Michael J. Schneider

Author Interview Form
Tell us your name and where you’re from.:
My name is Michael J. Schneider. I am originally from Omaha,
Nebraska; but I now live in Arlington, Texas.
What led to your decision to become an author?:
I thought I might become a good storyteller, so in the late
1980’s I took a course from the Institute of Children’s Literature.
They encouraged me to continue writing.
Tell us about what you’re currently working on, and
what you’ve written in the past.:
I’m currently working on a novel with the working title: “The
Mob on Mars”. It is about a Las Vegas syndicate that gets fed up with
government intrusion into their Las Vegas operations. After learning
of a physicist who has designed a new type of rocket engine that
achieves speeds close to the speed of light, the syndicate decides to
move their operations to Mars.

In 2001 I wrote “The Secret of Sangre de Cristo” a novel about
teenagers who discover a treasure in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains of
Colorado. I had this published by a pay-on-demand publishing company.
Shortly thereafter I wrote “Brendan of Kilrush”, a novel that takes
place during the Viking invasion of Ireland in 812 A.D. The hero,
Brendan is a 16 year old shepherd boy with a club foot. This was also
published pay-on-demand. Since I had no good marketing plan, neither
of these sold. I took a second course from the Institute of
Children’s Literature that concentrated on writing books. My
instructor encouraged me to write a nonfiction book targeting the
youth market. The title of this book is “Swift, Silent and Deadly,
Recon Marines in Vietnam.” I tried to sell this book, first to
publishers, then to literary agents, without success for about 7
years. I finally published it as an ebook at Amazon in 2011. I’ve
sold over 1,000 copies of it since then. I’ve also published a
historical romance, “Rebecca and the Renegade”, a contemporary
romance, “The Mystery of Skunk Hollow, and a memoir, “From Omaha to Da
Nang” as ebooks.

What are some of your strongest points as a writer,
and what if anything are you constantly working to improve upon?:
I think my strongest point is that I spin a good take. I
think I need to work on creating better imagery and giving my
characters more depth.
Are you self published, traditionally published or
both? Why did you choose to go that route?:
The Secret of Sangre de Cristo and Brendan of Kilrush were
both self published paperbacks. I also have an ebook version of “The
Secret of Sangre de Cristo”. “Rebecca and the Renegade”, “Swift,
Silent and Deadly, Recon Marines in Vietnam”, “The Mystery of Skunk
Hollow” and “From Omaha to Da Nang” are ebooks in Kindle format. I
recently signed a contract with a traditional publisher to publish
“Brendan of Kilrush”. I chose self-publishing because I couldn’t get
a traditional publisher interesting in publishing.
What format are your books available in? Which of
these formats do you prefer and why?:
“Brendan of Kilrush” is currently unavailable for
publishing-on-demand or as an ebook because my current contract with a
publisher.. “The Secret of Sangre de Cristo” is available in both
paperback and ebook form. The other
How do you go about marketing your books?:
I’m afraid I don’t know how to market them successfully.
Have you ever had to deal with harsh criticism in a
review, and how do you handle it?:
I’ve had few reviews and none were particularly harsh.
What are your favorite genres to both read and
I generally like to read historical nonfiction. I think I
like to write young adult novels the best.
What authors have influenced or inspired you?:
Damon Runyon, Ian Fleming, and Tom Clancy.
What kinds of things do you enjoy doing when you’re
not writing?:
Watching television and walking the dog.
What software do you use for your writing? Did you
try others before you settled on the one you’re currently using?:
I use Microsoft Word. This the only software I’ve ever
What is it that you like about the software you’re
currently using that makes it the best solution for you?:
Microsoft Word is easy to use.
What’s the best advice you could possibly give to
your fellow authors?:
Write the kind of book you’d like to read or have read. When
I say have read I mean if you write to a young audience, write the
kind of book you liked to read as a youth.
Where can people find out more about you and your
With the exception of “Brendan of Kilrush”, all my books are
currently available as ebooks at Amazon.com.