Today, we are privileged to have an interview with author Nia Farrell (aka Ree L. Diehl aka Erinn Ellender Quinn). Nia is an international best-selling author, a four-time Golden Flogger Finalist, a founding member of the Wicked Pens, and her novel As Wicked As You Want was voted one of The 50 Best Indie Books of 2016.
Nia has been dubbed “The Queen of Steam,” as she writes hot sex and happy endings in multiple genres and subgenres, including BDSM, ménage (MFM and MMF), MM, reverse harem, paranormal, MC, and Mafia.
In recent months, I have got to know Nia through many great conversations on Facebook, and it is a pleasure that she agreed to be interviewed.
Where do you live currently and has this place influenced your writings at all?
I’m a seventh-generation Illinoisan living in southern Illinois, near St. Louis, Missouri. It has most definitely influenced my writing. My Avenging Angels MC series is set in the fictional town of Diamond Springs, Illinois. In my Guarded Hearts series (co-written with Claire Marta), Casey (Book 2, out March 13th) has some Wizard of Oz trivia paired with a fictional band from Bloomington, Illinois. The Dread Monkeys from Bloomington will get their own Banished spin-off series later this year.
In one of our Facebook chats, you mentioned that you have lived several previous lives, including one on Atlantis. Please could you tell us a bit about your previous lives, and have they been sources of inspiration for your writings?
I remember more than seventy of my past lives, several of them as a writer. I can still read things that I wrote as Marie de France, Christine de Pisan, Lucrezia de Borgia, and Clara Barton.
All of my books written by my pen name Erinn Ellender Quinn are based on or inspired by one of my past lives: Ride the Wind (Book 2 of the Touch The Wind series)was my lifetime in 1728 Tidewater Maryland; and Highland Desire (free at Smashwords) is my lifetime in 1602 Scotland. As it happens, my younger daughter was my oldest child in my lifetime in 1602.
You have written and published over 60 books. That is absolutely phenomenal. When did you publish your first book and how many do you publish a year?
I wrote for twenty-eight years before making my first sale in 2015. (I am a poster-child for patience and perseverance.) My lengths run a gamut from a 3000-word short story to a 155,500-word epic novel.
Currently, I have 23 releases planned for 2020 (several are single-title issues from pieces that appeared in now-delisted anthologies). This month’s releases are Damage Control, a BBW/billionaire romantic comedy/romantic intrigue erotic romance by Ree L. Diehl, and Replay Reunion 3: Naughty Carnevale, a 7K-word erotic short story by Nia Farrell that foreshadows another new series, Club Paradiso, debuting in November.
My next big book is Casey (Book 2 of The Guarded Hearts series), shifters with a sci-fi twist, co-authored by Claire Marta and Nia Farrell, to be released on Friday, March 13th.
This blogger: That is absolutely astonishing! Yes, you are the poster girl for patience and perseverance. I am so happy that you are getting your just rewards after so many years of waiting.
You have written under several different names and pseudonyms. Out of interest, why did you not stick to one name?
I use pen names for branding. Under my legal name, I’m published in nonfiction, children’s books, poetry, music, and freelance articles, with one documentary screenplay under my literary belt.
Because of the children’s books, I keep her separate from my three pen names. Nia Farrell writes contemporary, historical, and dystopian erotic romance; Erinn Ellender Quinn writes historical romance; and Ree L. Diehl writes romantic comedy erotica/erotic romance. With each pen name, you know exactly what to expect when you pick up her book.
However, the three pen names share a website at http://niafarrell.wordpress.com. There, you can find descriptions, teasers, and uncensored excerpts from Nia, Erinn, and Ree.
You have written in many different genres, including romance, historical romance, erotic romance, nonfiction, poetry and books for children. This is an astonishing range. Which genre do you enjoy writing in the most?
Erotic romance, hands down. MMF ménage is my absolute favorite trope to write. I love when the men have a relationship with each other in addition to the woman they share. Also, I enjoy writing music and will be co-writing with a new partner later this year.
This blogger: I did not know that you write music! I look forward to listening to it when it is ready.
You have also written a documentary screenplay. What was the documentary about, and how different was writing a screenplay compared to a novel? What were the two key differences that you noted?
My husband and I are Civil War re-enactors, and I was approached about writing the screenplay for the Lincoln 150th funeral re-enactment. Writing it required viewing hundreds of hours of film, identifying units and individuals, and pairing time links with text. A portion of the full draft made it onto the screen. The rest was told through imagery.
Unlike the documentary, which was very structured, I’m a pantster when I write fiction. I meet my characters, find where the book starts (vs. where the story begins; there is a difference), and follow where they lead. I have an idea of where we’re headed, but my people love to take the scenic route.
This blogger: I did not know that you and your husband are Civil War re-enactors. How fun! Plus, that must have been a real honour to be asked to write the Lincoln 150th funeral re-enactment. That is a testament to you and your many talents.
