Check out this author spotlight for Michael Paul Scott!
You can find all his links furthest down the page, and don’t forget to check out his books!
1. Hi! Welcome to my humble blog of all things bookish! I would like for us to start by getting to know you. Give us a short bio, please!
Sure! My name is Michael Paul Scott and I live in a sleepy village called Gardiner in New York, about 90 miles north of NYC. My family and I are surrounded by apple orchards, lush vineyards, and just about the best autumn views you can imagine. I work as a dispatcher for the local utility company, bossing around linemen and gas crews to get power restored during stormy weather outages and respond to natural gas emergencies. I am married to a lovely and wonderful woman, Christine. I published my debut novel, Freewilds – The Cult & the Constable, on September 30th of 2021.
2. To get to know you just a little bit better, I’d like to ask you some this or that questions. Answer 5 of these and explain why you chose this or that, or maybe an entirely different alternative!
Winter, spring, summer or autumn?
Oh gosh… probably autumn for the views and the relative relief I get from seasonal allergies. I feel kind of fortunate to live in a region that actually gets all four. When I lived near Oceanside, California for a while, the lack of a genuine winter was a real letdown for me.
Cat or dog?
I love pretty much all animals, but I am partial to my dog, Scrappy (and yes, the name suits him well!)
Morning or evening?
I am definitely a night owl. I dread the early rise and love sleeping in.
Mountains or beaches?
I was born in Longview, Washington and vividly recall the majestic vistas of Mt. St. Helens and Mt. Rainier… but if I’m planning a trip, it’s to the beach (less climby!)
Standalone or series?
I never want the story to ‘end,’ but rather to evolve and mature over the course of a series.
3. When you look for books to read, what trope or type of story will always catch your attention?
Relatable characters and verisimilitude, mostly. I enjoy a villain that I can understand, a flawed and fallible hero, and a plot that doesn’t collapse under any kind of objective scrutiny.
4. What do you write? Tell us about your current projects and the latest happenings!
This is an easy one, since I only have the one novel to my name (so far).
I write dark fantasy/horror in the vein of Stephen King’s Dark Tower series, Patrick Rothfuss, Brandon Sanderson and R.A. Salvatore. My debut novel blends these themes with a detective protagonist and a suspenseful occult-related mystery.
5. What is your most recent release? Give us a short presentation, cover, and a link for where to buy it!
Freewilds – The Cult & the Constable
In a refugee shanty town on the outskirts of a vast and opulent imperial capital city, an insidious sect of demon worshippers, the Cult of Ebon, began to prey upon the Gathered, a diaspora of peoples displaced from their nations in the aftermath of a mad tyrant’s ceaseless wars of conquest, long ago.
Unwilling to overlook these heinous crimes against a vulnerable, underserved populace, Constable Lukarde Alfans began an investigation that brought him far too close to the truth, leading him to become the cult’s next target.
In order to derail his investigation, the enigmatic leader of the cult framed Lukarde for the grisly murder of a woman whose psychic gifts had been invaluable in his investigations.
The disgraced former constable, haunted by the lingering trauma of all he had seen and endured during his investigations, was chased into exile with his life in utter ruins.
He must travel far to the southern reaches, to the Freewilds, in search of a new start and, perhaps, a chance to unravel the mysteries surrounding the Cult of Ebon, bringing them to justice, clearing his good name, and silencing the horrors that plague his mind whenever he closes his eyes.
6. What real-life inspiration do you draw from, and what are your primary fictional sources of inspiration (books, authors, films, music, etc.)? Name a few!
I’m going to get deep here, so bear with me. Depression, anxiety, and PTSD inform just about everything I do, and my writing is no exception. This book is a creative and constructive outlet for me. It is a catharsis. Therapeutic and essential.
As far as fictional sources of inspiration, it will be tough to limit myself to just a few! I am an avid tactical and pen & paper roleplayer. I cut my teeth on Dungeons & Dragons as a kid, and that is an itch in constant craving for a good scratch. Writing a fantasy novel definitely satisfies, in that regard. I am also a fan of both great literary works and more pulpy fare.
7. What is your writing routine? If you have one, give us the run-down!
I am writing the sequel to Freewilds – The Cult & the Constable, now, and I learned a lot the first time, so I am refining my process and trying to do things a bit differently.
I like to stay organized, so I begin by creating a dedicated folder and come up with a rough outline of the overarching plot, light on specific details. I then write each chapter, including the prologue and epilogue, as its own individual Word file.
I learned the hard way that the way you format those Word files can make a big difference later, during the editing, proofreading, and publishing process.
Since my first book is pretty hefty (a little over 700 pages in Soft- and Hardcover), and it landed at about 240,000 words with 38 chapters, I set myself a reasonable and achievable goal, created 40 preformatted chapter DOCX files, and aim for an average of 6,000 words per chapter if I can, give or take here and there.
As far as staying motivated and inspired are concerned, I believe in palate cleansing with a video game, a movie, or binging a TV show… but I try to limit what I read to things outside the genre I am working on… just to avoid being inadvertently derivative.
8. If you could go back and give yourself one piece of advice as you started out on the path to become an author, what would it be?
Do the work.
You are on a journey, and this is all heading somewhere amazing, so even when the going gets tough… keep going.
Don’t believe your lying mind; you are worth more than you think, and you have much to be grateful for.
Finally, make this a priority, and keep it that way. You love writing, so write!
9. Last but not least: where can we find you? Drop those links!