As part of my ongoing launch this week, I’m interviewing guest authors here and on my Facebook page. This will be a great way to discover new and exciting authors, and possibly win free copies of their work! Today’s guest is contemporary fantasy author Nils Visser, author of the Wyrde Woods series, with Escape from Neverland and Dance into the Wyrd available through Amazon now.
Q. What do you write, and what inspired you to start?
Contemporary fantasy set in a fictional woodlands in Sussex I’ve called the Wyrde Woods. My first two novels, Escape from Neverland and Dance into the Wyrd, take place in 2004 and were intended to be a complete series (Lord of the Wyrde Woods). However, a small group of avid Wyrde Woods readers are twisting my arm into writing a third installment. I then took that same setting and some of the characters for a foray in historical fantasy. Forgotten Road is the first part of the Secrets of the Wyrde Woods series and will soon be followed by the second part: Hidden Springs, my current work in progress. I’ve also written two historical fiction short novels: Will’s War in Brighton and Will’s War: Exile from Brighton. Some of the Wyrde Woods characters and the Wyrde Woods themselves feature in those but without the fantastical elements. As to writing, I took the plunge in the summer of 2014 after deciding it was now or never with regard to an ambition I’ve had since I was a kid.
Q. We all know writers love to drink—coffee, tea or worse! When you’re writing, what’s your poison?
Coffee, lots of it. Cider and mead follow but usually when there is something to celebrate, completed writing for example. Too much of the stuff doesn’t improve the writing itself at all.
Q. Do you have a favorite line that you’ve written? If so, what is it?
I’ve taken an old Sussex saying and turned it around some and use that quite a lot. It’s used to explain the inexplicable or just be deliberately vague to foreigners (those beyond the Sussex county lines, like faraway and exotic Surrey and Hampshire).
“There is something of everything and everything of something.”
Q. What are you most known for amongst your friends and family?
A lot of people consider me kind of odd. I’ve stopped trying to explain myself. Take it or leave it.
Q. Have you ever seen a movie that you thought was better than the book?
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest and In the Name of the Rose.
Q. Is there a message in your writing that you would want your audience to grasp? If so, what is it?
Yes, the nostalgia a lot of older people feel for childhood is not necessary. The magic is still there, we just often choose not to see it anymore. Revisit your old childhood haunts, the places where you played or hung out outside of parental supervision. There be dragons. The Wyrde Woods are essentially an unsupervised play area—and through that simplicity achieve a mystical status. Apart from that the books are a celebration of English woodlands to remind people what valuable assets these really are, important in times when the overriding logic seems to be that it is acceptable to destroy our environmental habitat for profits.
Q. Seven is a something of a ‘power’ number in The Redemption of Erâth; it crops up rather frequently. Is there any similar symbolism or talismanic aspect to your own writing?
I’ve used an old rhyme for Escape from Neverland and Dance into the Wyrd and worked that into the plot extensively.
“One for sorrow
Two for gold
Three for a girl
Four for a boy
Five for silver
Six for gold
Seven for a secret,
Never to be told.”
Thank you for your thoughtful answers, Nils—and I can’t wait for people to discover your writing!