A simple question…”Do you know?“…but one which can make you double think, one that can make you question your own logic and knowledge.
You start asking yourself “is that the Michael I know?” or “Does he spell his surname with two t’s?“.
Little doubts, little nags, little uncertainties start to creep into you mind.
The same things happen when your read the work of this particular Michael J. Elliott. When you think you have the tale ‘sussed’ along comes a little twist and throws you all to kilter.
Oh, don’t try and predict the ending; even if you are close, you will be wrong, it will be scarier, or harder, or the character will suffer more…or less…before they die…or live happily ever after. That is of course if it has anything to do with that character at all.
This is why I love reading Michael’s stories…this is the Michael J. Elliott I do know, the one who does spells his name with two t’s!
I wanted to take a peek into Michael’s psyche, I wanted to know how a man of his undoubted talent conjures up such spellbinding tales so, I asked him a few leading questions.
You could say that these questions are Choice Cuts!
Do you think someone could be a writer if they don’t feel emotions strongly?
Micheal said: No, I really think you need to LOVE books and writing. It’s an art form like anything else and artists simply wouldn’t create if they didn’t have the drive and the passion.
Do you hide any secrets in your books that only a few people will find?
Yes! In my first collection, Portraits of Dread, I wrote a story called Defective goods. It was a creepy send up of a well known British comedy show. I named all the characters after the actors from the show or their characters. I was hoping clever readers would spot the connection. In my new collection, Choice Cuts-A Bite from The Dark Realm, I have a story called Penance. It’s about an ancient order of nuns. I have named all the Sisters after famous figures from history. Eagle eyed readers will be able to guess the convent’s secret just from the names. I love throwing in those sort of references in my work 🙂
Have you read anything that made you think differently about fiction?
I’ve read a lot of writer’s craft books which have certainly taught me a lot about the “rules” of writing. That has been a big help in my journey as an author.
What did you edit out of your latest book?
Two stories didn’t make the grade for this collection. The first was titled, Once A Jolly Swagman. It was a ghost story centered around the famous Australian song and poem. I hadn’t finished it but when I went back and re read it I found it just rambled, way too much padding with nothing really interesting happening until the build up. I’ll keep it and give it a good edit so that you may see it in another collection at some time. The other was entitled, The Snow Globe. I dithered with so many options about how the protagonist finds this globe and what it actually does that I eventually decided to cut the story out completely.
My final question was, what kind of research do you do, and how long do you spend researching before beginning a book?
I take a lot of notes and Wilkipedia is my best friend lol. I’m writing Mr Westacott’s Holiday atm. It’s set in two time frames, 1900 and 1970. The setting is Britain. I was born and live in Australia and was a teen during the 70’s so I had no idea of British fashion of the 70’s, the distance between two of the towns in the book etc. I’m very grateful to the British members of #The Awethors for helping me out with these questions.
Choice Cuts- A Bite From the Dark Realm will be released on Halloween 2016 and is currently available for pre order at Smashwords and Amazon for the special promotion price of 99c (will be $4.99) Also available in paperback for $10.99
Choice Cuts is available worldwide via Amazon on this link http://authl.it/6a0
and from Smashwords here
Other books by Micheal J Elliot