Tell us a little about yourself and your background?
Hailing from Long Island, NY, I moved to Maryland to attain an undergraduate degree from the University of Maryland, College Park and a Master’s from Notre Dame of Maryland University. I have been blessed to be a high school English teacher for the last seven years. While, I am no longer in the traditional classroom, I have every intention of reaching adolescents through my W.O.R.D.S (Way of reviving discouraged souls).
Which writers inspire you?
My favorite author is J. California Cooper. I was inspired by her short stories as they seemed so real to me. The characters were relatable even though they lived in the country or South and I grew up in the suburbs of Long Island. I must admit that when I received her novel I was hesitant to read it. I was afraid that she would not be able to complete a full-length novel with same finesse she mastered in her short stories. Glad to report that the novel was just as wonderful as the short stories. J. California Cooper will forever be my all-time favorite author.
Gwendolyn Brooks, Maya Angelou, Langston Hughes, Robert Frost
Have you written any other novels in collaboration with other writers?
I will be featured in a collaboration project entitled, Poet Justness Vol 1. due to release in Sept. 2015. My second book, Journey to Love Vol. 1 is due to release in October 2015.
When did you decide to become a writer?
I didn’t, it chose me. I’ve been writing poetry and short stories since I was in middle school. The serious “stuff” began in high school.
Do you write full-time or part-time?
I resigned from my teaching career to pursue writing. I am still teaching writing at the local community college.
Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just see where an idea takes you?
As a poet, I tend to see where an idea takes me. Sometimes, I can complete an entire poem in one sitting. Sometimes, I only get bits and pieces. I am very careful to make sure I record anything that comes to me so that I don’t “lose it” later.
Do you have a strategy for finding reviewers?
My current strategy is social media.
What are your thoughts on good/bad reviews?
I think that bad reviews are just as helpful, if not more helpful than good ones. One can’t improve without knowing where the weakness or issue lies. Should a bad review be published…in the interest of the artist, I would hope not. Artists should have the chance to improve the craft, make it the best product the audience can receive.
How can readers discover more about you and you work?
Facebook: Nas Writes