1. Every author's journey to publication is unique. Would you share with us a brief description of your experience?
I started writing in response to the emotions I wrestled with after the almost-fatal motorcycle accident my brother-in-law suffered. Up until that time, I hated writing, but through that ordeal I discovered writing was a very liberating exercise. Long story short, I fell in love with it.
About four years later, I tried my hand at writing fiction and was hooked. In 2006, I attended the Greater Philadelphia Christian Writer's Conference with a manuscript in hand and caught the attention of Kathryn Mackel, a wonderful novelist, whose books inspired me to write supernatural suspense. Kathy recommended me to an agent friend of hers, and a few months later, I signed a contract with him. Six months later, Realms Fiction offered me a contract for my first novel, "The Hunted."
Writer's conferences are a great way to network and get your name and work out there. Unfortunately, a lot of getting published is meeting and knowing the right people.
2. Mike, you write spine-tingling suspense. Where do you come up with your ideas for stories?
Ideas come from a variety of places: news stories I hear, urban legends and myths, real life events, and even dreams. Something will spark that creative fire in me, and I'll start to think about it, toss it around, and mull it over until a storyline developes. Then, I'll toy with a plot and throw in some twists and turns, get the basic, very broad outline in my mind before I start writing. From there, it's a free for all. I make things up on the fly.
3. Character development is another area of great interest. How do you write such life-like characters?
I put myself in the shoes of my characters. I'm really into why people do the things they do. Everyone has a story to tell, a background of information and experiences. I want the reader to connect with my characters so I have to make them as real as I can...flawed, scared, weak, victorious, hypocritical, whatever. Sometimes this causes problems with readers or critics because a character may seem inconsistent, but really, aren't we all inconsistent? No one acts a certain way all the time. Let's face it, we're all hypocrites sometimes. And we all act differently depending on the circumstances. I like my characters to show a level of humanness, of being real people. I hope that comes across in my writing.
4. What new projects do you have in the pipeline?
Ah yes. I'm currently working on my third novel, "Darlington," which is under a September 1st deadline. I'm writing furiously to get it done! It's a great story about a man dealing with inescapable grief and facing impossible odds. His search for his son leads him to a seemingly innocent, yet very backwards, town in Northern Maryland called, "Darlington." A town where fear has teeth.
Look for it next Spring or Summer.
Thanks for joining us today, Mike. We look forward to your new release.
Mike Dellosso is the author of supernatural suspense titles, "the Hunted, and "Scream." He lives in Hanover, PA with his wife and three daughters...and a black lab who follows him around everywhere.