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Interview with Niki White


How did you become a writer?

I started keeping a diary in elementary school, literally just recording what was going on around me one day in class because I was done with my work and bored, and at the time not much of a reader aside from audiobooks. Naturally this progressed to writing my thoughts, as well as observations, and then in middle school, now into reading in any format, I had this idea for a story that made me so physically excited I sat gasping for what felt like minutes before knowing I had to get it out of my head. The closest thing at hand was my laptop, so that's what it was written on. This terrible jumble of many of the writers I was reading at the time got up to around 50 pages, and after that ideas for other stories just kept coming. It merged from a hobby into a career somewhere between editing people's fanfiction in high school and my first year of college.


Could you share some of your challenges as a writer?

Transitions are evil, and as a totally blind person, it can be difficult to find a good balance between description and dialogue, since the former isn't how I perceive things.


How does your antagonist create conflict?

There are a few characters who qualify for that category, but at some point all of them decide what they want is preferable to dealing with something that could be hard on them/that they don't like, with no concern for the consequences—usually great emotional distress of the protagonist, and in one case physical displacement of same.


What are your current/future projects?

Some fairy tale retellings with disability representation, a blind Beauty in "Beauty and the Beast", and "Cinderella" in a wheelchair (yes, how she does all the chores will be addressed). Also, another modern Jane Austen retelling; I'm going from her first novel to her final, and will have Anne share my disability, because the many similarities between the disabled community and well-meaning 18th century godmothers about a young person's future are eerie.


Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?

Every few years, read something you're not entirely sure you'll like. The best that can happen is you find a new author or genre you enjoy, and if you dislike it, figure out why. This can be a really fun way to see what works for you on a craft level. And if you think you could have done something better? Well, there's your next book.


What is your preferred method for readers to get in touch with you?

Either reach out to me through my website nikiwhite.net or Twitter @niki_white

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