It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare, it is because we do not dare that they are difficult. - Seneca

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Interview w/Song of the Muses author, Michele Hart





~Something's Rotten at the Gates of Heaven~
Under conspiratorial inspiration of Olympian thrones,
Thalia, the Muse of Comedy,
sends a blessing of love and laughter to Drew Murphy,
a young man cursed to a short and miserable life.
But when her favorite messenger Daisy Sullivan accidentally launches the magic
--wrong time, wrong place, wrong method, wrong everything!--
Thalia must force to light buried secrets of a millennia-old family curse
and face down a most vengeful Immortal on his own bloody stage
if she wishes to free both Drew and Daisy from an unJust fate.

Ares, the God of War,
loves only one thing as much as he loves bloodshed....
How's Thalia supposed to make THAT funny?
At least, she's wearing her best sandals!


Today I had the pleasure of interviewing, Michele Hart, another author contributing to the Songs of the Muses anthology. Her story, "No Funny Stuff," is being released today by the Wild Rose Press!

Welcome Michele, I appreciate you taking the time to grant me an interview. You must be so excited about your upcoming release! And I hope you don't mind if we ask you a few questions!

C of C- How long have you been writing?
MH- Ew, complicated answer. I started writing from 1991-95, took a break for real life, then returned to the keyboard in 2005, when I rewrote all I’d written in the ‘90s, then wrote more. Haven’t stopped since.

C o C- Are you a plotter or a pantser?
MH- I was 100% pantser until I joined this anthology! I’d always generated my own stories, had never been handed an “assignment” before, so I had to learn a comfortable combination of both. And I’m glad I did. The skill will help me from now on, I’m sure.

C of C- How would you describe your voice?
MH- Not all that Romancy, in my opinion. The greatest share of my writing is Futuristic Romance, and I probably have a cooler, more gritty voice in most for those stories. But No Funny Stuff! is more light-hearted than my other stuff. Thalia had specifically requested fun.

C of C- What is your favorite part of the writing process?
MH- The unflowering of the story as I pound it out of my keyboard. I’m often very surprised at how things turn out, how earlier things mentioned in the story play through the plot. I love the surprise.
C of C- I agree with you Michele, there is nothing better than when your characters take over the story and send you on a journey you never expected!

C of C- Where do you find your inspiration?
MH- Decades of Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica, and all those ‘70s reruns that had babysat me in my youth. The news and technology inspire me, as well. Science is my true love.
C of C- That is obvious to me as I speak with you!

C of C- How do you come up with your ideas/plots?
MH- I find a technology that tickles my brain, then I create the characters around that. I’m a huge Tesla fan, and he always has an idea for me.

C of C- Do you write in short stretches or for long periods of time?
MH- Long stretches, often 15-18 hours a day when I’m pounding out a first draft. I don’t sleep more than 5-6 hours then, and not many breaks. Usually the story’s bursting out of me.
C of C- Wow!! I wish I had your dedication!

C of C- Do you write in silence or listen to music?
MH-I WISH I could write and listen to music, but I must have a pretty quiet place, and I’m lucky to have that.

C of C- Do you eat or drink while writing?
MH-I break to eat, but guzzle the java like the Coffee Cops are banging down my door.
C of C- lol, :O)

C of C- Do you research your story before you write it, or as you go?
MH- I start the research before I write and it’s usually ongoing throughout writing the first draft.

C of C- What have you learned through research that you’ll remember for the rest of your life?
MH-Oh, my gosh! You don’t have enough room!
The most important thing I’ve studied, and still do, is HAARP, electro-magnetic technology that can find fossil fuel, communicate underwater, initiate mind-control, change the weather, disrupt migratory fields, shatter our magnetosphere, and dominate the world. HAARP could be the most important scientific development in the history of Mankind. Or the WORST doomsday machine ever devised.
C of C- lol, ok, Michele way over my head!!!! very interesting though, I'll have to google that!:O)
C of C- How do you decorate your writing space?
MH- I have twenty times more toys in my office now than I’d ever had as a kid!
C of C- ha, ha!!

C of C- Are you a neat/organized writer or is your office and/or space a complete mess with sticky notes everywhere?
MH- It’s organized chaos in my office! Notes everywhere!

C of C- Does all your writing take place on a computer or do you ever write on pen and paper?
MH- Computer. Oh, if I had to write by hand, I wouldn’t have written my name!
C of C- I'm with you there!!! lol, I would die if it had to be done by hand!!

C of C- What is your favorite time period? And why?
MH-I love the far future for its challenging settings, themes, and technologies.

C of C- What character did you most enjoy writing?
MH- Thalia, the Muse of Comedy, was very fun to write. I gave her a very big problem she had to take seriously and still have fun.

C of C- Readers are always curious to know about authors lives. What is the worst job (non-writing related) you’ve ever held?
MH- Ha! I once did telemarketing for a funeral home. That was the pits.
C of C- Oh my, that must have been interesting!! lol, you are so funny!!! It's no wonder they asked you to write about the muse of comedy!!!!!

