Michael Bowler grew up in San Rafael, California. He attended St. Raphael’s School and Marin Catholic High School before attending Santa Clara University.Titanic and her tragic fate has fascinated Mr. Bowler for as far back as he can remember. It is because of this passion that he has a vast collection of artwork, memorabilia and virtually every book ever written about the disaster.
Michael Bowler majored in English and Theatre at Santa Clara and got a master’s in film production from Loyola Marymount University. He partnered with two friends as producer, writer, and/or director on several films, most notably Fatal Images, Dead Girls, Hell Spa (which was later re-edited and re-titled Club Dead), Things, and Things II.
In addition, Mr. Bowler has written a number of unproduced screenplays and is currently working on other novels he has outlined. He’s been teaching high school in Hawthorne, California for over 20 years.
Mr. Bowler has been a volunteer Big Brother to seven different boys for over 28 years with the Catholic Big Brothers/Big Sisters program and a volunteer within the juvenile justice system in Los Angeles for 27 years. He is a passionate advocate for the fair treatment of children and teens in California, something that is sorely lacking in this state.
His first novel, A Boy and His Dragon, was originally written in the 1980s before fantasy stories enjoyed a major renaissance, and has remained unpublished to this day. It is intended as the first of a trilogy.
Readers can learn more about Michael Bowler and his work by visiting the following links:
Could you please tell us a bit about your book? The story? The characters?
The tagline on the front cover reads: “The world’s greatest evil stalks the world’s greatest ship, and the only one who can stop him hasn’t even been born yet.” While I can’t give away “the world’s greatest evil,” I can say the world’s greatest ship is, of course, Titanic. That ship and her tragic fate have always fascinated me since childhood. I also grew up loving gothic and horror literature and time travel stories. This book mashed all three of those elements into one story involving a college student named Jamie in 1986 who, through a series of dreams, discovers that he is somehow connected to Titanic’s sinking, despite his having not been alive at the time.He develops an odd illness, and a mysterious cell appears in his blood, a cell that, in his case, originated aboard Titanic. His roommate Dan, Dan’s sister Maggie, and Jamie’s friend Kevin attempt to help him, but they cannot understand what is happening. Jamie finally announces that the only way he can save himself from the deadly effects of that “cell” is to circumvent time and board Titanic before she sinks in 1912. While everyone thinks he’s delusional, including his writing professor and his parents, Jamie sets out to solve the mystery and save his life. Dan, for whom Jamie has become a good friend, agrees to accompany his roomie on as much of the journey as possible. He knows that if Jamie can somehow “jump” time and board the ship, he would not be able to follow. Their adventures together and Jamie’s ultimate destiny as it pertains to Titanic make up the bulk of the story.
How did you come up with the title and how much say did you have on the cover design?
The title is actually a line of dialogue from the book that I felt best encapsulated Jamie’s circular journey. The cover design I created myself, using pictures I took and Photoshop to meld them together. The iceberg and star field background I leased from a stock photo site. The Statue of Liberty Centennial pocket watch figures prominently in the story.
Do you have a favorite line or excerpt that you would like to share from your book?
My favorite line is the first: “Love is timeless, Time is heartless, and Fate is unmerciful” because it sums up the story.
What are some of your favorite ways to promote your work?
I have a Facebook page and a website and have promoted the book on Goodreads, but I’ve gotten more readers and reviews by giving the book to people that I know enjoy reading and some of them have posted up reviews for me. I also have Book Daily sending out alerts and a sample chapter to its members every month. I’m new to the book-promoting business so I need more advice on what to do.
What is a typical writing day like for you?
I usually begin writing as soon as I get up in the morning. I’ll work for an hour or two, and then have breakfast, shave, etc. Then I write until lunch time, eat something, and go back to it until about 4 p.m. That’s when I go to the gym for a couple of hours. After the gym, it’s dinner and more writing. I’m an avid collector of movie soundtracks and tend to listen to music that fits the mood of whatever kind of scene I’m working on. It helps quite a bit.
What are some ways that you like to relax?
I work out with weights and do cardio vascular exercise. I read and sometimes watch DVDs of movies or TV shows I haven’t seen.
What author/s do you think are overlooked in the writing/reading world today?
I think David Wellington, who writes amazing vampire books (the type wherein the vampires are evil and dangerous) is someone who has been greatly overlooked. His vampire and zombie books would all make fantastic movies, but near as I can tell, Hollywood has ignored him.
What author would you most like to meet and why?
I don’t have any favorite authors I’d be dying to meet. I’m not a celebrity-chasing kind of guy.
Do you have any upcoming projects that you would like to share with readers?
I have completed a revised first draft of a new novel, which I can’t say too much about until I send it in to the Copyright Office. But I can say it incorporates my many years of working with incarcerated and disenfranchised children and teens throughout Los Angeles County and will, hopefully, enlighten the reader on many issues facing today’s youth. It is fiction with a strong storyline and memorable characters to better grab the reader’s emotions. I look forward to getting it finished and out to the public soon. I suspect that many ideas it espouses will be controversial.
What is something about yourself that would come as a surprise to many people?
I have in the past made some very low-budget horror films, so my name will pop up on IMDB, along with some hilarious reviews of the movies I worked on. Watch them at your peril. Ha!