Michael Brookes is an Executive Producer with a leading UK games developer. Working in games and writing are two of his life passions and he considers himself fortunate to be able to indulge in them both. He lives in the east of England, enjoying starry skies in the flattest part of the country. When not working or writing he can sometimes be found sleeping, which is good, as that is where many good ideas come from.
Christine: Are you solely a writer or do you have multiple occupations?
Michael: I have a day job as an executive producer for a video games developer. I write in my spare time. I consider myself fortunate that I can devote so much time to two of my life passions.
Christine: What is the title of your most recently published novel and a description of it?
Michael: Conversations in the Abyss is the sequel to the 5-star rated supernatural thriller The Cult of Me. Here is a description:
Stealing Lazarus’s miracle gifted him immortality. Combined with his natural ability of invading and controlling people’s minds this made him one of the most dangerous people on Earth.
But the miracle came with a price. His punishment was to be imprisoned within the walls of an ancient monastery and tormented by an invisible fire that burned his body perpetually. To escape the pain he retreated deep into his own mind.
There he discovers the truth of the universe and that only he can stop the coming Apocalypse.
Christine: Where can we find your published writing?
Michael: My books are all available from Amazon:
An Odd Quartet
A collection of four dark short stories:
The Cult of Me
A supernatural thriller – the first book in ‘The Third Path’ trilogy:
Conversations in the Abyss
The sequel to The Cult of Me:
Christine: Do you formally plan out your novels before you write them? Why, and how?
Michael: Yes, I’m a great believer in planning before I start writing the first draft. I tend to start by writing a single line summary of the book. I then sketch out the characters and develop a chapter plan. I don’t start writing until I’m happy with the chapter plan.
The good thing about having a decent plan is that if I get stuck, I can skip to the next bit and carry on.
Christine: What are your strengths as a novelist?
Michael: I focus on the story. For me, the story is the most important part of a novel. Once you have the story, the characters and plot follow. And one of the great parts of writing is that I can constantly improve. In fact, that should be every writer’s goal – to get better.
Christine: What marketing techniques do you use to promote yourself as a novelist and your novels?
Michael: This is the part of self-publishing I haven’t mastered yet. I write a regular blog and post on Twitter. I also participate in communities, like Goodreads and the Kindle Users Forum. I’ve tried various paid advertisements as well.
Christine: What do you like to read?
Michael: Science fiction by Ian M Banks (especially his culture series) is my favourite type of read. I also enjoy horrors by authors like Clive Barker and Stephen King. I’ve recently expanded out into reading other indie authors’ work.
Christine: Do you find you “mentally edit” other writers’ works as you read them? Does doing this help you or bother you?
Michael: I do find myself doing this. For the most part it doesn’t bother me, but on a few occasions where the book really needed an edit pass it can be quite distracting.
Christine: Where can we find you on the Web?
Michael: You can find my blog at: www.thecultofme.blogspot.co.uk. And you can follow me on Twitter here: @TheCultofMe.
Thanks so much for joining us today, Michael!