Today the Indie Spotlight falls on fantasy author Nichelle Rae!
Nichelle Rae, fantasy’s newest author, was born and raised in Massachusetts. Her love for writing began when she was 14 years old and she wrote short stories about meeting her favorite music group at that age. She received so much praise and complements on her writing ability that it quickly became a passion of hers. Throughout the years she has gotten much praise from peers, professors, and professional author’s she’s had a chance to work with about her writing and her ability to put emotions into text.
The White Warrior Series is her debut fantasy series she’s publishing as an independent author which will consist of seven books total. Nichelle already has begun three more fantasy series that she hopes to publish in the future after The White Warrior Series.
When did you first know that you wanted to be a writer?
This is a slightly complicated question. I always enjoyed writing from the day I realized people loved my work. But writing was always just something I enjoyed doing, nothing I really considered as career option. It’s taken years of praise and complements from a variety of people, peers and professionals, on my writing abilities to think it might be something worth pursuing more seriously. The moment I really made the decision to be a published author, was right after I sent out a sample of The White Warrior series to some close friends of mine. I was just looking for some critiques but the resulting excitement, and overwhelming praise really lit the fire for me to go after this; even if only to get my book out to these close friends of mine who suddenly wanted it so badly.
I guess there wasn’t really a defining moment of when I decided I wanted to be a writer, it’s just something I’ve always done and enjoyed.
What do you find easiest about writing? What the hardest?
The easiest thing about writing, for me, is my characters. They come to me so easily it’s sort of frightening. I understand them immediately when I start a new story. I know how they will respond to situations and progress the story along with their reactions. This might sound super weird but I sort of build a relationship with them while I write. I come to care about them as people. I worry about them when they enter a situation that seems to be too much for them, and I’m relieved when they come out the other side of said situations. I legitimately fall in love with every character I create. I cry if they die and rejoice when something good happens.
The hardest thing about writing is marketing your work. It’s difficult to get the word out and have people listen. Fellow authors are usually concerned with getting their own writing out that they can’t pay much attention to other authors. On the same token, the general public isn’t going to listen to a nobody debut novelist. It’s hard to be heard.
Talk a little about your debut novel “Only a Glow”.
“Only A Glow” starts the journey of Azrel, Rabryn, and Ortheldo across their land in hopes to save it from another age of the evil Shadow God’s rule. Azrel’s journey however, isn’t just across the land she lives in, but it’s a journey of healing and self-discovery that she needs to take.
It’s a journey of accepting who she is and to do something great with it. The end of the book isn’t just about whether she wins or loses the battle to save her world (though that’s still a huge part,) but also to see if she can overcome her own self-hatred and become everything she was born to be. Or to see if she will fail and destroy herself, thus the world becomes destroyed with her. It’s also interesting to see how she overcomes some obstacles and how she often fails at overcoming others.
How would you describe the success of your book so far?
Surprising! I’ve gotten some really stellar reviews in my email, in Facebook messages, on Amazon and Smashwords! I average about 3 – 5 downloads every day on Smashwords. It’s slow going but I was prepared for that. I understand that it takes a while for an unknown author to get on the radar, if I’m meant to be on the radar at all. If not, well, I love writing and I’m going to keep doing it because life doesn’t make sense if I’m not writing. Being successful at what I love to do would just be a bonus. I’m not doing it for the success; I’m doing it because it’s what I love. I will get all 7 of my books in this series out whether the world wants them or not, because I want them.
Can you give some tips for other Indie Authors regarding the writing and self-publishing process?
First, and the most important advice I can give from my limited experience as an indie author is this: While you’re writing your book and getting it ready to publish, find as many bloggers in your genre (even some that are not in your genre) as you can and become fast friends with them. Bloggers ARE the marketing tool for independent authors! You cannot get the word out about your book without them. Blog shop and blog shop a lot.
Second, when self-publishing a book you have got to read up on what is needed and required. Do your homework. That is the best advice I can give. Don’t jump into this blind. You could save yourself a lot of time and hiccups/issues. When I started going full force with getting this book out, I did it in 5 months, which is pretty good timing I think considering everything that needed to get done…which was a lot!
Finally, do your book your way! Get advice and ideas from people and successful authors but ultimately do your book how you want it done. Your uniqueness will make your book stand out and it will truly be your own. Make sure you are happy with it, not that anyone else is happy with it, because it’s your book, no one else’s. You have to live with it and look at it forever, so make sure you love what you’re seeing.
How can readers connect with you?
I am a huge Twitter nerd and I’m ashamed to admit it. I’m on every single day. Follow me Twitter and we can chat. You can also contact me via my website or you can just email me at Nichelle_Rae@yahoo.com. Thank you so much!
Thanks, Nichelle, and best of luck with your newest book!
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