1. Can we start with your name and where you’re from?
My name is Nikki Ashton and I’m from Cheshire – Crewe to be exact, it’s not pretty but it’s home.
2. Most authors love reading, is this true for you and if so who was/is your inspiration?
I love reading and probably read three or four books a week. Everything I read is inspiration – I don’t mean I copy the storylines, but the different styles of writing. Writing in the first person wasn’t something I ever considered until I read other authors books. Now I love it as you can get so much more across to the reader. My biggest inspiration to start writing though was Marian Keyes. I love how she can make you laugh out loud and then cry with the next sentence.
3. What genre do you write in or do you cross over into many?
I have always written romantic comedy but recently have crossed over into contemporary romance, and absolutely loved the change.
4. If you could take any character from someone else’s book and make him/her your own creation who would it be and why?
Ooh that’s hard. I suppose it’d have to be Christian Grey, purely and simply because the books became such a phenomena. They gave EL James a tremendous amount of success and to reach that level with something that I’d actually written would be amazing.
5. When did you first start writing?
I’ve always written stories from the age of 7 and then wrote my first full length book about 15 years ago. I shelved it though until 4 years ago with the rise of self-publishing.
6. Do you plan every inch of your books or do you just let the words flow?
I do a rough plot line, write the first and last chapter and then just see where the words take me.
7. Who is your favourite character and why? (your own character)
As I write a character they become my favourite, so at the moment it’s Jesse Connor, the rancher in my book that’s coming out in the summer. Although Roman Hepburn from my February release, Roman’s Having Sex Again, is a very close second. Both are pretty Alpha Male but have a romantic side too. As for female characters it has to be Summer from Roman’s Having Sex Again – she sarcastic and strong and has a fine collection of amazing shoes!!
8. Was there an event in your life that triggered a particular book, or even a scene in a book? If so what was the book and what was the event?
The whole of my teenage and early twenties pretty much inspired my first book, Guess Who I Pulled Last Night? Some scenes were a little exaggerated, but generally the three heroines are me and my friends.
9. Are you working on anything at the moment? If so can you share any tasty morsels?
I’ve just finished a joint venture with Victoria Johns, so we’re currently doing edits for that. Other than that I’m doing the follow up to my rancher story. It’s about Jesse’s brother, Garratt and it’s going to be emotional.
10. What one piece of advice would you give to someone starting out?
Just do it, what do you have to lose? Oh and make sure you get a good team behind you in the form of an editor and proof reader. There’s a lot of competition out there and lots of discerning readers.
11. What do you do when you’re not writing?
Read and people watch for inspiration.
12. What is the hardest part of the whole writing, editing, marketing process for you?
The marketing side of things for definite. I love interacting with my readers but I never know how much it too much marketing, plus I’m not particularly organised.
13. We all have those friends or family members who make sweeping statements about our writing or the process, which is your particular bug bear?
The fact that people don’t take you seriously because you self-publish and don’t see it as a job. I have a part-time job and people always say ‘yeah but you get two days off every week’ – actually I don’t because I’m doing my other job then. I might have more flexibility but if I don’t write in the day I’ll probably be up until the early hours writing.
14. What is your idea of happiness?
My family. Spending time with my husband, or spoiling my nephews and nieces is when I’m most happy.
15. For this one I want you to showcase your creativity by painting me a picture, with words, of your ideal setting to write in.
Music plays quietly in the background, as the glow from the desk lamp shines onto the computer screen. The aroma of fresh, steaming, black coffee fills the air and there is a constant tap, tap, tap of the keyboard as the words flow easily. A voice from the sofa breaks into my thoughts as a bare chested, Micah Truitt says, ‘Okay stop writing now love, it’s sexy time.’
16. What makes you laugh/cry?
Observational humour makes me laugh, so I adore Peter Kay and Victoria Wood. I always laugh out loud at Helena Hunting books – she just has my sense of humour; coarse and smutty. I am quite an emotional person so lots of things make me cry, both happy and sad.
