Interview with Ana C. Nunes

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Barcelos, a small town in the North of Portugal. I can't say that influenced me much, at least not the town itself. It's people, on the other hand, are always a source of inspiration, for their habits, their lives and their way of thinking.
But two things about the town itself did influence me a bit; the history/legends (especially the castles and the legend of the Cock of Barcelos) and the river that is such and intricate part of the town.
One other thing that had a major impact on my writing was the proximity to the Gerês National Park, which is one of the most beautiful places around. That has always been a source of inspiration.
When did you first start writing?
I started writing when I was 14 years old because there was girl, in my class, who drew really well and wrote stories, and I was a bit envious of her, so I started doing the same: drawing and writing. We later became best friends and even wrote stories together. And as the years passed, my passion for writing grew bigger, after a few years' hiatus where I dedicated more time to drawing. But ever since then, I never stopped writing. Be it novels, short-stories or comic-book scripts. And one thing that never changed was my predilection for fantasy stories.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Lately I've been writing more short-stories and less books. But if we're talking about the latest book I released (which was, coincidentally, the first) then "Angel Gabriel - Blood Bound" is the topic, and I have to say it all started in 2005 when I had my first idea with vampires. Since I was in a comic-book-stage of my life, my first idea was to turn it into a webcomic, but what I soon realized was that I lacked the skill to bring the story across in that form, so I put it back for a while.
In 2008, on my first journey into NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) I decided to write this particular story.
The thing is, as I wrote it, it changed drastically from my first idea. Because it was supposed to be about three characters: Gabriel, Angel and Davet, travelling across Europe, in a time when vampires had driven the humans to near extinction, and their main goal was to save themselves; but when I started thinking about it, the story just lacked interest, so Gabriel and Angel became the main focus, and the journey turned out not to be just about them. Little by little, the story gained more layers, until it became so complex it was just impossible to put it all on the pages. So I had to select which information was primary, and which to not focus so much attention on, It was hard, at times, but in the end "Angel Gabriel - Blood Bound" is something I'm very proud of.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Two things: Rejection from Portuguese publishers, who seem very reluctant to support new authors; and the fact that, by going indie, I had full control over my work. If it failed, there was no one to blame but myself, and if it succeeded, it was all on me as well. That is both exhilarating and scary, but, from my experience so far, it's a good experience, for better and for worse.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Smashwords was my first choice for ebook self-publishing because of the way it treats and respects its authors, and also because it has partnerships with many distributors I would never be able to reach without its aid. I have no problem recommending Smashwords, for its simplicity to use, its services and its reader community.
Smashwords has helped me reach a much wider audience than I would've expected, and I love that it lets me give away my ebooks (for review or contests) and that it lest me be the one to decide which price to use, even if it's 0€ (Free).
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Taking the risk of sounding cliché, I have to say it's the joy to give life to characters I created, and put forth stories I unraveled.
Then, of course, it's knowing that other people might enjoy it just as much, or even more, than I did. Reading reviews is a risky business, but is one that is very fulfilling because I know that someone took the time, and effort, to read what I wrote. Be it a bad or good review, at least I know my stories were a part of someone else's life.
Still, the best part about writing is not the reader's feedback. At least not for me. That is, of course, great, but what really gets me writing is the need I have to tell stories. There are so many different ones inside my head that I just have to get them out and make them worthwhile.
What are you working on next?
Right now I'm preparing the publication of a fantasy satire, which will be released as an illustrated ebook. This satire will be divided in 10 parts, and each part will make fun of a fantasy stereotype, but it will still keep the same main characters and it will all be connected in the end. It's just a fun little project I've been wanting to publish for a while. It will be called "Heroine" and the first part of this adventure is "The Heroine and the Warrior". It should be out soon.
Who are your favorite authors?
