Interview with LJ Vickery
by Sherry Perkins
LJ Vickery writes when the muse strikes her — even if that means in the middle of preparing Thanksgiving dinner for twenty-eight! But the muse has been kind, allowing her to blend a love of historical fiction with fantasy and paranormal romance. She’s written about immortals searching for fated mates, a paranormal dating agency (in space, no less), and heroes, all while bookkeeping for a construction company, tending to an organic garden and practicing Chinese medicine.
She was kind enough to take a few minutes away from those Mesopotamian gods, lonely space truckers and heroes in hardhats to answer a few questions for readers and explain why being the plucky, strong lead is better than being immortal and all-powerful.
1. I know it’s a bit like asking who’s your favorite child, but what’s your favorite romance sub-genre to write in? Historical, paranormal, science fiction, contemporary? Why?
My first love is historical fiction, but when I found a way to combine it with paranormal romance, that’s when my Immortals series was born! Based on a group of ancient Mesopotamian gods, my books flit back and forth between their pasts, the seventeenth century, and present day.
2. You’ve talked about your success in your “day job” as a bookkeeper, but the muses kept speaking to you, calling you to write. Could you talk more about that? For instance, when did you first recognize you had stories needing to be told? Was the transition smooth between the two careers and do you have any advice on how to accomplish a successful transition–or even a balance between the two?
I still bookkeep for my husband’s contracting business, so I’ve managed to strike a balance, lol! It’s just that I’ve always had a writing bug, so when I dreamed–yes, I actually dreamed–up the premise for the Immortals on one Thanksgiving morning, instead of cooking dinner for 28 people, I orchestrated my family from my office while I frantically wrote everything down! Dinner turned out great, by the way! The moral of that story for any aspiring writer, is to use all the help at hand!
3. Fated mates and chosen mates–if you had to define them for someone who had never heard the terms before, what would you say?
I like to equate fated mates with true love! Just as some of us recognize who we will spend the rest of our lives with, (can you tell I’ve been happily married for 29 years?) my gods meet their significant others in natural situations, but even then it sometimes takes a while for them to warm up to each other! Once they know, however, they know!!
4. Has organic gardening, Chinese medicine and farm living better prepared you for physical distancing? What advice do you have for readers to successfully navigate the chaos of pandemic life?
I feel blessed to have my farming skills. We eat really well! My greenhouse is full of organic seedlings and micro-greens right now, and I plan to put up a lot (canning and freezing) for fall, in case things shut down again. I’d advise anyone who can to eat lots of fresh produce to boost their immune systems. That said, I can put away a lot of dark chocolate, too! 🙂
5. So, what does happen when a Mesopotamian god meets a contemporary American woman? If you could, would you chose to be immortal? Or the plucky, contemporary woman?
Usually when a god meets his human woman, he’s thrown off guard! These guys think they are so all-powerful, but I’d pit any of my human women against them, any day! I write strong female characters, and I’d certainly choose to be the plucky human, every time!
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