A while back I was interviewed by Fiona Mcvie in the UK, and some of my readers commented that it was interesting to learn more about this humble writer, so here is the interview.
Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.
Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?
Marcus: Marcus Miller and I’m sixty-two years old.
Fiona: Where are you from?
Marcus: From a lot of places really. I was born in Oregon, but I ran away from home when I was eleven years old and traveled a lot over the years.
Fiona: A little about yourself (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
Marcus: My bio probably describes me best, Yearning for adventure I ran away from home at an early age, and my travels took me across the U.S. and through Central and South America and the Caribbean. I have worn many hats in my life, working as a private military contractor, kidnap resolution specialist, firearms instructor, self-defense and edged weapons instructor, cowboy, sailor, scuba diving instructor, hunting guide, horse trainer, and adventurer. I never completed high school or attended college, so my personal education was derived from working and living on the streets, back alleys, fetid jungles and dank ports in third world countries, I now travel and write action/adventure novels…..I’m divorced and have no family.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
Marcus: I’ve purchased an RV and am preparing to move into it full time and travel while I write. I’m working on my fifth novel, the third book in The Forgotten Man series, and writing articles for travel magazines as well.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
Marcus: I started trying to write almost thirty years ago, but my work kept me moving so much I never completed anything, just started a lot of things. In 2014 I started a blog that came to the attention of the author Brian Meeks, who told me I had the gift for storytelling, and encouraged me to devote some serious time to it, but my work just kept me too busy to really get my head into it, until 2016 when I injured my knee severely and was off my feet for a long rehab period. Not being the type of person to sit around a twiddle my thumbs, I pull my chair up to the keyboard and wrote my first novel, The Redemption Wall. One hundred and thirty-six thousand words in six weeks!
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
Marcus: The idea that I’m a writer is just dawning on me, but foremost I think of myself as a storyteller.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
Marcus: My childhood. I never was close enough to anyone, even through two marriages to talk about my childhood, until I wrote The Redemption Wall.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
Marcus: The redemption wall was a place of atonement in my father’s house.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
Marcus: I’m a narrator primarily, just a simple country boy telling a story around the campfire. No real challenge, I have a story in my head all the time.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
Marcus: Quite a bit. I’ve had, and continue to have an adventurous life, so its easy to wrap my experiences into a fictional dialog.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
Marcus: I’ve traveled a lot, and continue to travel all the time, so yes, I think it helps to know the areas your writing about intimately.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
Marcus: I do. I take pictures as I travel and try to incorporate them into my covers.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Marcus: Strength of character, perseverance in the face of tribulation and justice for those who have been trodden upon.
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest? Who is your favorite writer, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?
Marcus: New authors? No one jumps out at me, but my favorite author is the late Gary Jennings, a fabulous storyteller who did an immense amount of research for his novels. I’ve read, and reread his works over the years!
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to becoming a published author.
Marcus: My partner gave me the place to write and encouraged me to pen my stories, and she continues to help me as we travel the world.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Marcus: More as a lifestyle, in as much as I’ve had lots of careers in my life already.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Marcus: On all my books, I would spend more time editing. I’m learning it is as important as writing the story in the first place!
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
Marcus: The current book I’m writing is about the Central American gang MS-13, and although I dealt with a lot of really bad actors in my years in Latin America, these tattooed punks from El Salvador are as bad as they get! Their bloodthirsty ways are reminiscent of the middle ages! Truly some bad dudes!
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
Marcus: If my third novel, The Forgotten Man was made into a movie, I think I’d like to see Kevin Costner play the part of Steve Rawlings. He is about the right age and can ride a horse well, something that the character would need to do.
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Marcus: Write! Start writing and don’t get hung up on little things. You can add, delete or elaborate when you start your second draft. Just get your story on paper and deal with the little stuff later.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
Marcus: Only that I hope they enjoy my stories and writing style. I love to be captivated by a good story, and I hope I deliver that to my readers.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
Marcus: Nothing. When I’m writing I can’t get my head into anything else. When I’m not actually punching the keyboard, my head is working on the storyline.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
Marcus: Probably something by Louis L´Amour, or Hemmingway? There were plenty of those around the bunkhouse when I was a kid!
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
Marcus: Tough questions! I don’t show emotion very well, as my ex-wives could tell you.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
Marcus: Winston Churchill. He was a smart, tough guy with a big set of cojones, and I’d like to drink a scotch with him and tap some of his wisdom.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
Marcus: I love to cook! I rarely eat out because I prefer my own cooking. Also hiking, camping and fishing, which I do a lot!
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
Marcus: I don’t watch TV, and rarely any movies. I stay abreast of the news and world events via the internet, but TV bores me to death, and for me, I feel it is a waste of time.
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
Marcus: Foods, I like everything as long as its spicy! Colors, blue and green, and music, Pink Floyd, and the Eagles.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
Fiona: What do you want to be written on your headstone?
Marcus: He lived a good story.