Interview with Brian Bakos

Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
No. It was probably pretty bad. I like to think that I have improved since then, but maybe not.
What is your writing process?
There's supposed to be a process? Let me think about that one. Actually, I plan very carefully using outlines and flow charts. The morning hours are best. I also like to write freehand over lunch or a couple of beers.
How do you approach cover design?
I know two excellent cover artists. I suggest designs to them, then let them have at it. Sometimes the result is quite different from what I originally intended. I also create some covers myself using photos I've taken around the world and in my own backyard. Photoshop rules!
Describe your desk and work area
Well, I'm living in Belize right now in a house with only one air conditioned bedroom. I spend the hot hours in the cool room using a tiny stand for my laptop. The cooler hours are at the large kitchen table with lots of space.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
Allen Park, Michigan (Home of the Detroit Lions). The local settings are shot through many of my books, especially the Time Before Color TV series and DAS ROAD. I took the cover photo for DAS ROAD there, on the route I used many times walking to high school.
When did you first start writing?
Fourth grade, I think. My first outputs have been lost to history; perhaps that's a good thing.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Creating unique worlds that take on lives of their own. Having characters appear from out of nowhere.
What do your fans mean to you?
Everything. Thanks to everyone who has enjoyed reading my books!
What are you working on next?
BATTLE FOR MECH CITY, book 3 of the Robot Horizon series, is my current project. Then, a book that's been on the back burner for quite a while: GREAT REPUBLIC ON RYE. I had to visit some Mayan sites in Belize before I finished the research for it.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
My timer going off.
Published 2016-10-03.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Strange Tales for Cozy Nights 1
Price: Free! Words: 34,540. Language: English. Published: May 24, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Psychological thriller, Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories
Nine offbeat tales guaranteed to disturb your cozy nights. From strange voyages and baffling powers to dystopian athletic competitions, these stories are for you if you enjoy burning the midnight oil with a good yarn.
Battle for Mech City
Series: Robot Horizon. Price: Free! Words: 89,540. Language: English. Published: August 10, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Utopias & dystopias, Fiction » Fantasy » Dark
(5.00 from 1 review)
Winston Horvath regains control of Mech City after returning from his remake. He brings order and prosperity, but his success is soon threatened. Violent religious fanatics are approaching with a robotic army. A disgruntled Dr. Jerry Che is also coming, bent on capturing Star Power for his own. Events on the West Coast spill over - the future isn't what it was!
Raptor Aces
Price: Free! Words: 106,130. Language: English. Published: December 25, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Adventure » War & military adventure, Fiction » Adventure » Action
Dytran and his squadron of young fliers struggle to survive in a world so ravaged by war that reality has become unhinged. His sense of superiority vanishes before an enemy who is far more than the “inferior race” of the propaganda. He becomes swept up in violence and revenge until escape seems impossible; only the tenuous bonds of friendship offer hope. New Adult / Action-Adventure / Dystopian
4th Musketelle
Price: Free! Words: 71,160. Language: English. Published: November 29, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » Black comedy
Trophy wife Laila chafes under dominating husband, Frank. When she learns that her adult step children are plotting to cut her out of their dad's lucrative business affairs and frame her with accusations of infidelity, Laila decides that a preemptive murder would be nice. She arranges an "accident" for Frank, but things take unexpected turns. Who will end up dead? Dark Humor / Romantic Homicide
A Hurricane in Your Suitcase
Price: Free! Words: 11,940. Language: English. Published: February 26, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction, Fiction » Humor & comedy » Satire
Brett's lies are getting him into serious trouble. Can big brother Joe stop admiring himself long enough to help turn things around? Children's humor.
Expedition Westward
Series: Robot Horizon, Book 2. Price: Free! Words: 93,710. Language: English. Published: November 17, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Adventure » Action, Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure
(5.00 from 2 reviews)
Book 2, Robot Horizon series What's the cost of rediscovering true love in a shattered world? Star must find out, or not survive the outcome. A trek along dangerous roads provides the answer. After Winston's dismal failure as Mech City mayor, Star convinces him to journey with her to the West Coast where he might be upgraded so as to satisfy her robust desires. Science Fiction / Humor / Dystopian
How Raspberry Jam Got Invented
Series: Time Before Color TV, Book 1. Price: Free! Words: 12,420. Language: English. Published: October 19, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Action & Adventure / Survival Stories, Fiction » Adventure » Action
The last summer picnic turns into an astonishing disaster! Middle grad humor and adventure. Book 1, "Time Before Color TV" series
The Daring Rooftop Rescue
Price: Free! Words: 16,120. Language: English. Published: August 31, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Social Issues / Friendship, Fiction » Children’s books » Animals
"Coming up in the world" can bring unexpected problems as Johnny Badger learns the hard way.