17. You’re stranded on a desert island and you can take three men/women who would they be and why? This can be practical or purely sexual in nature.
Apart from my husband being an obvious choice, family members would be difficult as I love them all dearly. So, looking at this purely from a ‘whoa, check you out’, point of view it would be; Micah Truitt, Pep Guardiola and Jamie Dornan. Without books or TV, I’m sure I’d find something to do!
18. What is your most annoying habit?
Self-doubt and being over sensitive
19. Please tell me about your books? For each one please send a pic (kindle cover would be perfect)
Guess Who I Pulled Last Night? This a story of three friends in their early 30’s and the ups and downs they go through for love. There are parts to the story that we can all relate to at some point in our lives.
No Bra Required, is a humorous, romantic love story about Lucy and Ed. After spending weeks in bed wearing a bobble hat, due to being unceremoniously dumped by her cheating husband, Lucy decides to make a fresh start living with her dad for a while. That’s when she meets Ed. But, in true romance tradition, things don’t run smoothly when his bitchy ex-wife, and mother of his son, suddenly appears.
Get Your Kit Off is the story of Molly Pearson, who doesn’t have children, but as the Player Liaison Manager for a premiership football club, does have twenty-two professional footballers and one jealous fiancé to take care of. With having to deal with problems from players buying zoo animals as pets, to losing their false teeth and a whole lot more, Molly can’t wait for the season to end. But, her life becomes even more complicated, when the man who broke her heart six years earlier, comes back into her life. Hail the returning hero, Joe Bennett, now one of the best footballers in the world and the club’s most expensive signing. Every woman wants him, every man wants to be him, and he’s returned for one reason only – he wants Molly back.
Rock Stars Don’t Like Big Knickers follows Luke and Martha. Luke ‘Luciano’ Mahoney is the arrogant and sexy lead singer of the mega rock band, Dirty Riches, and he finds it highly amusing that his flirting embarrasses Martha, his new housekeeper/cook. Despite a shaky start involving a naked Luke and a mortified Martha, they start to grow closer and their friendship starts to develop into something more, but will he ever manage to prove to Martha that he’s the right man for her.
Rock Stars Don’t Like Ugly Bras, is the second in the Dirty Riches series and is all about their Lead Guitarist, Jake Hughes and the band’s PA, Amber Mahoney, who also happens to be Luke’s cousin. Jake irritates Amber more than anyone she’s ever met before. Jake, however, thinks that Amber is sexy but scary. Now they’ve got to share a house for six weeks – what could possibly go wrong?
Cheese Tarts and Fluffy Socks: Complex, Enthralling Romance Novel Proves Sex & Work is a Cocktail Best Left Unshaken. The story zeroes in on a steamy one-night stand that, unknown to either party, is about to kick-off a working relationship that is far more than awkward. A hotel badly in need of investment, a young entrepreneur has been sent in to decide if it’s a good investment, but the daughter of the owner is…well…you get the picture.
Rock Stars Do Like Christmas Stockings, is the final book in the Dirty Riches series, and is all about Tom Davies, final member of the band to settle down, or so everyone thinks. What they don’t know is that Tom has been having a relationship with Jake’s sister, Abbie, for the past year. With one secret affair, one unwelcome Santa suit, five excitable children, four foul-mouthed band members and two days to organise a party for hundreds of people, Christmas is certainly going to be interesting for the Dirty Riches boys and their families this year!
20. Lightning Round:
Tea or Coffee? Tea
Cash or credit? Cash
Cats or Dogs? Dogs
Beach or Mountain? Beach
Summer or Winter Summer
Sweet or Savoury Savoury
Early riser or late riser? Late Riser
Morning or Night? Night
Christmas Tree – real or fake? Fake
Sex – Lights on or off? On (unless we’re in the car of course ☺ )
Thank you very much for taking the time to answer these questions.
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