In the Spotlight with Bayou Book Junkie: Author Aimee Nicole Walker
Hi Aimee Nicole Walker and welcome to Bayou Book Junkie. Aimee Nicole’s known for her Fated Hearts series, which recently ended after book 7, and she’s just released Dyeing To Be Loved, book one in her Curl Up And Dye mystery series, which is a bit of a departure for her. I say that, as DTBL isn’t a tale that ends in a full-on HEA, which I’m used to from her, but in the start of the leads’ journey to a HEA. It does have more than a HFN feel to it, to reassure readers and fans, and we at BBJ can’t wait to read more. Which is why we just had to go and invite her over so that she could dish the dirt, spill the beans, blab to her heart’s content, etc. etc. etc. So, without any more from me, here’s Aimee Nicole herself.
BBJ: Hi Aimee Nicole, and welcome. We really, really, really need you to tell us all about yourself and the world of ANW, as try as we did, we couldn’t find very much on you. Is that deliberate? Are you going for some sort of woman of mystery thing? If so, you’ve done it in style, but we have to confess that we don’t like that. No ma’am, not at all. 😉
AIMEE NICOLE: Thank you for having me. I’m truly excited to be here. Woman of mystery? No, I just think I’m boring. I do consider myself somewhat private, but I share pictures of my dogs with my readers on Facebook and will sometimes include a photo of my daughter because she doesn’t mind her picture being made public. I talk about my life, but I don’t post pictures of myself. I did go public with my battle with breast cancer this year because I wanted to stress the importance of early detection. I think I’m just an ordinary person who’s blessed to make a living off her overactive imagination. I love sports, baking, cooking, I know how to quilt, and I love watching those videos on how to paint fancy fingernails. I can barely put a coat of polish on without getting it all over me.
BBJ: So, what made you go from writing stories that either end in a solid HEA/where we see the leads cementing their HEA in the next book in the series, to a book where the leads’ HEA, pardon the pun, is a WIP?
AIMEE NICOLE: Honestly, Josh and Gabe’s story can’t be told in one book – not even a super long one. I knew from the very beginning that Josh was not the kind of guy who would reveal his past hurts quickly or even efficiently. I’m writing book three now and I’m still learning about his past. Also, I liked the challenge of writing this type of series over Fated Hearts. It’s much more challenging for me to slowly roll the story out and build the relationship over a series of books, but I think it suits me well.
BBJ: And what inspired you to dream up Gabe and Josh? How many books do you have planned for them and how quickly are you aiming to release them?
AIMEE NICOLE: Josh came to my mind about the time I started writing the Fated Hearts series in the fall of 2014. In this case, I cannot point to a single incident that triggered Josh’s creation. He came out of nowhere and feels like a part of my soul that I’m unleashing onto the world. Whereas, the Fated Hearts series began with a picture of a man reading in bed. He wore glasses and looked like Clark Kent. He immediately became my Grayson Wright. That one photo helped create seven books. Josh was demanding from the start and wanted his story, but I made him wait while I wrote seven books. It wasn’t easy to do, but I had no desire to go back and forth between the two series.
I am planning four books for Gabe and Josh and a spinoff book for Doctor Dimples. That being said, a new character just moved into the house next to Josh and I think he’s going to want his own story. I’ll have to see where it takes me. I announced the book two release date at the end of the DTBL epilogue and I’m right on track. Something to Dye For is coming on January 3, 2017. I’m planning to release book 3 on March 7, 2017, book four on May 2, 2017, and Doctor Dimples on July 11, 2017.
BBJ: Could you describe a typical day in your life?
AIMEE NICOLE: Here’s where it gets boring. There’s coffee and music to wake up my brain. Music is my biggest source of energy to do anything in life. Then I sit down at the computer and start to work. On most days, I have no idea what I’m even going to write. I’m not a plotter at all. I may have a few plot points I know I want to hit, but I never know how they’ll connect until they do. I have a morning writing session and an afternoon writing session that sometimes bleeds into evening hours. I wind down with music after work. We eat dinner as a family around the dining room table then I spend the evening with my husband. I’ve been watching the show Arrow on Netflix to unwind before bed. I bet most readers fell asleep just now.
BBJ: What made you decide to end the Fated Hearts series where you did, or is it a case of never saying never? Might there be shorts/snippets/freebies/a catch-up story/all of the former at some point?
