Check out this author spotlight for Michael Camarillo!

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!

I was born in California and raised in Texas, but I strive to be a citizen of the world. I hold a dual-Bachelor’s degree from Brown University in Archaeology and Architectural Studies, and I am currently pursuing a Master’s in International Relations at Troy University.

I have published a non-fiction travel book as a part of my product development in my family travel business, Novel Excursion Travel. I am also working on a children’s book series that will put our business vision (changing the world one nameless stranger at a time by bridging cultures through travel, education, and service) into action through the eyes of my two children exploring the world around them and meeting new people.

I love travel, culture, baseball, and anything involving outdoor activities. My greatest passion is my family—Amanda (wife), Sarah, and Adrian.

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!

Library or museums?
Museums. As an archaeology major, I interned at the RISD Museum of Art in college, gave tours, and helped with the redesign of the Antiquities Collection. I absolutely love how artifacts can come alive with their stories through the use of space and information. There is something ethereal about walking through a museum.

Ninjas or pirates?
Pirates 100%! I am a HUGE history buff, so I love stepping back in time and imagining I am on a magnificent Spanish Galleon. I also love Disney…like big time, LOVE! So, the romanticization of pirates in that regard is fun for me and my children.

Mountains or beaches?
Mountains. I love the outdoors and I love getting lost. I find mountainous environments entrancing and inspiring. My wife and I want to go climb a number of mountains.

Plotter or pantser?
This one is tough. I have always been a very deliberate planner and am diagnosed with OCD. Strangely enough, I have found that my creative writing is much different than my academic and professional writing. With the latter, I would definitely be considered a plotter. However, with my fiction stories, I am much more a pantser. I do research my themes, processes, and facts significantly so that I can speak to them in a knowledgeable way. Yet, the storyline and character development kind of just happens. My editor wants a chapter by chapter plot for book 2 and I’m dragging my feet. I prefer to keep writing…already done with 3 chapters 😊

Book or ebook?
Book. Well, this one I’m a tad conflicted. I much prefer holding a book, sniffing it, and flipping through the pages. It feels much more immersive in my opinion. However, I hate stuff…and really want to minimize what I own. I want to travel freely without attachment to stuff. This makes my love of books difficult.

3. When you look for books to read, what trope or type of story will always catch your attention?

Historical Fiction and things that play with philosophical and psychological themes. I love the anti-heroes!

4. What do you write? Tell us about your current projects and the latest happenings!

I write various works that span the breadth of what I do as an entrepreneur. My first published book (Sept ’21) was a non-fiction travel guide titled, Explore! San Antonio Your Culture Guide to Educational- and Service-Oriented Travel. That project is a compliment to the family travel business I own and operated called Novel Excursion Travel. I am working on similar books like that for various destinations around the world.

I am also working on a children’s book series with my 9-year-old daughter that focuses on making the world a better place as we follow the travels of my two kids.

My passion project is my newest fiction novel, Keeper 829. It is a dystopian fiction/sci-fi that integrates contemporary social and geopolitical themes with historical narratives, artificial intelligence, genetic engineering, and extra-terrestrial contact. It is the first in a planned 4-book series called The Keeper Program.

5. What is your most recent release? Give us a short presentation, cover, and a link for where to buy it!

Keeper 829 will be released on December 31, 2021. This dystopian fiction reshapes the way the world works by mixing historical storytelling with an imaginative (and dark) future. In this cautionary tale, readers are taken to a world on the brink of collapse where humans are just another experiment in a cosmic vision fueled by genetic engineering. The oppressive organization that provides global harmony is not what it seems. Something inhuman is lurking in the shadows, and once the veil is dropped, readers will join a race against the extermination clock in a multi-book series.

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!

My characters are loosely based on people I have encountered in my personal life, as the storyline is extremely personal and a fictionalized rendition of my experiences. I touch on some contentious issues in my narrative in response to life experiences and adversity I have faced. Every location I mention (on Earth, at least), I have travelled to.

As for fictional sources of inspiration, Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles were what got me started writing in the first place. I strive to create dynamic characters much like those in Rice’s novels. I also draw inspiration from films like The Matrix, Star Wars, Inception, and really anything that plays with psychological and philosophical themes.

7. What is your writing routine? If you have one, give us the run-down!

Honestly, I have not been the best at developing a writing routine. I have waves of inspiration, and when that happens, I carry my laptop around and write in any free moment. I am a pantser when it comes to my fiction writing, but much more of a plotter with non-fiction stuff. I do spend significant time researching before I start any project.

8. If you could go back and give yourself one piece of advice as you started out on the path to becoming an author, what would it be?

Start sooner. Be confident and just start writing.

9. Last but not least: where can we find you? Drop those links!