Interview with Alisha Nocks

Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I don't remember the first story I ever wrote. However, the first story I recall writing was about being seated at a booth next to the drive through at a Burger King with a group of friends eating a donut. My crush drove passed the window to use the drive-thru, looked in and waved. I took that donut and chucked it under the table. My friends were cracking up. I still had like half a donut left. Ooh I regretted throwing that donut on the floor.
What is your writing process?
Crazy. My process is crazy. I often get inspired by a song title, hashtag or catch phrase and make that a title or theme and write as much as I can until I veer off topic (as I tend to do).
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs was my jam. There were barely any words on the pages. The imagery just spoke to me. It sent my mind sailing. It invited me to dream and imagine. It filled my belly.
How do you approach cover design?
My brother Antuan is an aspiring graphic artist. He is also an introvert like me. I give him a line about what "feeling" I want to evoke and he just gets it.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
The Bible. - It has saved me on more than one ocassion.
The Tragedy of Puddnhead Wilson by Mark Twain - It was so twisty and turny and the subject matter is still prevalent today
Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers - the format of starting with scripture and then telling a scandalous tale for the scripture to be applied to
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl - It made me feel like I could taste the words as I read them
Sula by Toni Morrison - It was the first book I checked out from the library when I got to the "big" high school. It was so deep.
What do you read for pleasure?
I read autobiographies of famous introverts. I love stories about underdogs. I prefer African-American literature because I don't see the diversity and facets of our lives depicted enough in other media.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
Kindle
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
I'm a virgin. We shall see.
Describe your desk
glass desk from Ikea. lucite office supplies. digital frame. colorful pictures of my family. post-its. journals. coffee cup from two days ago.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Beloit, Wisconsin. It was a small town, not far from where my father lived in the big city of Chicago. I always had a sense of wanting to be elsewhere but at the same time, I am very fond of my hometown. I miss walking barefoot in the grass and being able to go to Culver's for a burger and shake when I feel like it.
When did you first start writing?
I first started writing in grade school. I helped create a play called "Marshmallow People" that my classmates and I would perform in the snow at recess...good times.
What's the story behind your latest book?
It is a collection of autobiographical fiction, loosely based on actual events. The over-arching theme is a recount of chasing dreams, failing forward and inspiring myself to keep reaching. The stories reveal motivations of the title character Andromeda Bremen, a hot mess who messes up a lot but finds ways to flip it. She rises above...a lot.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Failure. Fear of failure. Accepting failure. Making good on a promise. Too many rules and restrictions make my armpits itch. I love the idea of being independent and "owning" my process.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Well, it is a catalyst in helping me achieve a goal. I am embarking on turning a dream into a goal. I feel very empowered. The rest remains to be seen.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Reading something that I wrote that used to make me cry and now makes me feel stronger for having overcome it. Being able to create a thing that didn't exist before. Moving someone to laughter, tears or action because of something that once swam around in my head. That is so dope!
What do your fans mean to you?
I hope that anyone who reads my work and likes it, will share it. I hope that I inspire others and help others to see themselves in my stories. I hope I will be able to move others to compassion or make people laugh and maybe cry. I want to move people. For me to have "fans" means I have done that. If I am able to do that then having fans will mean a great deal to me.
What are you working on next?
A cookbook with recipes for the meals that are mentioned in Confessions of a Profamateur Chef. I also have a love letter to my late father brewing in my bones.
Who are your favorite authors?
Toni Morrison, Terry McMillan, Maya Angelou, Homer, Roald Dahl, Mark Twain, James Baldwin
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
My kids. My stories. Hunger pains. The toilet.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Lately, writing has taken up a lot of my time but when I'm not doing that I spend time with my husband and two small children as much as possible. I watch documentaries. I go to the library to smell books. I daydream. I kiss on my kids. I bake. I laugh. I dream. I dream. I create vision boards. I dream.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I Google topics. I look for recommendations on Goodreads. I search for similar titles. I preview books. I have a friend who is a librarian with a blog.
Published 2016-07-01.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Confessions of a Profamateur Chef
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 47,960. Language: English. Published: July 21, 2016. Categories: Fiction » African American fiction » Contemporary woman, Nonfiction » Inspiration » Personal inspiration
"Confessions of a Profamateur Chef" is a colorful and inventive deconstruction of actual events that infuses quirkiness, creativity, bravery, truth and black girl magic, and serves it up in a soulful collection of irreverent, yet inspirational short stories and poems.