Saturday, February 23, 2013

Getting To Know Author Nancy Richardson Fischer

Hey Readers, take a moment out of your day and meet Nancy Richardson Fischer, author of 'Pandora's Key'. If you'd like a refresher course on the book, click here to see my review. :)

I was born on the east coast and went to Cornell University. After college I worked as a writer for Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey Circus. It was a fun first job and I learned how to write quickly, and also that when elephants sneeze on you it's very (VERY) messy. After a year in the circus, I moved out west. I lived in Aspen, Colorado where I skied as much as possible and worked as a waitress in a Mexican restaurant. Great experience but I learned that waitressing is hard (HARD) and I'm not very good at it.

After Aspen, I moved to San Francisco, California where I worked as a writer for University of California, San Francisco and wrote freelance for LucasFilm. At UCSF I learned that sitting in a cubicle under fluorescent lights dulls my soul. LucasFilm taught me that writing freelance, especially fiction, is fun (FUN). So I headed tograduate school in Boulder, Colorado to further hone my skills.

For the first part of my freelance writing career I wrote sport autobiographies. I'd visit and travel with an athlete like Monica Seles, Bela Karolyi, Nadia Comaneci or Apolo Ohno and then write their book. It was a terrific job, but after ten years and tons of incredible experiences I got tired of writing other peoples' stories and not my own.

I've always loved books with adventure, magic, and dark forces. I'm a huge fan of Stephen King, Peter Straub, Neil Gaiman, Suzanne Collins and George R.R. Martin. Those writers allow a reader to lose themselves in stories that are intense, sometimes other-worldly, yet strangely believable. I feel incredibly lucky that now I have the chance to create books for readers that will hopefully captivate and transport them into a world where the supernatural is possible with characters that they can relate to who are flawed yet totally compelling.

Today I live in the Pacific Northwest with my amazing husband, Henry, and our mostly loveable (but sometimes vorpal) Vizsla, Boone. When I'm not conjuring a story, I love to kite-board, bike, ski or plan adventures with Boone and Henry, who both make me laugh for different reasons and who are the best partners in fun a gal could ever imagine. (Bio taken from Nancy's website, which can be found here )


What is the hardest part of the writing process?

Putting my butt in the chair. A lot of people tell me they have great ideas for books... and they do! But it's putting your butt in the chair for hour after hour, day after day, and continuing to write when you feel like playing with your dog, going for a run, meeting friends for coffee, that's hard! It's worth it, but it's hard:-)

Where is your favorite place to write?

I love writing in my house with my dog curled up at my feet.

Are you lucky enough to write full time or do you have a day job?

I am lucky enough to write full time. That wasn't always the case. I spent a decade writing other peoples stories - sport autobiographies, Star Wars trilogies, and various articles, plus a few years working for different companies. There isn't a day that I'm not thankful for the opportunity I now have to write what I love!

 How do you handle negative reviews?

They hurt my feelings... and then I get over them. You just can't please everyone. Sometimes I want to write the person and explain that I spent two years writing the book they just trashed and I did it FOR readers to enjoy, NOT to torture them! Good intentions, you know? But that's why they make a zillion different flavors of ice cream - people need options and we all like different things.

If Pandora's Key was made into a movie who would you cast?

Brittany, I really want to know who YOU would cast!!! Who would play Evangeline, Olivia, Raphe, Dr. Sullivan and Malledy? 

I'm still working on this...... :) Everyone that I have in mind is too old, I need to become more familiar with the younger generation of actors!

I can imagine Dakota Fanning as Evangeline... Naomi Watts as Olivia... Michael Pitt or Joseph Gordon Levitt as Dr. Sullivan.... and I'm not sure about Raphe or Malledy... maybe two unknown actors... what do you think?

What book is currently on your night stand? (At least, at the time of the interview)

'Where She Went' by Gayle Forman

Do you have any hobbies?

I'm a sporty gal. I love to kitesurf, ski, road bike, hike... anything outside. I also like to study French and dream of one day being fluent.

 What are your favorite tv shows, past or present?

Hands down The Walking Dead!!!! Followed by Homeland, Justified, and Breaking Bad. I also loved Deadwood.

What are some of your favorite smells?

Vanilla. Orange blossoms. Freshly baked pies. Chocolate chip cookies. My husband right after he shaves.

Do you have any pet peeves?

Mean people. Pet owners who don't pick up their dog's poop (I have a dog so I can say this;-). Olives in any food I want to eat. Pickles. The word: moist.

Thank you so much Nancy for taking the time to answer my questions.  If you haven't read it yet, give 'Pandora's Key' a try.  And be on the lookout for 'The Key to Tartarus' (Book 2 of the Key Trilogy) which Nancy is currently hard at work on!

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