(M) An Interview With Michele G. Miller

M
Today’s post for the
A-to-Z Challenge is brought to you by the letter M!

Michele PhotoI’d like to introduce you to Michele G Miller, an amazing author, my first client, and a good friend of mine. She’s a dedicated writer who loves to dabble in a bit of everything. Pushing herself to always do more, write better, and explore the world of literature makes her a standout in the independent world. 

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#BookBlogWriMo Day 20 – Best Books of 2014 and Thanks

best books of 2014 thanks 20

I have read so many wonderful books this year. I’ve included some of them below, in no particular order. This in no way covers all of the awesome books I read this year, just touches on them. Click on the books to view the corresponding blog page (if there is one yet.) Enjoy!!

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I: Interview with Michele G. Miller

I
Michele is the author of the Coming of Age Fantasy Trilogy The Prophecy of Tyalbrook –

Never Let You Fall, book one (May 2013) and Never Let You Go, book two (Jan 2014) as well as the New Adult Romantic Suspense, Last Call (Oct 2013). 

She is currently working on the third book in The Prophecy of Tyalbrook Series, a Last Call novel and a YA Realistic Fiction series entitled From the Wreckage that has her super excited!

Having grown up in both the cold, quiet town of Topsham, Maine and the steamy, southern hospitality of Mobile, Alabama, Michele is something of a enigma. She is an avid Yankees fan, loves New England, being outdoors and misses snow. However she thinks southern boys are hotter, Alabama football is the only REAL football out there and sweet tea is the best thing this side of heaven and her children’s laughter!

Her family, an amazing husband and three awesome kids, have planted their roots in the middle of Michele’s two childhood homes in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Hi Michele! Thank you so much for agreeing to this interview. You will be my first. Let’s start out with something easy. What have you written?
The Prophecy of Tyalbrook series is a YA Fantasy Romance trilogy. Book Three will be out sometime in 2014.
Never Let You Fall, Book One
Never Let You Go, Book Two

Last Call, a New Adult Contemporary Romance with some suspense

From The Wreckage, a Young Adult realistic fiction is coming in June (tentative release date)

What are you working on at the minute? What’s it about?
I am currently working on books two and three in the From The Wreckage series. From The Wreckage is about the immediate aftermath of a life changing event in the life of Jules Blacklin. Books two and three continue on from there. The series deals with the loss, love and hope we find after our worlds are torn apart.

When and why did you decide to become a writer?
I’ve always been a writer. I started truly writing, scripts and plays, in the seventh grade as a way to cope with a difficult move and life changes. Before that, you would always find me acting out stories in my playtime. My Barbies lived fascinating lives 😉

I quit writing after graduation when work and marriage, and eventually my first born, became my life. It took the emergence of self-publishing and e-books for me to realize that perhaps I could create stories on my own. There isn’t really a “Why did you become a writer?” answer. It’s more of a need. A need to tell the stories of the people talking in your head – I want to tell them. It’s not to be a bestseller or to travel the world, make movies or be famous. (I’ll happily accept that if it comes knocking though!) It’s just to tell stories; hopefully people will like them and find some escape for the few hours they are reading.

What is your favorite genre to write in and what draws you to this genre?
Romance. Without a doubt, I am a romantic at heart. Whether I write fantasy, suspense, YA or NA, I will always include romance. I believe in soul mates, fate, love at first sight; I’ve experienced it, so I want to share it with others.

Out of all the characters you have created, who are you most drawn to?
Honestly, I think that changes with each book. I love Xander! I also fell HARD for Nickoli (Never Let You Fall, Tyalbrook #2). He was a character I didn’t expect to love, but there was something about him that drew me in and made me write his story.
Gage, in Last Call, is another character I had fun with. Apparently, I fall for all of my own book boys!

What made you decide to sit down and actually start writing your first book?
My poor husband had seriously tried to tell me to write a book for years. Really, truly years! I hemmed and hawed about how I couldn’t do that… and then if I did, what would I do? It took some random things happening for me to end up at the house of Nancy Straight for Y’all Fest 2012 in Charleston. I began grilling her about how it (self-publishing) all works and her words gave me the push I needed. Those words of wisdom that finally did me in? Write.

