A.R. Mirabal Interview
The Indie Book Butler Interview.
Indie Book Butler: Let’s start things off with an introduction. Tell us a little about yourself for those not already aware of you and your work.
A.R. Mirabal: My name is A.R. Mirabal, as of writing this I’m 26 years old, live in New England, and love almost all types of donuts. I have a degree in electro-mechanical engineering and minors in business/psychology (also a huge movie/TV buff).
The idea for my series first came to me after my freshman year of college (18 at the time) but didn’t take it seriously until after my graduation. Although it may not seem like it, I think my engineering degree actually has made a lot of my writing possible. My obsession for the development of future technologies would grow into imagining the plots for dystopian thrillers and science fiction fantasies.
If you’re a fan of Black Mirror and Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, check out my work!
IBB: You’ve got twenty words to tempt us to read your book(s). What would you say?
ARM: City kids uncover a reality-bending conspiracy that sets them on a path of rebellion, betrayal, and the wrong side of a black hole.
IBB: Where do you like to write?
ARM: I like to write outside with warm weather and good shade, but that’s not always a possibility in New England so I usually write wherever is closest when inspiration strikes.
IBB: Is there anything you must have in order to write?
ARM: Silence, I can’t write with too many distractions around me. Flashy lights and loud music tend to steal my attention.
IBB: What books have influenced you most, both as a person and as an author?
ARM: Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, hands down. The type of brevity, wit, and creativity that made Douglas Adams a staple in my introduction of science fiction is the same north star that guides me in my writing today (as well as in life).
IBB: What is the one thing that has helped you develop most as an author?
ARM: Life experiences and failures. There are few things in this world that motivate you to not fail yourself twice like failing yourself once.
IBB: What do you want to achieve most from your writing?
ARM: World domination, muwahahahaha!
Joking of course (partially anyway). On a more serious note, the main achievement I’m aiming for with my writing is to have people enjoy it and start conversations about its themes.
IBB: Have you received a favorite review of your work?
ARM: Yes! A fellow author once said that my writing has a district and unique voice to it, that if it were blindly tossed in a pile of un-titled manuscripts mine would stick out like a sore thumb. To me, that review was better than someone saying “I loved it”, because the quality of writing is objective (and guaranteed to increase with more practice) but if my writing is already at a point to merit being called “unique “then I’m headed the right way!
IBB: Were there any particular parts of the writing/publishing process that you struggled with?
ARM: Only all of it. Writing, editing, and putting my novel through the process of self-publishing has been one of the most exhaustive ventures I’ve ever fallen in love with. Everything from finding beta readers to fielding the right artists and editors is a seemingly never-ending field of prickly roses that ultimately ends with a final product you’re so proud of you could burst (but then one or two negative reviews pop that bubble for you too). Being a writer is a terrifying emotional rollercoaster, and I love me some rollercoasters.
IBB: Is there something specific you do to improve your writing?
ARM: Other than making sure I do proper research (and editing everything to the bone), the only thing I imagine actually improves my writing is repetition. No one is born a best seller.
IBB: What is the ideal relationship between editor and author?
ARM: The ideal relationship between editor and author would be one where the creativity of the author isn’t deluded by the corrections of the editor. To that same effect, an editor is there to shape and nurture the seed that is your manuscript, but you cannot expect an oak from the seed of a flower.
IBB: If you had a direct line to someone who loves or hates your writing, what would you say?
ARM: “Thanks for being so passionate about something I wrote, care to share your thoughts with me?”
IBB: If you could give one piece of advice to an aspiring author, what would it be?
ARM: “Say” and “said” are invisible words, use them copiously. Since this was my first time writing a novel I didn’t know any better, I went down the path of trying to replace those words for more ‘flashy’ ones and ended up regretting it later.
IBB: What does your writing future hold for you?
ARM: Wish I knew. I do, however, plan to release exponentially more content as the process gets familiar to me. “Allegory of the End, Vol: I” and the 3 books that follow it are but an introduction to the “Death of Order” saga that’s been brewing in my noggin for half a decade now.
I also plan to start panelling our first graphic novel “Banshee Cannot Die” this year!
IBB: How have you set about the task of creating enticing cover art?
ARM: The process of creating cover art is something that still eludes me to this day, but I’ve learned a lot through trial and error. Personally, I believe book covers are one of the most (if not the most) important aspect of marketing. It should represent the very essence of your work while still offering a unique and eye-popping visual for the eyes to feast on.
That being said, my process is usually to sketch up a few ideas on my own then send them to my artists who help me turn it into a professional final product. From there I play around with formatting the graphics on Inkscape/Photoshop into a book cover and viola!
IBB: How often do you read? What genre?
ARM: I read often due to the podcast I host, authors come on to chat/promote their works and it’s my job to make sure proper research is done before hitting record. Due to this, there are no particular genres I read anymore; I’m open to all forms of writing.
IBB: Before we let you escape, it’s your chance to name-drop. Anyone who you feel is deserving of more recognition at present or someone whose writing you have recently enjoyed? Now is your chance to spread the word…
ARM: The list is too long to remember off the top of my head! The Writing Community on both Instagram/Twitter have embraced me with open arms and linked me with some truly inspirational talents.
That being said, a special thanks does have to go out to Sean Campbell (@DCIMorton), Cody Fernandez (@cowboy_steel), P.L. Stuart (@plstuartwrites), Nikki Beebe (@33nbeebe), Collective Tales Publishing (@collective_tales_publishing), and so many more! Check out “A.R.’s Tales (AKA The A.R.T. Podcast)” on Spotify, iTunes, and everywhere else you find podcasts for more awesome authors to follow.
Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions. Best of luck in the future.
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