So, yesterday blogger and writer, Brett Michael Orr interviewed me on his blog and in turn I offered to interview him! T’was quite fun! Hope you all enjoy it!
Tell Me Who You Are!
I’m Brett Michael Orr! You can call me Brett, or Brett Michael, whichever you prefer!
Tell me a bit about yourself
I was originally born in Adelaide, South Australia (Down Under), and moved with my family to Queensland when I was four. We’ve been all over the state, from the tropical town of Mackay, down to the tourist Gold Coast and back again. We now live just south of Brisbane.
Do you have a published novel? Or are you still working on a WIP?
I’ve written three complete novels, two of which I am actively working on. The first, PROJECT NEW GENESIS, is a sci-fi thriller that I’m currently seeking representation for, and my current WIP is BUREAU OF TIME, a YA sci-fi that was written for NaNoWriMo 2014. I don’t have anything published of yet, but I try and participate in flash fiction, fan fiction and writing prompts, to continually hone my skills.
Traveling! Do you love it? Why? Where is a place you dream of going one day?
I do enjoy traveling, and I seem to have more English blood in my body than I usually think. I have a longing to visit somewhere like England, although I’ve never traveled overseas. I would like to see New Zealand one day, as they have fantastic scenery, and I’d love to visit the Shire and other Lord of the Rings sets. I also dream of visiting America on my (eventual) book tour!
What kind of music do you love to listen to? Any specific music or songs you listen to while writing/reading?
Well, I listen to several main bands, usually flicking between them depending on the mood I’m in. I listen mostly to Linkin Park, Paramore, Green Day, James Blunt, Coldplay and REM. Imagine Dragons also seems quite promising, and occasionally I’ll listen to more instrumental work (such as the incredible album, This is War, by Cliff Lin.) I also have some Matchbox Twenty and Snow Patrol lurking somewhere on my iPhone. Depending on what mood any specific scene is, will determine what band I listen to.
Is there a message within your novel(s) you are wanting readers to grasp? A certain feeling you want them to walk away with?
This is tough, as each novel tends to have a different core theme. Ultimately I tend to talk about the dangers of overly large corporations, as well as government interference and control; although admittedly, that’s true of almost *every* sci-fi/thriller novel. As for a feeling…I want them to be entertained. Nothing more. I want people to read my books in a single sitting, be caught up in the action, and ultimately left feeling like they’ve just been dragged into a breathtaking adrenalin ride. Some writers might try and shift their reader’s perspective or make them experience an new philosophical breakthrough, but I think the gift of entertainment itself is more than enough.
When and why did you start to write? What inspired you to start writing?
Well, like most writers, I used to write as a young kid. I think some of my first stories were written when I was about five. I learned to read and write before I could actually talk – I’ll always thank my amazing Mum for teaching me all of that by herself. As for actually wanting to be an author, I usually trace it back to Christopher Paolini’s ERAGON. I know many people criticize that book, but I personally loved the Inheritance Trilogy. After reading ERAGON, I was amazed that a fifteen year old boy could become a published author, and I was roughly the same age at the time. It truly inspired me to start writing properly. Since then, I’ve become captivated by the idea of writing professionally, and having my books read across the world. Partly because, as an Australian, I often feel ‘forgotten’ by the rest of the world, and I want to prove that Down Under can produce quality commercial fiction, just the same as Americans can.
Now, I always feel the need to ask this, When it comes to mythological creatures, which is your favourite? Why?
This is…an interesting question. I would probably go for the Chimera – lion, goat, snake, it’s got it all going on with firebreathing to boot. Greek Myths are usually my favorite. There was such an incredible lore to their religion, in-depth and rich with adventure and tragedy. Outside of the traditional Greek mythology, I really like Norse myths – they’re incredibly large-scale, with massive wolves and snakes. Plus, y’know, Thor.
Which fictional character (not your own character) do you feel you are most like to/relate to most, and why?
Ooh, tough question. This one’s really hard. I might be a little biased, especially because it’s my favorite TV show of all time, but I’m going to say Peter Bishop from FRINGE. He’s smart in a down-to-earth kind of way, which is how I hope I come across. Or maybe Richard Castle from CASTLE, mostly because he’s a writer and I love his dry sense of humor. But I’m leaning towards Peter still.
Which genre do you like to read? Do you also enjoy writing in that genre? Why or why not?
I like to read sci-fi or dystopian mostly. I write in YA sci-fi and in sci-fi/thriller. I do try and read outside that genre as well, to learn from other styles and authors.
Are you a plotter or a pantser when it comes to writing?
Hybrid. I actually did a blog piece about this a while ago. I tend to plot major ‘milestones’ that I want to happen, such as large setpieces or core revelations, and then pants the rest. I used to be a full plotter, but I found it was taking too much time, and I was beginning to overanalyze things. So now I use a hybrid, part outline, part pantser. It works for me, so it must be right.
When did you write your first ‘story’ and how old were you when you wrote it?
*clucks tongue*. Hard to say. I was about five-ish when I started writing stories (often with color images). I owe a lot to my Mum, who taught me to read and write all herself, so I did write quite a bit when I was younger. My first ‘story’ was about a private detective who solved crimes (and incidentally, a genre I’d like to explore again one day). It was really a short-story, in common terms, but it was the closest to an actual plot structure that I can think of. I was probably about 6 or 7.
What is one (already published novel) you wish you wrote, and why?
Ah, this is always a great question. I wish I’d come up with the idea for The Hunger Games. It will forever be the benchmark for YA dystopian/sci-fi/thrillers, and in particular, Mockingjay crosses into some elements of my own work.
Last thing! Where can we stalk-Um..I mean find you online?