I’m so excited about this interview, and I’m so thankful for the growing readership on this blog, that it’s time for another book giveaway!
Lori Michelle recently edited the horror anthology, Bleed. I’m offering a free Kindle copy of this anthology, and all you have to do to enter the random drawing is one of the following: like this blog post, leave a comment below, or share the link to this post on Facebook and let me know you shared it!
In addition to the Kindle copy of Bleed, I’m throwing in a paperback of Quixotic: Not Everyday Love Stories, so you can read my short story “Dying To Be With You”. Don’t miss out! Like, leave a comment, or share!
What inspired you to write your first book?
Dual Harvest was a Nanowrimo creation. I had this idea (which I can’t share here or it gives away the twist) and it just seemed like the natural place to try and write a novel. I liked the motivation, and every year I wish I had more time to play with the other Nanowrimers.
Do you write every single day?
Does email and Facebook count? Since lately I have been doing more editing and formatting, I haven’t had time to actually write much. Plus, it is really hard when you have children. I know, cry me a river.
Do events from your past play a role in your writing?
Oh heck yes. I totally used my anger to write Dual Harvest. It’s easiest to get and portray the emotional charge from a situation you have been in. Not that the situation you write about is realistic, but you use what you have been through to write the fiction.
Do you try to put messages and morals into your fiction, or do you write simply to entertain the reader?
I tend to write to get my emotion out. Messages, probably so. Morals, no. Entertaining, I certainly hope so!
One reviewer described your novel Dual Harvest as “raw, violent, and visceral”. Wow, I love that! Please tell us more about it!
What do you want to know? It is an erotic thriller about a female serial killer, her plain Jane roommate and the detective searching for her. It is very violent, and overtly sexual. I was very angry at life when I wrote it, and the emotions I was feeling come through. It was a cathartic experience and one I needed. I hope I get the same feeling of satisfaction when finishing my next novel.
Are character names important to you? How about settings?
Names are not really that important as long as they aren’t too similar. I really hate reading a story or a novel where I can’t keep the characters straight in my head because the names are almost the same. I tend to write stories with no names. I use “she” and “he” a lot, because I want my stories to be about anybody and not just a particular person. I don’t put a lot of thought into the setting either unless it is important to the plot. Again, in most of my stories, I want that ‘this could be you in your home town‘ feel.
Do you remember the first thing you ever wrote?
Yes I do. I was in eighth grade and we had to write a fairy tale. I had gotten stung by a bee and found out I was allergic the day we got the assignment. Naturally I wrote a about a princess who needed the wizard to save her from the heathen bee sting. Hey, I got an A on it! But then I didn’t write again until I was an adult, so not sure if that counts.
You recently edited an anthology of horror stories, for which profits will be donated to the Children’s Cancer Fund. I think charity anthologies are a great way for authors and readers to bond, knowing that they’ve helped a worthy cause while doing what they love–reading and writing. Can you tell us more about Bleed?
In January of 2011, my then three year old son was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. It was devastating to me. Thankfully he has been relatively healthy throughout the whole ordeal, but there are so many children down at the hospital that have one form of cancer or another. Many of them are so sickly looking, it breaks my heart. I decided that something needed to be done to help. Bleed was my answer, since it is the only way I know to give back to the charities that have tried so hard to help us make it through.
I emailed almost every horror writer I knew and asked for stories. Most were very receptive, and willing to help out in any way possible. Other authors even contacted more authors, and I had a lot of stories when it was all said and done. Bleed ended up being 45 different stories, essays and poems, so the reader will get one heck of a book.
What are you working on at the moment?
Since I am the managing editor over at Dark Moon Digest, I am always sifting and sorting through horror stories. Also, I am the co-pain-in-the-ass at Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing and do all the bookkeeping and interior formatting. 75% of the time, I am working on trying to get some book formatted in print or e-form. The other 25% of the time, I am telling my son to quit chasing the dog. One day I might write some more on the half-finished novel I have.
Have you ever collaborated with another author?
Max Booth III and I have tried, but we have never quite finished. Maybe one day we will take each other seriously.
How did you end up working as an editor for Dark Moon Books?
This is such a weird story, but it was one of the most pivotal points in my life. Max and I were friends on a writing website that is now no longer online. When it collapsed, Max started to look for places to submit to. He found a place that was looking for vampire stories and ghost stories. So we signed up for this publisher’s newsletter. A couple of months later, the publisher sent out a mass email that he was looking for story/copy editors. I emailed back that I wasn’t that great of an editor (or at least I thought at the time) but his website needed help and that was my area of expertise. So, Stan Swanson took a chance and let me work on one of his side projects. Then, I started putting together and formatting the e-magazine, Dark Eclipse. From there, it was proofing final projects, taking care of the blog, whatever he handed me, I did. At World Horror Convention 2012, Stan took me aside and told me that he was too tired and busy to manage Dark Moon Digest and that the only person he could think of to take over was me. So, I started to manage the Digest. Holy heck, he was right, that is a lot of work. Last August, I bought into the magazine and am now co-owner of DMD.
Aside from Lori Michelle, writer and editor, who is the real Lori Michelle? What are your hobbies? What inspires you in your day to day life?
I have time for hobbies? Just kidding. I am a very weird mix. On the one hand, I am a very creative person and actually grew up as a dancer. I taught dance for a long time before needing to stop. I miss teaching dance. I loved not only the movement and musicality, but the thrill of watching my students learn to understand the rhythm of it all. But that’s another story for another time. In any case, I love it when I can make something work in Photoshop, I like crafting, and I get the whole aesthetic thing. But I am also a analytical person too. I understand the technical aspect of a computer and I was a bookkeeper for several years before the company closed this last February.
Day to day, right now it’s just one foot in front of another as I figure out where my life it taking me. I would love to have more time to read, sew, do needlework, but I say yes to too many other projects. Plus this whole pesky ‘you need a job‘ thing gets in my way.
Where do you see yourself in ten years from now?
Happy. In the past couple of years, I have been through hell, but I now know what true happiness is. My kids have come to see the real mom, and see how happy mom can be, and they are a lot happier for it. Max takes really good care of me, and has shown me that I wasn’t living before. We hope to make PMMP big enough to be a recognized name. If I continued to do nothing but work on the digest and PMMP stuff for the rest of my life (you know with making ends meet and all) I would be thrilled. Plus laying on a beach somewhere for vacation would be nice.
What advice do you have for aspiring writers?
READ THE SUBMISSION GUIDELINES AND LEARN HOW TO FORMAT YOUR DOCUMENT CORRECTLY!!!!! Don’t be afraid to ask questions; most publishers won’t bite. Don’t be afraid to try something new. Make sure you really do know basic spelling and grammar. Try to have a neutral party read your work, since your family will always think you are wonderful. And write as much and as often as you can, even if it sucks. You can’t get any better unless you practice.
Where can we find you on the web?
Website www.lorimichelleauthor.com (yes, I know I need to update it)
DMD www.darkmoonbooks.com and DMD blog www.lastwritesdmd.com
Facebook personal page www.facebook.com/lorimichelleauthor
Facebook author page www.facebook.com/authorlorimichelle
Okay, everyone, don’t forget to like this post, leave a comment, or share the link on Facebook (and message me to let me know you shared it). You only have to do ONE of these things, and your name will be entered to win a free Kindle copy of BLEED and a paperback of the anthology Quixotic: Not Everyday Love Stories, featuring a short story by your loyal blog editor!