When she was a little tot, Nora’s mom got a library subscription for her. That, as they say, was that, and a lifelong love for books was born. Nora never stopped reading and doesn’t exaggerate when she says she devours books, rather than plain reads them. She started writing stories as soon as she could hold a pen and wrote her first full book as a teen (on a typewriter!). It took her waaaay too long to follow her dream to become a romance author.
Nora writes M/M romance, because hello, sexy boys, and likes her men flawed, strong, and a tad broken. She appreciates a little kink but insists on a happy ever after.
What do you love most about the writing process?
For me, the first few chapters are pure magic. Not necessarily the first chapters in the final book, because I don’t always write in order. But those first chapters that flow out of my hands when I start on a new book. They come so fast, so free, and there’s something breathtaking about watching characters come to life and unfold their dreams, hopes, wants, and pain. Once I get their essence, that’s when I know the rest of the book will follow automatically. All you have to do next is ask: “What would he do next?”
Is there a certain type of scene that’s harder for you to write than any others? Love? Action? Romance? Tragedy?
I have an intense dislike for conflict, so any scenes where characters fight are hard for me to write. The hardest are where the two love interests fight, because deep down, I want nothing more than for them to be happy. But I struggle with high-conflict scenes in general, which isn’t always handy when you’re a writer who needs to put her characters through hell.
Is there a message in your novel that you hope readers grasp?
I think the message in all of my books so far is that you’re okay just the way you are. No matter where you fall on the spectrum, or no matter your sexual preferences or kinks, or your emotional needs—it’s all okay. In my No Shame series, this is more prominent than in The Time of My Life, I think. I love to hear from readers who picked up on that message and let me know how it has impacted them. One reader sent me a message that she recognized herself completely in one of my characters and that for the first time, she understood that it was okay to be that way. That’s the biggest compliment I could ever get as a writer, that my book affirms people they’re okay and perfect the way they are.
Do you have a Bucket List? If so top 5 things on it
I do have a bucket list. The first version dates from 2003, so it’s been a while, but it’s amazing to see how much of that list I already realized. Example are setting up my own blog, publishing a non-fiction book, and publishing a romance. I’m still working on my goal to visit all the states of the USA. I’ll be adding quite a few this summer when I embark on a cross-country road trip with my son. There are also challenges I still need to work on, like running a half marathon and hiking the Appalachian Trail, but we’ll get there.
Have you ever gone to a convention? If so, how was it? If not, do you think it’s something you’d like to do in the future?
I love conventions. Last year, I went to the GayRomLit Retreat in the US and it was an amazing experience, even as a reader. I’ll be back this year as a featured author and I couldn’t be more excited to hang out with fellow lovers of gay romance. I’ll also be at the EuroPride Con in Amsterdam this year, another awesome conference for MM romance fans. I had planned to attend the UK Meet as an author, but unfortunately, I had to cancel due to a scheduling conflict. I really hope to meet tons of readers and other authors this year!
What is your very favourite holiday destination?
I love traveling, so any destination I haven’t been to before sounds great to me. That being said, I visited Ireland and Northern Ireland last year and that was truly special to me. The northern Irish coast was magical, and I deeply enjoyed a four-day hike along the coast I did there. This year, I’m planning to visit some of the great National Parks in the US, like the Grand Canyon, Yosemite, and Yellowstone and I can’t wait.
Denver is determined to realize his lifelong dream of becoming a singer. That’s why entering in The Right Note TV contest is the biggest opportunity he’ll ever get. After everything he’s been through with the boyfriend (now ex) from hell, he will not risk losing himself ever again, especially over a guy.
Judah has almost hit rock bottom. His dream to make it as a singer and musician is all but dead. Added to that, he’s broke and he’s about to outwear his welcome with his friends. Taking part in The Right Note is his last chance, but he cannot afford to show who he really is at the risk of permanently alienating his conservative family.
Denver doesn’t want to be drawn to Judah, ‘cause the guy spells trouble in every way. But the heart wants what it wants, and Denver seems unable to say no, even when Judah keeps switching from hot to cold on him.
When Judah meets Denver, he knows he’s in deep, deep trouble. He fights the attraction with everything he’s got, but Denver draws him in like the sun. Being with him comes at a price, however, and it’s not just jeopardizing winning the contest. When Denver’s ex stirs up trouble, Judah has to make a decision. Is Denver worth putting everything on the line for?
A little about The Time of My Life
The idea for The Time of My Life came when I was watching the blind auditions for The Voice. I wondered what would happen if two guys would meet and be forced to choose between their attraction and winning the show. I started doing some research and that’s where this book came from. I loved the setting since it’s completely different from what I’d done so far, and it was a lot of fun dreaming up this story.
Judah and Denver
As my readers know, I always create characters who are a bit broken, damaged if you will. That’s because this reflects reality. All of us carry some burden from the past, some scars and pain. Denver and Judah are no exceptions.
Judah is shoved deep into the closet, scared to come out because of what that would mean for the already fragile relationship with his family. This is a situation many on the LGBTQA spectrum know all too well, sadly.
Denver has his own skeletons, even if he’s out and proud. He’s just out of a bad relationship and it’s wounded him. This story is about two men figuring out how real the sparks that fly between them are and how much they’re willing to sacrifice to be with each other.
Excerpt from The Time of My Life:
“You can be pretty charming. You had LaVine eating out of your hand within seconds.”
The corners of Judah’s mouth pulled up, and Denver’s heart skipped a beat. “And how did I do that exactly? Be specific on the details so I can nail my interviews, you understand.”
He was flirting. Judah was pretty irresistible even when he was being an ass, but cheeky and flirty like this? Denver’s insides were a fucking mess. Should he call him out on it? And ruin this moment, this incredible experience of having that sexy smile aimed at him? Hell no.
“Well, there was this bowing and hand kissing thing you did,” Denver said.
“Hmm. A bit much for the interview, don’t you think? Any other suggestions?”
“Smile.” It was all Denver could bring out, his brain turned to mush.
“Smile? You think a smile alone will do the trick?”
Denver swallowed thickly. “Well, it’s a pretty nice smile.”
Judah nodded, broadened his grin. “Okay, smile. Duly noted. Anything else?”
Denver gave himself a mental shake. “Compliment her. Women apparently like that.”
“A compliment. Something like ‘I love your eyes’?”
On instinct, Denver closed his eyes. “What color are my eyes?”
“What?” He heard the confusion in Judah’s voice.
“You told me you loved my eyes, so I’m testing you to see if you even know what color they are. Women will do that, you know. You have to be specific in your compliments.”
“Oh.” Judah was quiet for a few seconds. “Your eyes remind me of the ocean on a perfect day. I grew up in the city, but I’ve always had a thing for the ocean, for being out on the water. Even the ferry to Staten Island does it for me. Somehow, when I’m on the water, I feel calmer, more at peace and free. That’s what your eyes remind me of, of that feeling.”
Come hang out with Nora in her Facebook group Nora’s Nook where she shares previews, sneak peeks, freebies, and much more: https://www.facebook.com/groups/norasnook/
To stay up-to-date with new releases from Nora sign up for Nora’s newsletter here: https://forms.aweber.com/form/54/1029699954.htm
You can also stalk her on Twitter: @NoraFromBHR