C of C- What is one thing you think your readers would be interested to know about you?
MH- My family’s from Transylvania!
C of C- Awesome!!!! that is totally cool!!! Ever met Dracula??? lol :O)

C of C- Are you reclusive or do you like being with other writers?
MH- I’m a terrible hermit, seldom leave my office.
C of C- I definitely wasn't getting that impression of you, but I shouldn't be surprised, us writers are a reclusive lot!!

C of C- Do you find love scenes easy or hard to write?
MH- I find love scenes very difficult to write, mainly because they require a different concentration and mood than other action and dialogue scenes. I usually skip over love scenes in a first draft, then go back to write them.
C of C- hmm, interesting.

C of C- How long do you wait once a story is finished to revise it?
MH-I take a few days off to clear my head, then I jump right on revisions.

C of C- Do you ever second-guess yourself and your writing?
MH- Story-telling’s such a deeply personal thing, I think it would take a monumental ego not to question yourself and your writing every now and then. Unless you’re Nora Roberts.
C of C- I agree.

C of C- Do you ever stray from your genre? Your comfort zone?
MH- I didn’t think I ever would, but in the last year, I’ve written an Erotic Romantic Suspense and a Fantasy Romance short story, things I never saw myself doing. It’s a good thing to test your boundaries, push them back.
C of C- Good for you!!!

C of C- Is it necessary to have a Critique/Writing partner?
MH- Although I don’t have a critique partner, I believe it’s critical to have one. An extra set of eyes will see what you don’t.
C of C- I agree, totally, they are definitely worth their weight in gold! You better be getting yourself one!!

C of C- Do you allow family and friends to read your stories?
MH- Mom edits for me but, no, I don’t pass the stories onto someone until they’re perfected by the publisher’s editors. I’d prefer as few mistakes seen as possible!

C of C- Authors make writing look so easy. Is it harder than most people imagine it to be?
MH- It’s much harder to be a WORKING and SELLING writer than 99% of outsiders speculate. There is far more work involved than they imagine, far more non-writing work with Web sites, blogs, book trailers, banners, postcards, interviews, reviews, and more! Being a writer is far more than just writing these days. You must make yourself a publicity machine.
C of C- Boy did you hit the nail on the head, its allot more than just getting story down on paper. I'm sure it can be exhausting.

C of C- How long does it take you to finish a story?
MH- I write word counts from 35,000 to 156,000 words, so the time varies, as well.

C of C- Which author/(s) are on your must-read list?
MH- Angela Knight, Jennifer Estep, Cheryl Anne Porter, Katie Macalister

C of C- Do you have more than one book out now?
MH- Yes, I have my Erotic Romantic Suspense releasing on May 19th with Siren Publishing.
C of C- Congratulations!!

C of C- Has your writing Journey been a smooth or bumpy ride?
MH- I’ve never heard of it as a smooth ride for any writer, considering research, rejections, seeking out information hidden in corners to make the best possible decisions. It’s not an easy job for the faint-at-heart. You really must be tough. That’s not to say I haven’t shed some tears. I have.

C of C- What advice would you give to a new aspiring writer?
MH- Step 1: Murder your ego!
You MUST learn to take advice and direction from more experienced writers, to endure tough criticism and rise to learn. Don’t let ego or feelings from keeping you from learning how to write a marketable story. Every good story is not a saleable story. You must learn to write what sells.
Having 300 great but unmarketable stories does the serious writer no good.
C of C- Excellent advice! You definitely must grow very thick skin!

Thanks so much for being here with me today Michele, I enjoyed getting to know you better, and I wish you the best of luck with all your future endeavours!!! AND most of all I want to send you my Congratulations on today's release of "No Funny Stuff!"

For more information on Michele please go to: http://www.michelehart.com/
Michele will be giving away a PDF copy of, "No Funny Stuff" to one lucky commenter. In order to be considered you must leave a comment under the interview. Please, PLEASE, PLEASE.. leave your contact information so that Michele can reach the winner.
If the winner doesn't respond to our attempts to reach them within a weeks time another name will be picked. Good Luck!!

24 comments:

Lyn said...

Great interview Michele. I'm reallyenjoying getting to know a little more about each of my muse sisters.

Valerie Everhart said...

Congrats Michele, on your new release!

And awesome interview. It was interesting to get to know more about you!

Kristy said...

With each interview of another author, I find myself understanding my own oddities. What a delightful interview. Michele, terrific terrific job. I can't wait to read your book.

Alisha Paige said...

Whoa...Transylvania! Tell us about that, Michele! Wow, sis...you talk way over my head. I need some of your scientific knowledge! No wonder you're so good at futuristic and sci fi writing. I need to pick your brain! And I'm so jealous of your long writing stretches!

It's wonderful to get to know you better! Congrats on your release! Have a happy release day! Pop some champagne!

Estella said...

Congrats on your release!
I enjoyed the interview.

kissinoak@verizon.net

Chicks of Characterization said...

Hi Lyn, Valerie, Kristy, Alisha, and Estella, thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a comment!!! And, Alisha, TRANSYLVANIA, woohoo, that's a story in itself, we'll have to get Michele to write a story about that, eh???

Andrea :O)

Skhye said...

