A rainy night. A slick road. A car crash.
‘A puff of yellow dust blew from the vent, and the car filled with a strong sulfur smell. Laughter whispered through the speakers, then blared at full volume.’
Everything changes for Alexia Harper the night she leaves late from her waitressing job. When voices threaten her through the radio, she wonders if she’s gone crazy. Then lightning explodes close by, and Alexia crashes.
Following the accident, every day is the same. Every night the same nightmare stalks her. It’s like her life is on repeat, but she can’t shake the fearful warning her subconscious is screaming at her.
When Leland starts working at the diner, Alexia is drawn to him. He’s kind, funny and handsome, and he’s…familiar. It’s like they’ve spent the past eight lifetimes getting to know each other.
Now, the memory-like dreams make sense. She recognizes people she doesn’t know—and they are giving her clues; answers she desperately needs to stop the thing that’s coming for her.
– When and where do you prefer to write?
I love to write outside. Find me a patch of grass in the sun and I’m golden (except for my skin. That will be sunburned seeing as how I’m ginger). I do end up doing most of my writing in my office in the winter, but in the summer, as much as I can, I love to write outside. I get so much done on camping trips or even long car rides. Something about the air and the wind, I don’t know, it makes my brain move and think in much more interesting ways. But I do have to remember to reapply sunscreen or find shade. I wasn’t joking about the sunburns.
– Do you have a certain ritual?
Nope. I just write until my brain is done with that. If I haven’t written in a while and I know I should be, I write something new. Or something stupid that has nothing to do with anything just to make my mind work. I like writing and I figure the more I make it a formal process, the more job-like it will feel. It’s my escape and my writing is better when I let it free, so I find ways to push myself without it feeling like a ritual. No specific times or words I have to write. Somedays I write twenty thousand words. Somedays I look up ways to describe a certain head nod for two hours.
– Is there a drink of some food that keeps you company while you write?
Only if I’m stuck on something, and then it’s just whatever’s closest. When I’m really in the zone, I can go hours without food or water (or breathing?) and just write. It’s a really bad habit actually but, to me, its similar to when you’re reading something and just cannot put it down or focus on anything but the words in front of your face.
– What is your favourite book?
If I had to pick just one, it would probably be A Wrinkle in Time. I read it when I was very young, and it made me want to keep reading. It’s magical.
– Do you consider writing a different genre in the future?
Probably but only in the sense that Last Time She Died is paranormal and I don’t intend to stay in that niche. I do like dark fiction though and so my over arching genre probably will never change. I like to read many other genres, so maybe someday I’ll dabble in one, but for now, I’m pretty sure I’ll stick to dark fantasy.
– Do you sometimes base your characters on people you know?
Yes. I do this fairly often. Just never wholly on one person. If it looks like one person, their personality will be completely different. There isn’t anyone in any book that is based on one person. Even if I strongly base a personality on someone, it will only be my jumping off point. I find this especially helpful with smaller characters, so they don’t feel like 2D caricatures.
– Do you take a notebook everywhere in order to write down ideas that pop up?
Not everywhere. But I did download a dictation app so if I’m on my way to the grocery store or out jogging and I get an idea, I can get it out right away. I do take paper on all my camping trips though.
– Which genre do you not like at all?
You know, that’s a hard question because I like a lot of random stuff and there are a lot of things I just don’t know much about. But, lately, YA romance has become very hard for me to read. I went though a big phase when Twilight and the Hunger Games and Divergent were huge where I just read everything YA and I honestly really enjoyed most of it. And now when I try, I mostly cringe my way through it. And I don’t actually think it’s the writing or the books themselves, I think I just burned myself out.
– If you had the chance to co-write a book. Whom would it be with?
Co-writing books seems like a talent I’m not sure I possess. I’m really a panster and my ideas are so fluid that I feel like I would just annoy whoever tried this adventure with me. Also, there are so many books and authors that I love that it would be such a privilege to write with them, but I can’t imagine a story that would make sense if someone like Suzanne Collins and I teamed up. Since my writing tends to be very dark, I think I’d have fun with someone like Stephen King. Realistically though, I’m in a writing group and I work with an author named Donn Hess and his writing is beautiful and I think we could co-write something pretty cool.
– If you should travel to a foreign country to do research, which one would you chose and why?
For research? Hmm. I don’t know. I wrote a chunk of Last Time She Died in Barbados, but I didn’t do any research there and it doesn’t feature in the book at all. So, if I were going somewhere to research something, it would probably be England or Scotland maybe? I’ve always liked history and I do think both of those countries have fascinating pasts. That would be a lot of fun.
Thank you, Niki Kamerzell and Rachel’s Random Resources
About the author
Niki Kamerzell lives in Colorado and spends her summers out in the wild enjoying camping and fishing. Her favorite place to visit is Yellowstone National Park.
She spends her free time reading and writing and will read just about anything recommended to her. She’s been known to sacrifice eating and sleeping to finish a good book. Niki writes fantasy and has been writing for the last ten years. When not writing or reading, Niki is probably distracted by her Corgi or out hiking in the Rocky Mountains with her husband.
Her other distractions include driving around and singing off key with the radio and scrapbooking. Always willing to make things awkward, sarcasm is like a second language to her and, next to her passion for writing, probably one of the things Niki’s most proud of.