Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Interview with Rachel Ann Nunes

"I love learning new things. I love dreaming. Combine the two and you have a novel." -Rachel Ann Nunes

Rachel Ann Nunes so kindly answered some of my questions regarding her book, Imprints and the sequel, Shades of Gray that will come out in 2011.  Thank you Rachel for allowing us to go "behind the scenes" and take a peek into the mind of an author.  

You can read my review of this wonderful book here.

Q: What inspired you to write your first book?

A: I simply knew from a very young age that I wanted to be an author. For as long as I can remember, writing novels is what I planned to do. I was an avid reader and always made up what I thought were wonderful stories in my mind. When I was in France for six months as an eleven-year-old, the seed for my first published novel, Ariana, began to grow, and two years in Portugal added to the European flavor of the novel.

Q: Does your family enjoy your books?

A: My daughters read them, and one particular daughter, Catia, is my biggest supporter. She pre-reads all my books for me.

Q:Is there a message in Imprints that you want readers to grasp?

A: If there's a message in Imprints, it's that you don't have to include a lot of raunchy sex scenes, child sacrifice, and swear words every page like all the national paranormal novels for adults out there. I believe the reason why young adult paranormal novels are so popular is that because they don't waste time with that sort of thing. There seems to be a real disconnect between publishers and readers these days in regards to what readers really want.

Q:Where did the idea for the ability to imprint come from?

A: It's one of those things that just happened. In fact, before the idea came to me, I didn't even realize there was a scientific name for the ability. I think on some level I sort of imagined those old handheld credit card imprint devices and how you'd slide the card and the number would appear magically on the paper. I figured an emotion would be a similar thing, only invisible to the eye.

Q: I love the covers for this series, did you have any input on them?

A: On the first mocked up of this cover, they had a girl in coat and boots who looked like she was walking around in a forest. There were fingerprints and sort of an old mystery look to the whole thing. In fact, you can still see that cover on Amazon. Not a bad cover, but the character doesn't look or feel like mine (who never wears shoes). When I suggested a change, my product manager thought we ought to use the Portland skyline as well, and this is what we ended up with http://rachelannnunes.com/Imprints_book.php. It fits the book a lot better. So, yes, my publisher is good to listen to my input about covers. I think they do a fabulous job.

Q:What kind of research did you do for this series?

A: I researched pychometry, which is the scientific name for the paranormal ability my character has, but most of my research involved cults, antiques, and the two cities in Oregon where my novel takes place. As the child of an herb store owner, I've always been interested in herbs and how people feel about them, so that's always fun to play into.

Q: What are you working on now?

A: I've just finished Shades of Gray, An Autumn Rain Imprints Novel, which as you can tell from the title, is the sequel to Imprints. My pre-readers were very positive about the book, and I'm excited for people to read it. The release date is likely in May 2011, give or take a month, and if you check on my website in April, I should have a sample chapter and the week of the release. In fact, I have sample chapters of most of my novels there: www.RachelAnnNunes.com. Currently, I'm working on a novel called Before I Say Goodbye, which is still in the early stages so I'm not ready to share much about yet. I do have to give my publisher a summary soon, and I'll put a bit of that up on my website in a few weeks. I plan to have it finished by the end of January for an August 2011 release.

Q: Do you have any advice for other writers?

My best advice is to read, read, read, and read some more. And then write, write, write, and pass your work around to other aspiring authors, and then rewrite again and send it out to editors or agents. Keep writing new novels or revising older ones and continue sending them out. Keep reading all the time (novels, grammar books, books about writing). If you don't give up, you will eventually make it.

Q: Are there any new books that have grabbed your interest?

A: I'm reading all the time, and right now I'm reading extensively in the urban fantasy market, which I'm writing on the side when I'm caught up on my current publisher deadlines. It's a fascinating genre, but I really only enjoy a few of those authors because of what I mentioned above about content. For my own writing in that genre, I may have to end up using younger characters just to avoid this. I'm not at all into the high school teen angst scene, but there is a newer genre of novels with twenty-something characters that are a mix of young adult and adult that I've found interesting.

Q: What inspires you to write and why?

A: I simply feel that I must write. When I do, I'm happier and my life and my relationships are smoother. It's like eating. If I'm away from it too long, I'm cranky and easily irritated. I believe we are all given gifts for a reason, and if we're not using them and stretching ourselves, we don't grow and progress, which makes the core of who we are unhappy. Also, writing is a unique profession in that you learn a little about many subjects. I love learning new things. I love dreaming. Combine the two and you have a novel.


  1. Fabulous interview! Rachel, I love your advice to writers, as that's what I've seen work for people who made it. Sometimes they've written ten novels before their writing got there. And reading. Yes! Although that's a type of market research that feels like cheating.

    I hear great things about your books and will be adding them to my TBR list. The covers are beautiful!

    Christy, I'm a new follower of your blog, and I'm doing Nanowrimo this month, too. Good luck and see you around!


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