Author Interview: Michael Noe
I’ve had the pleasure of networking with many authors in the Indie and traditional community, and this is the first interview I’ve branched out the genres. Michael’s a horror writer with experience with splatterpunk and a few other genres. He’s been on my to read list for a while, so I’m looking forward to his new work and The Darkness Of The Soul.
I believe we met through JEA Press and we’ve been connected on Facebook ever since 🙂 We are in several Facebook groups together and he’s never hesitated to give feedback or advice if needed.
Michael, thank you for agreeing to this interview.
You’re welcome, thanks for interviewing me.
Tell us a little about yourself and your background.
My name is Michael Noe and I’m a horror writer from Barberton, Ohio. I’ve been writing since I was 13 but stopped about 10 years ago because I couldn’t find the time to be a father, a writer, and a husband. My wife and I split up 2 years ago and I wondered if I could still string together coherent sentences and published my first book through Morbid Books.
What are your ambitions for your writing career?
I don’t really have any. Being published was the only one I had and that was enough for me. Now that it’s happened, I just hope that people like what they’re reading.
Which writers inspire you?
Richard Laymon is without a doubt one of my biggest influences due to his ability to create great stories that are not only shocking, but well written. Early Stephen King is a huge inspiration as well because he showed me how to create great scenes and allowed you to get to know the characters. Books have been a huge inspiration as well. American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis, Johnny Got His Gun by Dalton Trumbo, and Leaving Las Vegas.
What have you written? What genre do you typically write, and what genres are your books?
So far I’ve written Legacy which was released last year. I also have The Darkness Of The Soul which came out in June and my short story collection Insecure Delusions is available for preorder now and comes out September 16. I also have a new book coming out with JEA and that is in the first round of edits.
I write horror and splatterpunk. I love a good dark story with flawed characters. That’s always the kind of story that I’ve gravitated toward and as a writer that’s usually what I write. I never plan it that way but it always ends up there.
Where can we buy or see them?
The Darkness of The Soul is out now in print and on Kindle at Amazon and also at Fat Lip Press.
Insecure Delusion is the new one and that is out September 16 and can be preordered here at Fat Lip Press.
Legacy is available on Amazon.
Give us insight into your main character. What does he/she do that is so special?
My characters are all broken in some way. That’s what makes them so interesting. You can relate to them because we’ve all either been them, or known them at some point. I don’t think there’s really anything that makes them special, because like real people, there’s not just one thing that makes them special, or even unique. It’s all up to the readers to find a connection to them.
Give us a summary of what your book is about.
Insecure Delusions is a short story collection that features a few stories from different anthologies. It’s a good summary of where I’ve been and how I’ve evolved as a writer. There are some that were featured in anthologies that are now out of print and I thought they should be seen by a wider audience. Darkness is a twisted dark tale about obsession and revenge.
If you had to choose a favorite character that you’ve written, who would it be and why?
I don’t think I’ve written him/her yet. Each character I’ve created has something that I like. Even Kevin, the serial killer from Legacy. He’s a guy that you should hate and fear, and of course Nick from Darkness who falls in love with a woman who doesn’t feel the same way so he plans to destroy her. I like his motivation.
What are you working on now?
A secret project from JEA that will be out soon. I am just now working on the first round of edits so it should be out soon. It’s a new novel that a few people have been waiting for. I’ve also started a new novel but that won’t be done for quite some time and I finished the follow up to The Darkness Of The Soul. That just needs a home but I have plenty of time.
When did you decide to become a writer?
I was thirteen. I was reading Stephen King’s Pet Seminary and a light bulb clicked on. All of a sudden I knew that I wanted to be a writer. That book affected me not because of how scary it was but because of how dark it was. The funny thing is that I never even thought about getting published. All I wanted to do was write. That was enough.
Why do you write?
To keep my head from exploding. I don’t know how I survived all of those years not doing it, but it’s almost like an addiction. Once you start there’s no way to stop. Once you open the floodgates you just can’t close them again.
What made you decide to sit down and actually start something?
Sixth grade English. I had always been a huge King fan and it was around the time that I knew that I wanted to write and had a chance to prove it through writing assignments. We had to write story and I was so excited because I had a chance to see if I could actually put something together. I had been reading King since the third grade so of course the stuff I wrote raised a few eyebrows but hell, I wrote a story and I was proud.
