Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Author Interview: Michael W. Garza

Twisted Book Junkie interviews author Michael W. Garza, author of The Hand that Feeds.

Zombies, spaceships, and dragons have all found a place in my writing. I often find myself wondering where my inspiration will come from next and in what form my imagination will bring it to life. The outcomes regularly surprise me and it's always my ambition to amaze those curious enough to follow me and take in those results. Please take a look around my site and I encourage you to peek at my latest work as well as the material I've published in the past. I sincerely hope that everyone will find something that astonishes, surprises, or simple scares the heck out of you.
Welcome to Twisted Book Junkie, Michael. Thank you for taking the time to stop by the blog. First, tell us a little about yourself, and how you got into writing.
I’m a full time husband and father, employed in the aerospace industry who happens to enjoy writing things down. I’ve been writing for my own entertainment since I was a kid but only considered putting it out for others to see in the last six or seven years. Like most people my job takes up a majority of my time and my family takes up the rest. I write when I can which is usually late at night or early mornings on the weekends before the kids get out of bed. As odd as it may sound, horror is not my first choice by a long shot. I’ve always been drawn to science fiction. My leap into the world of horror can be traced directly to my love of H.P. Lovecraft.

What five words best describe you?
It's all in the details.

How do you decide on character names in your books?
It’s pretty random for me. I try not to worry about it too much when I’m writing. I usually just pick the first name that pops in my head as a place holder, but a number of times I get so used to the name it ends up sticking. Other times ill have some divine intervention and out of nowhere there’ll be a name I have to use.

Have you ever written yourself or people you know as a character in one of your books?
Not in anything published yet although I have used traits from people I know, even family members. I do have a book I’m currently shopping in which the two main characters are directly based on my oldest kids. I have to admit that it made the writing process far more difficult than it usually is. Midway through, I saw the characters as my kids and anything that happened to them made me feel guilty.

Do you write full time or do you keep a day job?
Writing is strictly a hobby for me. I’ve been blessed with some measure of success but, I’m lucky to have a career that I enjoy. I’ll continue to write as long as it provides the escape I take pleasure in. I can’t see myself ever stepping off the ledge so to speak and writing anymore than I do right now. That being said, I’m pretty dedicated to it. I have a real passion for it and would like to think I’m getting better with every finished work.
Do you hear from readers much? What kinds of things do they say?
With today’s social media it’s a pretty common occurrence to hear from your readers. For the most part I enjoy it. Even the criticism serves a purpose. It’s a really good way to see what’s working in your stories and what isn’t. I’ve heard everything from, “this is the best book I’ve ever read” to “this is terrible!” I try to take it all in stride. Everyone is entitled to their opinion and I’m glad to see a large majority of the reviews and feedback has been very positive.

What is the best piece of advice you ever received from another author?
“Sell one book at a time.” That might sound cheesy but it’s so right. What most people (and some writers) don’t see is how the hard part really starts after the book is done and the publisher has accepted it. Very few publishers invest a great deal in promotions. A majority of that work is left to the author and their supporters. At first it can be overwhelming, but if you focus on selling one book at a time and really building a fan base, you’ll have a lot more lasting success and more people willing to spend hard earned money on your future work.

Do you have a new project in the works?
I’m always working on multiple projects. Not sure why I work that way but it seems to keep me from getting bogged down on any one thing. I have a graphic novel that is out in limited run and selling in comic book stores. It’s scheduled for wide release in March. I’m also editing a short story collection of Lovecraftian works that I plan to put out mid 2014. Finally I’ve finished the follow up to The Hand That Feeds and hope to have it published by the end of the year. On a slightly different note, I’m currently working with a friend of mine in the film industry and he’s making a short film based on a short story I wrote.

Do you ever suffer from writer's block? If so, how do you handle it?
I’ve never had a problem with writers block. I think a lot of that comes from always working on several projects at one time. The variety helps break up each project and often times stimulates ideas that I wouldn’t have thought about had it not been for one of the other stories. It get’s hectic at times but at this point it’s a part of my process and I doubt it will ever change.

What is your biggest fear?
Not being there for my family. I think that’s why a majority of the things I write about revolve around someone’s vulnerability. To me that is the scariest thing on earth I can think of. Regardless if it involves the walking dead or not I always have this fear in the back of my mind. I think most people, particularly fathers, have a similar fear. The Hand That Feeds is a direct assault on that terror.

What is the happiest moment in your life, to date?
The birth of my kids. Not sure how this isn’t the answer for any father out there. I’ve got three wonderful kids and couldn’t imagine getting up each day without them.
The Hand That Feeds
by Michael W. Garza

How far will a parent go to keep their child alive? John and Angela Mason’s lives are brought to a tormenting halt when their ten year old son is reduced to a lifeless shell. John watches his wife slip into madness as his son rises from the dead. He realizes they must escape the terrifying infection in order to survive but how can he choose between the insanity consuming his wife and the undying hunger of his son. An appetite for death will come in one form or another and it will be left to John to decide on the hand that feeds.

The Hand That Feeds Blog Tour
February 23 – March 23

February 23 

Ebook Escapes
Book spotlight on The Hand That Feeds 

February 26 
Twisted Book Junkie
Author interview with Michael W. Garza

March 5 
Wag the Fox
Book review of The Hand That Feeds

March 10
The Bookie Monster
Guest post titled, "My book was published, now what?"

March 14
Biblio Babes
Book review of The Hand That Feeds

March 17
Brutal Books
Book review and author interview

No comments:

Post a Comment