What To Write

What To Write

As Fiction writers, we usually have ton’s of story ideas.

I know I do.

Sometimes I have trouble focusing on just one story at a time.

Has this ever happened to you?

I was set on writing my second Novel and I still am…but lately I’ve been writing something else on the side. A non-fictional piece for some reason I’ve felt I just had to flesh out a really rough draft outline of (or at least the part that was on my mind).

I’m definitely still working on writing Novel #2, but just wanted to know if anyone out there could relate.

Do you work on main pieces, but have a “side piece” story your writing at the same time?

Is it a bad idea? Good idea?

What do you think?

 

Until next time…

Nicole Alicia sig

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Why I Started Blogging

nicolealiciawrites.com

Writing is a funny thing ya know?

I originally found out about blogs, probably somewhere around the time I was a Junior in College, back in 2005.

I liked reading them and I often followed one’s dealing with poetry, since I was way into poets and poetry back then heavily.

I thought of posting some of my stuff online, but then I wondered where I would even have time to keep up a blog.

I mean I was a student, taking a heavy class load, involved in activities on campus (partying, mainly) and working.

So I dropped the idea.

Mainly, I kept my poetry on the pages of my notebooks and journals.

But, somewhere around 2010 I decided to start writing about some things that were going on around my city. That blog I started on Blogger, called “The Topic”.

I don’t remember what sparked this idea, other than I just wanted to voice my opinion and possibly entertain my friends and family while I was at it.

Thennnnn….

Along with the idea of writing a novel, I decided to create NicoleAliciaOnline.com. It was to be a lifestyle blog about any and everything. I talked about relationship issues and review different TV shows and movies. I guess my main purpose was to entertain, gain connections, while possibly inspiring someone along the way. That’s about it.

Kind of the same thing I’m doing now…

Why did you start blogging?

Let me know down in the comments…

Until next time…

Nicole Alicia sig

February Wrap-Up

February Wrap-Up

Hey!

So this month has been quite an eventful one news wise…

Personally, I’m exhausted trying to keep up with it all. I mean were already 3 months into 2018 and stuff just seems to be getting crazier and crazier out there doesn’t it.

Almost nothing makes sense anymore when I hear the news.

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But I digress…

On this last day of February 2018, I just wanted to check in with you my readers to see how things are going on your end.

How’s your year going so far?

Personally, I’ve been to two…count ’em…two funerals already (in the same month) and yep it’s only March so that was kind of depressing and zapped quite a bit of my energy.

On a more positive note, work is progressing on my second novel as I am currently at 14,000-ish words and counting. I’ve been distracted quite a bit, but I’m still struggling to stay at it.

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Well, I thought I’d just check in with you all to see what’s been happening on your end…let me know in the comments below how’s your 2018 so far.

Until next time…

Nicole Alicia sig

Top 5 Authors I Follow on Twitter

Top 5 Writers I Follow on Twitter

I love twitter!

More than ever, I enjoy following and interacting on social media. It can be very inspirational and helpful to connect with other writers.

Many different authors that I admire, were very successful last year. Here are just 5 I follow…

1. Nic Stone (@getnicced)-In 2017, she released her debut novel that did very well, “Dear Martin” about a young boy who faces racial injustices and during the course of his storm writes letters to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. This book is definitely on my Goodreads list of books to read in 2018. Her Twitter timeline is filled with tweets about herself as well, as well as other writers. I love that she shares her personal side.

2. Angie Thomas (@angiecthomas)-Her book, “The Hate You Give” is actually being turned into movie. It’s on my list to read this year and I hear it’s a real page turner! Angie tweets about current events, authors struggles and has a quite a sense of humor. Her bio states that “She love’s jesus but she cusses ūüôā

3. Nicola Yoon (@NicolaYoon)-Her debut book “Everything, Everything” was made into a movie last year. Her timeline is totally about diversity in litterature (yasss) and big ups other great writers.

4. Brit Bennett (@britrbennett)-Her book “The Mother’s” was one of my best reads of 2017! Not to mention, I got to meet her at a discussion and get a signed copy here in Kansas City last spring. She also writes some very interesting essays and Tweets about current events.

5. B. Love (@AuthorBLove)-Like myself she’s a self-published Author who writes fiction, Romance specifically. I find her tweets inspirational because she tweets about her writing process as well!