So simple, right? Just write two thousand words a day for three months and you’ll have a book. Voila!

What/who are your muses?
Music plays a huge role in setting tone. My characters are often times bits and pieces of people I know. The snarky comments from one friends, the fierceness from another. The idea of a knight in shining armor from my husband (cue the sighs). I often look at pictures of models, celebs or “normal” people shots on Pinterest for physical muses.

What is your writing process typically like?
Very random and not explainable. I write what I feel like writing. I know people who are waiting on books hate me for this, but I can’t write what is expected of me. I have to ‘be in the mood.’ So while, right now, I SHOULD be writing my last Tyalbrook book, I can’t. It’s not speaking to me in the way that it needs to for it to be what I need it to be. I write out of order a lot too, or I write dialogue only because I can visualize a conversation so clearly. I then go back later and fill in the details of the scene or insert the dialogue where I think it should go later.

Any tips on how to get through the dreaded writer’s block?
This is probably funny, but my new motto is when in doubt write a sex scene. *grins* I don’t mean some full-on erotic scene; it can be a lovely, sweet scene. For me, I find writing love scenes is easy and intimate and it helps me get into my characters heads. Therefore, it pulls me into the story when I’m having a hard time feeling them.

Do you personally prefer to read e-books or traditional paper/hard back books?
I typically read at night before bed – so e-books. My Kindle really is my very favorite thing ever! I buy a lot of paperbacks at events, but I get them signed so I hate to touch them. For traditionally published books, I often find paperbacks to be about the same price as e-books, so I do prefer to buy them in paperback form but I end up taking forever to read them that way. The Kindle is just so much easier to carry with me or to use at night.

Who are your favorite authors?
I’ve met so many authors I admire, I can’t really list them for fear of leaving someone off. I will read any book by the fabulous Amy Bartol who, along with Nancy Straight, set me on my path to self-publishing. I have old school love for Jane Austen, Judith McNaught and Mary Higgins Clark, VC Andrews – those are the books I grew up reading.

What books are you currently reading?
I just finished Mud Vein by Tarryn Fisher.

I’ve also been catching up on some older releases – Tragic by JA Huss and Crush by Lacey Weatherford. I am on some panels with authors this summer at a few book conventions, so I am trying to catch up on their books as well.

Do you let the book stew – leave it for a month and then come back to edit it or do you prefer to finish it all at once?
I let some things stew, but for the most part when I finish it (or think I have) I read over it one last time before I send it to my editor.

Your covers are always so eye-catching. What goes into your cover-selection process?
For the Tyalbrook series, I randomly came across a picture from a California photographer that I fell in love with for Skye. I contacted her and she went through all of her shots and pulled out other pictures for me to look through. Those became the covers for 1 and 2. The original shot I loved will be on book 3.

For Last Call – I had someone do a custom photo shoot because I knew I wanted a bar shot. It’s not what I was originally going for, but I think it turned out very intimate and sort of sexy. The guy POV that will come from that series later this year has a very sexy shot – because it’s his POV. 😉

The From The Wreckage series covers came from my desire to have something totally different on a YA book than what is currently being done. I didn’t want a girl in a prom dress, or a couple kissing, shirtless, hugging…etc

It’s 1am and you’ve been writing all night. What three items are on your desk?
Tumbler with sweet tea, twizzlers or pretzle sticks and my scratch paper and pen to jot reminders when something pops in my head.

Do you have any advice for other authors on how to market their books?
Toughest part of this job!! I signed on with a PR agency (Red Coat PR) in February because this is such an integral part of the job. I think in self-publishing you market yourself more than your books. I tend to buy books from other authors who I know on a personal level before others. I think teasers are great but you have to get bloggers, fans and FB sites to share them. That is hard if you’re not willing to have personal relationships with people. I love connecting with people – I am VERY grateful for the help and support everyone gives me.

When you aren’t writing, where can we find you?
Not writing?? On those few hours you will find me watching sports on the weekends during football season. You’ll find me hiking or enjoying the Carolina mountains in the Fall and Spring and playing by the pool with the kids in the summer.

What is your favorite book and why? Movie?
I really don’t have a favorite book. I love a lot of books. I’ve read many many books multiple times and never get sick of them. Classic historical romances by Judith McNaught are some of my favorites mostly because of the person I was when I first read them. They were my introduction into regency and highland romance when I was scarcely 20.
There are classics, like Pride and Prejudice and Lord of the Flies, contemporaries like Easy (T Weber) and Slammed (C Hoover) and paranormal stories like The Premonition Series (A Bartol) and The Infernal Devices (C Clare)

My standing favorite movie is Gone With the Wind. I always use this as an answer because I love the epic story. I love period pieces and the drama and humor.

Where can you see yourself in 5 years’ time?
Probably right where I’m at now. I love my family (3 kids and hubby). My oldest will be in college (holy wow!) so I’ll be crying at being that old. I know I will still be writing – regardless of the monetary/ranking success I have, I will always be writing.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
The same I got – write! Also, write for you. Don’t try to follow a trend because they change, and I feel like often times you can tell when someone forces a story just so they can sell it. Make sure you research who you use and who you give your money to. Self-publishing doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg., you don’t have to pay for review and tours, or formatting – learn to do things yourself. Pay for a good editor but have referrals, read a book they’ve edited. Oh, and covers matter. Like really, really matter!

Email: authormichelegmiller@gmail.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorMicheleGMiller
Twitter: https://twitter.com/chelemybelles
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/chelemybelles/
Website: http://michelegmiller.blogspot.com/
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Michele-G-Miller/e/B00CLRE0B0/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1
Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/c/michele-g-miller
iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/michele-g-miller/id726644601?mt=11
Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/MicheleGMiller
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6975382.Michele_G_Miller 

B: Book Beaus and Babes

Today’s post for the A to Z Challenge is brought to you by the letter B! What better way to give homage to the letter B than to name of of my Book Beaus/Boyfriends and Book Babes!?

Book BF 3

The Beaus

Hunter Niall – Sweep Series – by Cate Tiernan
Jacob Black – Twilight Series – by Stephanie Meyer
Eric Northman – Sookie Stackhouse Series – by Charlaine Harris
Alcide Herveaux – Sookie Stackhouse Series – by Charlaine Harris
Johnnycake Cade – The Outsiders – S.E. Hinton
Xander – The Prophecy of Tyalbrook Series – by Michele G. Miller
John Snow – A Song of Ice and Fire Series – George R.R. Martin
Peeta Mellark – The Hunger Games Series – Suzanne Collins
Remus Lupin – Harry Potter Series – J.K. Rowling
Sirius Black – Harry Potter Series – J.K. Rowling
Farid – Inkheart Series – Cornelia Funke
Grayson Lee – Incomplete Series – Lindy Zart
Ryder – Anything But Series – Lindy Zart
Caleb Jacobson – Significance Series – Shelly Crane
Ryan – Writing on the Wall Series – Tracey Ward
Aaron Jamison – Markings – S.B. Roozenboom

Book BF

The Babes

 Katniss Everdeen – The Hunger Games Series – Suzanne Collins
Daenerys Targaryen – A Song of Ice and Fire Series – George R.R. Martin*
Skye Martin – The Prophecy of Tyalbrook – Michele G. Miller
Honor – Anything But Series – Lindy Zart

Book BF 2

B

Cover Reveal – From the Wreckage by Michele G. Miller

We are so excited to be sharing the cover for From the Wreckage by Michele G. Miller with everyone today! 
This is the first book in a series that will show you the depths of despair, as well as the hope and faith that come From the Wreckage.
 
Synopsis:
 
About Michele:
Michele is the author of the Coming of Age Fantasy Trilogy The Prophecy of Tyalbrook –

Never Let You Fall, book one (May 2013) and Never Let You Go, book two (Jan 2014) as well as the New Adult Romantic Suspense, Last Call (Oct 2013). 

She is currently working on the third book in The Prophecy of Tyalbrook Series, a Last Call novel and a YA Realistic Fiction that has her super excited!

