Interview: Pamela Palmer

NRR: Can you share with us how you got started into writing? 

I first thought about trying to write a book (a Silhouette Intimate Moments since that's what I was reading at that point) soon after college. But I had no idea what I was doing (an engineering major, I'd never taken any writing courses beyond Freshman English), and when I got stuck I got discouraged and really believed I just didn't have the talent. I thought a 'real' writer would certainly know what comes next, and I didn't have a clue. I'd love to go back in time with a stack of the writing books that ultimately opened up the craft for me, shove them into my younger self's hands, and tell her to get to work. “This can all be learned. The only thing you must have to be a writer is stories to tell.” And I had those in abundance. 

I got there, eventually, but it was almost ten years and two kids later that one of those stories (or daydreams) got too big to keep in my head, driving me to the computer. The difference this time was a brand new library down the street where I accidentally stumbled upon shelves upon shelves of how-to-write books. And I realized I could absolutely learn how to craft the stories I kept dreaming up. 

NRR: What authors helped inspire your writing career? 

My very favorites in those early years were Nora Roberts and Elizabeth Lowell.  There wasn't much paranormal romance back then, unfortunately. It's my absolute favorite today. 

NRR: What is a day in the life of Pamela Palmer like? 

It depends, of course, but in general, I like to exercise about an hour-- strength building or step class twice a week and Tae Kwon Do three times. I just took up Tae Kwon Do last summer and I love it! Then it's time to get to work and I'll generally work until eight or nine p.m. I tend to write in one-hour spurts with short breaks in between. I find that an hour is about as long as I can focus before I pop out of my chair. Or until I HAVE to check the internet. The best software program I've found is called Freedom and literally locks you out of the internet for the amount of time you specify. I set it for an hour at a time during which I can't check my email. I make myself write until it goes off again. 

In the late evening, I either watch a television show or two, or read. 

NRR: How were you inspired to write the Feral Warriors series? 

The Feral Warriors series actually sprang from a single idea--a young woman stolen from her ordinary life by a huge, gorgeous man claiming she's not human, that she is, in fact, the savior of his immortal race. If you've read any of the Feral Warrior books, you might recognize Kara and Lyon in that scenario which  ultimately became one of the first scenes in Desire Untamed, book 1 of the Feral Warriors series. When I first came up with the idea, I didn't know what this gorgeous man was, only that he was immortal. As I thought about it, the world began to unfold for me--the fact that the man was a shape-shifter, one of the nine remaining shifters in the world. That each of the nine shifted into a different animal. And that these nine immortals are all that stand between us and the Daemons who are battling to escape their magical prison and bring hell to Earth. 

NRR: All the Feral Warriors capture readers hearts! Which one would you say you can relate to the most ( I know that is a tough one) ? 

Ha! It's like choosing one of your children over the others. No, actually, it's worse, because I've lived within the hearts and minds of each and every one of them. At least the ones whose stories I've told. In order to write them, I have to KNOW them. In some ways I have to BE them, or at least channel them, for a time. And knowing them that well, I relate to every one of them, and ache for them when their lives are falling apart. 

That said, the one I can probably relate to least, yet who entertains me the most, is Jag. That Feral is so bad, yet he always has me laughing. And, yes, I write the books, but I never know what's going to come out of that Feral's mouth until my fingers are typing it. He's incorrigible, but I adore him. I love all of them. 

NRR: What is your guilty pleasure? 

That depends on what you consider 'guilty'. My addiction to Vampire Diaries and True Blood are perfectly normal in my world. Right?  

NRR: How long does it take to put a novel together?

That's a good question! I wish I had a good answer. Actually the real answer is probably: however long I have to write it. The quickest I've written one is two and a half months. The first three books in the Feral Warriors series weren't originally scheduled to be released back-to-back, but nine months apart. But when the editorial/art/marketing departments sat down for the cover conference on Desire Untamed, they came up with the idea of releasing the first three back-to-back. My editor told me she had to do a 'time-out'. “I have to check with Pamela to see if she can do it.” Pulling the next two in wound up giving me four months to write Obsession Untamed, which I was already working on at the time and two and a half for Passion Untamed. I had no idea if I could write that fast, but I've always loved a challenge and I did like the idea of the back-to-back releases, so I said yes. Writing Paenther's story (Passion Untamed) was one of the most intense and, ultimately, rewarding writing experiences of my career so far. I lived those two and a half months in a nearly perpetual state of half-panic, adrenaline pumping constantly. I cancelled everything--exercise, social events, you name it, and wrote from the moment I got up in the morning until I went to bed at night, seven days a week. Intense. But I never left that world once I started that book, and it wound up working really well. I kind of like that half-panic state, but it's not something I've ever been able to get myself into with false deadlines. They have to be real. The book I just finished, Ecstasy Untamed took me nine months because I had nine months. And because there is a lot going on in that book. On average, six months is probably a comfortable amount of time for me to put together a book. 

NRR: Can you share with us a little about Hunger Untamed (of course no spoilers)? 

At the end of Rapture Untamed, Tighe and Hawke fell into the same kind of Daemon spirit trap that destroyed seventeen Feral Warriors centuries ago. The seventeen Ferals died back then, their animals never to return to mark another. And with the soulless Mage trying to free the Daemons again, the remaining Feral Warriors cannot afford to lose two more animals, to go from nine to seven, permanently. Besides, Tighe and Hawke are their friends, their brothers, whom they're desperate to save.

Only Kougar knows of a way to save them, but it requires the help of the Queen of the Ilinas, Ariana, Kougar's mate. For a thousand years, he thought she was dead and her entire race of female mist warriors extinct. Only recently did he learn the truth of her terrible betrayal of everything they'd once meant to one another. He despises her for what she did to him, and believes her soulless. The last thing he wants to do is see her again, but she's the only chance they have of saving Tighe and Hawke. 

NRR: What else can fans expect to see from you this year? 

Book 6, Ecstasy Untamed, will be out November 29th! I haven't revealed the hero of that book, yet, and have been telling everyone I won't until the bookcover comes out in June (and the animal on the front gives the game away). But I'm fielding this question over and over again daily, so I think I'm going to have to give up the answer before then. But not yet. Maybe in March, after my hardcore readers have had a chance to read Hunger Untamed. 

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