Wordy Wednesday with Mike Russell

A new author for you all this week and a new one for me to meet too! Welcome to the interview hot seat for Mike Russell, author of Nothing is Strange.

So Mike, when did you start writing?

I began writing seriously when I was 12 years old. I began writing a novel called ‘Imagine Infinity’. I designed the book cover and wrote about twenty pages before deciding that I needed more life experience and abandoned it. I thought this early attempt was lost until my parents found it in their loft a couple of years ago. I still like the title.

In my twenties I began performing my stories in clubs & bars etc and happily kept being invited to do more. This showed me that there was an audience for my writing. The stories in ‘Nothing Is Strange’ have all been performed many times and have been carefully honed over the years.

What 3 things (not including paper, computer, pens) would you like to facilitate a good days writing?
I used to need all doors and windows to be closed so that I was in a hermetically sealed space! Thankfully for my girlfriend and cats that is no longer the case. I don’t need anything now other than inspiration. I tend to forget to eat and drink when I am writing though so perhaps some sort of intravenous drip would be good.

What are your favourite biscuits?
Ginger but I have recently given biscuits up altogether. Can you imagine? (no, and I'd like to suggest that despite book title, that is a bit strange)

What book are you reading at the moment?
An ETA Hoffman story called Mademoiselle de Scuderi. For anyone who hasn’t heard of Hoffman he wrote wonderfully odd, fantastical tales of magic. He was one of the first.

If you could genetically cross any animal with a fruit which two would you choose and why? (I'm going with Giraffe banana, just because everyone needs an easi-peel giraffe)

Hmm… I’d like to see a lemon crossed with a canary. They’d look great growing on the tree, singing to each other, then when they fell off they could fly away.(I love this answer!)

Do you use social media (facebook, twitter, instagram etc) to engage with your audience and do you find it fun or a chore?

Yes indeed. I enjoy sharing images & short films I have made and we do giveaways and competitions.

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Do you dream in colour?
Absolutely. I love dreams. I even appreciate bad dreams because they are all there to help. I keep a dream journal. It is extraordinary to me that many people do not discuss their dreams.

For me, creating is discovering and storytelling is bringing into the world dreams that are universal. These stories come from a deep place; they want to be known and they want to help us. Storytelling is a way of turning the world inside out, which I believe it desperately needs.

If reading and writing were banned, what would you do instead?
Break the law.

‘Nothing Is Strange’ by Mike Russell is a collection of 20 mind-expanding short stories that have been described as: ‘Inspiring, liberating, otherworldly, magical, surreal, bizarre, funny, disturbing and unique’.

“Nothing Is Strange took me on a topsy turvy whirly gig ride into my imagination and then deeper still.” Misti Moss
“The stories will take you to places within your mind you never knew existed.” Gerard Bianco

It is available to buy in both print (£5.99) and e-book format (£2.99 or free with Amazon Unlimited) from amazon

Or visit www.strangebooks.com where you can read many more reviews and see other strange offerings and merchandise.

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