I’m Interviewed At Poland Today Magazine

ptmag-8-cover587_auto_196x250I’m interviewed by Andy Kureth  at Poland Today magazine as part of an article on Bydgoszcz, and you can read it online here.

There are all sort of grown up article and features- including an interview with Professor Norman Davies – but my bit is on page 65. You’ve got to flick the pages to get there.

Short, Sharp Interview: Mike Miner

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PDB: Can you pitch THE IMMORTAL GAME in 25 words or less?

A private detective is hired to find a missing boy and gets caught up in a mob war in the North End of Boston.

PDB: Which music, books, films or television shows have floated your boat recently?

I’m usually stuck in the past on most things, but here’s some recent stuff:

Music – First Aid Kit, Lydia Loveless, White Denim.

Books – I read Don Winslow’s The Power of the Dog recently and it blew me away. The Hard Way by William Hastings is a great little collection of essays. Pike by Ben Whitmer, Mountain Home by Bracken MacLeod, Volt by Alan Heathcock. These are just the most recent. I’ve been on a good streak lately.

Films – I’m definitely stuck in the past with movies. Give me a black and white Bogie and Bacall or Cagney movie every night of the week. I’ll settle for Peckinpah or Tarantino. Watched the original Getaway with McQueen and McGraw the other night. Still great.

Television – This year was all about True Detective and Hannibal. I suspect next year won’t be much different.

PDB: Is it possible for a writer to be an objective reader?

Not for this writer. I get angry if the writing’s bad. I get jealous if the writing’s good. Like a magician, I always want to know how a good writer performs his tricks.

PDB: Do you have any interest in writing for films, theatre or television?

I spent some time in LA as a studio exec for 20th Century Fox. It is a really collaborative undertaking and I came to the realization that I don’t work well with others, creatively speaking.

PDB: How much research goes into each book?

Very little goes into the first draft. Julia Glass once told me, do as little as you can because it will distract you from the point of the story. The first few books I wrote came largely out of my own experiences so not much was needed. I recently completed a manuscript that deals with war veterans and I did do quite a bit of research for that one.

PDB: How useful or important are social media for you as a writer?

So far almost everything I’ve published has somehow come out of a social media connection. And it certainly helps sell books.

PDB: What’s on the cards for the rest of 2014?

It’s been a good year. A collection of linked stories, Everything She Knows was released. A story in Thuglit 12. After The Immortal Game, I have a novel, Prodigal Sons slated for November/December from All Due Respect Books.

Miner - P Sons Headshot (2)Bio: Mike Miner lives and writes in Connecticut.  He is the author of Prodigal Sons (All Due Respect Books), The Immortal Game (Gutter Books) and Everything She Knows (SolsticeLit Books). His stories can be found in the anthologies, Protectors: Stories to Benefit PROTECT and Pulp Ink 2 as well as in places like Thuglit, Beat To a Pulp, All Due Respect, Burnt Bridge, Narrative, PANK, The Flash Fiction Offensive, Shotgun Honey and others.

Short, Sharp Interview: Ed Lynskey

PDB: Can you pitch your latest publication in 25 words or less?

Blood Diamonds is crime noir about a diamond heist that sounds better as a plan than it goes during the execution.

There: that’s in 21 words.

PDB: Which books, films or television shows have floated your boat recently?

In general, TV flat-out sucks. I’m currently reading Charles Willeford’s four early novels: The Whip Hand, Wild Wives, The Woman Chaser, and The High Priest of California.

I like to watch the classic film noirs. I recently watched an interesting Anthony Mann early noir titled Strange Impersonation.

PDB: Is it possible for a writer to be an objective reader?

Well, I try to be when I’m assigned to write my professional reviews.

PDB: Do you have any interest in writing for films, theatre or television?

Great question. My novels have been described as “cinematic,” probably because I like to use dialogue. It’d be fun to try to do such a project (paid, of course). But such a possibility is so far outside of my present realm that I haven’t given it any thought.

PDB: How much research goes into each book?

I use Google a lot to fact check as I write and edit my books. My use of Google probably adds up because I do many editing revisions on each of my titles.

PDB: How useful or important are social media for you as a writer?

I find social media becoming a bigger part of my book marketing and promotion efforts. Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads are the three biggies for me.

PDB: What’s on the cards in 2012?

 Blood Diamonds got released in July. Topaz Moon should be out later. I have a science fiction novel, The Quetzal Motel, due out whenever I can finish reviewing the final edits.

