When the baby of a troubled couple—a man seeking revenge for the atrocities of his father’s generation and a woman also feeling unduly victimized by past events—enters the world during a natural disaster, her Bushman nanny sees this as a sign of dark things to come and calls on the Spirits for help.
A behavior change model shows the internal and external influences that shape the way people experience their worlds. Insight into the dynamics of change helps writers convey language and sensory details related to the thoughts, interactions, and behaviors of their story characters.
I offer creative writing tips on the dynamics of change to help writers map out narrative and character arcs that bring about credible transformation. The principles that guide storytelling are no different than those that drive personal development and social change in real life.
I believe “searching for home” is a universal condition of times past and future. Those are the stories I want to write—exploring the universal themes that drive idiosyncratic behaviors as my characters traverse their inner and outer worlds, all the time striving to discover a real sense of belonging.
Belinda has critiqued my book-length manuscript and made valuable suggestions on ways I can improve my story in terms of its tone, meaning, and structure. Her understanding of cultural diversity and the impact of change, on both a physical and emotional level, is remarkable. So is her ability to work with writers as she balances honest input with great sensitivity. — Leslie Ahmadi, Ph.D. (Trainer)
I know Belinda through her participation at several writers’ networking events and open mics I have hosted. Belinda thrilled the crowd with her vivid imagery and sensory details of her childhood in South Africa - a rare feat since it is hard to captivate strangers’ attention verbally at these events. — Alice Osborn (Editor)
I was a presenter with Belinda Nicoll at a symposium on identity, immigration and the issues of dislocation at The Town of Cary, N.C. in 2008. Belinda read from her memoir of her experiences on arrival in the United States. I was impressed with the beautifully written and moving account of her experiences and with Belinda’s skills in adapting to a new culture. — Susan Buret (Artist)
I’ve had the pleasure of working with Belinda in writer’s workshops and critiquing groups. She’s proven valuable to my own artistic development through her insightful, unbiased critiques. Belinda founded the writers group that grew out of a workshop we both attended. Belinda’s training as a life coach gives her a unique perspective on creative writing. — Andrea Wenger (Technical Writer)
I have known Belinda Nicoll for twelve years as a personal friend, fellow writer, and trained life coach. I know her to be an empathetic, respectful, and successful life coach, and generally hardworking and resilient. Belinda brings an interesting international perspective to group work. — Trudi Taylor, Ph.D. (Therapist / Author of “Breasts Don’t Lie")
Belinda is an excellent writer. She also speaks well in front of audiences. I have interacted with her in graduate school and also as a peer in the North Carolina writing community. She is intelligent and reliable. — Maureen Sherbondy (Lecturer / Award-winning Poet)
I met Belinda as one of five writers in a writing class we took together for three years. Belinda is a terrific memoir and fiction writer. Her grasp of language and how to create stories within stories are two of her skills that helped me improve my own work. I appreciate how she can, concretely, give suggestions about how one’s fiction or poetry might be improved. — Jodi Barnes (Poet and Teacher)
I’ve had the benefit of both Belinda’s life coaching service and her copywriting talent. She has helped me resolve various conflicts and guided me in making strategic decisions with regard my own business. Someone as multi-talented as Belinda is a rare find. — Lisa Stewart (Interior Designer