For the second installment of Inkitt’s author Q&A sessions, we chatted to NicoleRidd3y! We gathered her reader’s questions and picked her brains!
NicoleRidd3y is known for her books on Inkitt, Trapping Quincy, Catching Genesis and Gideon. Let’s go!
How do you come up with the ideas for your books? What inspired them?
Sometimes I get ideas from watching a movie or read a story that doesn’t go the way I want it to go – it drives me nuts when that happens. I have to write my own version of how things should go. Most of the time, my ideas come from the weird and wild place called my head.
Sometimes these stories are inspired by life experience and sometimes they’re just from my imagination – you could threaten me or you could bribe me, but I’ll never tell which one is from life experience.
How do you plan your books?
I’d like to tell you that I write everything down in a super detailed and super secret document – I don’t. Like everything else in my life, I play it by ear, mostly. I usually write the first few chapters of the story, then I write the last chapter. The middle is just ideas in my head.
I mark the timeline of the story so that I know what time of the day, the day of the week, and also the year so that it won’t get confusing for me or my readers.
I also like to research everything, from the culture involved in the story, to the meanings of the names of the characters. A lot of the names that I chose for my stories are not accidental. For example, the meaning of Æmelius means “rival” or the name Thane means “the king/royal protector”.
What was your favorite book to write and why?
I think I enjoyed writing Catching Genesis the most because it’s my very first book and I didn’t think that anybody would read it, so I let my freak flag fly wild and free. Sometimes I was dancing or singing (badly) to myself or saying the dialogue out loud while I was writing it – that’s how much fun I was having with it.
What is your favorite scene to write to date?
I don’t think I have one particular scene that I enjoyed writing the most. I do enjoy writing the funny scenes. I think as a reader, you’ll get the sense of which scenes I had fun writing.
Which scenes are most difficult to write?
Most of the mature scenes. I love reading romance but I skip the mature scenes and I found myself blushing so much while writing them. Not that there’s anything wrong with people who like to read or write them – more power to you! It’s just hard for me, that’s all. Maybe I’m just shy!
Do you put some of your personal quirks into your characters?
I think I must have, even though not intentionally. For example, their love for food.
Which female main character in your books can you relate to the most in terms of personality and attitude?
Are you kidding me? They’re all so crazy and I’m so…not crazy.
Okay, seriously, I can relate to all of them in one way or another. Their inner monologues are my inner monologues sometimes, especially when I encounter rude people. The difference is, I’m not saying any of those things out loud. I’m a Canadian. I think most of you can relate to that. No?
If you were to choose, which of the fantasy creatures would you like to be?
A valkyrie, of course. She wore the coolest outfit and wielded the baddest weapons. I’m not fond of war or killing anything, so maybe I could use the weapons to win a competition or something like that.
The best part about being a valkyrie is being able to ride a horse through air and sea. No more flying on a crowded airplane for this woman!
Do you base your main male characters on someone that you know?
Nope! Maybe a few characteristics from my friends or brothers but not on one particular person.
Why didn’t you take the typical route where people make a faery sweet? Why did you make them tricky instead?
Because that’s how most of them are – tricky.
What are the challenges you face as an author?
Oh, there are many, but I’m just going to tell you a few right off the top of my head.
I think of writing as something that is enjoyable for me. So when I’m writing, I feel guilty for doing so and not doing something else that I should be doing, for example, sleeping.
The second one is meeting the deadlines that I set for myself, mainly because I don’t like deadlines and also because I’m very critical of my work. I find myself deleting the whole chapter often when I think they’re either too dull or too goofy. Starting the whole chapter all over again is a drag, so I find myself playing video games or reading a book for an hour or two before I can start writing again. That’s a big problem when I have a deadline to make.
I get distracted very easily too. If there’s something exciting happening around me, like someone is playing a game or watching a good show on the tv, it’s hard for me to keep my attention on writing.
How do you balance your life and your writing?
Writing can be consuming sometimes especially when you’re brimming with fresh ideas. It can be a bit hard when you’re bursting with ideas but you have other commitments.
If the commitment is to my family and friends, they win all the time.
The good thing for me is, I write mostly at night when everyone else is asleep so I don’t miss out on anything.
What advice do you give to upcoming authors?
I’m a fairly new author, but if I were to give advice, I’d say, write for yourself and have fun doing it. You can’t please everybody, so please yourself first.
Constructive criticisms are great, so consider them, appreciate them, and be thankful to those who give them but don’t let others tell you how to write your story. It’s the one thing that you have the control over. The story lives in your head to be shared so others can get a glimpse of them. Only you know the characters and how the story should go.
When you’re writing in an interactive writing app like Inkitt, try not to take any rude comments personally (most Inkitt readers are awesome, though). They don’t know you. Take time to cool down before you answer them, if you choose to answer at all, and try to be kind – the person might have a bad day or a miserable life.
What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
I love painting, sketching, reading, swimming, traveling, and watching baking shows. Yep, baking shows are great – I get to drool over the baked goods without gaining a pound and I get to feel accomplished even though it wasn’t me who’s slaving away, baking.
I also like to go out with friends for coffee or lunch or brunch or dinner…any kind of outing that involves food, really.
If you had to describe yourself in three words, what would they be?
Hmmm…three words? Disorganized, friendly, impulsive, and queen of procrastination. Ooops…that’s more than three words. Add bad at maths to the list too then.
Check out Nicole’s books and connect with her here: https://www.inkitt.com/nicoleridd3y