After reading most of his novels, I was pleased to be able to ask author Michael Phillip Cash some questions.
Today I’m very lucky to interview Michael Phillip Cash, author of titles such as The After House, The Flip, the Battle for Darracia Trilogy, The Witches Protection Program, Pokergeist and more. I had never heard of this author before I read The After House and his work just keeps better and better, at least in my humble opinion, so I was very excited when he agreed to answer some interview questions.
Hi Michael, thank you for agreeing to this interview.
At what age did you start writing?
For fun, since I’m 15. To pay the bills, since I’m 30.
You don’t cover just one genre of writing, what is your favourite genre?
Choosing a favourite genre is like choosing a favourite child. I love each of them. If I absolutely had to choose, it would be Paranormal Suspense. Nothing like a good ghost story.
Your mum (Carole P. Roman) is a very successful children’s book writer, is this what encouraged to write your own books and did she encourage you?
I wrote a best-selling self-help book called ‘Just Ask the Universe’ under the pen name Michael Samuels. After that book took off, I dared her to start writing children’s books. She is incredibly prolific and knocks out a book almost once a month. I also ask her for constant advice on my books… she’s an incredible guide on this writing journey.
What other writers inspire you?
My mom obviously. But I am a huge Quentin Tarantino fan. I feel his story-telling is what got me motivated to write. I also loved reading Save the Cat by Blake Snyder. Blake breaks down how stories are told in certain formulas. You get to tweak those formulas to make an incredible story.
Where do you get your ideas from?
My ideas come from the craziest places. This is a bit embarrassing but for Witches Protection Program, I was in the bathroom and checking out my wife’s trashy magazines. I thought it said Witches Protection Program on one page, and I thought that would be an incredible idea for a book. Turns out, it actually said Wetless Protection Program in her magazine. But I went ahead and starting beating out the book that night. Months later, Witches is a best-seller on amazon in Teen & Young Adult.
Do you feel your writing style has improved from your first book to your latest?
Absolutely! I cringe when I reread my earlier works. The stuff I wrote in college – forget about it. Writing allows you to blossom and take chances that you didn’t take in your earlier works. Writers must take risks. I honed my skills and can definitely tell better stories now.
What are you working on at the minute?
I just finished my monster masterpiece – Monsterland. A teen must save his date in a theme park whose main attractions – real vampires, werewolves and zombies – descend the place into chaos. I also started beating out a new idea about a haunted college. It’s called The History Major.
How long, on average, would you say it takes you to write a new story?
The script takes about 2 to 3 weeks. The book takes about a month.
Do you ever get writer’s block and if so how do you overcome it?
Everyone gets writer’s block. I make myself a green tea with mint. Eat a couple pieces of Lindt Dark Chocolate, and I keep writing.The only way to overcome writer’s block is to write more.
Which one of your novels would you most like to be turned into a film and why?
All of them! I actually have a meeting with a production company next week about my books and possibly turning one of them into a film. That has been my dream since I’m in 2nd grade. Out of all the books I’d like to see on the big screen, I think Witches Protection Program would be it. Why? Witches was pure fun. It’s a popcorn, shoot ‘em up, summer flick that will be yielding a trilogy with big name stars. There has been heavy interest in some very large studios about Witches Protection Program.
I would like to see The Witches Protection Program turned into a series of books, do you ever see this as happening?
LOL. See answer above. Witches II is being beat out as we speak. I already know where Witches III is going as well. There will be a lot more adventures with Wes, Alastair and Morgan in the future.
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
The same advice I received:
“Of the many supposed rules of writing, the only one that’s legit is ‘write every day.’”
“The Coen brothers, Charlie Kaufman, Quentin Tarantino never tried to guess what Hollywood would make. They wrote their obsessions and so should you.”
Both quotes by Brian Koppelman
Thank you very much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to take part in this interview it is very much appreciated. If Witches is turned into a movie it will definitely be one I will be going see as I loved the book.
To find out more about Michael Phillip Cash and his work visit his website www.michaelphillipcash.com or find him on Twitter @michaelpcash. His books are available to buy in paperback or Kindle format from Amazon. You can also read my reviews of his books here. And if like me you have never read any of his work, take a chance, you might just be surprised at how much you enjoy it!
Carole P. Roman is the author of the Captain No Beard series and the If You Were Me and Lived in … series – a child’s introduction to cultures around the world. For more information visit www.caroleproman.com.