Featured Friday! Mike Walters
Mike Walters’ debut duology, The Outlaw River Wilde – Book I, and Still Wilde in Outlaw River – Book II, sprung from an idea while watching Ancient Aliens on the History channel. He intertwines his love of Native American culture and a passion for the Pacific Northwest, primarily his birth state of Oregon in the Supernatural SciFi Mystery. Mike sat down one day and started writing. The characters and story came to life as he wrote.
Mike is the Director of Marketing & Product at a Library Software company, Auto-Graphics, Inc. based in Ontario, California. When Mike isn’t working, he can be found bicycling around Southern California, hiking the Claremont Loop, or writing.
Mike learned photography as a freshman in high school and later took the passion and used it as a photographer in the United States Air Force. Besides his hiking and bicycling passion, Mike has a penchant for capturing sunrises on his Blackberry, which he often shares on Facebook and Instagram. Mike has a fondness for Micro-brews, particularly Porters and Stouts. One can frequently find him sampling, with his son Alexander, at Claremont Craft Ales, a personal favorite. Mike is currently at work on his next yarn, What Lies Beneath the Ferns — a dark mystery dealing with abduction, childhood abuse, and a family that wants to wish it all away. As time permits, which seems to never be enough, he continues to market his supernatural duology, The Outlaw River Wilde.
What’s your favourite part of the lifestyle of an Author?
How it changed and improved my observational skills of day-to-day life. I am forever thinking of ways to turn something I witness or observe in to a potential novel. I never know where the next idea is going to come from or when.
What made you start writing?
Someone I knew was a writer and had an agent that wanted to represent them. The person stopped communicating with the agent because they felt the agent wasn’t really serious. I was incredulous over how they could be so cynical and turn their back on such a fortunate opportunity. This motivated me to write my first novel with the desire of being an Indie author and self-publishing.
Easily Cormac McCarthy. His ability to move a story forward effortlessly as well as use very little punctuation is inspiring. I never had a desire to properly learn punctuation in school and Cormac’s attitude about it fascinates me. I love post-apocalyptic stuff and The Road is one of my all time favorites.
What’s your number one tip for an aspiring Author?
Write for yourself and don’t worry about pleasing everyone. Get a trusted first reader, or two, and if all of you enjoy what you are writing others will as well. Not everyone will like everything you write so don’t worry about it.
What type of book do you like to read and does this differ from the genre that you prefer to write?
I have a broad cross-section of things I like to read. I want to care about the characters and the story. If I can get pulled in to both I don’t care what the genre is. I think my writing will be similar. My first two novels were a supernatural SciFi duology with Native American and Ancient Alien themes. What I am currently working on is a dark mystery that takes place with a family over several decades as it charts their keen ability to overlook the family wrongs so as not to have to deal with the dirty facts of everyday life. I have a new idea on another SciFi alien takeover of earth in the works.
Which one of your characters would you most like to spend time with?
The antagonist in my Outlaw River Wilde duology. He has been abused by his parents and forgotten and he let it ruin his life. He needed someone he could trust to encourage him to get some counselling and look at the dark moments of his childhood as an opportunity to learn and grow. I suppose I like to fix things.
Which book do you consider a must-read?
Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand. So many eerie parallels on what is going on in today’s society. She was ahead of her time and I love her personal story of immigrating to the United States and doing things on her terms.
What’s been the hardest edit that you’ve had to make? Why did you want to keep the material in?
Taking out a big section of a flashback with the protagonist and his best friend in their youth. I wanted to keep it in because some of it came from my personal experience as a teen, but the editor was right in that it didn’t move the story forward.
If you could live in a book, which one would it be?
This may sound a bit nuts, but McCarthy’s The Road. I am drawn to post-apocalyptic stories because of the simplicity of life. You get up every day focused on survival and nothing else. No distractions period!
If you could pick an Author to write your biography, who would it be?
We all know the phrase “the book is always better than the film.” Which film would you like to see remade as a book?
Knight and Day with Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz. It did not receive great film reviews but I loved the two main characters and their interaction. It is the type of characters and action I would like to write. Smart ass, witty humour with a fast pace story deeper. Could be a great novel with some more back story and depth.
Can you sum up your life story in ten words or less?
Embraced the challenges life put in his way.
What’s exciting you about your next project?
A dark mystery of events taken from my own personal life and my messed up childhood and family. I think it will be a sort of cleansing for me, in the sense I hope to get out a lot of garbage buried that I really have never talked about. I also think it will reflect a tremendous amount on what goes on in many families and how most of them don’t want to talk about the dirt and admit they are messed up. The working title, What Lies Beneath the Ferns, will follow the life of a protagonist married three times who is confronted with the unexpected murder of his first two wives. It will be a page turner. I can’t wait to see how it ends up.
And finally, you have one quote to be remembered by, what is it?
“Seeing what happens when you rip yourself open is what your job is all about.”
Ed Harris – American Actor
I am fascinated in seeing what I uncover inside me as I write.
Find out more about Mike Walters and his supernatural Duology on his website: