Nathalie M.L. Römer Interview Published on: 30, Jun 2020

Were you born in Gusselby, Sweden? Since how long have you been living here?

I moved to Gusselby, where I live and work as an author a few years ago, after moving to Sweden in 2015. I've been an author since November 2014, and I credit the unhurried atmosphere of where I live for my writing efforts to date. Before I moved to Sweden I lived in Britain for 25 years.

Where did you meet your partner Anders?

Anders, who is native to Sweden, and I actually met by chance while we both played the game World of Warcraft. I'm writing a book (with his blessing) about how and why we met, so I can't go into much details (as Dr Rive Song from Dr Who says: "Spoilers.")

Did you choose to be a multi-genre author or did it happen with time?

I've always enjoyed reading books of different genres, The three types were and are fantasy, science fiction and mystery. I chose to be a multi-genre author as the most captivating books borrow from all genres. There is fantasy, mystery, adventure, romance, and even a trail of a whodunnit weaving through my fantasy series The Wolf Riders of Keldarra. I just pick genres and thropes that fit in a story, and as I'm a discovery writer (pantser) for the most part I find myself borrowing from everything I've ever seen used in storytelling no matter the original medium. If I know I can deliver a story of a genre or a trope I'll begin the work on it, and then, eventually, I'll have another book for readers to enjoy.

When did you decide to become a published author?

I don't think I can go into much detail of why for legal reasons, but I was aware of what is called "vanity publishing" (mostly as I worked in a bookstore once, long ago, as a temp job. The manager there taught me the earliest stuff about book publishing, though not much. The idea of writing books stems back from childhood, when a teacher told me I'd either be an artist or a writer. I was an artist for a few decades, mostly doing freelance advert design, but then I decided during Summer of 2014 to explore the idea of book writing. I was frequenting a forum of some sort at the time, and posted there I was going to work on a short story. This led to "a vanity publisher" (withholding the name for aforementioned reasons) somehow found out my home phone number (unlisted). They pestered me relentlessly. I saw in an article by SFWA an article about how they played a prank on a vanity publisher. So I decided to do the same. The "oh's" and "ah's" from the woman who called me when I read out the first lines from 20-30 books, with her thinking I was reading my manuscript... I kept my manuscript, which would later become part of Tainted Truth as far as I could from her (it's a later chapter in the book). From a good laugh over a successful prank I went to sitting on my bed and writing longform. By the evening I had 1,400 words written, a crude outline and a desire to finish the idea and publish it.

I succeeded in my goal, though it came with bumps in the road, and a process that taught me 90% of what I know now about writing, editing, publishing and much more, though I keep on learning more every day. But that I've grown as an author shows from a graph I screen grabbed from the app Fictionary, showing how closely I write to the typical story arc as shown in the image shared on my official Facebook page (see

Being a multi-genre author, which genre do you enjoy writing in the most?

I'm definitely finding my strength in the fantasy genre. I guess I've been influenced both by being a Lord of the Rings fan and also being aware of the backstory for the game World of Warcraft, which both demonstrated you can think big when it comes to creating a new world. But it hasn't stopped me from exporting the same methodology I use for creating a fantasy world to creating a bit of Earth that doesn't really exist. When I heard a comment that Midsomer Murders takes place in a village that doesn't exist I decided it gave me creative freedom to spin fantasy elements in our worlds of places of things that don't exist. The village in another book I wrote, which is due for re-release in 2022 (The Mystery of Priory Mansion) is set in a village that equally only exists in my book and not in the real world. Fantasy will always be the genre I enjoy the most (stares at the long list of projects in my notebook!) but I love to explore other genres. As I said earlier, it's more the question "Can I write something in this setting?" that drives me forward in my writing efforts than a favoritism of a genre.

What are the challenges of publishing independently?

The biggest one is that you do everything. But you can make it easier by planning everything. Everyone is aware of plotting a book. Plot the writing career as diligently as well. Yeah, yeah, I said I'm a pantser, but I do think it's important to have some notes and some ideas written for a book. Similarly, you need to understand what you do when you become an independent author, publisher, entrepreneur. You run a business. Your books are the products you create. You need to make certain you want to create the product you're selling. And when the book is done you put in effort to keep getting more and more interest in it. Not everyone has the big budget for marketing, so even if you're the "shoestring" person, still do as much as you can to publicise yourself. The biggest key factor of discoverability is that your book's metadata (title, author name, blurb, ISBN, etc.) is accurate and as much "filled in" as you can get it. In the end it takes just one person to think "this is an awesome book and all my friends need to buy it too" and so the person tells friends, and they do it too in turn, and you could end up selling many books suddenly. But book publishing is a long haul effort. It can take a decade for most authors to be "well known" and you need several books to improve your discoverability. Alone doesn't mean you're isolated. The others in the industry who also publish, sell, market, etc. are your greatest allies. I found my personal ally and friend in Orna Ross who taught me the number one thing that stopped me from giving up: "The more you write the better you get at it..."

