TJ Nichols on Mytho Origins and Lust and Other Drugs (Mytho #1) by T.J. Nichols

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Lust and Other Drugs (Mytho #1) by T.J. Nichols

Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Tiferet Design

Buy Links:  Dreamspinner Press | Kobo | iTunes | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host TJ Nichols here today on tour for Lust and Other Drugs.  Welcome, TJ.

 

 

Mytho—Origins

One of the first thing people ask when a new book comes out is ‘where did the idea come from?’

It would be nice if there were an easy answer. A point in time where I could pinpoint exactly how the pieces came together. A story, for me, comes in many bits that have to be assembled without any instructions.

I think the first bit that appeared was Edra. I wanted to write a dragon shapeshifter and thought it might be fun if he had invisibility issues (he can’t control it all that well), which can make things awkward.

I wanted to set the book in the here and now, not an alternate earth like the Demonology series. But I had no idea how dragons fitted into our world so let the idea sit.

Months later I remembered reading something about the Hadron Collider and remembered all the predictions of ripping the world apart that had been made—but I still had no story at this point.

Then I went to a crime writing workshop (for no good reason besides a general interest) and thought that maybe I could add that in, maybe the love interest is a cop. And the love interest likes pretty lingerie (I don’t know why, sometimes a character insists and it’s easier and more interesting to go with it, so I did). So Jordan arrived with his pet can and lingerie.

Then it all snowballed into an idea that I could play with.

What if it wasn’t our world the Hadron Collider destroyed, but the Mytho world. The place where mythological creatures and people lived, though they had sometimes interacted with our world, thus our myths and legends. What if the Mytho world collapsed into ours and now we have werewolf and vampire and ogre refugees?

I had to make a choice here, I either wrote about the disaster, the fighting, marshal law and internment camps for mythos that would inevitably happen in such a disaster or I let all of that happen and write 10 years on when humans have grudgingly accepted that the Mythos are here to stay and cops are trying to police satyrs and mermaids and beings they know very little about. I went with the later simply because I didn’t want to write the grim fighting and death and destruction (I was writing the Demonology series at the time and this series needed to be a little lighter.

I plotted out the romance arc over several books, gave Edra and Jordan a crime to solve in each book and that was that. And that was about two years before I started writing Lust and other Drugs. All the plots and character arc sat there waiting for attention.

This sometimes happens, book ideas have to wait until I have time or the calling to write them (it’s kind of like my brain going, THIS ONE NOW and everything falls neatly into place).

The only thing I hadn’t decided on was where to set the story. I had two locations in mind Sydney, Australia (I’m an Aussie so that was the easy choice) of San Francisco. Both places have bridges and an island in the bay (both of which matter). In the end I went with SF (Which I’ve only visited once) so yay for the internet and the brilliant SFPD website.

Of course the Mytho world collapsing into ours changed a few things so any errors are clearly meant to be there and happened as part of the disaster…

About the Author

TJ Nichols is an avid runner and martial arts enthusiast who first started writing as child. Many years later while working as a civil designer, TJ decided to pick up a pen and start writing again. Having grown up reading thrillers and fantasy novels, it’s no surprise that mixing danger and magic comes so easily. Writing urban fantasy allows TJ to bring magic to the every day. TJ enjoys writing novellas and novels and has a series, Studies in Demonology, coming out with DSP Publications.

With two cats acting as supervisors, TJ has gone from designing roads to building worlds and wouldn’t have it any other way. After traveling all over the world and Australia, TJ now lives in Perth, Western Australia.

Website: www.tjnichols-author.blogspot.com

Twitter: @TobyJNichols

Facebook: www.facebook.com/TJNichols.author

Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/cO-YRz

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/TJ-Nichols/e/B01B463R6W

Bookbub https://www.bookbub.com/authors/tj-nichols

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14669076.T_J_Nichols

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/tjnichols.author/

Blurb:

Mytho: Book One

Police officer Jordan and dragon shifter Edra might have to work together, but they don’t trust each other—even if sparks do fly between them.

If anyone finds out Jordan’s a mytho sympathizer, it could kill his career. No one can know that he frequents the satyr dens and uses the drug Bliss. Another satyr overdose might not get much attention, but two dead humans? That shouldn’t be possible.

And it might not be an accident.