AIMEE NICOLE: It’s “so long for now” and not “goodbye” for the Fated Hearts series. I am planning free shorts on my blog to stay connected with the characters and I would like to write a few spinoff books for some of the characters we met throughout the series. We’ll see what happens after I finish Curl Up and Dye. There’s a standalone novel that’s been rolling about for over a year that I might tackle next. I would love a Fated Hearts Christmas novella at some point in the future so maybe 2017.
BBJ: Can you see yourself collaborating with any other authors?
AIMEE NICOLE: Funny you should ask. The answer is yes and that’s all I’m at liberty to say right now. Stay tuned!
BBJ: If you had the chance to make one of your books into a film, which would you choose and why, and who would you cast as your leads?
AIMEE NICOLE: It would be the Curl Up and Dye series. I’d prefer television over a movie, but I would have no idea about a cast. To be honest, having my books show up in a series or on the big screen has never been a goal.
BBJ: What do you think about Andrew Christian undies? Sexy? Daring? A little…tacky? Niche? Brave? Anything else you’d like to add? And, what do you think of the models, and no, we don’t buy that you don’t know what we mean. 😉
AIMEE NICOLE: Ha! Josh is a huge fan of Andrew Christian undies. He’s made Gabe a fan also. I think the undies are sexy and they offer a wide variety. I think the models are sexy men.
BBJ: Can you tell us a little about how you’re feeling as a US citizen following the 2016 presidential election?
AIMEE NICOLE: Privately, I am very passionate about my politics. Publicly, I usually steer clear of controversial subjects like religion and politics. The fear and uncertainty that many Americans feel right now is tangible and you can almost feel it pulsing in the air. I wish I could calm and soothe those fears or that someone could do the same for me.
BBJ: Describe your books and your writing to new readers deciding on whether to take a chance on you or not.
AIMEE NICOLE: Hmmmm. This is always the hardest question to answer. What I hear from my readers most frequently is that my stories pull them in and my characters feel real to them. They feel like they’re part of the story rather than just being told a story. They tell me that my characters stay with them after the story is finished.
BBJ: Will you be attending GRL/RT/RWA or any other conferences next year? Any plans to come to London or Europe, too? Please?
AIMEE NICOLE: I do hope to attend GRL in 2017. I don’t have any immediate plans to travel abroad, but I’d truly love to visit the U.K.
BBJ: And now, the quick-fire round:
What are your plans and hopes for 2017? My plans and hopes for 2017 are simple: stay cancer free and continue to grow as a writer.
Who’s the most romantic, you or your hubs, and why? Neither my husband nor I are very romantic people. I would say we’re considerate and thoughtful, but not overly romantic.
What’s the best thing about the US? The best thing about the US is our diversity and how geographically different we are from coast to coast. I like the different regional foods also.
What do you bribe your brood with, and how often? No bribes with the brood. Mom and Dad are the law of the house and we won’t be disrespected.
Finally, Joe Manganiello or Matt Bomer? (Er, you’re allowed extra time to
ogle, drool…research and compare, perhaps even watch Magic Mike 1&2, in the interests of fairness and accuracy, of course. 😉 I like both Joe and Matt, but I’ll go with Matt. Here’s a confession for you. I’ve never watched either Magic Mike movies.
Thanks for popping in, Aimee Nicole. We hope you had fun and can’t wait for more of Gabe and Josh.
And don't miss out on the Exclusive Cover Reveal for Something to Dye For, book 2 in the Curl Up and Dye Mysteries series, it really is to die for!
Other than feeling a bit lost at the beginning of the book wondering whether or not this was a follow up to another book or a standalone. I found Josh and Gabe very entertaining. They had great chemistry and their banter was amusing. Josh, or as some of the town folk call him Jazz, owns the best Salon in town. After an altercation in his shop between the town's former and current First Lady, Former Mayor's wife Georgia Beaumont is found murdered in her home. While most people know there is no way that Josh would kill anyone Detective Gabe Wyatt has to question him. Unfortunately for both Josh and Gabe they share a brief history with one another. Gabe wants the chance to spend more time with Josh but Josh definitely doesn't feel the same as Gabe, having had his ego bruised overhearing Gabe disparaging him. Fate seems to keep throwing them together as evidence points at Josh. Gabe knows it can't be him but he has to question him. Things don't change for Gabe, he still can't give up on Josh. Too bad there's a killer on the loose. This was my first book by Aimee Nicole Walker but now that I have read this story I know I will be reading more of her books. The writing was very well done and engaging. The characters were fun and likable and I found myself easily connecting to them. All in all, I would definitely recommend Dyeing to be Loved! 4.5 Stars!
*Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie by the author/publisher for my reading pleasure in hopes of an unbiased opinion, a review was not a requirement.*