Disaster Productions
Price: Free! Words: 42,440. Language: English. Published: June 21, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Humor, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Drama
Matt’s struggle to win media fame by his 14th birthday leads to escalating disasters. Add some romantic complications and things become really disastrous. Young Adult humor.
The Bulb People
Series: Terror Orchard, Book 2. Price: Free! Words: 35,090. Language: English. Published: May 21, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Horror, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
(5.00 from 1 review)
Why are people vanishing in the nasty little town of Bridgestock? Newcomer Ryan tackles this mystery, along with the issue of his “happy blended family” which he desperately wants to vanish as well. Maybe things are interrelated, and one problem can help solve the other - in a lethal fashion. YA humor and light horror. Book 2 of the Terror Orchard series
Captive in Terror Orchard
Series: Terror Orchard, Book 1. Price: Free! Words: 35,510. Language: English. Published: May 19, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Horror, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Sci-Fi & fantasy
(5.00 from 1 review)
Where do kids go when they are driven through the cracks? Throwaway delinquent Billy Conner seems useless to the world, but he’s all that stands between it and the workings of a vicious, supernatural conspiracy. Book 1 of the Terror Orchard series
Return to Mech City
Series: Robot Horizon, Book 1. Price: Free! Words: 100,090. Language: English. Published: May 15, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Apocalyptic, Fiction » Fantasy » Epic
(4.80 from 10 reviews)
The end of the world as you've never seen it before. Life goes on in Mech City, but it is no longer human. Oppose the Roboto Fascist regime at your peril! Book 1, Robot Horizon series.
The First Ring Rainbow
Series: Time Before Color TV, Book 2. Price: Free! Words: 15,030. Language: English. Published: May 5, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Historical, Fiction » Children’s books » Action & Adventure / Survival Stories
1950’s Cold War tension; anything can happen during the Atomic Summer. Amanda struggles with the era’s sexist restraints, her fugitive Russian Communist grandparents, and the appearance of a bizarre creature at Secret Pond. Book 2, "Time Before Color TV" series
Career Moves For Burnt Out Personifications
Price: Free! Words: 14,680. Language: English. Published: May 1, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Graphic novels & comics » Fantasy, Fiction » Humor & comedy » Black comedy
(5.00 from 1 review)
Santa, the Grim Reaper, and others scramble to find new careers and identities. Political and social satire. “A smorgasbord of paranoid ramblings.”
The Great Flying Adventure
Series: Time Before Color TV, Book 4. Price: Free! Words: 37,980. Language: English. Published: April 21, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Sci-Fi & fantasy, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Adventure
(5.00 from 1 review)
Amanda and Quentin fly to an alien world where Quentin competes in a brutal tournament to save Earth from invasion, but Amanda falls for the enemy team captain, and things become terribly complex. Book 4, "Time Before Color TV" series
Das Road
Price: Free! Words: 103,140. Language: English. Published: April 14, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Adventure » Travel, Fiction » Adventure » Men’s adventure
(5.00 from 2 reviews)
A road novel with fascinating turns through exotic Asia, workaday America, and Iran caught up in revolution. Readers travel realms where anything is possible, wonderful, or horrible. And always on the road ahead, the mythical Jon Glass who haunts the entire journey.
Return of Mr. Badpenny
Series: Time Before Color TV, Book 5. Price: Free! Words: 25,190. Language: English. Published: April 9, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy, Fiction » Children’s books » Paranormal
Tommy gets more help than he expected from a mysterious two-headed coin. When he passes it on to the class queen bee, things get even more out of control. When Mr. Badpenny is around, you kind of wreck your own life. Tween action / fantasy. Book 5, "Time Before Color TV" series
The Lost Country
Price: Free! Words: 50,100. Language: English. Published: April 8, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Adventure
Crown Prince Rupert struggles against ignorance and superstition to rally his countrymen against a dire threat coming from the mysterious East Lands. When disaster finally strikes, it's up to Rupert and his band of often questionable allies to win through or face total destruction.
Adventure Bike Club and the Tire Giant
Series: Time Before Color TV, Book 3. Price: Free! Words: 27,880. Language: English. Published: April 2, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Action & Adventure / Survival Stories, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Fantasy
(5.00 from 1 review)
The huge tire on the freeway outside town is not an advertisement, as people think, but a vessel from another universe on a sinister mission. Can Amanda and her friends make it back out alive? The fate of the world might hinge on the outcome, or at least Melissa's fancy new bike. Book 3 of the "Time Before Color TV" series