1. Paperback, hardback, audiobook?
Hardback. They look more stately and dignified than paperbacks, and if you have enough, they encourage you to settle down, because it’s hell to have to move them.
2. Pick a genre, any genre!
Sci-Fi without a question. It’s been my go-to since I was a kid. Advanced tech, mind-bending but plausible physical concepts and the existential crises that come with it? Yes please.
3. What is the first book you remember reading?
The Bingity Bangity School Bus was my earliest kids’ book. But the first adult book I remember reading (not long after Bingity Bangity) was George Burns’ How To Live To Be 100. I don’t yet know if I absorbed any of that.
4. What book shaped your childhood most?
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (not a surprise). Up until then, I thought sci-fi was serious business about the future and wars with lasers. Douglas Adams taught me that intro and extrospection go hand in hand, and to just accept how ridiculous and out of our control the universe is.
5. When did you first start writing?
I’d say about 8th grade. My English teacher asked us to write a short adventure story since we were covering The Hobbit. I wrote a 100 page novel with maps and appendices.
6. What made you want to write? Does it still hold true?
My grandfather was a writer, even though he never really published anything, so I think I get the writing gene from there. Hard to change genetics.
7. What book/poem are you most proud of creating?
I’d say Duckett & Dyer: Dicks For Hire is what I’m most proud of. It was a 5 year labor of love and intense effort. It’s a miracle I even finished it at all.
8. Did you publish your first book or is it for your eyes only?
Duckett & Dyer was my first book, so it’s out there, baby! It was the first time I ever actually enjoyed reading through something I’d completed.
9. How many books/collections have you published so far?
Two books. Duckett & Dyer: Dicks For Hire, and its sequel The One-Hundred Percent Solution. Currently working on the third book, The Mystery of the Murdered Guy.
10. What genres do you write in (or hope to)?
I play in that bizarre, unprofitable intersection of sci-fi, mystery, and comedy.
11. Do you do research for your writing or is it all in your head?
Most of what I write is so idiosyncratically bizarre that I wouldn’t be able to research it if I tried.
12. To plan, or not to plan your plot?
Oh, I gotsta plan. A lot of my work deals with time travel and multiverse theory, so if I didn’t keep things straight, I wouldn’t have a chance!
13. What route of publishing have you chosen? Do you plan to stick with it?
I pitched Duckett & Dyer to a bunch of agents, hoping for a trad pub route, but didn’t get any takers. It’s fair. Humor’s hard to market. So I went self-pub. I’m planning to stick with self-pub for Duckett & Dyer, since it allows me to do weird, wacky stuff trad publishers might balk at. I do enjoy the control.
But I’ve got other, more conventional ideas that I’d like to pitch to the trad world again. We’ll see.
14. If you could live inside another author’s universe, which one would you pick? (Ex: Middle Earth, Narnia, etc.)
Oof. That’s a hard one. I’ve always thought the Star Wars universe was one of the cooler ones. Let’s go with that.
15. Do you currently have a WIP?
Currently, I’m working on the third book in the Duckett & Dyer series, The Mystery of the Murdered Guy. It’s an anthology of short mystery stories set in the Duckett & Dyer universe.
16. Tell me about the character you’ve created who is dearest to your heart.
Stephanie Dyer is such a wild and crazy disaster area of a person that I can’t help but love her, but I’d probably want to smack her in real life.
17. What do you consider your *current* magnum opus?
I’ve been working on an epic-scale space opera called ‘The Centre of All Things’ for nearly 20 years now. I don’t think I’ll live long enough for it to see the light of day, but, if it does … that’s it. That’s the one.
18. Do you have a favourite romance in your books? Or, if yours features no romance, tell us about your favourite character friendship!
My books aren’t heavy on the romance, but the friendship between Michael Duckett and Stephanie Dyer is so central to my stories, they would be absolutely non-functional without it.
19. Do you listen to music as you write? Recommend a favourite writing song.
I don’t usually, but I do listen to a lot of music while I’m brainstorming (or vice versa). Basically Doctor Who soundtracks, or any epic/80s remixes of Star Wars music I can find on YouTube.
20. Do you have any character art for your books, whether by you or another artist? (Be sure to credit/link if you can!)
My book covers are probably the best place to see my characters. They’re drawn by the incredible Tareque Powaday (@yatelboa on Instagram), who’s always able to translate my vague descriptions into an awesome cover.
21. If you could give one piece of advice to an aspiring author, what would it be?
Your first draft doesn’t have to be good. It just has to be done. Because it’s way easier to fix a broken thing than to make a perfect thing wholesale.
22. Have you entered any writer contests? Tell us about your experience!
I just entered Hugh Howey and Duncan Swan’s Self-Published Science Fiction Competition. It’s my first big contest, and I’m loving the enthusiasm and the dedication of the reviewers!
23. Who are your top 5-10 favourite writers?
Douglas Adams is the tops, of course. But I love Asimov, Clarke, and Bradbury for some good classic sci-fi. I also really love a lot of modern comic book writers like Jonathan Hickman, Chip Zdarsky, and Tom Taylor. They really have a unique flavor for a great medium.
24. Link us your book/twitter/goodreads or wherever we can best connect with you!
Connect with me on Twitter, I’m usually there spouting off some stupid nonsense, and I’d love to hear from you.
Otherwise, check out my books here.