Curious as to who else I follow on Twitter or what I tweet about? Follow me at NicoleAlicia2

Until next time…

Nicole Alicia sig

What To Do When Starting A New Novel: My Process

 

What To Do When Starting A New Story_ My Process (1)

There’s nothing like starting¬† a brand new book!

For me, I get excited to dive into a new book. As a writer, I feel that same way!

When I started working on my debut novel, “Drama University” that I released last year, no lie it took me quite awhile to write and publish.

(A warning: for first time novel writers, it could take you awhile. The important part is that you finish and get that story out, so you can share it with the world.)

Thing is for most newbies, they think there is some magical formula that is attached to writing a novel. But, I found that to be a BIG lie. There is no exact formula!

You really do have to find what works for YOU and only you. But, today I’m going to share a little bit of my process with you.

I have written and self-published my first novel and am in the process of writing my second.

First of all, I think the hardest thing is to narrow down what you’ll be writing about. Well at least for me it is, and here’s why…¬†

With my first novel, I had a very broad idea that I was going to write about College life and center a female character around it. That was it. At the time, I was working a corporate 8 to 5 job and had my own little cubicle.

I kept a notebook with me in my little tote bag and would write at lunch (if I even got to take a lunch away from desk) and often use up a bunch of my offices’ sticky notes and notepads to jot down any notes for my story that popped in my head while working through out the day.

The main thing is narrowing down what you’re going to write about first. This may require some free writing, some charting, some bar graphs (I’m just kidding). If you’re like me, you have the gift and the curse of having too many d*mn ideas.

 The Plots & Outlines.

I’ve found it helpful to just write out a brief synopsis of what story you have in your head. A paragraph or two is alright. Remember, this is for you, so do whatever will help you get a clear idea of your story.

I understand some writers can just go and write and end up with a complete manuscript for a 1st rough draft.

This.is.not.me! I can’t do it.

I’ve tried to write with no outline and my story always come to a hault usually very early in the story because I forget what the heck I was going with this.

I am an outline-r! I love outlines!

They help me stay on track. It doesn’t have to be a text book type outline either with numbers and letters and subscripts either. If all you write is beginning, middle, end and that works for you. Do it!

Mine is a bit more detailed… (Check out the video below to see what one of my outlines looks like)

Once I have a rough outline, if I need to I go do research. Research in my next novel has been very important because it’s going to be a historical fictional.

Really that’s it! Really!

I could go into characters and arc and everything but I’ll save that for another post.

Oh and don’t forget to set yourself some goals! Think about when you would like to realistically finish your first draft. How many words will it take you to finish that thang!

Other than this, that’s all.

The major key to writing a novel is DON’T MAKE IT COMPLICATED! DO NOT CONFUSE YOURSELF!

As one of favorite comedians, Martin Lawrence says, “Nothing to it, but to do it!”

So get to it…

WRITE!

I know you can do it.

Until next time…

Peace, Love and Blessings

Nicole Alicia sig

Writing Inspiration: Music

Writing Inspiration_ Music

First off let me say that I love MUSIC!

I am a fan of many different genres and artists. I can mostly thank my Dad for my musical influence. That is one of the many things we have in common. At a young age I was introduced to soul and funk music of the 70’s, not to mention one of the best bands of the 80’s Zap and a music innovator by the name of Roger Troutman. Some how listening to these funky tunes at an early age stuck with me.

It became a love affair. The same albums my Mom and Dad had in their collection, I now find myself collecting (I could go on about this forever, but I’ll save the rest for another post).

Music sparks my creative juices!

When I write, I have to have it. It’s weird because if I’m reading or when I was in school I could not do homework with TV or music on. However, when I’m writing if I don’t have it, it throws me off entirely. (Does anyone else write in silence? I can’t do it!)

What do I listen to when I write you ask?

“There is no formula, rhyme or reason really.”

I do think it may be tied to my mood at the time though. Also, it’s depending on what I’m writing. But then sometimes it’s not. Sometimes, if I’m writing in a coffee house I just really need the music on for background music because the music there either sucks or their isn’t any.

When I was working on my first novel “Drama University”, I wrote to mainly Hip Hop and R&B of the early 2000’s. It was a mood setter for me. I made a playlist for myself on Spotify even.

