Featured Author

Our featured author for Winter 2019 is 18 year old Nicole Jackson. Nicole’s mind-blowing short story, The Bus Stop, is featured in the Imagine Anthology. We recently interviewed this upcoming author, and here’s what she had to say…

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What was the inspiration for your story?
One of my favorite things in the world is discussing plot ideas and stories with my dad. The Bus Stop was a conversation we had one day when my dad suggested “What if there is a bus stop that takes you where you are destined to go?” We talked this idea out for a few days and I knew I had to write it. Because it is a short story, I couldn’t include the FULL details and entire idea we had come up with, but I did the best I could to turn it into something short and sweet.
What book are you reading right now?
I am currently DEVOURING Saved by the Page by J.D. Netto. Everyone read this book, it’s brilliant.
Who are your favorite writers?
I could go on and on about different authors that have shaped my life, but a few authors that I am absolutely obsessed with are: The queen of fantasy, Sarah J. Maas (author of A Court of Thorns and Roses series), Tahereh Mafi (author of the Shatter Me series), Lindsay Cummings (author of The Murder Complex series), oh, and I can’t forget about the literary genius Ray Bradbury. I listen to his books constantly on repeat!
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
Oh wow, I actually remember the moment. It was my sophomore year in high school when I got the chance to go to my very first book signing. Now I am not exaggerating this I promise. During the signing, I was so enthralled with the fans and the author sitting at the podium. Suddenly it was like the world went silent for a minute. Everything slowed down, and I felt this feeling of certainty come over me. It was so strong. It was like this magical power inside my core. I have never felt anything like that in my life. I looked around the room with tears brimming my eyes because I just knew that this is what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I wanted to be an author. Everything I had written before the signing was just written for fun. I never cared about the quality or quantity in what I wrote. But that all changed in that one second. In that moment, I decided I would do anything to get where the author in front of me was standing. And that’s what I continue to work towards every day.
What are you currently working on?
Over the last 2 years, I have been drafting my own fantasy novel! I can’t really give any details about it yet because it’s still a work in progress. But I can tell you a little bit about a different project! I am also working on a fun spy adventure story! I have had this story simmering in my head since I was in 6th grade and am finally attempting to put my ideas on paper! It’s very slow going, but I am thrilled with what I have so far!
Do you have a message for other aspiring writers?
I would have to give other writers the advice that was given to me. At another book signing I went to, Tahereh Mafi was asked this exact question and this is what she said. “The only difference between a successful author and an unsuccessful one is time.” This really hit me hard when I first heard this. To me, I felt like all the secrets to success had been revealed. Especially since it came from the lips of the author who made me fall in love with reading! If she says it, it has to be true! Right? Whenever I get discouraged, I repeat her words to myself. Just because the words aren’t flowing the way you want them to right now doesn’t mean they won’t!
What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
When I am not writing or reading, I spend my time scouring the internet for great historical fiction TV shows! I’m currently obsessed with The Crown and Outlander! I also spend a lot of time working with my service dog Finnegan! He is a 2-year-old Golden Retriever and has A LOT of energy, so just spending time with him keeps me busy.
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The Imagine Anthology can currently be purchased on Amazon.com in paperback and e-book editions, or read for free if you subscribe to Kindle Unlimited.  Be sure to read Nicole’s story and subscribe to Songbird Publishing Group to keep apprised of her upcoming works! We can’t wait to see more from this talented, young author and expect great things from her.