By: Michael A. Rothman
Publisher: M&S Publishing, LLC
Publication Date: June 1st, 2016
In a post-apocalyptic world ruled by a Governor who is both feared and worshipped, Willow is a seventeen-year-old girl who is just trying to get through her last year of studies. But when her father dies, she experiences strange dreams that change everything about how she looks at the world and at herself.
Haunted by the tragedy, Willow begins pushing herself beyond anything she could have imagined she was capable of. It’s only when she catches the attention of some of the Governor’s minions that her world is turned upside-down.
If you emptied out your purse, wallet, desk drawer, pockets, backpack, beach bag, saddle bag, or fanny pack, what would we find?
Wallet – cash, credit cards and maybe a few receipts. I’m fairly organized and don’t like to have much clutter.
What is your writing process? Are you a plotter or a panster?
I’m a little bit of both nowadays.
I had started as a plotter. I’m a research scientist/engineer by profession and I’d initially applied that discipline to my writing. I would outline and plot the details of my story before laying down the first line.
However, I’ve evolved a bit on that. I found using that method was useful, but it sometimes left my story seem a bit stiff and choreographed.
Yet, I’ve never been a pantser. The idea of me just starting to write without knowing my general direction or how the story ends is a terrifying notion to me. I suppose I’m a bit more of a control freak, so I can’t allow myself that level of freedom.
Today, I find myself doing a bit of both.
I start with a basic premise and have a very good idea of some scenes that I want to have. I also know how the story should end from the very beginning.
That being said, I start a small outline which gives me a very clear idea of the chapter I’m working on and the general direction of the next couple of chapters. I also markup the outline with the key scenes I know need to occur. Then I begin writing.
Once I’m into the writing of the book, ideas begin to percolate as I immerse myself in the story. I’ll constantly touch up my outline, adding/changing things. This method continues throughout the writing process until I’m done.
Describe you book in 5 words or less
Girl finds herself and overcomes.
Do you have a special story behind your inspiration for the book?
In my mind, I’d always thought of the backstory of The Lord of the Rings. I’d imagined that the Middle Earth we read about was a view of our own distant future, 1000’s of years from now after a cataclysmic war that devastated the land. From it was born the new races and the great good and evil that we read about in Tolkien’s classics.
I’d imagined Dispocalypse as a view into a post-apocalyptic world were the bad guys won, the world was nearly destroyed, and the first signs of a change are in the wind.
Who was your favorite character to write and who gave you the most trouble?
I suppose the main POV character, Willow, was my favorite and gave me the most trouble.
My challenge was to show a teenage girl as both vulnerable and strong, having the real-world angst that someone in her position would have, yet not being overly dramatic. She needed to have challenges that readers could empathize with, yet not trivialize being able to overcome it. I wanted her to be a good example, yet not be perfect in every way.
If you could ask a character of your choice from DISPOCALYPSE one question what would it be?
I’d ask Willow at the end of the story, “Now that you’ve done this, what’s your plan?”
What scene from the book are you most proud of (because of how you handled the atmosphere, characters, dialogue, etc)?
I do like the reveal at the end of the story. It should make readers smack their forehead with the palm of their hand and say, “Of course!” Oftentimes this leads to rereading the story with new knowledge in mind. The interactions between some of the key characters in the story start to have new meaning on the second reading.
Is there a scene that you had difficulty with and just had to power through to finish the book?
Not really. I’m not a pantser, as in writing without an idea of where I’m going, so the scenes I was working on usually came together pretty well. However, if someone would have asked me as I started the writing process, “Did the story end up being exactly as you planned it?” The answer would certainly be, “No.” Things certainly evolved as I wrote it. Inspirations often come from the writing process itself as well as pre-plotted ideas.
What is your number one writing tip?
Keep a steady pace. When writing, people always find reasons why today is not a good day. My advice is to always find some time and use it to advance your story/outline/whatever. For me, I tend to wake up early and almost immediately invest an hour or so just editing what I’d done the previous day or writing a new scene or two. It’s amazing how far you can go if you steadily work at it.
Michael A. Rothman – Author, Engineer and Cat Herder.
In a nutshell:
- First-born American in my family
- Accepts no excuses
- Despises self-importance in himself and others
- Loves Epic Fantasy, Science Fiction, Thrillers
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Disclaimer: The synopsis and cover picture were pulled from the book’s Goodreads page. Neither belong to us. The author info, image, giveaway, and more were provided by YA Bound Book Tours.