Nikki Pellegrino’s writing doubts and advice

Close up of Nicky Pellegrino against a grey backgroundNicky Pellegrino was born in Liverpool but spent her childhood summers staying with family in southern Italy. So when Nicky started writing fiction, her memories of those summers came flooding back and flavoured her stories: the passions, the feuds but most of all the food.

Nicky now lives in Auckland, New Zealand as a freelance journalist and her novels are distributed in the UK, Australia, and New Zealand, and have been translated into 12 languages.

Her latest book is One Summer in Venice and we recently interviewed her in episode 65 of our podcast, So you want to be a writer, where she had a couple of gems that resonated with us:

On the most challenging part of the writing process:

“Sometimes I just don’t feel like I can write, which possibly sounds a bit insane, but sometimes I’ll think I don’t even know how to construct a sentence. I guess you do have moments of doubt. And I suspect a writer who didn’t have moments of thinking, ‘I can’t do this, I’m no good,' would in fact not be a very good writer. I think doubt is an important and comfortable part of the writing process.

“I know it sounds mad coming from someone who has spent her entire life writing, but I think the doubt thing is just a crisis of confidence. It’s sort of a ‘does my bum look big in this’ moment in my writing process.”

Advice for aspiring authors:
One Summer in Venice“Have a comfortable chair, because you will be spending a lot of time sitting in it!

“I think it’s really important to write the kind of book that you like to read. I’ve heard people say, ‘I’m going to write Mills and Boon,' or, ‘I’m going to write chick lit,' but, if that’s not what you actually enjoy, it’s not going to seem very genuine and the readers will know that.

“I keep wanting to write a crime novel, because I think it would be great to have action and blood. But, I actually don’t really read those books, so…

“Also, it’s really easy to procrastinate. I completely get that. I’m the world’s biggest procrastinator. At the end of the day, the difference between writing a novel and not writing one is sitting down and actually doing it.”

Wise words! You can read more about Nicky’s writing on her website or listen to the complete podcast episode here.

Nicki Pellegrino quote on a pink background "At the end of the day, the difference between writing a novel and not writing one is sitting down and actually doing it."

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