For the chance to win a free e-copy (.PDF or Kindle only) of Unspoken by Nikolas P. Robinson, please leave a comment on this post with your email address included in the body of the comment. This giveaway will end at 3 PM (EST) on September 6.
Nikolas P. Robinson was born in Saint Paul, MN but spent most of his life in and around Rapid City, SD and the Black Hills where he still resides with his children and assorted pets as a single father.
A former musician; some of Nikolas’ non-literary artistry can be found with the relatively unknown musical project Alter Noctvm…Alter Idem (roughly translated from Latin into English as Another Night…Another Identity) for which he provided vocals, bass, percussion, and some synth/programming.
A former scientist in the making; Nikolas spent three years as a double major in both physics and chemistry before ultimately dropping out due to scheduling conflicts between his classes and the real life logistics of being a single father. He intends to return and complete his degrees when there isn’t so much on his plate.
Most importantly, he is a writer; Nikolas began writing at a very early age, but lost sight of that particular passion during his mid-20s, only returning to it at the beginning of his 30s and he couldn’t be happier.
Hello! What’s your name?
What do you write and why?
I write primarily horror-based literature (regardless of the length) because horror is what I’m most familiar with. I don’t feel any great need to go into detail about my childhood or life in general, but I can say that there has been a lot to be afraid of. Combine that with the fact that I spent my whole life watching horror movies and the like, and we have a healthy, nutrient rich soil to grow a horror author.
Do you read the same genre that you write? Why or why not?
I do indeed read the genres that I write (at least the ones that I prefer to write). I love seeing what other authors are creating, analyzing the substrate of language that they build their narratives upon, and losing myself in the imagination of someone else who might or might not think a bit like I do.
What is the title you are promoting right now?
What is it about?
It’s about a lot of things; the end of the world (or human civilization at the very least), it’s about love and the fear and uncertainty that can arise when one is too insecure to imagine that the love could be returned, exploring preconceptions by developing a character that might seem almost intolerable and setting up a series of events and circumstances that force the reader to see him differently than they might have initially, it’s about insanity and regret.
What makes this book different from others in your genre?
Well, to be honest, I think the postmodernist and semi-poetic elements of it make it stand out amongst other horror novels with a touch of romance to the narrative. Maybe there’s more than a touch of romance, I don’t know. I’m not altogether too familiar with the romance genre.
What’s the story behind the story?
There are a lot of things that fed into the story unfolding the way that it does. One of which would have to be that I had just recently taken on a position working in a healthcare capacity for an organization that provides care and support for individuals with mental and physical disabilities. That environment and type of work heavily influenced the setting to an extent. The other major influence would have to be the fact that I spent a great deal of my life never having the courage or sense of security required to actively express my interest in women if I really happened to be interested in them.
What is your goal as an author?
Well, of course, I want to become successful and respected as well as moderately well off in a financial sense. I want to write stories that speak to people, stories that actually make a difference in their lives the same sort of way that different stories by other authors have made an impact in my own life. I want to make my children, my family, and other loved ones proud of me.
Are you working on anything new? Give us a preview of what’s to come!
I am indeed working on quite a few different projects; a few novels, a novella, and a handful of short stories. Two of the novels are horror and one is science fiction, the novella is sort of a horror/psychological tale, and the short stories are exclusively horror in nature. I would love to provide you with an actual preview of what’s coming, but I don’t know what will be next. I wish that I did.
Who is your favorite author and what is your favorite book?
Dune by Frank Herbert would have to be my favorite book of all time. My favorite authors fluctuate depending on my mood and the genre that happens to be my favorite from one moment to the next.
Where can readers find you and your work?
I am on Facebook, Goodreads, Twitter and all the usual places. In addition, I have a blog that I somewhat frequently update on WordPress here. My work can be found on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million, and the usual booksellers.
What’s your view on the self-publishing/traditional publishing thing? Ideally, which one would you prefer and why?
I think that self-publishing has the potential to be a great thing, if the authors have enough self-respect and pride (as well as a healthy dose of self awareness) to ensure that the work they are publishing is really complete (edited, proofread, and so on). With agents and publishers unwilling to take chances on new authors or uncertain genres, or unable to really take more than a brief snippet of a manuscript as basis for judgment, self-publishing becomes the only real outlet that newcomers have to give their passion an outlet. Optimally, I would have loved to have an agent, professional editor, and publisher behind Unspoken…but that wasn’t a viable option for me.
Do you have a favorite quote?
“Give a man a fire and he’s warm for a day, but set fire to him and he’s warm for the rest of his life.” – Terry Pratchett
What is the most important advice you have for aspiring authors?
Don’t give up. Don’t ever lose sight of what you want to be doing with your life and where you want to go. Find some concrete outcomes that you aspire to achieve…and focus on them regularly. If you reach a point where you can’t seem to continue with a narrative, start a new one until you are over the hurdle. Scott Sigler offered me some excellent advice when I was still working on Unspoken, “Just write a bad book. And yes, I’m serious. Your problem is the same as many aspiring authors — you get stuck; you can’t figure out where to go, you get frustrated, you put it down. So, set a simple goal: you are going to write a bad book. Why? Because when you get stuck, you basically think “well, screw it, it’s a bad book, so I’ll just throw something in here” and you move forward. Doesn’t matter if it’s bad or good, just keep writing.”
Is there anything else you’d like to say before we finish up?
This has actually been a great deal of fun, answering these questions and being forced to put word to some of these thoughts.
Awesome, thanks for allowing me to interview you!
Don’t forget to pay Nikolas a visit at the links below!