“I was born in the 80’s and am a fan of 90’s R&B. I love a good playlist that includes TLC, D’Angelo and Aaliyah.”

I think we all gain inspiration as writers from different places, different people.

Music is just one of my inspirations.

Click [HERE] to follow me on Spotify to see what other songs that kind of motivate me to write and inspire me  to do my thing, which is WRITE!

Until next time….

Nicole Alicia sig

 

 

How’s Your NanoWriMo Going?

How's Your NanoWriMo Going-

Last week, I took a brief break from blogging. I was trying to hastily to figure out how to format the interior and exterior of my novel “Drama University”. (I’ll write a¬†blog post on this soon!)

Although I have my debut novel, coming out in 7 days, YES 7 days, I decided last month with all that was going on, and all that I had on my to do list for November to go ahead and keep the party going by participating in NanoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month). After all, I had been finished writing “Drama University” that is coming out this month, over 2 years ago! I felt ready to start work on a new novel!

I tried to participate in NanoWriMo I think way back in 2012, then again in 2015. But, I never tried to sincerely give it a sincere try.

This time I am!

In early October, I conceived an idea for my new novel and began formulating a plot and started an outline to which I honestly have still failed to complete. Currently, I only have a little under 2000 words toward novel #2, as of 7 days in.

Of coarse, I hope to increase this number. I know it doesn’t sound like a lot, compared to all of these other writers numbers out here right now. But, it’s were I’m at.

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Sometimes you just gotta go for it!

I am!

Have you ever just said,”what the hey” and went for something!

Are you participating in NanoWriMo this month? How’s it going?

Comment below!

My Novel Writing Process

My Novel Writing Process (1)

When I first got the idea that I wanted to write a novel, I felt overwhelmed.

I kept pushing the thought away that I could even be a writer, let alone write an entire novel. I thought to myself, who would want to read anything I have to written? But you and I both know if you have that attitude you wont get to far anyway.

When I started writing my first novel, I was 23 years old. I had been journaling and writing short stories off and on since I was about 5.

It was 2007, I started writing down my ideas for the story line. I knew it was going to be about relationships and school and that was about all I had. I kept thinking what else?Like, what was my story going to be about? Then I thought about who my main character was going to be.Then from there I wrote out some of the events I wanted to have occur and got more detailed about who my main character was and where she was from, etc. From there the wheels just really started to turn in my head.

At this point, I was using paper and pen only.

I love, love, love notebooks and journals (p.s. I make notebooks also and sell the over at Dear Alice Company). For some reason, I love the feel of paper and pen in my hands. It just feels more real to me. I am a bit obsessed with it. In the beginning, I would just keep a pad of paper on my desk at work and jot down little ideas about my story line or characters. At the end of the day I would tear off those sheets and take them home with me.

Even though I had a computer with MS Word on it, it was so super hard for me at first to just sit down at a computer and begin typing words onto this blank screen so I began writing my story in a notebook with pen. This turned into me filling up the entire 70 page single subject notebook with the first 3 chapters.

I would have loved to continue on like this, but I feared that if I kept going it was going to be entirely to hard to go back and type all of this handwritten mess. Instead I forced myself to type up what I had. From there I brought in my knowledge from past English classes and started a actual outline and kind of just filled in from there. I started like a I was writing a play and used Acts.

Yes, “Acts”!

If you’ve ever seen a playwright you have Act I, Act II, Act III and so forth and so on. I chose to divide mine into three different Acts and outline each chapter from there.

I know some writers don’t go in chronological order from the jump. I did at first, but then I hit a wall around say Chapter 5 which is the part of the beginning. I then started writing my ending chapter and working my way back and it helped me finish the rest.

Now I know many of you are like, “WOW it’s 2017 and you’re just now trying to edit and publish this thing?”

YES!

While I was writing this novel I had more than a few of life tragedies, health scares and the birth of my first child occur that have derailed me in my quest for publishing. I took breaks, had moments of why am I even doing this in the first place and time where I just let it sit for no reason at all.

Writing a novel is most definitely is a journey and not a destination! But, so is being a writer, period.

As with anything in writing or anything creative for that matter, you just have find what works for you. Disclaimer: This is only what worked for me. I am not writing a how to article just sharing my knowledge!

Do you want to write a Novel? Have you written a Novel? What was your experience?

-Nicole Alicia