Meet Michael J. Schneider, Author of The Secret of Sangre De Cristo and other stories
MJS: I’ve always enjoyed a good story. My wife thought I ought to write children’s books. Back in 1987 I took a correspondence course from theInstitute of Children’s Literature. That course was geared more to short stories; but I was more interested in writing books. I started the Secret of Sangre de Cristo around 1998 and completed it in 2001. I tried to get publishers interested in it; but had no luck. I contracted with a publish-on-demand company to publish it in paperback form. After I learned it had numerous errors in it, I revised it and published it as an ebook.
MJS: Besides The Secret of Sangre de Cristo which is a contemporary young adult novel, I’ve written the following books:
Brendan of Kilrush: This is also a young adult novel. Like The Secret of Sangre de Cristo, I contracted with a publish-on-demand company to publish it in paperback form. After I learned it had numerous errors in it, I revised it and published it as an ebook. The setting for this story, however, is in 9th Century Ireland during the Viking invasions. A sixteen year old, lame shepherd boy clashes with Vikings. I recently signed a contract with a publisher to publish this book so I’ve withdrawn both the paperback versions and ebook version from the market. The publisher tells me the book will probably be released in September 2014.
Swift, Silent and Deadly: Recon Marines in Vietnam: This is a nonfiction book targeted at the middle grade to young adult audience. It is a collection of stories about Reconnaissance Marines who served in Vietnam. Reconnaissance Marines patrolled deep in enemy held territory to try and find the enemy base camps. Since Secret of Sangre de Cristo and Brendan of Kilrush didn’t sell, I decided to take a second course from Institute of Children’s Literature. This course taught how to write children’s books. My instructor encouraged me to write Swift, Silent and Deadly. I had served with the 1st Reconnaissance Battalion, 1st Marine Division in Vietnam. After failing to get publishers or even literary agents interested in this book, I published it as an ebook on Amazon Kindle. I also contracted with a company called Bookbaby which formatted the ebook so it could be read on other readers. Swift, Silent and Deadly has been my most successful book so far. It has sold over a 1,000 copies.
Rebecca and the Renegade: This is a historical romance. It is about a 19 year old girl who is captured by Delaware Indians in Western Pennsylvania during Revolutionary War and who falls in love with one of the Indians who captured her. It is only available as an ebook
The Mystery of Skunk Hollow: It hard to classify this book. I have the following book description listed at Amazon.com: “When Ralph Morgan, a retired plumber discovers his rural water well contains cyanide he finds himself aided by a gorgeous redhead, Denise McLaughlin and a stunning graduate student from Kenya, Lala Ngigi, in determining the source of pollution. Their investigation leads them to a criminal network involved in industrial pollution, illegal immigration, and tobacco smuggling.” It is only available in ebook form.
From OMAHA to DA NANG: Reflections of a 2-Yr Marine: This is my personal memoir of my short career as a U.S. Marine. It is nonfiction and probably more suitable reading for a mature audience.
MJS: As you see from the information on the books I’ve written, my ideas come from personal experience or my personal interests. I got the idea forSecret of Sangre de Cristo for instance, from a newspaper article an old timer read me. At the time I was working as an engineering aid for the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. We were surveying a project near Alamosa, Colorado and we ran into this old timer at a hotel there. The article was about some hikers who found a cave in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains of Colorado with Spanish armor in it. When they tried to locate the cave again they couldn’t find it.
MJS: I don’t think I’ve had serious writer’s block; but I’ve had periods where I put off writing because my interest waned or I couldn’t decide what turn the plot was to take next.
BBB: What are you currently working on?
MJS: My current project is The Mob on Mars. It is about former gangsters who have become respectable casino owners who decide to move their operations to the planet Mars.
BBB: How can readers discover more about you and your work?
MJS: Probably the best way is to view my author page at Amazon.com. The URL is: http://www.amazon.com/Michael-Schneider/e/B0052G1BJ6/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1