INTRODUCING AUTHOR C.MICHAELS
Interview by L.Leander
Author C. Michaels was kind enough to agree to do the first interview on my new L.Leander Reviews and Interviews blog. I owe her a big thank you. I had a great time reading the answers to the questions I sent Ms. Michaels and I think you will too. This summer I read the book “Cross Roads” by the author. You can read the review here. I loved the novel and Ms. Michael’s writing style. I began the second in the series “No Fear” but she put out an entirely new book recently called “Bill Of Human Wrongs” and I immediately downloaded the Kindle version. It has been very hard to put the book down, even to design this new site and post Ms. Michael’s interview. You can read my review of “Bill of Human Wrongs” here.
Since I know Ms. Michaels personally, I find it hard to understand that she writes in the Suspense/Thrillers genre. She is very nice, outgoing, and always eager to help a fellow author succeed. There is absolutely no sign of the danger and suspense that lurks within the pages of her books. I’d say that makes a great author and C. Michaels is one of my new favorites.
INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR C. MICHAELS by L.Leander
- What makes you stand out as a writer?
Perhaps it is my twists and turns with my storylines. It’s done all the time with other writers, but I tell ya… my characters really surprise me sometimes. I have had to get out of my chair and pace the floor at times saying to myself, “Where did that come from?”
- What is your favorite type of reading material?
Surprise. I would say, a good thriller. The worst part of having learned what makes a good storyline, however, is now I find myself more finicky. Both with books and movies… I will hear a good review about a movie so I watch it. Immediately, I see how it will play out, too predictable. With books, I look for tricks, the rules we must, should follow, so when I read a book that misses these gems (rules), I’m tainted by my book snobbery. The good news, though, is that a well-written novel is a real gift.
- If you could only pick one, who is your greatest influence?
Easy. My late husband. He began as a mentor for my career when I was new to teaching many years ago. He was tough, but that encouraged me to work hard.
Later, we became involved, and he became a different type of mentor. He taught me to enjoy every minute of life, literally. Once in a while, I slip and forget to “relish the moment”, but then I think of him, and remind myself to suck it up, maybe turn on some music, maybe even dance.
- Where do you get your ideas for writing?
At first, I drew exclusively on my own experiences. Cross Roads, my first novel takes place in a small town in Idaho where I fished many years ago. Many of the characters are stolen personalities from folks I know. Funny, though. After I finished the story, my two favorite characters were totally manufactured in my head. That fact helped me feel more confident to just make stuff up.
NO FEAR! continues with the lives of the Cross Roads people, and while the storyline is completely fabricated, it does take place in the town where I live. So, in that respect, I was still drawing on my experiences to some extent.
It is my latest novel, Bill of Human Wrongs where I braved it by picking a subject I haven’t lived. It does, however, deal with a subject matter, US politics, that I find most interesting.
I seem to have a thing for injecting a small bit of fantasy into my novels so far. Just a bit, mind you. Maybe there is still some “kid” in me.
- Are you a pantser or an outliner?
Both. I start with a strong premise, main characters, and an ending. The rest would be considered “pantser”.
- Finish this sentence: One thing very few people know about me is…
- If I had a choice, every day would include.
Walk on the beach with my dog (after coffee). Now, if you are allowing me to fantasize, I would say that I’d like my mom and daughters with their families to live near me. Then the daily walk on the beach would include them.
- If you were stranded on a deserted island and could have Internet and a computer or a supply of paper and pens which would you choose?
Computer ~ I am a geek. Really, I am. Used to teach programming languages.
- Do you hear voices? What do they tell you? What do you tell them?
Sure, I’m a writer. They don’t say much to me, they talk amongst themselves. But they let me hear their conversations, and have given me permission to use them in my books. I don’t tell them anything – they don’t need me. It’s me who needs them.
- What is your very favorite part of being an author? Your least favorite?
Best: Unleashing my imagination, so exciting when I move into the zone. Least: When, if I feel the book is taking a wrong turn I need to get away from the computer and begin thinking, planning. Another pacing experience, but in this case, a nervous experience.
- Where did you grow up?
Washington state, where there is lots of salt water while having the mountains a short drive away. Pretty slick.
- Describe your ideal vacation (the sky’s the limit)
I’m living it every day. I live in Mazatlan. Sounds like I’m a bore, but that’s the way I feel now. Maybe it will wear off after a while. Ask me this question again in a few years.
- If you could be either, which would you choose – a dog or a cat? Why?
My best friend is Rani. She’s a compassionate dog, perhaps the love we share is a perfect definition of love.
- You are the co-host of CBS This Morning – who would you like to snag an interview with?
There are many, but right now, Tina Fey comes to mind. I would love to learn how her creative mind ticks.
- Tell us a little about your most recent protagonist?
Ah, that would be Claire Winslow. I really like this woman. Her life, at first glance, tells the reader that she’s a success. She is a US Senator; bright, and compassionate about working to pass laws to enhance women’s rights. I actually feel sorry for her when her world is turned upside down. She is faced with a difficult decision she must make when a Senate bill is to be voted on in a week. She’s the deciding vote for her Party. She knows it makes damaging changes to the Bill of Rights that could ruin lives, but also knows that her Party will make sure she is not re-elected if she doesn’t vote for it. The misery she goes through during the first days of this story is painful to watch. She is in her “hole”. A turn of events throws a curveball to her thinking, however, a secret so hard to believe, so terrible. Claire is able to crawl out of her misery, knowing what she must do, but not before coming to grips with the unimaginable knowledge she learns from a strange woman she meets in a coffee house, late in the night.
Thank you Ms. Michaels for your candor. I’m sure our readers will enjoy hearing what makes you tick and once they read one of your books you should get a landslide of fan mail! Readers, I am including the following links for you to check out Ms. Michaels books and other places you can find her on the Internet. Please feel free to ask questions in the comment section below or leave feedback.
Stop by C. Michaels Website
Check out C.Michaels book review for Bill of Human Wrongs at eBook and Book for Coffee Time