Author interview 145 – Erick Williams


Erick Williams

Texas, United States in Texas  

Age 54

I was born in Washington D.C. and later my family moved to High Point N.C. where I was raised and attended school. After graduating high school, I enlisted in the Army serving five years as a military policeman where I met my wife. After getting out of the military I moved to Texas and got married. I have two grown stepsons and a grown son we had together. I got a job at the Grayson County Juvenile Bootcamp as a juvenile supervision officer, with over eighteen years of experience, this is where I got the inspiration to write both books You Never Said Goodbye and my current book The Last Time. Other interest include riding my motorcycle and traveling to new places.
The prequel to You Never Said Goodbye. School is out for the summer and sixteen-year-old Jordan Skyy only cares about running the streets and hanging with his bros Nick and Spenser. At a party, he meets Reign Sparks and they are feeling each other. The only problem is Reign’s boyfriend Dejuan who is obsessed with her. Reign and Jordan go out. When Dejuan finds out he lets Jordan know to stay away. Jordan ain’t bout to be punked by nobody, so he’s going to let Dejuan know what’s up. Before he gets the chance he is arrested and sent to boot camp. While at boot camp he continues his thug ways. His mother Vicky is deeply worried about him at boot camp. Jordan gets a letter from Reign showing she is still down for him. With Reign’s support and a mother’s love, he decides to do boot camp. Jordan graduates boot camp. On his first night home he has an unexpected encounter with Dejuan, will the old Jordan resurface one last time?

Romelia: WHAT IS A SIGNIFICANT WAY YOUR BOOK HAS CHANGED SINCE THE FIRST DRAFT? 

Erick Williams: When I first started writing the book it was a story about the dangers of the gang life style, it is now a menacing teenage love triangle.

Romelia: WHAT PERSPECTIVES OR BELIEFS HAVE YOU CHALLENGED WITH THIS WORK? 

Erick Williams: One belief that I believe the book challenges is that there is always a happy ending.  Real life does not always end of with a happy ending like movies and tv sitcoms portray. I just want my book to reflect real life.

Romelia: WHAT INSPIRED THE IDEA FOR YOUR BOOK? 

Erick Williams: I worked in juvenile corrections for 20 years, and I saw a lot of good kids that are caught up in bad situations that they have no control over which forces them to make bad decisions and end up locked up.  If they would have had the right guidance, they could be productive people.

Romelia: HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR BOOK’S IDEAL READER?

Erick Williams: Young inner-city youth who are living day to day and based on my reader feedback mothers, I believe they relate to Vicky’s struggles as she deals with Jordan’s issues.

Romelia: HOW MUCH RESEARCH DID YOU NEED TO DO FOR YOUR BOOK? 

Erick Williams: My 20 years’ experience dealing with troubled youth and living in the world today was all the research I need.

Romelia: HOW IMPORTANT WAS PROFESSIONAL EDITING TO YOUR BOOK’S DEVELOPMENT?

Erick Williams: I actually am a self-published author, who had a teacher I know edited the book for me without her assistance the book would not even be here.

Romelia: WHAT WAS YOUR HARDEST SCENE TO WRITE, AND WHY?

Erick Williams: This is probably the typical answer, but the last scene.  After all the hardship, drama, and pain the lead character (Jordan) has been through just for the chance to be with his girlfriend (Reign) she has been his sole motivation to endure everything and for the opportunity to be snatched away is honestly tragic.

Romelia: WHAT CHARACTERS IN YOUR BOOK ARE MOST SIMILAR TO YOU OR TO PEOPLE YOU KNOW?

Erick Williams: The main characters mother Vicky has a lot of similar traits of my wife in that she will do anything and I mean anything for her kids. Sometime to the detriment of the kid’s development.

Romelia: HOW LONG DID IT TAKE YOU TO WRITE THIS BOOK?

Erick Williams: This book took about 8 months from writing to being published.

Romelia: HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH THE TITLE FOR YOUR BOOK? 

Erick Williams: The main character Jordan was having a conversation with one of his friends and says the line and I thought it was appropriate especially considering the ending.

Romelia: WOULD YOU AND YOUR MAIN CHARACTER GET ALONG?  

