By Jeff Ayers
In Michael Parker’s compelling new novel, THE BOY FROM BERLIN, Gus Mason strides towards the Presidency of the United States of America. But what secret, spawned in the Berlin Bunker can stop him? And what nightmare is it that haunts the ageing Gunter Haman in Germany? From the Nazi death camps to the steps of the Whitehouse, Haman and Jacob Demski, heir to the Jewish Mafia Empire, unravel a mystery that threatens the very fabric of the American way of life. And as Lieutenant Amos, a Newark Police Officer investigates the supposed suicide of a local senator, his investigations lead him into the corrupt world that inhabits the underbelly of American politics, and threatens his own existence and that of his family.
Parker discussed his new novel and his inspirations with THE BIG THRILL.
What sparked the idea for THE BOY FROM BERLIN?
I’ll never know what sparks my ideas for any of my novels. The idea for this book simply drifted into my mind about something that could have occurred in Hitler’s Bunker in Berlin. I played around with it and could see its potential, so I developed it because I knew that the result (from the fiction point of view) would have shattering implications on the Western World.
Could you talk a bit about bringing your older titles into the world of e-books? What do you think about the new world of publishing?
I work with a group of writers at www.acclaimedbooks.com, (AB.c) We publish our POD and Kindle titles through the group (a registered company). I had to get the paperback rights from my publishers (Macmillan and Hale) before I could venture into the self-publishing game. I have no problems bringing my older titles out because not all of them are topical. For example, my first novel, now in POD was NORTH SLOPE. This is set in the barren wastes of Alaska and is about the discovery of oil in 1968. I have a title set in 1944 about the war. Another in Africa, 1898. So you see, unless the novel is really about today, there shouldn’t be any hang-ups about publishing again.
As far as the new world of publishing is concerned, I believe it will now take away the mystique of being a published author. Your neighbour could write and publish a book, whether it was any good or not, and claim that he or she is just like you; a published author. I also think it will have a negative effect on writers who have a talent, but can’t find a publisher, because their work will be swamped. I hate to say this, but it will change nothing really; publishers will use their financial muscle and promotional strength to ensure that their authors remain at the top, whether it’s hardback, POD or e-book.
Your novels tend to reflect on the past or be set in the past. Why?
If inspiration comes from something I have read that was historical, I go with it. There’s no hard and fast rule with me that my work should delve into history. My last, hardback novel published by Robert Hale in 2010 was set in England and Afghanistan, and it was about drugs, arms and children smuggling. So, my time periods are fairly eclectic.
What inspires you?
Who knows? I believe we all have a talent which is God given. And whatever drives us, whether we are musicians, painters, missionaries, writers, it comes from Him. It is up to the individual to use that talent.
Ha, ha! Why breathe? For as long as I can remember, I have been a writer. Not necessarily a published writer. At school I loved to write my ‘stories’. I always put my hand up when the teacher asked who wanted to read his story out. You know: ‘Me sir, please sir!’ If I’m not writing, my wife tells me that she knows I am putting something together in my head because of the way she catches me deep in thought. Even during the years that I was being rejected by agents and publishers, it never stopped me writing. I will probably pass on to the after-life with a pen in my hand.
Simply to say that anyone who is reading this, who has not been published, please don’t give up. I went from 1984 until 2006 before my third novel was accepted. I never gave up. 22 years is a long time, but my patience and perseverance was rewarded. And I kept on writing. THE BOY FROM BERLIN will be my eighth, published hardback. Never give up!
Michael Parker is an established author with seven titles to his credit. He has been writing for most of his adult life, and is now bringing his novels out in paperback on Amazon. He has been married for 51 years to Patricia, and has four sons and ten grandchildren. He lives in Spain and is still writing.
To learn more about Michael, please visit his website.