Do you write full-time or part-time?
A little of both. I have a job and try and write as often as I can. I try and balance both equally.
How do you structure your day: by word count, hours or by pages?
I don’t have any structure at all. I write when I can which makes it more fun. I would love to have a set writing schedule but it’s just not possible.
Do you write on a typewriter, computer, dictate or longhand?
On my laptop or if an idea hits I have used my phone.
Where do your ideas come from?
A variety of places. My brain just sends me random ideas that I have to piece together. I’m one of these people that never visualize an idea. They just hit at an odd moments.
Do you work to an outline or plot, or do you prefer just see where an idea takes you?
I didn’t, but the new novel that I’m writing has key points and character ideas. I have quick memo on my phone so I’ll write ideas and once I start writing I’ll pick the parts that work and build a foundation from that.
How do you think you’ve evolved creatively?
I’ve grown more confident as a writer and have learned to move beyond my comfort zone. As a writer, you should challenge yourself just to so how much you’ve evolved.
What are your greatest challenges in writing and how have you adapted to them?
For me it was dialogue. It just never felt natural but I started speaking what my characters were saying out loud and that helped me improve.
Do you proofread/edit all your own books or do you get someone to do that for you?
I proofread my own work and then my girlfriend does the edits. Once it’s with the publisher it’s almost ready but they always find something that we’ve missed.
What process do you use to proofread or edit your books?
Once it’s done I don’t look at it for about a week and then I just read through it.
Who edited your book and how did you select him/her?
For Darkness, Kasey Hill edited it. Great editor that was really hands on. If she had a question or wanted to change something she would message me on Facebook.
Amanda Lyons is doing the secret book for JEA Press and she’s amazing as well. She edited some of my short stories and I trust her and value her opinion.
Tell us about the cover/s and how it/they came about.
The cover for Darkness and Insecure Delusions were all picked by Fat Lip Press. The new cover for Darkness I actually picked. Kasey didn’t like the cover so she messaged me some images and I asked if I could pick something and thankfully she agreed and we have an amazing cover that people are really digging which makes me feel good because I picked it. If they hated it, I was going to blame Kasy.
Who designed your book cover/s?
I believe the majority of them come from a website called Deviantart.
Do you think that the cover plays an important part in the buying process?
It helps. A cover will grab your attention but the blurb on the back is what makes you want to read it. I’ve read books with really bad cover art but the blurb was really good.
How are you publishing this book and why?
Indie. I support both Fat Lip and JEA so to have books published by them is mind blowing. I have had really good experiences with those guys and know that if I have a book released by them it’s going to be read.
What would you say are the main advantages and disadvantages of self-publishing against being published or the other way around?
I’ve never self-published but I can tell you that having the support of a publisher makes the entire process easier. You have a support system.
How do you market your books?
Facebook and a thing called co-promote. Fat Lip has blogs that they feature authors in so there’s exposure there as well.
How do you relax?
I read and write reviews. I also watch a bit of television but I end up feeling guilty and end up writing. I also collect vinyl records which doesn’t sound relaxing but the shopping for vinyl is.
What is your favorite book and why?
There are so many. I can’t just pick one. Leaving Las Vegas, Johnny Got His Gun by Dalton Trumbo, One Rainy Night and Come Out Tonight by Richard Laymon, Pet Seminary by Stephen King, You By Caroline Kepnes, American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis, I could do this all day.
How did you get inspired to write?
Stephen King’s Pet Seminary. That was the moment where I knew that I wanted to write. Had no idea what it entailed but that book was an eye opener.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
That’s hard because there’s so much that I would do differently, but the question is would it all end the same way? Everything happens for a reason and I’ve experienced so much that I would probably miss out on something important by giving myself advice about how to do things differently
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Write as often as you can. Don’t worry about page counts or words. Just write. That’s more important than anything else.
Where do you see publishing going in the future?
It’s hard to tell. Tastes change and what’s popular today could be gone tomorrow.
Is there anything else you would like to add that I haven’t included?
I wanted to thank everyone for reading my work and for leaving reviews. None of this would even be possible if it weren’t for you.0