About Michael Coombs:
Before writing a word I would like to thank you for this wonderful opportunity. That said, my name is Michael Coombs and I was born on the Island of Jamaica. I had a wonderful time as a child there.. My Aunt, who I grew up with, had a small farm in a place called Mavis Bank. It was awesome. I spent a lot of time in the trees, at the river or building carts in which my friends and I could ride. Actually it was my friends who did most of the building. Of course like any kid on a farm I did chores like tying out the goats, feeding the chickens or helping to plant crops like lettuce, carrots, beats…you name it. My Aunt was forever experimenting with various crops…always doing things that were out of the ordinary.
I never thought seriously of writing anything but if you think long and hard you can probably spot little telltale signs of the probability. It likely started when I was quite young – 6 maybe 7. Like many kids at that age I would tell stories. These stories where quite elaborate and would often involve my ‘made up’ weekend with my Dad. There were others. I remember one in which I was a swashbuckling pirate. I actually acted that one out. I stopped when I got to primary school. Making up stories were no longer cool or so I thought. I am not sure I missed it because at around that time I started reading a lot of kiddy mystery novels – particularly the Hardy Boys. My Dad turned me onto the series. I also got involved in the boy scouts and track & field. Maybe I am now coming full circle with this book writing. Time will tell but it certainly was enjoyable.
I attended Kingston College (KC) while living with my Aunt and met a group of guys there who I am fortunate enough to still be able to call friends. For me, attending KC was a big thing because you had to pass an island wide exam to get in. Anyone who goes to college in the West Indies has to pass this inter-island exam. Another thing you should know about college in Jamaica is that it’s the equivalent of the combined stay in middle and high school in the US. After only completing 2 forms at KC (it has 7) I migrated to the US. High school (Tilden) college (Frostburg) and graduate school (UMUC) were all completed in the US. I enjoyed them all to varying degrees. I even became involved in a Fraternity while at Frostburg – Alpha Phi Alpha.
I now live in Maryland where I work in the insurance industry. As I said earlier, I never gave any serious thought to writing, not until sometime in 2009. From the point the book became public, some 6 months ago, I would tell anyone who asked that this writing thing was a total accident. I am not so sure of that answer any longer. This book idea was probably bouncing around in my subconscious for years. There you have it, a short story of my life.
What inspires you to write?
That’s an excellent question and for me there is no concrete answer. I am sure it’s that way with most people. Inspiration can actually come from anywhere and at anytime. It may be the way the sun’s rays shimmers on a body of water, a fleeting glance from a stranger, the sight of a flock of birds making their way across the sky. And the kicker is that you have no idea why it inspires. For some reason that thing or that action touches a chord deep in your soul. My muse, however, is the lady to whom this book is dedicated – Jeannie. It’s as though I have been placed on this earth to be with her. The thought of her makes me want to put pen to paper and write something that she would love reading…something that would bring joy to the world
Tell us about your writing process.
That would be an instructive question if I actually had a writing process…then again the lack of a process could be a process of sorts so here goes. I start at the beginning or where ever the book idea is most solid and I skip around. There is no natural progression from beginning to end. If there is a mental block, I will wrestle with it for awhile but if I find I am not winning the wrestling match; I quickly move on to another area of the book where I write about something totally different. Hopefully I am able to paste the diverse pieces together. I usually am but many times I am not and a piece is never used. It’s not a total waste though because it often gives me an added idea or ideas. I like the freedom this lack of a rigid process gives me.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I never really talk to my characters but listen to them in that I relate. I know how they feel, how they will act or react. My characters are usually an amalgamation of individuals that have drifted through my orbit. I am never actually introduced to these people but there is something about them that’s different. Maybe it’s the eyes, the clothes or the voice…something. I develop a story around them that probably has no bearing on reality. I usually have a wonderful time with my characters even the more sinister ones.
What advice would you give other writers?
My advise for new authors would be to have faith in your ability and in words of Winston Churchill, “…never, never, never give up.” Good things seem to happen when you least expect it to but you do need to lay the ground work. You need to be prepared.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I had heard of self publishing but went the more traditional route of securing a publication company. I was quite sure I would not have the time needed to self publish and actually lucked out. A good friend…an author herself…had contacts at a publication company that proved to be invaluable. I doubt that I would have published as quickly if they had not indicated that my initial manuscript had merit.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
That’s a toughie in that in most areas the pendulum swings from one extreme to the other. Self –publishing seems to be on the rise now but will that be the case 5 or 10 years from now. Who knows with any certainty? One thing we can be relatively sure of, however, is that technology is here to stay. That seems to imply that traditional publishing will decline but that’s not a necessary outcome. Hopefully we have a future where the best of traditional publishing combines with the best of self publishing.
What do you use?: Professional Cover Designer
What genres do you write?: I have only written one book so far and its a romantic thriller
What formats are your books in?: Both eBook and Print
Your Social Media Links