Your Name:
Your Email Address:
Your Question:
Please enter the code above in the text box below:

Search past questions

Submitted by visitors to this website

Posted by Katy

February 18th 2015

Hi! I think I must have been 12-14 when I read the Wind of Fire and Noble Warriors trilogies ( I remember literally jumping for joy when Noman had been released and I came across it in the book shop^^). Anyway, I just wanted to say thank you, those books are very special to me and I still think about them often, the kind of ideas you wrote about have definitely stuck with me. In particular, the scene when Seeker finally goes to the garden and what he sees there, that kind of blew my mind in the best way. I look forward to another 10 years of being their company^^

William Nicholson responded:

You remind me of the extreme excitement I felt while writing that crucial scene, indeed, the whole of the Noble Warriors. My mind was on fire as I was writing. Thank you for bringing it back to me.

Posted by Emily Simpson

February 13th 2015

Hello, I am an English teacher at a school in a deprived area of Coventry and have recently been reading and studying The Wind Singer alongside my Year 7 students; I put it forward as an option after enjoying it so much myself as a young person and it has been an absolute hit. We have spent a lot of time discussing what it means to stand up for and fight against the problems and challenges we face in every day life and, most recently, one student described the book as 'helping me know that it's okay to be angry, upset or confused - it's actually a power which can be used for positive change in my world.' I guess it's not a question that I have, I just wanted you to know what an inspiration this book has been to a group of kids who have so much going on in their lives - and what a pleasure it has been to teach it.

William Nicholson responded:

You've made my day. Somehow I've assumed that the generation that read The Wind Singer - my own children's generation - has now grown up, and it's no longer known. So it's such a delight to hear what you tell me. Makes me feel proud.

Posted by Matthew Bloome

February 8th 2015

Mr. Nicholson, Among authors whose work I've read, you've had one of the more varied careers. From your blog posts and question sections of your website, I recognize that you work on multiple projects simultaneously. My question is one that I've seen many authors stumble over so I apologize if it is difficult to answer, but at what point in your creative process do you take into account your intended audience or potential themes for your work? Do they reveal themselves at different points for each project or do certain formats lend themselves better to knowing audience or theme earlier in the process?

William Nicholson responded:

When I write films, I feel as if I'm working outside myself, as it were. When I write novels, I'm working inside myself. So the different media do bring out different aspects of my own nature. I don't think I'm all that aware of my audience in either case. My main drive is to get at what it is I've seen or thought or felt, to communicate that more perfectly; and then I just hope the viewers or readers will want it. My struggle all the time is to get the finished work so clear and true that it goes straight from me to you, the audience, without any friction. But I don't think I've ever achieved this. Yet.

Posted by john woolford

February 3rd 2015

Dear William, I remember you as 'Bill', and my student at Christ's long ago. You seem to fit the bill among the 'Bill Nicholsons' on google, most of which is the territory of a manager of Spurs! I remember seeing your film on the race for DNA, which I thought excellent: is it available on DVD or Videotape? I'd love to hear how life has treated you since I knew you back in the day, kind regards John

William Nicholson responded:

Yes, I'm the same one - still Bill, though William on the credits, and even more these days, on the book jackets. This website tells the story of my life since I sat at your feet, or part of it, at least. Even then, though I probably didn't reveal this, I was attempting to be a writer. It took a long time, but I have become a writer, and I even make my living at it. So I think you must have done something right. I'm afraid 'Life Story', the DNA film, was a BBC production. One day the BBC will find a way to make their back catalogue available, but they haven't done it yet. Meantime there's quite a bit of my work around, created since we last saw each other in 1970. I hope you're keeping well, and enjoying what must surely be your retirement.

Posted by Amy

January 27th 2015

Hi William, I have been trying to find the quote for the funeral ceremony from the wind on fire series. As a 11 year old I read it for my sisters funeral. The 10 year anniversary is coming up and I no longer have the books but was hoping to once again read the quote and was wondering if you could sent it to me please? It would mean a lot. Kind Regards, Amy

William Nicholson responded:

Believe it or not, it's so long since I wrote the books that I can't remember where the funeral ceremony is. However, I can remember the death of Ira Hath at the end, and I think the words spoken then must be the same as the ones you mean. They are: "We who are left behind watch you on your way. The long prison of the years unlocks its iron door. Go free now, into the beautiful land. Forgive us who suffer in this clouded land. Guide us and wait for us, as we wait for you. We will meet again."

Posted by Sarah Le

January 19th 2015

Would love your advice for aspiring filmmakers who want to write for their own films as well. Do you think film school is the best way to learn filmmaking and screenwriting? Or is it something that can be self-taught? Often times, film schools are unaffordable. In such case, what would you advise? How does one go about learning this craft best? Thanks. PS - Please do not listen to the critics on Firelight. It is one of the my all-time favorite movies. To me, it's romantic and unforgettable and is an inspiration in filmmaking. Thank you for giving us Firelight! I have the DVD (in Chinese since I couldn't find it in English anywhere). Would love it if there's a Director's Commentary also. Maybe one day, when the Criterion Collection is smart enough to add Firelight to their shelves, you will do a Director's Commentary on it. :)

William Nicholson responded:

Film school is undoubtedly a great way to learn (though it wasn't my way), but I do understand the cost is an issue. If you can't go to film school, you can make your own by watching films and learning from them, and by making your own no-budget films using your phone or whatever. I think there's no substitute for doing it, making mistakes, learning from them, and getting better. Great if you can do this in an organised environment, but it's not the only way. Just tell yourself: most films are very poor, and you can do better. Why not? And thank you for the kind words about Firelight.