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Meet Steven Nickodemski: The Stephen King of Psychological Thrillers

It is no secret that technology has made our lives all the more accessible; with everything available on demand, people have less reason to let their minds be bored. But why do we need to be bored, you ask? Because boredom is the starting point for the mind to explore the world of imagination.

Although it’s treated as an artificial construct, imagination has been the driving force behind some of the world’s greatest inventions. From the first-ever call made to the foundation of tech giants like Microsoft and Apple, imagination has helped humans distinguish themselves from animals. With all these ideas swirling in the ether, one wonders what would happen if we melded creativity and imagination in a pot. What would we get? The answer lies in the minds of writers.

Writers are adept at conjuring up worlds they’ve never seen, people they’ve never met, and conversations they’ve never had, all on a whim. This mastery over their minds allows them to weave intricate stories together from thin air. So curiosity got the better of us as we decided to get to the bottom of this conundrum by sitting down with one of the greatest writers of this generation.

Steven Nickodemski, the author of The Marginalized Passenger, expressed his thoughts on how aspiring writers could hone their imagination to perfection – or at least to a level where the difference remains negligible.

“It’s all in the mind, to be honest, but if you can carry out a conversation with yourself, then you’re already well on the path.”

We asked Steven why and when he decided to become an author, to which he replied, “I have a background in the Navy; I enlisted when I was 17, and even before then, I came from – what you would call – a broken home. My parents were divorced, my mother was suicidal, and my father was an alcoholic. All of these events, I believe, are what made me want to tell my own story.” Steven also explained how his passion and love for writing helped him leave his dark past behind, providing him with an outlet for all his emotions.

As the conversation took a light-hearted turn, Steven shared how he personally managed to keep his imagination fresh and vivid – something that he encourages aspiring writers to practice because he believes that “imagination is the soul of any story.”

Draw from your experiences in life. Steven elaborated on how most of the plots and characters in his works are inspired by real-life people. ”Of course, they are exaggerated and molded into what I need them to be; however, there is part of me in every book I write.”

Open your mind. “There is nothing worse than a writer being close-minded. Try anything, however ludicrous it may seem. I write these things down, because if I don’t try it, I’ll never know.” Steven told us.

Don’t do what everyone else is doing. “To be creative, you must stray from the mainstream. Cut your own path and be different,” Steven suggested. He further expounded on his point by saying, “Most writers usually paint their characters in just one shade. If you’re good, you’re good. And if you’re bad, well, you’re bad. You don’t want to do that. Look at some of the greatest characters ever created, you can pick any one of Stephen King’s books, and you’ll see what I’m talking about.”

There is nothing wrong with daydreaming. “Sit, be quiet and observe your surroundings: people, animals, and just the world in general. Absorb whatever you can; make mental notes, write them down, dictate them into your phone, whatever works for you,” Steven encouraged.

Listen to your surroundings. “I listen to white noise whenever I need to relax and tune out—too much noise in this world. Tune out and let your imagination run wild,” Steven said.

On a parting note, Steven Nickodemski emphasized how every writer needs their own color and flair and said, “There is no universal method. Every brain works differently, so what works for me may not work for you, but the most important point is to find that uniqueness within you and to hone it to perfection.” 

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