In which year did you start your imprint Emerentsia Publications?

The imprint was launched in 2015 as soon as I began working on my first book. The name of the imprint is derived from the first name of my partner's grandmother, who was known as Emerentsia. She was a potter in Lindesberg, which is where my partner grew up. The imprint is part of the parent company Emerentsia Group which we're planning to incorporate as a partnership in 2021.

How did you begin writing The Wolf Riders of Keldarra series?

From the start I knew it was going to be a series. As I plotted the story arc for the series, the series went from three books to five books, then to seven, and after I found further plot holes in 2017 I settled on a nine-book series. I'm currently rewriting Book 2 and 3 for re-release (they were previously published), and I'm finalizing the first draft of Book 4, and expanding the plot for Book 5. The "how" part of the question can be answered by the fact I wanted to create a massive world for the story. The "why" would be answered by a desire to leave humankind a legacy, which is what I see as the primary thing I do with my writing. That's what every author should remember; you leave a legacy to the world when you publish books.

How was the idea for your book, Hidden developed?

I found a project on Facebook one day where the concept was for a number of authors to create a single-word title, i.e. "Hidden," and write their personal take of the story for it. Each week another was scheduled to publish their story, and the following week the next author would do this, and so on. When I chose my story I decided to tackle something so often "hidden" in society, which is depression, anxiety, and related illnesses. Personally I've battled with depression half my life, had bouts of anxiety attacks and have had to recover from PTSD (I'm not going into the personal details of what happened). So I injected a measure of autobiographical traits into a story of two friends who tackle the tough discussion they're having after months of drifting apart about why they've behaved in such a way when they're supposedly "best friends." Without spoilers, the story shows the reader they've got a reason to have this discussion. There's a follow-on book planned though I cannot give any details yet on scheduling.

Who inspired the character of Marrida in Stolen Truth?

Marrida is, in part, a mirror image of me. Like with the book Hidden, I tackle the topic of depression and PTSD in the series (Stolen Truth is Book 2 of The Wolf Riders of Keldarra, due for release on 1 December 2020 and available on pre-release ordering in Paperback and e-Book format on Amazon). Her backstory includes dealing with and learning to overcome the effects of bullying she endured while going to the Temple of Ruh'nar (at the beginning of Book 1, Tainted Truth) and as the youngest person there she stood out like a sore thumb. She has to overcome what happened because of the things that happen to her in later parts of the story (which I won't spoil here) but her story through the series is designed to be a story of growth, self-discovery, and learning to be a confident person. All of which I had to do myself once the bullying at school stopped for me. And then for good measure she's also learning to be resilient and not give up, which I'm learning now as an author...

What is the significance of the title of your book, Donta Naughty?

It's "Don Quixote" meets your worst romantic vampire setting. The explanation is revealed in the story. There's a bit of humour in the story too...

If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?

I began my writing later in life, but if I would tell the younger self dreaming about writing anything I'd tell her: "Don't be afraid."

What is the toughest criticism you've ever received? What was the best?

Interestingly both criticisms relate to the evolution of my book Tainted Truth. I published this book under a different title (still visible on Amazon if readers want to see the name of the book), where someone suggested it was the worst grammar, worst everything they'd written. Because I wanted to make the book better and didn't know how I had a heart to heart with Orna Ross. I pulled all my books down in late 2017 with the intention to rewrite and re-release (which according to Joanna Penn is something independent authors can do as often as they want). My plan was to be complete with the re-writing by the end of 2021, and I'm about 50% done with the re-writing now. Mind you, discovering ProWritingAid boosted my confidence in my writing skill enormously, and the accolade came when my proofreader suggested that for the size of book Tainted Truth she found few errors to correct. So the worst criticism actually became my motivation to become better at writing on all fronts. I'm a glass half full kind of person these days, so I only see the positive results when someone tells me the story could be better. I have taken a similar approach of improving each book that needs to be rewritten, and apply everything I learn to each new story I tackle.

Have you worked on some new plots during quarantine?

During the quarantine time I worked on Book 4 of The Wolf Riders of Keldarra, editing Books 2 and 3 of the same series, and yeah, even found time to come up with a few interesting plots. One is a futuristic alien first contact story and the other is a historical fantasy fiction story. In addition, I've also worked on creating a few stories due to be released in a number of anthologies in the next few years.

How has been your experience of working with AllAuthor?

Great! It has given me more followers on social media, and I can credit a few book sales from the site too from people who said they found me on the site and then went on to buy one of my books. I'll keep using the site.

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