Met Michael online. He’s Got two EBooks out now, The Cult of Me, and An Odd Quartet, and has contributed a short story to a third. He writes in the… aw heck, I’ll let him tell it.

OK so you’re one of these tech savvy guys that can format his own E-Book. What’s your background?

Funnily enough it’s computers! There are two people I can blame for this. The first is my uncle who was a bigwig in computers before computers were a known thing. The other is my current boss, who back in the mid eighties co-wrote a game called ‘Elite’ and inspired a love of computer games and the worlds they create.

Tell us something insightful about developing games vs. writing.

They have many similarities. In both you are creating a world and a story for people to experience. The real difference is in games you often have to create a world that is wider than the story and sometimes the player has the freedom to do whatever they want. In books the author has the freedom and thne reader is along for the ride. With games it’s not so clear cut.

And I’m guessing Michael Brookes is not a penname. I recently finished a book about a pirate hunter named Woodes Rogers. What is it with Brits and that silent “e”?

It’s a good question and one I don’t know the answer to. I blame the Normans – that’s where the name comes from apparently.

You have two Kindle books available and contributed a short story(?) to a compilation that’s also available in Kindle. Genre, horror, Sci-fi, and Supernatural I’m thinking?

Yes, my books so far have been supernatural horror, although I was lucky enough to be asked to write an official tie-in for the new Elite game so I’ll be branching into science fiction in the coming year, which is great as I’m an avid sci-fi reader.

Are these guy books? Girl books? Genre? Young adult? Take it from there.

I’d say they’re gender neutral, my readers seem to be fairly evenly split between the sexes. I wouldn’t recommend them for young readers as my characters tend to be a little twisted. Although I do prefer more psychological horror to gore fests. Although a little blood here and there has its place.

I’m imagining Nicolas Cage starring, set in Iceland. What rating is the movie going to get?

It should be an 18, but I can see the studio cutting it to get a 15 rating for extra bums on seats 🙂

What catastrophe was averted in your life that prodded you into writing?

It stopped my head from exploding from storing too many stories. A trite answer, but that’s what got me writing. I’ve always loved reading and often it sparked ideas. In my youth I put pen to paper, mostly to write short stories. Only recently have I really taken it seriously and expanded my work.

Your reviews at Amazon and Goodreads are embarrassingly good. What’s going on there?

I think I write a good story. Like any other writer I have to keep working to improve my craft. That’s one of the things I like about writing, I can keep improving.

Either that or my readers take pity on me 🙂

I’m guessing you had a big hand in your cover art…?

Yes, I do my own covers. Aside from the actual writing this is another fun part of me. I’m no artist, but I like to think they’re not bad.

What forays have you made into the other dark arts? Acting? Painting? Sculpture?

I’m afraid not. I used to think I could sing, but only after a few drinks.

What books would you buy kids that are marooned on a desert island?

Probably the ones that drew me into reading as a youngster. Thomas the Tank Engine if they’re very young. As they get older I’d introduce them to Lord of the Rings and Isaac Asimov’s Foundation series. For horror they’d get to read some Clive Barker – the Thief of Always would be a good start. And for the classics they’d have to read Marlowe’s Faustus and Milton’s Paradise Lost.

Influences? Any new or used authors that have grabbed your oeuvre and turned it on its head?

I take influences from all over the place. Milton’s Paradise Lost has always been a big influence. Clive Barker, Stephen King and James Herbert for horror.Ian M Banks and Terry Prachett also provide inspiration.

Current projects? Anything in the works? Literature? Film? Stage?

I have a new book – Conversations in the Abyss, about to be released. I then have a couple of first drafts that I need to work up. One of my life goals is to make a movie of Paradise Lost.

Do you have any advice for other writers? Anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

For other writers I would say just do it. Keep writing. Keep trying to improve your writing. Listen to the advice of others, but also make your own decisions.

And for my readers all I can say is thank you and I hope you continue to enjoy my stories.
You can learn more about Michael at:

Twitter: TheCultofMe

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