This is always a difficult answer for me, but I have a few names that I always list: Edgar Allan Poe, Robin, McKinley, J.K. Rowling, João Barreiros, Luís Filipe Silva, Jim Butcher, Inês Montenegro, Rui Alves, Marcelina Gama, Leandro, among others.
And in the realm of mangas, I love the works of Minetaro Mochizuki, Masakazu Katsura, Dall-Young Lim, Chitose Yagami, among others.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Well, seeing as writing is nothing but a part-time job, for now, I spend most of my time working. When I'm not working, I like to be with family and friends, watch movies and TV-shows, and then I try to take some time to draw/illustrate (my other passion). I also like photography and nature-walks. And, sorry to say, I do procrastinate a lot. Can't help it.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Mostly it's through word-of-mouth, recommendations from friends and reviews on Goodreads. Sometimes I also find books through the recommendations on ebook sites. One thing I try to do is to keep up with what my fellow Portuguese writers release as ebooks. Since we're still a small group, it's always interesting to see what comes out.
Published 2013-09-01.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Angel Gabriel - Pacto de Sangue (Edição 5 anos)
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 122,870. Language: Portuguese. Published: April 28, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Dark, Fiction » Fantasy » Paranormal
Num futuro distante, a extinção dos humanos aproxima-se. A magia e o silêncio são as únicas armas eficazes para proteger a espécie. Prisioneira de um pacto de sangue criado pela sua própria mãe, Angel terá de unir-se a Gabriel, o mais poderoso dos vampiros Sekhmet. Juntos terão de percorrer a Europa em busca de uma solução para o seu problema.
A Heroína e o Vilão
Series: Heroína, Book 2. Price: Free! Words: 6,540. Language: Portuguese. Published: October 1, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories, Fiction » Humor & comedy » Parody
Teria sido uma noite como outra qualquer se a terra não se tivesse aberto debaixo dos seus pés, qual monstro esfomeado. E afinal o que é aquilo que brilha no cimo da montanha? Cabe à Heroína e ao seu fiel Mascote descobrir o que se passa e consertá-lo. Ou será que ainda vão fazer pior?
Um Toque de ... (antologia)
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 12,470. Language: Portuguese. Published: June 20, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - single author, Fiction » Romance » Short stories
O amor está presente em todo o tipo de gestos e acções. No cuidado com que se evita tocar um assunto sensível; Na forma como se fica a ver o outro dormir; Numa conversa à beira mar; Num post-it colorido; Num lugar vazio no restaurante; Numas mãos entrelaçadas ao som das ondas; Num jantar fracassado; Numa noite solitária; Numa negação. Mas nem sempre o amor resulta em felicidade ... (antologia)
A Heroína e o Guerreiro
Series: Heroína, Book 1. Price: Free! Words: 4,480. Language: Portuguese. Published: September 20, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories, Fiction » Humor & comedy » Parody
A grande e única Heroína, acompanhado do seu fiel Mascote , são a nossa última esperança. Conseguirão eles reescrever a história do planeta, ou serão eles a sua perdição? Não percam as aventuras ilustradas deste duo.
The Last Supper - A Christmas Tale of Horror
Price: Free! Words: 8,980. Language: English. Published: December 26, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories, Fiction » Horror » General
Christmas is a time when families are brought together , people who haven’t seen each other in a long time and who, on this day, sit together at a table, share stories, dreams, joys and a traditional dinner. But on this Christmas, one particular supper is anything but traditional. And what gets served is something very few ever get to taste. One simple meal can hold many secrets …
A Última Ceia - Um conto de Terror Natalício
Price: Free! Words: 8,630. Language: Portuguese. Published: December 23, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories
O Natal é uma época para a família, em que os membros que não se vêem há muito tempo, se reúnem à mesa, partilham histórias, sonhos, alegrias e uma refeição tradicional. Mas neste Natal a ceia é tudo menos convencional. Uma delícia que poucos têm oportunidade de provar. Uma refeição pode esconder muitos segredos …