Exclusive Interview with

Mike Rickett

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When did you start writing?

I have been a lifelong daily newspaper journalist but only ventured into fiction about 18 months ago

Mike Rickett
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What makes writing your passion?

The power of the word. It is what drew me into journalism after university and the same is even more true of fiction if anything.

Mike Rickett
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How long have you been writing?

Literally all my life. I won a national essay writing competition in the UK when I was eight and English has always been my strongest subject.

Mike Rickett
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What was the feeling when you published your first book?

Ecstatic! There is nothing quite like seeing your book in print and holding it in your hands. This is something you may have spent a year writing. It is not the same as seeing a feature you have written appearing in a paper.

Mike Rickett
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What’s the story behind your choice of characters?

My central character in The Poseidon Files is Naomi who was inspired by my grandmother, who was something of a mystic. She was a lovely, kindly white-haired lady who was always right when she predicted something. I was a little scared of her I think. So she lives on, in a way, in my books.

Mike Rickett
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What annoys you the most in pursuing a writing career?

Agents in many ways. They are the gatekeepers in publishing and are so often wrong in their judgements. Too many talented writers are turned away or are put off by rejections. It is proven by writers who have success despite them. J. K Rowling and Any Weir are two excellent examples.

Mike Rickett
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How do you get over the “writer’s block”?

I sleep on it or I go the the pub and have a few drinks to think through the problem. Invariably works!

Mike Rickett
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We all know the writer’s path is never easy, what makes you keep going? What advice would you give to new authors?

Never, ever, give up. If you think you have a good tale to tell stick at it. But most importantly read, read and read. Plan your story, chapter by chapter and be prepared to change it as the story develops. And when you finish, that will be just the beginning....

Mike Rickett
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If you could go back in time and talk to your younger self, what would you say?

I would tell myself that I was an arrogant bastard. I had four degrees and was clever and I knew it. I must have been a complete arse. I'm quite a nice guy now though. Honest!

Mike Rickett
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Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with the bad ones?

I read them all. So far, I don't have any bad ones but if I did I would simply shrug. In the end you can't please everybody.

Mike Rickett
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What is the feeling when you get a good review?

I was genuinely amazed and thrilled! I basked in gratifying plaudits such as ‘page-turner’, ‘heart-pounding’, ‘engaging’ and ‘thrilling.’ One or two even suggested it would make a good film or TV series, especially given the popularity of Liverpool as a film location which is where the story is largely set. At the moment they are filming Batman here!

Mike Rickett
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Have you ever incorporated something that happened to you in real life into your novels?

Yes. As a journalist I have years of experience to call upon. My books are mostly about crime with a touch of the supernatural. At one time I was a crime reporter so I know how the police operate and how criminals think.

Mike Rickett
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Which of your characters you can compare yourself with? Did you base that character on you?

Apart from my grandmother (see above) I tend to 'see' my characters as I plan and write about them. They are nearly all based on people I have met or know. In that way I am able to describe them in my mind's eye.

Mike Rickett
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What do you think, the book cover is as important as the story?

The cover is important but not more important than the story. It is simply a marketing tool to entice a potential reader who will also read the blurb on the back in deciding whether to buy it or not.

Mike Rickett
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Do you connect with your readers? Do you mind having a chat with them or you prefer to express yourself through your writing?

I am more than happy to talk to my readers. No author should live in an ivory tower. What your readers think matters in my view. It is invaluable feedback whether you like it or not

Mike Rickett