Author's Interview with Michael Mohr.

Author's Interview with Michael Mohr.

First, before we move forward with our Author's Interview, I would like to start with an introduction. 

1. Could you please introduce yourself to us?

My name is Michael Mohr. I've been a writer for a long time. Born and raised in Ojai and Ventura (north of Los Angeles), I grew up in a writer family. My mom and uncle are both novelists. I've lived all over, from San Diego to Portland, Oregon to New York City to Philadelphia. My work is semi-autobiographical and usually somewhat gritty. This is my first published novel, though I've written 13 others and will be revising and releasing some of them over the coming years. 

2. Congratulations on your book. So what inspired you to write this book?

My lived experience going to high school and getting into punk rock anarchy between 1999-2002. 

3. What is the book all about?

Here's the summary: All freshman year Jack Donnigan wanted to ditch the nerds and become cool. When Jack—a protected 16-year-old sophomore at St. Andy’s Prep in Southern California in 2000—gets accepted into The Crew, a renegade punk clique on campus led by the nefarious and intelligent Cannonball (“Cannon”), he is thrilled. But he soon challenges Cannon’s leadership by starting a secret relationship with Sarah—a punk-feminist who Cannonball mysteriously says is off-limits—trying hard drugs, and jumping on stage at punk shows. 

 

Jack’s relationship with Mom becomes strained. He stays out late and rebels for the first time. The faculty at St. Andy’s—wanting to dismantle the cult hero status of The Crew—organize a coup. They plan to nail the perceived leader: Jack Donnigan, who’s been conned by Cannonball. Jack’s mentor is his unconventional English teacher, Mr. Bryce, who teaches Jack a more nuanced world view. 

When the faculty nail Jack, Mr. Bryce does his best to save the floundering student. But when Jack is kicked out of his folks’ home, expelled from school, and Cannonball steals Sarah by spreading a web of lies: Who will save Jack from himself?

4. Why did you choose this genre for your book?

I didn't, honestly. In 2008, when I started the first draft (I was 25 then), I didn't even know "YA" existed. Later, I realized I had a teen protagonist and it made sense. But really all I was trying to do was write thinly-veiled autobiographical literary fiction. Over the years the novel became less autobiographical and more fiction. 

5. How much time did it take to complete this book?

Haha. Oh man. Well, I started it in 2008 and published it in 2024. So...do the math. I wasn't always working on it, of course. Years would go by without me even glancing at it. But still: It was a long, slow road. 

6. What makes your Book Special?

It combines punk rock, Catholic college prep, and real-life street kids in a bundled-up mixture of literature, education, chaos, drinking, violence and coming-of-age. 

7. When is your second book coming?

Good question. I have many books very close to ready. It's more of a case of deciding when to publish. Perhaps in 6-8 months. 

8. While writing did you get any writer's block? What is the Tip that you will give others who are facing writer's block?

I've honestly never had it. That's one thing I've always had as a writer: The steady ability to put prose onto the page. 

9. What are your other hobbies besides being a talented author?

Backpacking, reading, hanging with my animals (three cats and a dog), spending time with my wife, traveling, writing on Substack. 

10. Last but not the least, How did you feel, while giving this interview?

I felt good! It's always nice to introduce myself to new readers. 

Book Review | Book Link 

Comments

  1. Started at 2008 and published at 2024, wow truly inspiring. One should never give up.

    ReplyDelete

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