“I like to write and I’m an illustrator and I have a blog,” Nicole said, “and I thought, ’Maybe this is the link to put it all together.'”
Nicole’s autobiographical comic “High Yella Magic” can be found here, for now, until she re-does her website. She almost signed with a publisher once, but decided to stay independent after the publisher wanted to change “a lot of things,” she said, “and I wasn’t ready for that.”
“They were like, ’You shouldn’t talk about this,’ or, ’This should be your angle,'” she said. “It’s not about an angle. It’s about my experience.”
One of the comics is a take on navigating the audition process when you’re not a “beauty queen” or a “tiny model.” (She makes goofs like having unmanicured toes when she shows up for a Dr. Sholl’s commercial, and chapped lips for a Chapstick ad). One is about how she exhibited a talent for drawing at the age of four, and upset her teachers because she was drawing her mother naked. Another is about having a younger sister who is autistic. “They’re not serious sob stories,” Nicole said. “They’re funny.”
Nicole counts Alison Bechdel’s “Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic,” Mike Carey’s “Lucifer,” and Bill Willingham’s “Fables” as her inspiration to write, draw, pencil, and ink everything herself. She currently posts one new comic a week, but she has more in the wings.
“It’s nice to be able to have something I have complete creative control over,” she said, “as opposed to acting, where you’re just along for the ride and waiting to see what happens. I have so much fun doing it, and I’ll always be able to take out a piece of paper and a pencil and be able to draw something.”