Erick Williams: Definitely not Jordan in the early stages of the book he was a selfish knucklehead, but as he progresses in the book and has a change of heart there is a strong chance I would have a certain respect for him.  I know we wouldn’t be good friends because of the age difference he a 16 and me in my 50’s.

Romelia: IF YOU COULD MEET YOUR CHARACTERS, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY TO THEM?

Erick Williams: I would tell Jordan that you need to appreciate your family because in the end that’s all you got.  Vicky his mother I would tell her that „God does not give more than you can bear ‘stay strong.’ It will be all right.

Romelia: WHAT IS YOUR WRITING PROCESS LIKE? ARE YOU MORE OF A PLOTTER OR A PANTSER?

Erick Williams: The first book I was definitely a pantser and I didn’t realize it.  This book here I was a plotter, I think it helped tell a smoother more cohesive story.

Romelia: WHAT DO YOU NEED IN YOUR WRITING SPACE TO HELP YOU STAY FOCUSED?

Erick Williams: Now that I’m a plotter I write it out on paper then on the computer, I write in short creative burst.  The tv will be on, I write a little bit then watch tv come back to writing I have a short attention span and writing like this allows me write without feeling overwhelmed although I realize it slows down the process.

Romelia: IF YOU WERE TO WRITE A SPIN-OFF ABOUT A SIDE CHARACTER, WHICH WOULD YOU PICK?  

Erick Williams: The youngest sister Ericka she is 9-10 years old she not a main character and most of the plot does not affect her directly but indirectly it has to have an effect on her.  I think it would be interesting to see how she turns out 10-15 years later.

Romelia: IF YOU COULD SPEND A DAY WITH ANOTHER POPULAR AUTHOR, WHOM WOULD YOU CHOOSE?

Erick Williams: I not sure how popular he is or how many books he has but I read one of his books titled A Darkness unto the Dawn by R a St. James.  It was such an interesting read, I would love to pick his brain to see what his writing process is.

Romelia: WHAT IS YOUR SCHEDULE LIKE WHEN YOU’RE WRITING A BOOK?

Erick Williams: I work a regular 40-hour job and pretty much live a normal existence so I set my phone alarm at a certain time to remind to write every day, even if just 30 minutes to an hour.  My goal while I’m writing is to try to do something every day towards completing the book.  I don’t always do it I just make it up the next time.

Romelia: HAVE YOU EVER TRAVELED AS RESEARCH FOR YOUR BOOK?

Erick Williams: Not yet.

Romelia: WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE WRITING SNACK OR DRINK? 

Erick Williams: I snack on tortilla chips while putting the book on the computer.

Romelia: HOW DO YOU CELEBRATE WHEN YOU FINISH YOUR BOOK?

Erick Williams: Just sit back and just relax in the moment glad that it is completed.

Romelia: WHAT RISKS HAVE YOU TAKEN WITH YOUR WRITING THAT HAVE PAID OFF?

Erick Williams: Just writing was a risk I never ever pictured myself as an author, when I told people I was writing a book most were shocked so completing 2 books is a major accomplishment.

Romelia: WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU GOOGLED YOURSELF AND WHAT DID YOU FIND?

Erick Williams: I have never googled myself.

Romelia: WHAT IS YOUR KRYPTONITE AS A WRITER?

Erick Williams: My short attention span. sometime when I have a lot of time to write (2 plus hours) I still will only write for a short period. If I could focus better I would finish books a lot sooner.

Romelia: TELL US SOMETHING FUNNY FROM YOUR ADULT LIFE.

Erick Williams: Can’t really think of nothing.

Romelia: describe yourself in a few sentences. Tell us something we do not know about you and something you hate about the world. 

Erick Williams: I live in Texas, I just recently started writing and I have 2 books published in less than a year.   What I hate is how hyper sensitive the world has become you can’t tell a joke without offending a certain group, race, gender.  Also, how certain things you’ve done in your past 20-30 years ago can be brought up on the internet and used against you there is a thing called youthful indiscretion.  Most people do a lot of dumb things as kids or young adults, learn from their mistakes and move on.

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