Please join us in welcoming author Nancy Fraser from Canada to Books & Benches for an interview.
Nancy is the award-winning author of twenty-one published works and it sounds like there's many more to come!
"Want more to read just like this! Love books that touch you for days after your done reading!"
—Amazon Reviewer on Home is Where the Hunk is
Let's hear from the author . . .
In 250 words or less, what can you tell us about your newest release?
Eye of the Pharaoh is my second venture into time travel and one I knew I was destined to write. My love for Egyptian history began many years ago at the Field Museum in Chicago. Their Inside Ancient Egypt exhibit screamed “write me and make it a romance."
My goal in creating Dr. Joshua Cain, Professor of Archaeology, was that he’d be a modern version of all the movie archetypes from Indiana Jones to The Mummy. In Eye of the Pharaoh, Dr. Cain spouts facts 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fictitious Anukehaten, guardian of the Queen-Pharaoh Hatshepsut’s tomb, and the ancient curse of the pink stone, all historical references shared by Dr.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.
Two complete opposites, Teri and Josh enter into an adventure of a lifetime.
What story are you working on next, and what inspired you?
I’m currently in the middle of a story for the new historical series from The Wild Rose Press. The series is called “Stranded” and, just as it sounds, the story must place the hero and heroine in a position of being cut off from others and surviving on their own. My story, Waking Up in Oz, is a 1970’s retooling of the Wizard of Oz.
My inspiration came from the publisher’s submission call itself. I kept running ideas through my head and it finally came to me. The “ultimate” case of being stranded ... Dorothy in Oz. I began plotting from there. I have a heroine named Dorothy Gail Farmer, and a storm-chaser hero dubbed "The Wizard" because of his ability to project the path of a hurricane. Even my antagonist, Evelyn Witcher, takes her evil cue from the movie.
I’m about halfway through the first draft and loving it so far.
Do you consider your books plot-driven or character-driven? Is that how you naturally write, or is there a purpose for what you choose?
Most often, I’m character driven. I know I want to write a story about a certain type of heroine and match her up with an equally strong hero. Most of the books I write are based on submission calls from one of my four publishers. So, often, the plot is chosen for me. I then tweak the characters I’ve chosen to fit the needs of the story.
Life will occasionally intervene, as it did with my 2014 award-winning romance, Home is Where the Hunk is. The idea for the book came from someone I’d met in real life. Her backstory gave me the perfect plot for a very unusual twist on the secret baby trope. I had no idea who my heroine was or who the hero was. I just knew I had to tell this story in a loving and romantic way.
What is your favorite scene in Eye of the Pharaoh?
If I had to pick just one, I’d say it’s the scene where my hero and heroine realize they’ve traveled through time and distance.
Wake up. Kick . . . to hell with it . . . just wake up!
She stretched out her hand and poked Josh in the chest, certain he was nothing more than a dream, an apparition. When her fingers met solid muscle, she told him, “Pinch me. I need to wake up.”
“I’m not a figment of your imagination and you’re not asleep.” Withdrawing the pink stone from his pocket, he held it up to the waning sunlight. “Somehow, we’ve been brought here, and it must have something to do with this stone.”
“You mean we’ve traveled halfway around the world by the power of a three-thousand-year-old, possibly cursed, jewel?”
“It would seem so, although I’m not quite ready to make such an outlandish assumption. At least not without a bit more research.” He paused, turning full circle, stopping every so often to study their surroundings. “If I’m gauging the landscape correctly, we’ve not only traveled across miles, we’ve traveled through time.”
She shook her head, unwilling to accept either possibility. “I’m as a big fan of H.G. Wells as the next person,” she admitted, “but there’s no such thing as time travel.” When Josh didn’t comment, she asked, “Is there?”
You're quite a prolific author. What else have you written?
Eye of the Pharaoh is my twenty-first published book. I have another four scheduled for 2017, with my twenty-fifth book due out next Christmas.
On November 1st, I will celebrate twenty-years as a published author.
I cross genres with gleeful abandon, from contemporary, to historical, to time travel, to erotic romance. My favorite genre/era is what’s termed “vintage” historical which covers the years from the end of WWII to the beginning of the twenty-first century. I’m also somewhat partial to the Roaring Twenties.
I was fortunate enough to win two 2015 International Digital Awards. Home is Where the Hunk is took first place in the full length contemporary romance category and The Mysterious Mrs. Pennybaker, set in the Twenties, won for short erotic romance.
I also write a daily blog, Notes From a Romantic’s Heart, where I feature the work of other authors as well as share writing tips. I also do two monthly blog columns for my publishers.
Eye of the Pharaoh
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 archaeology 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 into 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 ancient guardian keep them on-track and safe?
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 be celebrating her 20th year as a published author in November 2016. 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.
Visit the author at nancyfraser.ca.