Having grown up in both the cold, quiet town of Topsham, Maine and the steamy, southern hospitality of Mobile, Alabama, Michele is something of a enigma. She is an avid Yankees fan, loves New England, being outdoors and misses snow. However she thinks southern boys are hotter, Alabama football is the only REAL football out there and sweet tea is the best thing this side of heaven and her children’s laughter!

Her family, an amazing husband and three awesome kids, have planted their roots in the middle of Michele’s two childhood homes in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Email: authormichelegmiller@gmail.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorMicheleGMiller
Twitter: https://twitter.com/chelemybelles
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/chelemybelles/
Website: http://michelegmiller.blogspot.com/
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Michele-G-Miller/e/B00CLRE0B0/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1
Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/c/michele-g-miller
iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/michele-g-miller/id726644601?mt=11
Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/MicheleGMiller
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6975382.Michele_G_Miller 

A Little Bit About Me And My Love For Books

A Book Survey (written during my lunchbreak)

1. What book are you reading now?  I am currently reading Dead Until Dark from the Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris. For those who are fans of “True Blood” – this is the book series that the show is based off of. I’ve read all but the final book in the series, and I can tell you that the book series and tv series are very different from one another.

2. What are your favorite books/series? It’s so hard for me to answer this question because I have SO many books that I love. Some of my favorite books include: Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams, A Walk To Remember by Nicholas Sparks, The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton, The Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins, Sweep series by Cate Tiernan, Hannibal series by Thomas Harris, The Prophecy of Tyalbrook series by Michele G Miller and SOOOOO many more.

3. How did you learn to read? I actually learned to read when I was very little. Reading has always been important in my family. When I was little, I was one of those kids who would read every sign that I went by out loud. Come to think of it, I sometimes still do that. Old habits die hard.

4. What foreign languages do you read? I can read a little bit in French, but that’s a bit rusty. This will be vastly improving as I jump into my Rosetta Stone soon.

5. What’s the funniest book you ever read? The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy is the first that comes to mind.

6. What books have changed the way you look at the world or the way you live your life? I grew up with the Harry Potter series. I guess I’ve always loved the fantasy world, but this series has stuck with me. It was beautiful and tragic and whimsical all at once. Another book that I remember distinctly is Misha: A Mémoire of the Holocaust Years by Misha Defonseca. Despite the fact that this turned out to be a hoax, I read this book when I was in 5th grade, perhaps a bit young for some of the heavier issues inside, but it was impactful, nonetheless. One last series that struck a large chord with me was the Hunger Games series; something about children fighting to their deaths due to politics and power just has that type of effect.

7. About how many books do you own? Oh, hundreds… I really should count. Once I get them all in one place. My collection grows all the time.

8. Do you read in bed? I read before going to bed every night. This can pose for some really interesting or terrifying dreams, pending what I’m reading at the time.

9. Do you ever read while walking or driving? Oh yes… I have been known to have my nose stuck in a book on my way from the train in the morning to work.

10. What was the most difficult book to read? My husband and mother-in-law will be really disappointed… but I have been reading IT by Stephen King for the last 3 years… I’m halfway through. I understand what I’m reading and the subject matter doesn’t bother me… it’s very difficult for me to stay focused on most Stephen King’s work. I love action, live for it… but IT contains a LOT of description, filler, back story, etc. One day I will finish..

11. What books do you intend to read but keep putting off? I plan to read the Divergent series by Veronica Roth

12. Do you buy new or used books, paperbacks or hardcovers, leather or collector’s? I buy them all. I also buy e-books, as I am finally allowing myself to use a Kindle, though I have strict guidelines for doing so. I’d MUCH rather read the real thing versus the e-version, though.

13. How do you feel about writing in books? Writing in books… I’m not a huge fan of doing this myself, though I have purchased books with writing in them.  To each their own.

14. What were your favorite books as a child? Love You Forever by Robert Munsch is one of my favorite books from when I was little. It breaks my heart every time I read it, but I absolutely love it.

15. Do you ever read the ending first? Absolutely not.

What about you? Tell me some of your answers to these questions. 🙂