Author Nicolas W King first started writing when he was thirteen years old. ‘I remember writing a really bad X-Men fanfiction story at the time,’ laughs the writer, beginning his interaction with The Literary Juggernaut. Stating, nonetheless, that his first original story was a one-act play, which he gave to his theater teacher in high school, Nicholas, who works his day job in IT Support and tends to write at night, lets on with a smile, ‘She enjoyed it but could see I needed a lot more practice!’
Not Just an Author
Speaking to us about his first published work entitled ‘Blood and Stone’, which is part of The Atalante Chronicles series, the Florida-based author tells us that the original genesis of the series started in 2006. ‘But I didn’t start writing it until 2013! It took the better part of five years to get everything done and then another two years before I convinced myself to self-publish it through Amazon. I’m currently working on the next book in the series, The Crone and The Curse, which picks up six months after the ending of book one,’ the 40-year old shares.
A cross between an architect and gardener-author, we learn over the course of the interaction that Nicholas, who tries to schedule his writing to make it easier to focus on it specifically, always starts with an outline of the overall story for the book, including the big set-piece moments and the characters that are going to be involved in the story. ‘Then I’ll write up a rough outline of the chapter that I’m going to work on. Once the writing starts, things can and do occur to me. I ended up adding two or three extra chapters to my last book because I realized I was missing some key pieces while I was writing it,’ he explains.
‘Admire Stephen King Due to His Ability to Craft Rich Atmospheres’
On being asked if he favors any authors, Nicholas says he admires quite a few authors. ‘Tolkien would be the biggest one. The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings were the first big books I read as a kid on my own,’ he tells us, adding, ‘Stephen King is another one, mainly due to his ability to craft rich atmospheres. Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman are two big ones due to their work on the Dragonlance series.’ And since he is into writing Urban Fantasy, he avers that he’d be remiss if he failed to include early Laurell K Hamilton and Jim Butcher as influences! ‘They’ve made the Urban Fantasy genre what it is,’ he states.
An alumnus of The University of South Florida, Nicholas, who holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Creative Writing, states he had dabbled in writing stories for years before he decided to go to college. ‘While I was in college, I decided to pursue writing as a career. I still took the better part of a decade before actually putting my nose to the grindstone and started making it happen,’ he guffaws.
‘It’s Never Easy to Juggle Writing and the Rest of My Life’
Be that as it may, how does he manage to juggle writing and other tasks? ‘It’s never easy to juggle writing and the rest of my life because writing is a solitary activity,’ Nicholas says. ‘I do my best to make sure I schedule time for family and friends; I watch shows that I enjoy, and I take time to read new books. I’m also an avid reader, and I love binge-watching shows on Disney+, Netflix, Hulu, and the like.’
The author, whose work in progress besides The Crone and The Curse is an anthology collection set in the same universe, has also got a message for budding writers who might lose motivation if their works don’t do well. He says, ‘Keep at it! If writing is your passion, let nothing stop you. Not every book you write is going to sell. Tell the stories you want to tell. If you can’t get anyone to buy it, shelf it for a bit and come back to it later. If you’re self-publishing like I am, keep churning out the work. The only way you’re going to be successful is if you keep putting out work.’
‘Keep at it! If this is your passion, let nothing stop you. Not every book you write is going to sell. Tell the stories you want to tell. If you can’t get anyone to buy it, shelf it for a bit and come back to it later. If you’re self-publishing like I am, keep churning out the work. The only way you’re going to be successful is if you keep putting out work.’NICHOLAS W KING
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And is there anything that the author would like to change? ‘Greater empathy for our fellow humans is what I yearn for,’ asserts the author, who also desires to take Japanese and Spanish lessons in the future. ‘We need to concern ourselves more with the plight of other people and the effects our decisions have on them,’ he states. He then points out that we are the only species that can’t seem to find a way to balance our desire for self-interest with maintaining the quality of life for our fellows.
As the conversation draws to an end, he remembers some words he’d picked up from the Luke Cage series on Netflix. ‘Always forward. No matter what life throws at you, always move forward,’ he declares, thereby signing off.
‘Greater empathy for our fellow humans is what I yearn for.’NICHOLAS W KING
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