Edra, Mythological Services Liaison, has been covering up mytho crimes to protect the community’s reputation. With a mayoral election looming, the last thing his people need is a scandal.

To get a murderer off the streets, Jordan and Edra will be spending a lot of time together, and it won’t be easy to keep up with their deceptions… or to keep resisting each other.

TJ Nichols on Plotting and Planning and their latest release Olivier (Order of the Black Knights #7) (guest post)

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Olivier (Order of the Black Knights #7) by T.J. Nichols
Dreamspinner Press

Cover Artist: Paul Richmond

Buy links:   Dreamspinner Press |  Kobo | iTunes | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to have T.J. Nichols here today to talk about the latest in the Order of the Black Knights series, Olivier and share some insight into the author’s writing process.  Welcome, T.J.!

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Plotting and planning by T.J. Nichols

I like to get to know my characters and have an idea about where my story is going before I start writing. Because Olivier is part of a series written by several authors there were also some basic rules that I had to follow, such as including the prologue (about the Knight’s last life and how he died) and also the detail about how Olivier became a Black Knight.

Aside from those couple of things the world was my own to create. It is less fantasy than my other works, but I love a cursed hero and the lure of including past lives was too great for me to pass up the opportunity.

The first thing I did was work out why Olivier signed on with the wizard. Who did he want revenge on and why? Then I needed to show an echo of that in the prologue and have him confront that issue once again in the actual story. After all those lives of killing and seeking revenge without understanding why, he has to eventually learn the lesson.

With one character established I then had to work out who it was that Olivier had been killing over and over again through the centuries. What had this guy done in the past and who was he now? While he hadn’t signed on with the wizard he’d been dragged into the curse.

I knew when I started that I didn’t want the breaking of the curse to become part of the Happily Ever After. It had to be another complication that only makes things worse for Olivier and Cody.

Somehow as I was writing it all got rather tangled and I had to go back to my reliable method of fixing a plot: make a list of every scene with a one sentence summary and a note about whose point of view it’s in. This method has saved many a story as I can see quickly when someone is taking over, or when scenes are missing, or need deleted. What I usually find is that when things get messy I’ve jumped ahead and missed scenes or I’ve taken a wild wrong turn and I need to rewrite one scene to put it back on track. Writing this list also helps me remember what the story is about and to keep true to that instead of trying to make it something else.

With this story one of my problems was working out how to deal with Cody’s father. I couldn’t let him walk away, but I also knew that he was too slippery for the police. Once I’d worked out what to do with him the ending came together—though not as I’d originally planned.

Olivier

Order of the Black Knights

Olivier Merlo works for a dangerous man. He does what he’s told without asking questions because he needs to protect his sister and niece. When someone gives his boss trouble, Olivier does what he does best. It’s a routine hit—until the victim’s brother starts poking around.

Cody Anders left his family behind a decade ago—along with their wealth and influence—to live on his own terms. Still, he knows his twin didn’t die of a drug overdose, and he’ll do anything to find the truth. What he uncovers is a conspiracy that will topple his family and leave him staring down the barrel of a gun.

Olivier must decide if he’s going to obey orders or free himself from the curse that has guided his hand for centuries. Cody, who challenges Olivier’s notion that no one can love him, holds the key to breaking his chains. But when the truth finally comes out, it might be more than Cody can accept.

About the Author

TJ Nichols is an avid runner and martial arts enthusiast who first started writing as child. Many years later while working as a civil designer, TJ decided to pick up a pen and start writing again. Having grown up reading thrillers and fantasy novels, it’s no surprise that mixing danger and magic comes so easily, writing urban fantasy allows TJ to bring magic to the every day. TJ enjoys writing novellas and novels and has a series, Studies in Demonology, coming out with DSP Publications.

With two cats acting as supervisors, TJ has gone from designing roads to building worlds and wouldn’t have it any other way. After traveling all over the world and Australia, TJ now lives in Perth, Western Australia.

Website: www.tjnichols-author.blogspot.com

Twitter: @TobyJNichols

Facebook: www.facebook.com/TJNichols.author

Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/cO-YRz

TJ Nichols on Research, Writing, and ‘Warlock in Training’ (author interview and DSP Publications Guest Post)

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Warlock in Training (Studies in Demonology #1) by T.J. Nichols
D
SP Publications
Cover Artist: Catt Ford

Available for Purchase at

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Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host T.J. Nichols here today in our authors interview chair.  Welcome, T.J.!

~Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Interview with T.J. Nichols~

Does research play a role into choosing which genre you write?  Do you enjoy research or prefer making up your worlds and cultures?

I do a lot of research even though I write (mostly) urban fantasy. It could be simple things like the physical location of the story if I’m setting it in a place I’ve never been through to different poisons that were common in the Middle Ages, or even the different types of werewolf lore.

When creating Demonside (the realm where demons live in Warlock in training) I had to research how desert dwelling people survived in those harsh conditions. I had to look up the life cycle of desert plants and animals which are dependent on the rains when, or if, they come.

Research is one of those things that I do all the time, even if I don’t know where the knowledge is going to come in handy.

Has your choice of childhood or teenage reading genres carried into your own choices for writing?

Definitely. I read mainly fantasy novel when growing up, and I love that escape to new worlds. These days I love creating those new worlds and mixing magic into our world.

Do you like HFN or HEA? And why?

I like both as a reader and writer. Some stories need everything to be tied up with a bow and other stories need to be left undone. I’m generally happy as long as I think the couple has the chance to give being together a good shot. As a writer crafting the perfect ending can take a while. I try to know the last scene of the book by the time I’m ¼ of the way through writing the first draft. Sometimes I know that final image when I start plotting…then the trouble is working out how to get there. I must confess I’m not a fan of the ‘two years later epilogue’, I’ve never read one that’s made me love the story more (but I’ll read it if it’s there).

Do you read romances, as a teenager and as an adult?

I didn’t discover romance novels until I was in my twenties. These days I read both. It all depends on what I want from a book (sometimes I want the happily ever after, sometimes I want the bigger world of an urban fantasy/fantasy, and sometimes I just want something I can read in 2 hours so I read a novella). I like the uplifting nature of romance novels and that love wins every time. Love should win and everyone should get their happily ever after, but that doesn’t happen in real life.

How do you feel about the ebook format and where do you see it going?

I don’t think ebooks will go away. I love them. The convenience of having a library on my ereader is great. I still buy print books, usually it comes down to price and availability as to which format I buy (I live in Australia).

Do you have a favorite among your own stories?  And why?

I love all my stories but for different reasons. A Wolf’s Resistance is set in WW2 which is one of my favorite time periods so the research was really just reading for pleasure. Warlock in Training was just fun to write—not all stories are like that (I’m working on a novella at the moment which is like pulling teeth).

What’s next for you as an author?

I’m busy working on book 3 in the Studies in Demonology series (book 2 is with my crit partner at the moment). In September-ish Olivier (an Order of the Black Knights novel) will be out. If you haven’t checked out the Black Knights multi author series do, as it’s a mix of romantic suspense, past life repercussions and curses (some of my favorite things).

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Blurb

Angus Donohue doesn’t want to be a warlock. He believes draining demons for magic is evil, but it’s a dangerous opinion to have—his father is a powerful and well-connected warlock, and Angus is expected to follow the family tradition.

His only way out is to fail the demon summoning class. Failure means expulsion from the Warlock College. Despite Angus’s best efforts to fumble the summoning, it works. Although not the way anyone expects.

Angus’s demon, Saka, is a powerful mage with his own need for a warlock.

Saka wants to use Angus in a ritual to rebalance the magic that is being stripped from Demonside by warlocks. If Angus survives his demon’s desires and the perils of Demonside, he’ll have to face the Warlock College and their demands.

Angus must choose: obey the College and forget about Demonside or trust Saka and try to fix the damage before it’s too late. Whatever he does, he is in the middle of a war he isn’t qualified to fight.

About the Author

TJ Nichols is an avid runner and martial arts enthusiast who first started writing as child. Many years later while working as a civil designer TJ decided to pick up a pen and start writing again. Having grown up reading thrillers and fantasy novels it’s no surprise that mixing danger and magic comes so easily, writing urban fantasy allows TJ to bring magic to the everyday.

With two cats acting as supervisors TJ has gone from designing roads to building worlds and wouldn’t have it any other way. After traveling all over the world and Australia, TJ now lives in Perth, Western Australia.

Website: tjnichols-author.blogspot.com

Twitter: @TobyJNichols

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TJNichols.author/

Ebook: 978-1-63533-267-4

Print: 978-1-63533-266-7