have realized I don’t know squat about the publishing biz. What I do know is that authors who have a publisher let alone a literary agent have EARNED it. Unless they are those subspecies of writers who plagiarize right under the radar and slime their way in on the road to author fame, authors who have made it have earned it. If this is something one wants to pursue, then one must have more than just a desire-they have to need it like they need oxygen for their lungs.
Do you have any other upcoming works or even just ideas bouncing around in your head?
I always have ideas bouncing in my head. Sometimes I feel as if I have democratic conventions set to the music of Mozart’s Figaro. Right now I am working on the second book in the “Cursed Awakening” series and my first erotica novel, “The Blood Courtesan”. I’m also working on a collection of five short stories that are all paranormal romances.
To close the interview, I have ten questions for you, plus one. Here they go!
- What is your favorite word? Dorko-I use it a lot, just ask my kids.
- What is your least favorite word? Anything that derives itself from hate.
- What turns you on? A great sense of warped humor, wit, a kind heart, confidence, and jeans that fit tight in all the right places.
- What turns you off? Aside from ignorance, bad hygiene and fanny packs.
- What sound or noise do you love? Laughter, a great band that is tearing it up, the rain and gentle wind blowing wind chimes.
- What sound or noise do you hate? Anything remotely sounding like a tornado or tornado siren. My son howling about how life is unfair(I think he trumps the tornado siren), and my husband’s snoring.
- What is your favorite curse word? I don’t know…I use most of them quite often and feel quite fondly about all of them.
- What profession, other than your own, would you like to attempt? Not answered ;)
- What profession would you not like to do? International Woman of Mystery
- If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates? “I thought you were never going to get here! Okay, we can start the party now! Cue the music people.”
- What question have you never been asked, that you wish someone would ask you? “What is the most important trait that your characters share?"
Nikki, thanks so much for spending time with us. Can you let us know where to follow you, and where we can go to purchase your work?
Rudy and Trish are the main characters in our two published short stories in the "Evernight: Romance in a World of Darkness" anthologies. You can get to know them as well as get 23 other great stories! Here's where you can find them: