Michael Rizzo

Smashwords Interview

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in the suburbs of Phoenix, Arizona, surrounded by desert hills that I'd disappear into to get away from home stress, be alone and spin stories in my head. The wide-open desert inspired the setting for the God Mars series, and my old neighborhood and favorite hiking spot appear in Grayman Book Three. (Of course, I fled to the opposite--the rich green forests of the Pacific Northwest--as soon as I had the chance.)
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
First book I ever read, five years old: Gulliver's Travels. Really. (Followed by The Tales of King Arthur, written in Olde English.) Classic adventure, fantastic worlds (and pretty adult stuff). My parents got me a subscription to a scholastic book-of-the-month, and it was all classic adventure lit. I learned a lot about storytelling from those books, and a lot about writing, style, plot.
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