Tell us a little about yourself and your background?
Well I am a Director of Marketing & Product for a library software company by day. At night and in the early morning hours I pose as an Indie author. I was born and raised in Oregon and spent the first 22 years of my life there before becoming a combat photographer in the U.S. Air Force for four years. After the Air Force I married and relocated to Manassas, VA, yes near the battlefield, had a son who is now an actor and dashing young man. Several years ago I relocated to Southern California, yay back on the west coast, for my job. I got divorced, amicably a couple of years ago, and now spend my time at my paying job, writing whenever I can, and hanging out with my son at Claremont Ales in Claremont, CA when possible. I spend most weekends now with my lady friend at the Westside German Shepherd rescue in Los Angeles photographing dogs in need of new ‘forever’ homes.
Which writers inspire you? This is difficult for me to say. I love to read and there are so many authors I enjoy. John Irving is an all-time favorite. I love some of Margaret Atwood’s work. T.C. Boyle and Tortilla Curtain in particular. Cormac McCarthy’s work fascinates me. Andy Weir with his Mars novel is an inspiration for his self-pub journey and its long path to success. I absolutely loved Robert Ludlum growing up and read Zane Grey’s work repeatedly as well.
Have you written any other novels in collaboration with other writers? No I have not.
When did you decide to become a writer? I loved writing stories as a kid and learned early on that I had a great imagination for spinning a tale. It never occurred to me until the last couple of years that I could actually sit down and write. I started pecking away one day on my laptop with a character and place in mind and a story was born. I had a lot of fun watching the journey unfold.
Do you write full-time or part-time? Part time for now. I have to keep a day job to pay the bills.
Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just see where an idea takes you? I absolutely see where an idea takes me. This is the fun part for me. Its as if I am reading the story myself and like the reader get to learn where things go and what happens.
Do you have a strategy for finding reviewers? Not yet. Funny but writing the novel was the easy part. Trying to get publicity and an audience is proving to be much more challenging. Social media is both good and bad I am finding for a self-pub author. It can be a great avenue to get out there and get exposure, but it is also good for thousands and thousands of other writers able to tell a good story so the market is flooded.
What are your thoughts on good/bad reviews? I love good reviews, they are validating. Bad reviews suck ass. Seriously, though I take them with a grain of salt. I know that not everyone is going to like what I write. When I started, I told myself that if I enjoy reading what I write, if I like the characters, if I like the storyline than others will also. The novel hasn’t been written yet, that I am aware of anyhow, that everyone likes. So if people don’t like some Atwood, Boyle, Irving, etc. that puts me in good company.
How can readers discover more about you and you work? The best way right now is to go to my website, www.mikewaltersnovels.com, and there are links there to my Facebook and Twitter pages as well. I will most likely add a blog page in the next month or so as I try to get some exposure. Right now I am in full fledge marketing mode with The Outlaw River Wilde and hard at work to the follow up, Still Wilde in the Outlaw River.