Interview: Mike Barnett
Interviewing Mike Barnett, a New York Times Best Seller Author.
Paul Collins–Tell us about your background. Who you are, where you are from?
Mike Barnett – I was born in the late 50’s in Southern California, and lived through the turbulent 60’s. It wasn’t all bad though. There was still innocence in those pre-technology days. It was a time when I would rarely be home, but out on adventures. When I did watch TV, I was always right in front of “Outer Limits” or “Twilight Zone”. Needless to say, I honed my already excessive imagination, and cultivated a love of Science Fiction. When I was 13, we moved to my dad’s home town in Indiana, and my love of reading and writing really took off. This was probably due to a more sedentary lifestyle than California offered, and I had a chance to develop my talent. All through high school and college at Purdue, my love for reading and writing only grew. The sad part about all of this is that I only continued reading over the next thirty years, never taking the risk of writing my first book, until four years ago.
Paul Collins–What themes does your book explore and what do you hope the readers will take away from the experience? Is there a particular feeling or experience that you hope to evoke for the reader?
Mike Barnett – In “When Earthlings Weep”, I was hoping to show that bad guys aren’t always bad, and good guys aren’t always good. This book will keep you guessing, who to root for, and who to hate. Don’t get me wrong, I have plenty of good and bad characters, and they remain the same throughout the book. The theme of the book is that no matter how bad or impossible situations get, there is always hope.
Paul Collins–What prompted you to be an author and did you have a specific inspiration in mind? Were you influenced by a certain person, artist, or genre?
Mike Barnett – Four years ago, my father passed away, and my younger brother started badgering me about writing my first book about our early years in California. I finally relented, and wrote ‘Eden Fading.” I have since followed that one up with “When Earthlings Weep”, my first Sci-Fi book, and am currently writing another Sci-Fi. My inspiration for writing would be an amalgam of John Steinbeck, Ernest Hemmingway, Nathaniel Hawthorn, Dean Koontz, Ann Rice, and Stephen King . . . some Stephen King.
Paul Collins–If you could compare your book to any other existing works, which ones would it be and why?
Mike Barnett – I have been told that my writing reminds people of John Steinbeck, Dean Koontz, and Stephen King. One of the reviews from “When Earthlings Weep” puts it rather well, “Imagine Stephen King meets Star Trek meets a blender on high!”
Paul Collins–Tell us about your latest work and what inspired you.
Mike Barnett – When Earthlings Weep is my latest work, and I was inspired by my love of all “Star Trek”, “Star Wars” . . . basically, all things with space, and aliens, dystopian stories, time travel, teleportation, DNA splicing . . . you get the picture. I have always loved science fiction, since if you give it enough time, and it will be the reality of tomorrow.
Paul Collins —Thanks for taking the time for this interview. All the best!