Michelle Pickett Returns in Sci-Fi Fashion
I'm a wife, mother, author, reader, although not always in that order. I write adult and young adult urban fantasies, science/fiction and paranormal romances and have recently started dabbling in young adult contemporary romance. Reading was one of my earliest passions, writing soon followed. I began writing seriously during college where I graduated Summa Cum Laude with a degree in accounting. Why I chose a career that frowns on creativity remains a mystery.
I’m addicted to Reese’s peanut butter cups and eat way too many while I write, have an abnormal obsession with hoodies and can’t write without one, and I hate to cook, but love to watch cooking shows on television. An unabashed romantic, I love a swoon-worthy ending that will give me butterflies for days.
Please tell us a little about your new release without giving too much of a spoiler away.
It’s a post-apocalyptic, science-fiction, romance told from the point of view of Eva, a seventeen-year-old girl. She tells the story of what happens when a deadly, unstoppable virus breaks out, killing everyone who comes in contact with it. She relates her experiences and feelings as she watches the virus ravage the world, the government’s attempt to save as many people as possible by opening an underground habitat, her feelings when she is one of the “Chosen” to live in the PODs and how devastated she is when she has to leave everyone she’s loved behind knowing they’ll succumb to the virus. She tells about her time in the underground PODs, and then finally what happens when the residents of the PODs are finally allowed to emerge and see the world the virus has left behind.
What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Time. There’s never enough. I have to force myself to be very disciplined about my writing time and protect it like I would if it were a job outside my home. With four children, a husband and my aging mother to care for, it’s very easy to let time get away from me and find the day has passed and I haven’t written a word. So I have a set amount of work that has to be done each day. I make myself write a minimum of four pages a day. Most days I write more than my minimum…sometimes it takes forever to crank out four, but it keeps me writing and that’s what’s important.
What comes first: the plot or the characters?
It depends actually. For my new release PODs, the plot came first. The plot also came first for “Milayna” releasing March 11, 2014. But my current work in progress the characters came first and told me their story.
Do you plan all your characters out before you start a story or do they develop as you write?
I find that it’s a little of both. I start with a sketch of who they are, where they come from, the physical attributes, and so forth. As the story unfolds, the characters reveal more of themselves to me.
Do you have a ritual when it comes to writing? Example….get coffee, blanket, paper, pen, laptop and a comfy place.
Ah, yes. I’m a little quirky when I write. I get up at six a.m. and get dressed and ready for the day. I have breakfast with my kids when we aren’t running through the house like maniacs because we’re late, which is most days. My writing day begins as soon as I walk through the door after taking my kids to school. I grab my house phone, something to drink, my hoodie, my cell phone, make sure my stress ball is in my desk drawer, and power-up my lap-top. I slip into my hoodie while I wait for the computer to wake-up. I don’t know where my obsession with hoodies came from, but I can’t write without one. If it’s too hot to wear one (I live in Texas!), I have it slung over the back of my chair. Once the hoodie is in place and my computer is ready, I deal with my email first and then start writing.
Do your books have a common theme or are they all different?
I write across many themes and genres. It keeps writing fun for me and hopefully for my readers, as well.
How long does it take you to write and then edit a story?
It typically takes me around three months to write and another month to edit and revise.
How do you go about naming characters?
Sometimes I hear a name I like and use it. I actually have a list on my computer of names I’ve heard that I think are pretty or unique. But sometimes the character names itself. The personality and characteristics of the character just lend themselves to a particular name.
What do you see for the future of publishing and e-books?
That’s a really tough question. I see a lot of change in the industry. I don’t know that traditional publishing (paper books) will ever go away completely, but I think it will diminish dramatically as years go on based on price and ease of use of and availability of e-books. Technology is pervasive in our world and I don’t see that changing, so it’s only natural that it will spill over into publishing.
What are your current books out right now, and what are the books coming up for release?
I have two books published through MuseItUp Publishing. They are adult urban fantasies: Concilium and the sequel Concilium: The Departure.
My young adult titles are published through Spencer Hill Press and include PODs, my newest release. It’s available in paperback and e-book on June 4th, which is also my son’s 12th birthday. That has to be a sign of good luck because he’s such a blessing to me.
Contracted books coming up are: Milayna, a young adult paranormal romance. It’s scheduled for release in paperback and e-book formats on March 11, 2014. It is tentatively scheduled as a trilogy. If I continue with the trilogy the second book, Milayna’s Angel would release in September 2014. The Infected, the sequel to PODs and last book in the PODs series, will release in November 2014. And finally The Innocent, the third book in the Milayna trilogy (if it progresses) will release in April 2015.
What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
I love photography. I drive my family crazy chasing them around with my camera. I love to take photos of faces, especially eyes. They fascinate me, how much emotion you can see in just a look, especially if you can take a photo without a person knowing they are being photographed—when they are relaxed.
Is there anything else you would like to tell the readers we have not touched on?
I’d like to tell you all that I appreciate each of you tremendously. It is a great honor and very humbling to have someone read my work. I can’t express my thanks enough.
Where can the readers learn more about you and find your books on the web? (Add the web links and buy links here)
I love to hear from readers and other authors! Find me here:
· Website: www.Michelle-Pickett.com
· Email: Michelle@Michelle-Pickett.com
· Blog: www.Michelle-Pickett.com/blog
· Facebook: www.Facebook.com/michellepickettauthor
· Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/michelle_kp
· Goodreads: http://goodreads.com/michelle-pickett
· Linked In: http://www.linkedin.com/in/michellepickett
· Pinterest http://pinterest.com/michelleauthor/