Interview with Michael Ballew

What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Writing provides a creative outlet for me. I find that when I write I become immersed in the story and I feel what the characters feel. It's as though they become real people to me. I find joy in doing anything that I love so much that I can get lost in it.
Who are your favorite authors?
Three of my favorite authors are John Grisham, Jonathan Kellerman, and Anne Tyler. The books I've read over the years from those authors and many others have had a significant influence on my writing style.
What is your writing process?
I try to write everyday, I think it keeps the story and characters fresh in my mind. I sit down at the computer and write and then before I end the day I read back over what I've written and make the necessary changes. I have come to the conclusion that rewriting is the best writing. Once I finish the entire manuscript, I read it again and again, each time tweaking and changing and sometimes rewriting entire paragraphs. After going through the manuscript at least a half dozen times, then it goes out for actual editing. My son has an English degree and he is my editor, he corrects all of my egregious errors. I believe it is also important to have a member of the opposite sex read through the manuscript, at least in my case. I have found that much as in real life, I can be unintentionally offensive so it's best to have my significant other point that out to me in a nice way of course before it gets out there in print.
When did you first start writing?
I began writing as a child for school assignments. In the sixth grade I was voted "Most Likely to Become a Future Author."
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
I like to do things and achieve my goals. I'm a very ambitious person and I usually start out each day full of energy and find myself buzzing about checking off everything on my To Do list.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
My childhood was spent in Harvester, Missouri which as the name implies was a very rural setting. Since then it has been swallowed up by the urban sprawl of St. Louis so I barely recognize it when I visit. I loved books as a child and read all of the Hardy Boys mysteries among many others. I think growing up in a peaceful rural setting gave me the proper environment to develop a love of books which later lead to my desire to become an author.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
The first book I can remember reading was The Wonderful Flight to the Mushroom Planet by Eleanor Cameron. As I recall it was a story about a boy whole built a rocket ship in his backyard and flew it to a distant planet where the mushrooms were as tall as trees. I was fascinated by the concept, and I guess the impact it had on me was the realization that in books anything is possible, that you are only limited by your imagination.
How do you approach cover design?
I do it myself using Photoshop. I take the photographs, I draw the graphics with a digital pen, and I manipulate the images until I'm satisfied with the overall look and feel of the finished product. I want my book covers to be appealing and instantly convey the genre or subject matter. In addition, my book covers hold a deeper meaning for those willing to take a closer look.
Describe your desk
It's a glass computer desk with two equally-sized monitors. On my desk sits a pen, some scrap paper, a calculator, and a coaster.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Windsor Towers is a classic whodunit written in the style of a cozy mystery with a wholesome romantic subplot. It's set in Savannah, Georgia in the springtime. The story is about a 30-year-old man who has recently left the police force to open his own private investigation firm. A beautiful woman asks for his help with her husband's unsolved murder case and they conduct the investigation together.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Patience is not one of my gifts. I know I would never have the patience to go the traditional publishing route which takes years.
Published 2016-05-05.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Windsor Towers
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 55,790. Language: English. Published: April 29, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » Cozy, Fiction » Romance » Suspense
It’s springtime in Savannah as Ashley O’Conner turns to private investigator Austin Hamilton for help in her husband’s murder investigation. Austin and Ashley unravel a mystery as their feelings for one another grow. Ashley realizes that when love finds its way into your heart, nothing else matters. Windsor Towers will leave you breathless and reaffirm your belief in the power of love.