Interview with Nick Starling


How did you become a writer?

I've been writing for a long time, but never had the motivation to actually finish a manuscript until I got a running injury in early 2020. That bled right into the COVID-19 pandemic, and with all that time on my hands, I needed something to occupy my time. So I started working on things that had long been in my mind, but had never made it onto the page. The rest, as they say, is history.

What inspires you to write?

I'm inspired to write when I have an idea for a character that I can't shake. They'll "talk to me" until I can't ignore them anymore, and I have to give them a story.

Could you share some of your challenges as a writer?

I actually really struggle with determining what is a good idea versus an unnecessary one. I have so many concepts that bounce around in my head, that I need a good sounding board to determine if an idea is worth exploring or not. Thankfully, I have a wonderful partner and co-author who is always ready to help out.

Tell me about your protagonist. What's your favorite trait and/or weakness?

Tomren Balrenci is your average young guy trying to make it on his own. He left home at eighteen and has been hunting monsters in the underground nation of Aniroth to make a living so his parents can't find him and sacrifice his soul to a demon lord. You know, normal stuff.

My favorite thing about Tomren is that, despite his cocky, humorous exterior, he's incredibly humble underneath and relies heavily on the support of those he cares about. Of course, by hiding those things even from the people he depends on, he ends up losing things he cares about over and over.

What are your current/future projects?

Currently, I'm moving into edits on Soulbow, a dark fantasy duology, and I'm also editing a joint project with Elle Mackenzie, who is an incredible author. It's a magical realism adult duology about semi-immortal witches and the quest to control the balance of magic, with a hefty dose of romance and family drama thrown in. I also have a full rewrite of my first manuscript coming up, as well as a new piece about a knight whose duty to the princess is hindered by a secret he'e been hiding for years.

If you could go back in time and give yourself advice, what would it be?

Don't worry about the speed. Get beta readers, get critiques, and rewrite it over and over until it's perfect. Don't get carried away. Good is better than fast.

* What is your preferred method for readers to get in touch with you?

Please feel free to email me or find me on Twitter--@nickastarling!

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