Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Author Interview: Michelle Pickett

Michelle Pickett has written PODs.

1. What is your name and where do you call home?
My name is Michelle Pickett. I was born and raised in Flint, Michigan, but I now reside in a small community outside Houston, Texas with my incredibly supportive husband, three school-aged children, a 125 pound “lap” dog and a very snooty cat.

2. Do you have a pen name?
No, I use my given name on all my writing.  Although, some books list me as Michelle K. Pickett while others leave out my middle initial. 

3. What is the name of your most recent book and if you had to sum it up in 20 or less words, what would you say?
My most recent book is a post-apocalyptic/dystopian/romance titled PODs and will release June 4th.
A virus kills the population. Some people are chosen to live in the PODs to save mankind—there are zombies.

4. Do you have plans for a new book? Is this book part of a series?
PODs is my debut young adult novel. It’s a post-apocalyptic/dystopian/romance. It was written as a stand-alone, but I recently signed a contract for the sequel titled, The Infected. PODs releases June 4th, 2013 and The Infected releases November 2014.

5. What or who inspired you to start writing? And how long have you been writing?
My grandmother inspired me to read, which led to writing. I’ve always written, even if it was just in my journal. However, I didn’t start writing seriously until college. Then my writing was just for myself. I dreamed of having something published one day, but never could finish a book. It was quite sometime after college that I wrote my first full-length novel.

6. How did you come up with the cover? Who designed the cover of your book?
The cover for PODs was designed by my editor and myself. We collaborated on it until we were both happy with the result.  After reading the book the reader will understand how perfect the cover is for the book. It couldn’t have been any better!
As for my next young adult novel, a paranormal romance titled Milayna, my editor and I also collaborated on it and she did an excellent job of capturing my vision. They are both fantastic covers and fit the books perfectly.

7. Is there anything you would change about your book covers?
No, I love them all. I’ve been very fortunate to have cover designers that take my feedback and work hard to make the cover as close to what I want as they can.

8. Do you have a playlist in mind for any of your books?
Yes, each of my books have playlists. They are located on my website (www.michelle-pickett.com). I also have some Youtube links that allow you to listen to some of the songs directly from my website, especially PODs and the sequel “The Infected.”

9. Did you listen to any particular songs whilst writing your books?
I do if the song relates to the scene. When I wrote the scene of Eva leaving her parents in PODs I listened to Avril Lavigne’s “I Miss You.”

10. How did you come up with the title for your book?
In PODs people are chosen to live in an underground habitat until the virus kills the population above and eventually dies itself. I just imagined them as being circular and the name PODs just jumped out at me. I had a really, really hard time trying to figure out what each letter would mean because I wanted the word POD to be an acronym.  The sequel’s title, The Infected, just fit the book so it also just fell into place without much effort from me.
My young adult paranormal romance the character came before the story and I knew her name was going to be Milayna so that became the titled of the first book in the trilogy. The second book’s title is tentatively Milayna’s Angel.  The third book doesn’t have a firm titled yet, however.

11. Do you have a book trailer? And what are your thoughts on book trailers?
My editor/publisher and I are currently working on an awesome book trailer. It is a live book trailer. In other words, it’s not just photos scrolling across the screen. An actor and voice over actor will be hired to do the scene and I think it is going to turn out awesome!
I happen to like book trailers and watch them when available for books I’m interested in. I know some people don’t care for them, but I love them. It’s just like watching a movie trailer in my opinion.

12. Do you have a “Dreamcast” in mind for any of your books?
No, but I do go to places like Istockphoto.com and find photos of people I think look like the character and use those as inspiration while I write.

13. What is your opinion of ARCs?
PODs is my first traditionally published book so it is the first book I’ve had ARCs for. My ARCs haven’t been sent out yet, but will be soon. It’s hard to give my opinion on them based on my books, but I do like reading them for other’s books.

14. Do you prefer e-books, paperbacks, hardcovers or audiobooks?
I don’t much care for audiobooks, but the other types I don’t have a preference. Although I love my Kindle Fire and do most of my reading on it, I do buy paperback books, especially those I’ve read and really enjoyed and know I’ll read again.

15. Have you ever read a book more than once? And if so what was it?
I’ve read many books more than once including (but not limited to) Olivia and Jai by Rebecca Ryman, Where the Red Fern Grows, and Easy by Tammara Webber.

16. What is your favourite film based on a book?
Jaws, definitely. Of course, I think PODs would make an excellent movie, too. 

17. What is your favourite book genre at the moment?
Hmm, that’s a really hard question because I read and write across genres. But right now I’m really into young adult contemporary romance.

18. What books have made it onto your wishlist recently? And why?
Meradeth Houston’s The Chemistry of Fate, because I’ve read her writing before and loved it.
Jennifer E. Smith’s This is What Happy Looks Like, just because it sounded sweet.
Just about anything from Spencer Hill Press because they put out awesome books by very talented authors.
Rebecca Donovan’s Out Of Breath, because I’ve read the first two books in the trilogy and loved them. I want to see how it ends.

19. What book are you reading at the moment? And in what format?
Revenge of the Girl With the Great Personality by Elizabeth Eulber
It’s a review ARC from Netgalley so it is an e-book.

20. Do you have any advice for other writers? And what’s the best advice that you have been given when it comes to writing?
My advice for writers is simple: Write. Don’t stop. That is also the best advice I was given: Write every day and read, read, read. Don’t give up.

21. Where can your readers follow you?

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/michelleauthor/

Thankyou so much for taking the time to do this interview and allowing us a glimpse into your writing world!

Thank you so much for hosting me on your blog. Bloggers play such an influential role in the success of an author and their books. I am so grateful that you were willing to take the time to interview me today!

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