We caught up with Michael Dowle, the author of Four Becomes the One and Laura, Come Back to Me. We wanted to catch up with the new author and see how life had been treating him since his recent book Four Becomes the One was released in January 2020.
Did you always dream of becoming an author?
No, and yes!
My life was always busy, working and raising a family, so I’d given very little consideration to writing novels until later in life. I wrote stories and told them to my sons as they grew up, especially at bedtime; but it was just for fun.
When I reached fifty years of age, several life-changing events were to shape my future over the next few years.
One of those was to write books. And here we are, as I’m now doing exactly that. I am living my own dream of telling stories that thanks to Pegasus Elliot Mackenzie Publishers, have been made into novels. I am now working on book four in my character-linked tetralogy.
What was your first job?
A newspaper delivery boy. I used to wake up my brother early in the morning as we’d get up to go and deliver the papers via our local shop. I don’t think I ever got used to those early mornings!
After that, my first full-time job was as a junior customs clearance clerk in the late 1970s; that was a thriving business back then in and around Dover on the Kent coast.
How did you come to write your book? Was that your intention or did you start writing for fun?
Initially, I came up with a story that I never dreamt would be published. It was just an idea to start with. One of my sons encouraged me to write because I’d always said I’d love to write novels one day.
That first story, I shelved, realising it was very repetitive. But I used some of the content for my published books.
It started as a fun hobby, which I knew I would love doing and still do to this day.
What was your life like before you became an author?
I was busy working, raising two sons with my now ex-wife, seeing family and friends regularly. I’d worked shifts (days/nights) for many years in different jobs in and around the Port of Dover, in Kent. They were mostly happy times, although much adversity came my way later! I did not dare to dream of becoming an author until I reached my early fifties when many life-changing events put the opportunity in place.
Did you face any struggles before becoming an author? If so, how did you overcome them?
Yes. In my early fifties, I lost my job, a relationship ended and my father passed away; among other issues! This all happened within a couple of years. I had nothing left, so moved back in with my mother for a short period. After six months of unemployment, I got the best job (other than writing!) I’d ever had; I became a postman for a few years. This is when I realised I could become an author. When this job ended, I had time to pursue my dream, which is now a reality; because I am now a published author.
Now that you are a published author, how has your life changed, if at all?
I have had articles in newspapers, been on radio stations talking about my books and have made speeches at book signings. I never thought I would be doing this, ever! But, I love it. I talk extensively about writing pretty much all of the time! It is truly a passion for me, as I know inside, I will always write, for as long as I possibly can.
Can you please describe a typical day in your life now?
When starting a novel, I make many, many handwritten notes, until I get almost all of the plot. This can take many weeks or even months.
Once that process is completed, I will write for about five or six hours a day, undertaking this in front of my computer for six to eight weeks.
In these six to eight weeks, I am in what I call “the zone”, knowing I will finish the novel in its entirety. The last few days, I will work all day or night, knowing I am nearing the end.
It then takes a further few months after this to fine-tune the story, until I’m happy to finally send it off to my publishers.
What is your most memorable moment of your life as an author?
Being told by Pegasus that my first attempt at a novel, titled Laura Come Back to Me, would be published.
I was at my son’s house when I got the call, which made me cry, with joy.
In a few words, how would you review your experience with Pegasus Elliot Mackenzie Publishers?
From submitting the first four chapters, synopsis and “bit about myself” for my first novel (Laura Come Back To Me), I have been helped along the way via several members of staff. They have all been professional, kind, sincere and courteous. I could ask for no more. Naming names, among others, they have been; Suzanne Mulvey, Jenna Evans, Claire Rose-Charlton, Vicky Gorry and Rudite Kazakevica. All have kept in touch with me in the process so far, of achieving becoming an author. Indeed, I have had my third book of four in my tetralogy just accepted. Thank you all for helping in my journey.
Why did you choose Pegasus Elliot Mackenzie Publishers?
Back in May 2017 when I sent initial chapters to several publishers, ten in all, everyone replied to me. Two asked for the full manuscript, one being yourselves at Pegasus. I’d seen stories via the internet of people who had not had good experiences, but I simply knew as soon as I saw the logo of a flying horse for Pegasus Publishing, it would only be you I asked to publish my novel(s).
Why? Because, when I was a child at school, I had been told via school reports that I had a very vivid imagination! That comment and point has stayed with me forever and I loved the idea of a flying horse as well as your name, Pegasus.
I do this, because I love to write. You have helped me to achieve a lifetime ambition; which I hope to continue for ever more.
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