Good to see you again!
Ready to get back to it?
Here we go - Jon'te Aycox, you're up!
Jon'te Aycox is an Artist and self-published Writer from Las Vegas NV. He was born in Tokyo, Japan - his dad was in the military. Jonte is African American and part Cherokee Indian.
He discovered his passion for the arts, at nine years old. He always sat at the table in the kitchen, drawing, while all the other kids were outside playing. He continued his love for art through classes in elementary, middle school, and high school. The more he learned, the more passionate he became. Over the years, his craft started to develop, improving more and more.
Jon'te expresses himself through his unique style by using a variety of acrylic paints. His art ranges in subject matter from nature to portraits; animals to humans; abstract to spiritual.
Later on, he discovered his love of storytelling.
He started creating his writing blog on www.aycox79.wordpress.com
His writing varies from poetry to spiritual writings. Additionally, Jon’te writes short stories that take the reader on adventures. His writings are fictional with relatable themes. In his words, he gives “Inspiration, happiness, and positivity.” Jon’te The Artist writes from the heart.
His first self-published book, 'Sweet September,' was published in 2020. A year later, he self-published his second book called, 'A Sweet September Christmas.'
Both of his books are now on Amazon and Kindle, and other online book sites.
How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have? Two so far.
Reboots – a great idea or a lack of creativity? A great idea.
Coffee, tea, or cacao? Cacao
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer? Back in 2012.
Where do you get your information or ideas for your books? From the love of the East Coast. I love the family closeness, the love, and the beautiful seasons of the year out there. Nature, good food, and gardening. I have family in Virginia.
When did you write your first book and how old were you? I wrote my first book in 2018. I was 38. It started as a short story on my blog. Then I decided to turn it into a book.
What do you like to do when you’re not writing? I love the outdoors. I like to go for long walks and just get lost in peace, observing nature and my surroundings while walking. I also enjoy singing karaoke. I'm into tv shows and movies. I love to cook and paint art.
Do you have any suggestions to help someone become a better writer? If so, what are they? My first suggestion is to make sure that you're true to yourself as a writer. Understand that the world of writing is so cruel because of all the judgment by the critics and readers. They can be very tough on grammar and the author's style of writing. Have tough skin. Try not to focus on others' opinions. Stay true to yourself, write from a place of compassion, and bring something to your craft that's gonna inspire the readers. Focus on trying to make a difference through your work. Also, if you can afford an editor, then get a very good one. If you can't afford one, then download Grammarly on your computer. Normally, if the person self-published their book, they might not be able to afford an editor. It depends. But if you decide to publish with a huge publishing company, they will have an editor available. My other suggestion is to enjoy writing. Enjoy the process and take your time.
What do you think makes a good story? A story that's written from a place of compassion and lots of heart. Not being afraid to express and being free. Someone that can give something fun and inspirational, happiness to the reader.
Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want? Original
Are you traditionally or self-published? Or both? Do you feel there are advantages to one over the other? I'm a self-published author. Being self-published is amazing cause the author gets to do it for free on some platforms. They don't have to pay any upfront fees until the book gets sales. The printing costs come out of the author's sales. I feel like if the author spends their money to just have their book published with a traditional big publishing company, they're able to edit and help promote the author. That doesn't mean that the book will be a bestseller but it makes a better difference because the author can be seen more. I feel bein-self-published, it's more of a hustle.
Do you write novels, novellas, short stories, episodic fiction, poems, screenplays, or something else? What is your preferred format? I write mostly short stories. I also write poems. I have written a screenplay for fun before.
How did publishing your first book change your process of writing? It taught me to be careful of writing mistakes, like how to use better grammar. And making sure that my paragraphs are spaced correctly.
If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be? Be careful with spelling and grammar. Write from your heart. The world of writing is tough and so you develop a thick skin.
What do you have coming next? I'm working on the third book of the Sweet September series.