Quick bio (for the lazy)
Live in Denmark. Been writing since the age of 18. Promised to type 1,000 words a day until I got a book published. Kept that promise 18 months and 13 manuscripts later. Have written and published +25 books. Lived as a full-time writer since 2017. Started translating my books into English in 2019. Prefer horror, fantasy and sci-fi. Prefer dogs, but like cats too.
Longer bio (for the curious)
My name is Nick Clausen* and I reside in Denmark, a small country in Scandinavia you probably heard about but can't locate. That's alright, I'll help you: We're kind of like neighbors with Britain, only a small sea between us (we're friendly neighbors nowadays, though we haven't always been - there was a little thing concerning some Vikings who would go about raping and murdering ... sorry about that, Britain!)
Let me start by answering a few things upfront. Yes, this is me speaking directly, not a translator. English is my second language, and I'm pretty fluent. But forgive me if you find any strange typos, I'll try to weed out as money as I can (that one was on purpose). Alright, with that out of the way, let me tell you a little about myself and my work.
Part One: Becoming an author
I was born in 1988, making me almost 31 years old, and I'm married to my public-school sweetheart. We live with our two stupid dogs (just kidding, they're actually pretty clever) and no kids yet - that's why I still have a surplus of energy and can write a lot of books.
If you want to read more in depth about my dramatic journey, I've made a blog post about it.
As a teenager I was just kind of drifting through life, becoming more and more restless, bored and depressed. I had no passion, no creativity, no goals. I started questioning if life really was supposed to feel so empty. I was 18 years old and working to become a carpenter and I hated it. The winters here can be pretty harsh, and just imagine waking up at six in the morning, pitch darkness outside, wind howling, two feet of snow, and knowing you'll be climbing about on a roof all day. Jeepers!
Luckily, my misery made my memory jumpstart, and I suddenly remembered my childhood dream of becoming an author. This was back in the day (God, I sound old) where e-books and Kindle weren't really that big of a thing yet, at least not in Denmark, so you had to go the traditional way of getting a publisher to accept your script - unless you were a millionaire and could self-publish. So, from that day I started writing 1,000 words a day.
I really struck a chord, and something within really resonanted. The ideas and the inspiration just came pouring in, I almost couldn't write them fast enough. A fire I had never felt before was now driving me, and I was so determined to achieve my dream I didn't care about the many rejections I got; I knew they were part of the process. I wrote every day and kept sending the scripts, getting back no after no.
Then finally (drumroll, please) I wrote a story called The Tide - and since the title is a link, you've probably already guessed what happened. It got accepted. I was over the moon. And more motivated than ever. I kept writing my 1,000 words and kept sending stories to the publishers. It wasn't all hits since then, I still had a few misses, but more and more got accepted for publication, and my body of work grew steadily over the years. I was finally able to become a full-time writer in 2017. Yay!
Part Two: Going indie
I thought that was the end of my journey. For a couple of years, it even felt like that. But something happened. Or rather, something had been happening for the past ten years, and I kind of knew about it, like everyone else in the writing or publishing world, but now I finally felt the impact of it directly. The market was shifting, and print book sales were going down drastically - they still are.
Books now had to compete with computers and internet for the attention of children and young adults - and guess who won. The libraries (which in Denmark are really important to authors trying to make a living) consequently had to pull back on the number of books they bought, and I found myself reaching fewer and fewer readers.
I almost lost my passion again. It might sound silly, but I would often find myself not motivated to keep writing on a story, because ... well, was it really worth the effort? Would anyone read it? It felt more and more like the books would just disappear after they were released. I don't just want to write my stories, I want someone to read those damn things too! Call me an attention seeking whore, but that's how I feel.
I started thinking about getting my books translated into English, which would enable them to reach a much larger audience, but the problem was financial. It is extremely expensive to get a book translated.
That was when I decided to give it a go myself. I felt fairly confident in my English - it isn't my first language, but a close second. So, I tried it, and it turned out decent. I try it again and it went a little better. Third time around, I felt like I was getting a hang of it. I ran it through some native English speakers and the feedback was very positive. So I began publishing on Amazon and building my website.
I'll write a blog post soon about the details of how the translation journey went.
And that is why you're reading this right now. Before I knew it, I was an indie author, starting completely over in another language. Except I can publish my stories a lot faster, because I only need to translate them. The coming months will be very exciting for me, with a lot of publications - I hope you'll follow along. Until then, thank you for reading!
*) I have a middle name too, but you won't be able to either read it or say it out loud, so what's the point in telling you? Alright, it's Høholt. There. Happy now?
Keep in touch (what!? no social media?)
It's true, I don't have either Facebook or Twitter. I'm sorry.
But I still would love to hear from you, if you have comments or questions about anything. I would also love to get your feedback on the books! You're welcome to contact me.
You could also write a review on my Amazon-page or my Goodreads-page. If you share your honest opinion about my books online, please know that you're helping others to find my books and that I greatly appreciate it! It's not easy starting from scratch as an unknown indie author. Thank you!
Get free stories (yes, plural)
I've written a lot of short stories. Some of them are already available in English (check out my Chills & Creeps-series) and some I'm giving away for free. If you sign up for my mailing list, I'll send you one of them right now and the next one tomorrow. I won't send you anything else, except for brief notices when I have a new book out. It's absolutely free and you can unsubscribe anytime - although I would be sad to see you leave.
Trying to look casual for the camera and failing.
My dogs like taking selfies.
If you're ever in the neighborhood ...
How did you begin writing?
Please see the longer bio above, or this blog post.
Why do you write in the fantastic genres?
Because they are fantastic! It was the kind of stories I was attracted to as a kid, reading a lot of Stephen King, Neil Gaiman and the likes. That sense of the world being bigger than we think always appealed to me, and it's still something that inspires me to write stories.
What's your favorite genre?
Now, now, genres are just a way of cataloguing fiction, and all stories should be appreciated equally, because—
Sorry about that. It's science fiction. My favorite genre is science fiction.
What would you have been if not a writer?
I would have found something else to create and share. I think it just might have been chicken coops. I know, it's not very authorly, but we have backyard chickens, and I really enjoy building things out of wood, so I'm pretty sure I could design some neat coops.
Where do you get the ideas from?
That's a tough one. I'll have to pass for now, but promise I'll do a blog entry on it soon!
Who is your favorite author?
Stephen King, hands down.
Which one of your books do you like the best?
That's like asking a parent which one of their children they love the most. It wouldn't be fair to the others if I answer. (But the first book is always special, and The Tide was my first book. But don't tell any of the other books I said that!)