Wonderful Wednesday my brainy amazing readers! I am so excited to share this interview with you all. I came across Mike Wells on Twitter many many years ago. He went to Vanderbilt, always a Nashville connection my friends. Most importantly he was just wonderful. So friendly and real, I will admit I geek out a little bit when an author or actor or anyone I admire really responds to a message I send.
Here is a link to his Twitter so that you can also enjoy his wit and banter! He was giving away a free copy of his book and well I am not one to look a gift horse in the mouth. I went for it. I read some of his stuff and well just really loved it.
I thought I should finally share this goodness with all of my friends. You can find my review for Book One of the Lust, Money & Murder series here. Yes, you can look forward to more reviews. I really love this guys stuff. As I mentioned before, he is so kind and quiet responsive so it only slightly surprised me when he honored me with taking some time to answer my questions about him, his life, and his books. Here it is:
RGR – Where is your favorite place to write?
Mike Wells (MW) – My favorite place to write is outside by the sea—it’s very relaxing and inspiring. But there are other factors that are more important, such as being comfortable. If it’s too cold, hot, windy, or there are too many flies and mosquitoes, etc., it’s better to be indoors. With two young kids (8 months and 2.5 years), I pretty much have to snatch any time I can find and this forces me to write anywhere and everywhere. I have a large phone and wireless keyboard which I do a lot of my writing on, highly portable.
RGR – Who is your favorite character from literature (your creation or other)?
MW – If I named one of my own I would feel like I was shamelessly promoting my own work in this interview, which I actually have no problem doing, but I’ll say Hannibal Lecter. Most of my favorite characters are villains, not heroes. I love Hannibal because he’s erudite and sophisticated yet so disgusting at the same time. Also, he has a black sense of humor.
RGR – Where is your favorite place to take a holiday?
MW – I live on the beach year round, so my favorite place to take a holiday is a big city like London or New York. I love to go to those two cities in particular because I enjoy Broadway and West End plays. I love seeing top notch actors perform on stage, especially my favorite movie actors. I’ve seen Damian Lewis, Elizabeth Moss, Jeremy Irons, Kevin Spacey, Danny DeVito, Rob Lowe, David Suchet, Kiera Knightly, John Goodman, Kristin Scott Thomas, and more in various plays. I believe writers can learn a lot about how to create good drama just from observing these pros in their element.
RGR – Do you have any interesting rituals associated with your writing process?
MW – Definitely. The quality of my writing depends highly on the T-shirt I happen to be wearing when I’m sitting at the screen. For example, if I’m writing action scenes, I wear my AC/DC T-shirt. If I’m writing tense, frightening scenes, I wear my NOTHING CAN SCARE ME – I HAVE TWO DAUGHTERS shirt. If I’m doing heavy research or writing technical explanations, I wear my SCHRÖDINGER’S CAT- WANTED DEAD-AND-ALIVE shirt. You get the idea.
(This might be my favorite question and answer, of any interview!)
RGR – You write suspense and with a suspenseful undertone to all of your work (my opinion), what is next in store for you?
MW – My main focus will be to continue to develop the Lust, Money & Murder series because that’s the most popular series I have, and keeping my readers happy is my number one priority. I’m working on the fourteenth LM&M book right now and see no end to the series in sight. It’s somewhat of a challenge to keep from repeating myself, but I don’t really seem to have that much trouble with it. If ideas for future books feel repetitive to me, I just discard them and come up with more. I will definitely continue on with other series (Wild Child and Baby Talk, for example) but those have to take a back seat for financial reasons—I’m a professional author and I make my living writing books.
RGR – Part of the first book (Lust) is based in Bulgaria. Have you been there? Why did you choose that location? Where did you learn Russian to use in the books?
MW – I chose to set that part of the book in Sofia, Bulgaria for several reasons. First, I visited the country once and its better to write about a setting from first-hand experience. Second, I wanted a remote-seeming place (to Western readers) that would probably be seen as an undesirable European location for a government job post, compared to a more “glamorous” place like Paris or Rome. Third, those glamorous locations are grossly overused in international thrillers, almost cliches — I wanted to choose a less known location that readers could learn something about and perhaps be pleasantly surprised, as Elaine was. The posting there was intended as punishment for her, yet it turned out to be a delightful, relaxed place where she also met the love of her life. About the Russian language bits used in my books, I speak basic conversational Russian because I studied it at one point for work. My wife is fluent (bi-lingual in English and Russian), so she checks everything I’m not sure about, which is most of it!
I want to thank Mike for taking the time to answer all of my questions. He is really just the best. His novels are something that anyone into suspense or strong female characters, should absolutely read. I would highly recommend that you check out his website here. He is great about keeping up his website and making sure you know the latest and greatest that is going on with him and his next fabulous book.
I hope you enjoy this interview as much as I do. Also, if you think of any questions, you would like me to ask, please let me know!
Love in Reading,