Thursday, May 26, 2011

Interview With Michael Jackson

Today's interview is with Michael Jackson, 4th place winner in the Lost on the Rock contest. I had considered changing the title of this post to 'Interview with Mike Jackson' so as not to confuse fans of a certain entertainer. Actually, I don't mind if thousands flock to my site accidentally. Perhaps they will read about THIS Michael Jackson, of Warrington in the UK, and want to flock to his blog and read more of his fiction.

Our Mike Jackson is a former primary school teacher and has only joined the writing game since he retired two years ago. He used to love telling stories to the children at school and now enjoys writing the stories at his blog MJShorts. His story Where is Esther? appears today at Laurita's blog Calling Shotgun.

Have you ever been lost? Physically? Emotionally? Grammatically?

I don't remember ever being lost physically or emotionally but at the moment feel a little lost with a children's book I'm writing. It's my first attempt at a book and the first three chapters seemed to fly on to the page but since February I've become bogged down. It's as if I've lost my way - I've tried going back to the beginning and picking my way through to see where the problem lies, but I'm still lost. I've decided to leave it alone for a while and see what happens. It might be that I have to abandon this journey and set off on a new one.

Tell us about your writing. What is your favorite genre? Do you have a favorite story or character you’ve written?

I only started writing 'properly' when I retired just under two years ago. For the first 12 months or so I concentrated on two blogs - one was about education and the other a more general 'rambling thoughts'. In December 2010 I started a new blog to post my short stories. This has become both fun and addictive. I find myself experimenting with short stories, flash fiction, dribbles, drabbles, 5x5 stories, twitter stories. I enjoy responding to the different writing prompts that fellow bloggers are often posting.

I'm not sure if I've settled on a specific genre yet. Many of the stories on the blog are humourous and some are science fiction/fantasy. I plan to write a children's book and it will be fantasy. I also enjoy writing dialogue only stories, one of my favourites is 'Life In a box'.

Where is your writing space?

My writing space is my 'Studio' - my wife calls it my shed. I made it myself, cedar wood shingle roof, fully insulated t keep out the cold and wet, it has it's own electricity supply and Internet. I keep a lot of my books in there, numerous writing pads/journals, it's got a very comfy armchair and a lovely view of the garden. I can, and often do, spend hours in there.

Are you working on anything right now?

At the moment I am developing my blog of short stories, trying to get to grips with Twitter, wondering whether, as a writer, I should have a Facebook page and about to embark on writing chapter 4 of this elusive children's book I've started.

When you think of Newfoundland, what pops into your mind?

Newfoundland - the first thing that pops into my mind is Canada and snow. As a child I remember being told that the explorer who discovered it called it Newfoundland because it was a 'New Found Land' - I loved the simplicity of the idea.

Bio: I've come to 'writing' late in life but have always enjoyed telling stories. As a primary school teacher and for 25 years a Headteacher I had lots of children to tell stories to! I've been retired for almost two years now and am thoroughly enjoying the time and the freedom to write. I enjoy writing stories for my 'Short Stories' blog and meeting lots of other enthusiastic writers/bloggers.


David Barber said...

Great answers, Mike. Really enjoyed your story. Well done.

Cathy Webster (Olliffe) said...

Mike, your shed sounds dreamy. And don't abandon your children's book... just plow through it, write anything just to get the momentum going... you'll find your mojo again.

Sue H said...

Nice to meet you, Mike! (tried to comment yesterday but Blogger wasn't playing nicely!) will be checking out your blog, though! Congrats on your winning entry!

Anonymous said...

David - many thanks for these kind words.
Cathy - my shed, or as I rather pompously call it 'My Studio' is a great retreat. Thanks for your comments.
Sue - Nice to meet you to Sue. Hope you enjoy your visit to my blog.