Today I am thrilled to welcome Nicola Moriarty to my blog. Nicola has recently released her first paranormal romance, Captivation, a novella (and the first paranormal addition to Random Romance’s digital series) which is an intoxicating ghost story that had me comparing it to the movie Ghost (my review here). By no means new to the author scene, Nicola has two previously published contemporary novels, Free-Falling, released in February 2012 and Paper Chains (my review here), released in February 2013.
Nicola lives in Sydney’s north west with her husband and two small (but remarkably strong willed) daughters. She is the younger sister of bestselling authors Liane Moriarty and Jaclyn Moriarty. In between various career changes, becoming a mum and studying at Macquarie University, she began to write. Now, she can’t seem to stop.
Before I continue however, I wish to thank Random House Australia, particularly Kirsty Noffke from their publicity department, who made this interview possible.
So, without further ado, let us indulge in getting to know Nicola a lot better.
Nicola, as a brief introduction, would you mind sharing a bit about yourself and how you came to write?
Hi Marcia, thanks so much for the invite to your blog, it’s lovely to be here! I grew up with a love of stories. When I was ten, Liane, my eldest sister used to make up stories for me – with me as the star, which I found absolutely thrilling. Another sister Kati, taught me to read with Enid Blyton’s, The Enchanted Wood and The Faraway Tree. All through school, English was always my favourite subject – especially creative writing – I’m just not sure why it took me so long after I left high school to come back to writing!
You are already a published author of two contemporary fiction novels but Captivation is your first foray into the paranormal romance sub-genre. Would you mind telling us a bit about the novella?
Captivation is about Juliette, a woman who has lost her husband and is slowly cutting herself off from the rest of the world due to her grief. When signs begin to appear that her husband’s ghost is still with her, she closes herself off from the world even further, determined to reignite their romance – no matter the cost!
What inspired you to explore paranormal romance?
Captivation was actually inspired by my first novel Free-Falling. Because Free-Falling deals with the loss of a loved one, I think I was always sort of wishing I could find a way to bring back the lost character in that book – but I couldn’t – because that wasn’t the story and that wasn’t the genre of that book. So Captivation became my chance to explore that possibility.
Paranormal romance is generally fantasy-based but I’m intrigued to know how you came up with Juliette’s experience? Is her character based on someone you know?
Nope, it’s completely imagined, but I guess it’s based on how I suspect I would feel if I lost the love of my life, I can imagine wanting nothing more than for him to find a way to return to me – and I’ve always been intrigued by the idea of ghosts and wished that I could have some sort of ghostly experience.
What was your favourite part of the novella to write?
There is a scene where Juliette starts drinking and in her intoxicated state, very nearly sets fire to her apartment, I enjoyed writing that scene because of the exciting conclusion and because of the setting of that scene – it’s all dark and hot and mysterious!
While the subject matter in Captivation is a far cry from your usual, was there anything in particular you found challenging in writing about paranormal experiences?
Yes, definitely! I struggled with the idea of exactly how Juliette should be communicating with the ghost of her husband – with the logistics of it I suppose – how could he touch her, could she touch him, would she be able to see him at all, could he walk through walls, would he vanish and reappear?! These were all the questions I was forever asking and often had trouble answering!
Can we expect another novel soon? If so, would you like to give us a hint as to what we can look forward to?
Yes I’m working on a third full-length novel right now. It’s actually quite different yet again from my first two books, but sort of hard to describe. I guess the best hint I can give is that it’s about a girl named Roberta Phish-Roden and a guy called Roger Dong and it’s a sort of absurdly crazy story of their lives unexpectedly crossing paths!
Oh and I should also mention that I have a short story included in the anthology book, ‘Sunlounger’ – it’s out now on Amazon here and features stories from over 40 authors set all over the world. My story is called, ‘The Red Glove’ and is set in outback Australia.
And now, just for some fun:
‘How to go out on a date in Queens’
Pizza or Pasta?
Pasta. (Penne with a creamy sundried tomato sauce!)
I have to choose two: Liane Moriarty and Jaclyn Moriarty! (Okay, okay, if I’m not choosing family members, then Neil Gaiman!)
If you had a book club, what would it be reading and why?
My preference is for always reading feel-good books. When I read, I want to escape from the real world, and I want to be left feeling contented – I like all sorts of genres, but I generally want a happy ending!
Give us three good to know facts about you – be creative.
I seem to think that I’m taller than I actually am. For years I was always surprised when I was placed in the front row of class photographs.
I make excellent triple-choc brownies.
Despite years of post natal depression, I absolutely LOVE being a mum, my girls surprise me every day (for instance, this morning I noticed that my 2 year old daughter’s hair had literally grown a couple of inches overnight and all of a sudden I could pop it in a ponytail!)
Nicola, it has been an absolute pleasure having you on my blog. Thank you for coming along.
Twas a pleasure to be here!