RED HEADED BOOK LOVER

AC Michael, Author Spotlight

Author Spotlight

One cat. One person. Many problems.

Mister Pushkin always knows what’s good for Klem. But Klem only thinks he knows what’s good for Mister Pushkin.

With luxuriant blue fur and golden eyes, Mister Pushkin is not like other cats.
And although his instinct is usually reliable, his ability to see things others can’t can be a mixed blessing.
Avoiding the vet’s thermometer may be impossible, but somehow, he must find a way to escape Klem’s short leash. If he tries really hard, sometimes his wishes can come true.
12 Summery tales, told with humour, mischief and wit. Whether you’re young or old, once you’ve stepped into the quirky world of Mister Pushkin, you’ll never want to leave.

Hello book lovers! Today is a day where I will be writing another author spotlight for a well-accomplished author whose work I have loved. As you know book lovers I love learning about authors and the inspiration behind their work, it fascinates me and adds to the depth of the book because the reader will be able to better understand it. That is how the author spotlights were created because I soon discovered that you lovely readers ALSO love learning about author’s, so I am excited to tell you a little bit more about author AC Michael whose book Mister Pushkin Sees The Light from beginning to end. I personally would recommend this book to all of those that love humorous and light hearted reads but really the book can be read by anybody as it is flawlessly written and highly enjoyable. With today’s author spotlight, a biography of the author and an interview between me and AC Michael will be shared, and I hope that you book lovers enjoy reading it! To kick this off here is an author bio about the wonderful AC Michael!

AC Michael, a former company executive and teacher, has written stories for as long as he can remember.

His first novel, The Dancing Barber, achieved some critical success, and was a No.1 historical fiction title on Amazon. The experience encouraged him to continue writing.

A keen gardener and hill-walker, he divides his time between managing a small business, doing housework, reading a wide range of books, and writing stories about Mister Pushkin.

Now, how wonderful does AC Michael sound?! AC Michael is a truly exceptional writer and I hope that you lovely readers have a read of the author’s work because you will not regret it! Please see below an interview between me and the author and I hope that you enjoy AC Michael answers to my questions, they are incredible and provide some great advice too!

Thank you for joining us today at Red Headed Book Lover! Please tell us more about yourself

First of all, thank you Aimee Ann for the Spotlight interview…

For as long as I can remember, I’ve always enjoyed being immersed in a good book. But I never imagined that I’d become a published author.

My first novel, The Dancing Barber, achieved some critical success, and was a No.1 historical fiction title on Amazon. The experience encouraged me to continue writing, choosing the brilliant Mister Pushkin as my primary character.

A keen gardener and hill-walker, I divide my time between managing a small business, doing housework, reading a wide range of books, and writing stories about Mister Pushkin, an adorable, but sassy cat.

Could you please tell us readers about your book and what inspired you to write your book?

I think it was Leslie Charteris (creator of The Saint) who suggested that a ‘full length novel must always be open to the suspicion of having been artificially inflated in order to bring it up to a purely conventional size’. And I am inclined to agree.

A short story, on the other hand leaves plenty of room for developing brilliant plots and memorable characters, whilst disciplining oneself to be ruthlessly concise.

Short stories are the perfect length to read, since each one can be consumed quickly, for instance with your morning coffee or afternoon tea. Short stories are also the perfect length to write, as each one can be finished before the author gets tired of it!  In fact, each of my books is formed out of 12 interconnected short stories, each one making perfect sense on its own, but together, building to form a wonderful series of novels!

I have written a series of four Mister Pushkin books, of which Mister Pushkin Sees The Light is the first. Here’s a snippet of what’s in it:

Mister Pushkin always knows what’s good for Klem. But Klem only thinks he knows what’s good for Mister Pushkin.
With luxuriant blue fur and golden eyes, Mister Pushkin is not like other cats.
And although his instinct is usually reliable, his ability to see things others can’t can be a mixed blessing.
Avoiding the vet’s thermometer may be impossible, but somehow, he must find a way to escape Klem’s short leash. If he tries really hard, sometimes his wishes can come true…

Mister Pushkin was inspired by my grandmother’s cat: a contender for the fussiest pussycat on the face of the earth. The expressions on this cat’s face when presented with ‘inferior quality’ cuisine have become pure Pushkin.

What would your advice be for aspiring writers?

Only write about things that interest you. Every word must shine with your enthusiasm for the subject. And attention to detail, careful plotting and realistic characterisation are vital.

There’s no short cut to learning the techniques. A good book to help is Solutions For Writers by Sol Stein. I found it truly indispensable. Just like every other walk of life, practice makes perfect!

It’s important to research the market: find out what your readers want. Then you’ll be able to write stories that people will want to read.

But don’t just do the same as everyone else… That’s why I constructed each of my books in the form of 12 interconnected short stories, each one making sense on its own, but together, building to form a rather good series of novels!

In your opinion, what is the most important thing about a book?

A book must keep a reader’s attention.

These two quotations from Roald Dahl are always at the forefront of my mind:

“When I’m writing a short story, I’m haunted by the thought that I’ve got to hold the reader’s attention for literally every second, otherwise I’m dead.”

“I find short stories difficult to do well, so I work slowly, about two a year.”

And this advice that C.S. Forester gave to an aspiring Roald Dahl is very important too:

“Let me have plenty of detail. That’s what counts in our business, tiny little details, like you had a broken shoelace on your left shoe, or a fly settled on the rim of your glass at lunch…”

What is your writing process like?

Many pages of pencil-written notes eventually become a first draft. This process results in a lot of sheets of lined A4 paper get screwed up and thrown into the recycling bin. Eventually, after many rewrites, I type up the manuscript on an old desktop PC.

Only then can the editing process commence. I don’t try to solve every problem (of which there are literally dozens and dozens!) in one read-through. Rather, I prefer to check for specific things with each read-through, such as ensuring all actions have appropriate motivation, and that all speech is correct for each character. Essentially, every word must earn its place, adding true value to the story.

What kind of research do you do, and how long do you spend researching before beginning a book?

Essentially, observing feline behaviour in various situations, especially interactions with humans. This is a continuous process, such observations being added to my ‘cerebral filing system’ every day. When you create a character like Mister Pushkin, he and the supporting characters, come to life in your head, you see them in different situations, how they act, what they think. I never switch off.

Do you have a set schedule for writing, or do you only write when you feel inspired?

Usually 11am – 2pm and 4pm – 6pm.

Do you read much and if so who are your favorite authors?

I have always read very widely.

Don Quixote. Bill Bryson. Michael Palin. Roald Dahl.

Even quantum physics books by Richard Feynman.

Lastly, when can we readers expect to read more wonderful books from you?

Mister Pushkin Makes A Move (the 5th book in the series) is to be published in Summer 2021, with Mister Pushkin Takes To The Road (the 6th book in the series) following in Autumn 2021.

I don’t want to give too much away…

But once you’ve read Mister Pushkin Lets The Cat Out Of The Bag (the final tale of the 4th book), it will certainly get your imagination whirring!

Its official book lovers, I am obsessed with AC Michael! If you have liked what you have read about the author and are interested in learning more, then please do have a browse of the links below and be sure to have a read of the preview too! You will not regret it.

Goodbye for now book lovers,

Amazon U.S. – Amazon U.K. – Goodreads

Author: Pinterest – Website – Facebook – Twitter – Instagram  

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