Short, Sharp Interview: Michael Young

PDB: Can you pitch your latest publication/ project in 25 words or less? 
I’ve seen this bit and lots of people just cheat: 
The Sky Might Fall is a short novel out now for Kindle. A hardboiled PI playing the Englishman abroad tries to save an almost innocent schoolgirl embroiled in an international conspiracy. In Hong Kong, mostly. With guns and girls and car chases and stuff. A noir-flavoured thriller, really.  
49 words, never mind. 

PDB: Which books, films or television shows have floated your boat recently? 
I’m quite behind on TV. The only shows I’ve watched regularly over the last year or so are Walking Dead and Dr Who. Sopranos will be started soon enough (told you I was behind), but I’m wary of how boxsets can take over your life. Also, I really want to check out that Atlantic City thing, Boardwalk Empire? And that old David Lynch one with rabbits, can’t remember what it’s called. Looks pretty crazy, although I’m not sure it was ever actually broadcast on TV.
In movies, I’m getting pretty tired of wading through Hollywood’s shit to find the gems. Most recently, Drive was pretty good; I thought it caught the mood and style of the book really well. Tarantino, Lynch and Cronenberg are about the only modern directors who regularly float my boat, and they don’t make anywhere near enough movies. 
Out east I like Park Chan-Wook in Korea and Takeshi Miike in Japan. Okay, pretty obvious, but they make classy intelligent films, and hunting down Miike’s back catalogue always throws up some interesting stuff. Those two both feature in Three…Extremes (2004), a pretty cool and bizarre little horror triple bill I saw last week, also featuring Fruit Chan from Hong Kong, who I’ve never heard of but has a really nice name and tells a fantastically sordid story in his segment.
My reading has always been random, sporadic, and varied. Right now I’m liking Josh Stallings, Ray Banks, Allan Guthrie, Christa Faust, Anthony Neil Smith. The new pulp masters, you might say. There’s a lot of young talent getting a chance through the likes of Untreed Reads, or self-published, and I’m a huge fan of New Pulp Press, and Hard Case, of course, especially now they’re on Kindle. Also, I am thrilled by the resurgence of the novella in ebooks. 
But I try to keep it varied. There’s always some Bukowski, JG Ballard, Bulgakov or Hemingway that I haven’t read, as well as others. And one of my favourite hobbies is to drink prodigious amounts of cheap rum and read aloud from Finnegan’s Wake until I pass out. Aaah, good times.

PDB: Is it possible for a writer to be an objective reader? 
Yes, but ebooks rushed out on the net can make it difficult. It’s not so much the writing as the editing. “Ooh,” I’ll think, “Someone should’ve caught that typo.” 

PDB: Do you have any interest in writing for films, theatre or television? 
I’d love to see my own books turned into movies, but I’d rather have some pretentious and ultimately useless role in the project. Stick me in a Hollywood apartment for 6 months, call me a script editor and I’ll complain about what the writers are doing to my work until the movie’s finished. Then I’ll bitch about it at the premiere, while downing all the free booze.

PDB: How much research goes into each book? 
Details, mostly. I like to have my facts straight about things that exist in the real word. With guns and cars, for example, I like to know all about them so I don’t make some basic error. Even if I don’t specify the model in the book, I want to know that the car I’m thinking of really is available in metallic British racing-green, and what capacity magazines are available for the CZ-75. So most of my research is writer’s block by another name. At some point I have to look in the mirror and shout ‘Get on with it!’ like an extra from The Holy Grail.

Research is most important for science bits, historical fiction or countries you’ve never been to, and I don’t write any of that. Anything else you can make up.

PDB: How useful or important are social media for you as a writer? 

I’m here aren’t I? Go, people, go buy my book. It’s only 99 cents on Kindle for goodness sake. Buy another one for your brother-in-law’s birthday, he’ll love it!
No, I’m not on twitter or facebook. But I do have a bit of a blog.

PDB: What’s on the cards in 2012? 

I have a sales target in mind before I write a sequel, but there could be one out by the end of summer. It was so fun to write (even though it was heartbreaking) that I know I could produce another pretty damn quick. I’ve kinda been thinking in terms of a trilogy, but with nothing quite concrete yet. Also, producing the cover was really fun. I’d like to put out another self-published book just to do that again. A few other interesting projects are underway, so we’ll see what happens to them.
Meanwhile, The Sky Might Fall is out now for Kindle. 99 cents, 77 pennies or 0,87 euros. And thanks very much for having me!