Author Interview with Michael Okon
I’m interviewing Michael Okon today, author of YA book “Monsterland”. Welcome to my blog!
When did you know you wanted to be an author?
I’ve been writing since kindergarten but I started taking it seriously when I was 15. Then I got really into writing screenplays in college. Then I started taking those screenplays and turning them into novels in my 20s and 30s. I got my first publishing deal at 39 years old.
What inspired you to write your book?
I was binge watching a classic movie marathon with my son. You know, the good ones, The Goonies, Gremlins, Back to the Future, Jurassic Park, etc…. I have always wanted to write a monster book but couldn’t settle on which monster I wanted to pursue. It was while watching all these movies, that I came up with the idea, why isn’t there a theme park with zombies. I called my brother immediately and told him my idea. He said, no – it has to be a theme park with werewolves, vampires AND zombies. I started beating out the story that night.
What is your editing process like?
I re-read the story a hundred times. No kidding. I ask my wife, my mom and couple beta readers to reread the manuscript. They give me feedback and I implement their changes, if I agree with them.
Is this your first book?
No, however this is my first published book. I was writing and self-publishing under a few different alias – Michael Samuels and Michael Phillip Cash. Then Monsterland got picked up in a two-book publishing deal and my attorney advised me to use my real name – Michael Okon.
Did you set any writing goals for 2017?
Oh yeah. I make a vision board every year. So far everything I’ve ever put on it comes true. For 2017, I asked for hundreds of things, specifically a movie deal. So far, my career looks like its heading in that direction. Only time will tell.
Are you working on something now?
Monsterland 2 is coming out on my 40th birthday, May 26, 2018. I’m knee deep in Monsterland 3. I’ve already started beating out the stories for Monsterland 4 & 5. Its seem I’m going to be writing about monsters for the foreseeable future.
About the Book
Author: Michael Okon
Welcome to Monsterland—the scariest place on Earth.
The last couple years of high school have not been fun for Wyatt Baldwin. His parents divorce, then his dad mysteriously dies. He’s not exactly comfortable with his new stepfather, Carter White, either. An on-going debate with his best friends Howard Drucker and Melvin over which monster is superior has gotten stale. He’d much rather spend his days with beautiful and popular Jade. However, she’s dating the brash high-school quarterback Nolan, and Wyatt thinks he doesn’t stand a chance.
But everything changes when Wyatt and his friends are invited to attend the grand opening of Monsterland, a groundbreaking theme park where guests can rock out with vampires at Vampire Village, be chased by actual werewolves on the Werewolf River Run, and walk among the dead in Zombieville.
With real werewolves, vampires and zombies as the main attractions, what could possibly go wrong?
Michael Okon is an award-winning and best-selling author of multiple genres including paranormal, thriller, horror, action/adventure and self-help. He graduated from Long Island University with a degree in English, and then later received his MBA in business and finance. Coming from a family of writers, he has storytelling is his DNA. Michael has been writing from as far back as he can remember, his inspiration being his love for films and their impact on his life. From the time he saw The Goonies, he was hooked on the idea of entertaining people through unforgettable characters.
Michael is a lifelong movie buff, a music playlist aficionado, and a sucker for self-help books. He lives on the North Shore of Long Island with his wife and children.