Michele, you worked with HAARP? So you're the one giving me these barometric-pressure induced headaches... I have a bone to pick with you! Seriously, congrats. ;)

Chicks of Characterization said...

Hey Skhye! waving* Grin :O)Thanks for stopping by!! So, Michele is the one giving us those headaches, eh??? hmmm ... :O)

Author Interview Fanatic said...

Great interview. I like the way she approaches her characters, picking technology and then constructing the characters around that piece of technology. Great idea!

Michele Hart said...

Hello, everyone!

I'm so glad everyone's enjoying the interview! I'll be collecting names for the drawing to win a copy of No Funny Stuff!.

Yes, Kristy, the more you'll read about authors, the more you'll realize we're all very similiar. Keep studying all the authors around you. There's much to learn.

Transylvania! Most of my life I didn't know, but I started studying a little of my Hungarian roots and realized it, then confirmed it with my uncle. How cool is that? (Several ex-boyfriends say they always knew, and that's why I don't let them out of the dungeon.)

Yeah, I gotta write a horror story.
But then, I'm divorced and it seems redundant.
BA-DOOM TEESH! Thank you very much!

No, Skhye, I didn't work WITH HAARP. I did some extensive research and wrote a story about it. I'm probably on an ugly government list for it too! Oh, Skhye! You'd LOVE HAARP! But you WILL be put on a list, so beware.

Thank you, all, and come back! I'm doing this here all weekend!

Read about No Funny Stuff!
http://www.michelehart.com/b22-book.htm

Meet the Muses! http://www.michelehart.com/songofthemuses.htm

Thank you, Sister Muses, for joining me!

Rebekah (the_littleminx) said...

Michele,
Congrats on your release. I think the book sounds delightful, and I hope to get a copy one of these days soon.

In the meantime, best of luck to you with all your future endeavors. I'm sure this story is going to be a major hit. :)

Cheers!

Rebekah

littleminx AT cox DOT net

Ruby (Mouth) said...

This sounds like such a cute book. And thanks for such a great interview.

Hope your release goes good!!

Ruth C. said...

Family from Transylvania and telemarketer for a funeral home -- what a lead in.

Just incorporating that into a book would be a riot.!!!!

This book sounds soooooo good - I really like humor injected into a story line.!!

Ruth C.

rchesick@yahoo.com

Michele Hart said...

Chicks of Characterization saw I was Transylvanian and asked me if I've ever met Dracula?

Met him??? I can't stop dating the guy!
(BA-DOOM TEESH! Thank you very much! You're a great audience!)

Michele Hart said...

Thank you for making Guest Star appearances on my blog, Muse Sisters!

Since I've started the Muse series, I've had great fun with the authors who would write the tales of the Muses. Can't find a better group of girls. I couldn't be more proud to be included as a Muse writer.

Song of the Muses has an Inspiration for you! Historicals and Contemporaries!

Readers!
Don't miss the chance to Meet the Muses!
Check out the blurbs and GORGEOUS covers right here:
http://www.michelehart.com/songofthemuses.htm

9 Tales of Romance for the 9 Muses of Inspiration. GET INSPIRED!

Available from The Wild Rose Press, Where Romance Blooms

I said I'd blog with two hands behind my back and BOY! is my nose sore!
(tap, tap! Is this thing on?)

dcreager said...

Michele,Your book sounds awesome. it to read it.
Debby Creager
cleo@hbeark.com

Michele Hart said...

Thanks, Debby. Dive in. I hope you like it.

Chicks of Characterization said...

Hi Everyone I'm away on vacation and had to BORROW my sons computer so I could check in and say HELLO to everyone! Thank you for dropping by and leaving a comment!!! Talk to you soon! :O)

Andrea

Michele Hart said...

Hello, Andrea!

Thank you for giving me a weekend on your blog. It's been fun, and I've met nice people.

Michele

LadyVampire2u said...

Andrea, hope your having a great vacation. I've been away from the internet on a trip also here but not exactly for enjoyment. Buisness bascially. Still, it's good to be back home and I see I'm late commenting on here but I had to add how I enjoyed the interview. Congratulations on your newest release Michele! Sounds like one wonderful book that I definitely have to get ahold of a copy of.

Michele Hart said...

Thank you so much, Lady Vampire. I hope No Funny Stuff! gives you many laughs.

TO ALL!
Because of several maniacal computer errors, I will be drawing the name of the winner of No Funny Stuff! Wednesday so most can catch up.

No Funny Stuff! hit #6 on the BestSeller's List this weekend!
Woo-hoo!

Chicks of Characterization said...

Hi Michele, you are so welcome for the time and space! I want to thanks everyone for stopping by and commenting!

Hey Lady Vamp, my vacation was FABULOUS!!! But then I had to come home. sigh** ha ha

Again, I appreciate everyone stopping by! And good luck with "No Funny Stuff," Michele!!!

Michele Hart said...

Thanks, all, for your participation!
Ruby won the drawing and a copy of my new release NO FUNNY STUFF!, and I hope she loves it.

Visit me @
http://www.ILoveShapeShifters.com/

Have a magical evening,
Michele Hart

Chicks of Characterization said...

Congratulations Ruby!!!!!!

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