Your erotic historical novel, As Wicked As You Want, was voted #1 Erotica and #10 overall in the 50 Best Indie Books of 2016; and Pride and Punishment was voted Best Historical Romance in the 2017 Ménages Romance Readers Favourites. First, congratulations on both of those achievements! Second, why do you think those books were so successful?
I write really unique characters, and As Wicked as You Want has one of the most unusual heroines I’ve written. Elena fought as a man during the American Civil War and has continued to live as one since. She’s forced to reclaim her true identity when the Pinkertons come to arrest her for desertion for not mustering out, even though she’d served her full three years. (Sadly, that happened to a friend’s ancestor).
Pride and Punishment is pure Jane Austen fan fiction, reborn as a BDSM erotic romance with a Dominant Mr. Darcy seeking to win a submissive woman who abhors him. I used as much of the original dialogue as I could. But the characters’ thoughts and motivations put a whole new twist on things.
This blogger: First, I did not know that about the Pinkertons. Thank you for informing me, and, sadly, I do believe something like that happened a lot in those days. Second, the way you have… adapted Pride and Punishment sounds like literary lover’s fantasy come true (*grins*).
Which genre have you not written in yet that you would like to?
I just wrote my first dystopian fantasy novel, set in 2055 Kansas in the former USA, now the American Federation of States. Future books include a political thriller and a literary mystery.
Recently, I have written some blog pieces about subliminal messaging in narratives. What is an example of a subliminal message that you have put into one of your novels?
I don’t consider what I write subliminal but certain things resonate in unexpected ways with readers. After years of struggling with triggers, a fan read my Avenging Angels MC series and recognized that she had symptoms of PTSD. She was able to trace it back to an experience as a pre-teen and was able to work through much of it once she had identified the source of her issues.
Moreover, I write a lot of damaged or challenged characters (especially in my Replay series, with BDSM used as a tool for self-healing). Ultimately, my books are about the healing power of love.
This blogger: That sounds like a lovely subliminal message. I like it a lot.
If you could go back in time and give your younger self some advice about the writing process, what would it be?
It would be to focus more on the production end of things, learn to be more computer savvy, take classes in graphic design, and above all to be disciplined. I write long hours and set my own schedule. But I work hard to tell the best story and present it in the most professional way that I can.
I write, edit, proof, do ebook and print layouts, design covers, make teasers, and help my personal assistant promote my work. It’s consuming, but it’s truly a labor of love.
What do you find the most challenging part of the writing process?
There’s never enough time. Right now, I have fifty covers designed for stories that are still in my head, waiting to pour out.
This blogger: Dear Lord! That’s a lot to be swirling around the mind. You have some imagination, Nia.
Are you writing a book at the moment? If so, would you mind telling us a bit about the plot please?
I’m currently writing three. Replay Reunion 3: Naughty Carnevale (out February 29th) is set at replay BDSM theme resort where patrons roleplay in the past. The setting for Naughty Carnevale is early 16th-century Venice, and a photojournalist caught trying to enter Replay under an alias learns her lesson under a Dominant congressman who’s running for re-election.
Play Date (Book 1 of the Club Paradiso series)is a twist on Cinderella when a Dominant prince mistakes the bodyguard assigned to him as his paid escort/submissive hired for the opening weekend of a Caribbean luxury resort. (Play Date will appear in the Little Black Dress anthology when it comes out on November 20th.)
Raven (Book 3 of the Guarded Hearts series) by Claire Marta and Nia Farrell pairs a young mother/nurse/midwife with two fated mates. The Guarded Heart books are shifters with a sci-fi twist, deftly written as subtle romantic comedy. Book 1, Morgan¸was voted favorite paranormal and was a finalist for favorite romantic comedy and favorite ménage. Book 2, Casey, is darker and comes out on Friday, March 13th.
This blogger: I am absolutely speechless by how much you have coming out this year alone. Your work-rate is exceptional.
Lastly, outside of writing, what do you like to do?
When I’m not reading, I’m a shutterbug. I enjoy photography, going to museums and historical re-enactments, traveling, cooking, and spending time with my husband of 46 years. I have a huge bucket list. We stayed in a treehouse for our 45th wedding anniversary. But staying in a castle remains a future goal. A trip to Ireland tops the list.
End of Interview
That, I am afraid to say, brings our interview with author Nia Farrell to a close. I would like to thank Nia for her time, and to say that it has been absolutely fascinating getting to know her. I wish her all the best in her many future writings, her re-enactments, her music, her photography, and her travels, to name but five of her many interests.
You can purchase Nia’s books on Amazon, and the same is true for her other pseudonyms, Ree L. Diehl and Erinn Ellender Quinn. Nia has written something for everyone, so take your pick and give her superb books a go. Specifically, “if you love sensual, emotional and powerful romance with a definite D/s dynamic, you should be reading Author Nia Farrell” (as one reviewer has aptly written).
Otherwise, like Nia on Facebook; follow her on Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr and YouTube; and visit her website and her Goodreads page. This way, you will be able to get all the updates for when Replay Reunion 3: Naughty Carnevale, Play Date and Raven will be released later this year, alone.
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