She reads books as one would breathe air, to fill up and live. – Annie Dillard
Publisher: Palmetto Publishing Group
Publication Date: October 3, 2017
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About the Book
Alone. Abandoned. Threatened. Natalie has lost all hope for a better future. Everything she’s known and everyone she’s ever loved is gone, and it’s up to her to get her old life back. In Michael Evans’s first novel, Control Freakz, Natalie’s journey toward a better life begins.
When Protocol 00 is enacted, Natalie’s family is taken by the government, along with the families of her two best friends, Ethan and Hunter. With nothing to lose, and the threat of government hitmen kidnapping them at any moment, the three must battle to survive in a horrid, post-apocalyptic world run by President Ash and his invasive government. They want answers. And they’re willing to jeopardize everything in desperate pursuit.
Risking ruthless leaders, attempted mind control, and her very existence on the planet, Natalie, along with Hunter and Ethan, will stop at nothing in their quest to regain everything they’ve ever known. Her spirits crushed and her will to live destroyed, Natalie knows everything is dead and gone, and soon she will be, too.
Memories connect us to the past, and can often cause us to long for a better future, but they can drive our minds into a state of hell if a better future is unattainable. Nevertheless, Natalie’s hope for a better a future remains.
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L: Can you tell us a little about yourself and your background?
ME: Well my name is Michael Evans, and I’m currently a sophomore in high school! I am extremely passionate about the future and have always loved to read! I’m also an author of Young Adult novels! My published novels include Control Freakz, and the forthcoming novel entitled Delusional, which is the second novel in the Control Freakz Trilogy. Whenever I’m not writing I may be found at the beach or trying to walk Skye, my crazy golden doodle. I’m also originally from Long Island, New York, but have since moved to Charleston, South Carolina. Some of my hobbies include running, hiking, camping, watching sunsets, exploring abandoned buildings, and playing basketball, and I have always dreamed of living on a private island. I’m also fascinated with neuroscience, nanotechnology, and of course this beautiful earth that we all live on (maybe one day humans will live on another planet and then destroy that too… but not yet).
L: Who or what inspired you to be an author?
ME: Writing is something that comes instinctively to me, but it is driven by my passion to impact the world positively. I'm an author simply because I love to express myself and feel there is no better way to impact people then through the beauty of the written word. My inspiration behind my desire to impact society positively stems from my fascination with the future, and my dream to make it the best it can be for everyone!
L: Who or what inspired your novel?
ME: My novel deals with the negative aspects that the progression of neural engineering may have on our society. Nanotechnology, specifically its impacts on mental health, is what inspired the underlying dystopian themes of my novel. However, my true purpose for writing the novel was to shed light on mental health issues that plague all of us (if you have a perfect mind you are lying to yourself), and to give people hope that they can overcome their obstacles. I also wanted to spark conversations about how technology may be able to actually help cure mental health disorders such as addiction. But that same technology will also have disastrous effects on society... you will have to read my novel to see exactly how I envision a dystopian society is possible due to the progression of neural engineering technology.
L: What would you say is the genre of your novel?
ME: It's a Young Adult Post Apocalyptic Thriller, with a Psychological Thriller narrative and moderate Sci-fi elements.
L:Why did you pick this/these genre(s)?
ME: I love the future as stated before. So including Sci-fi elements in my writing is just natural for me. I choose to portray a dystopic society in my novel because I believe it is more effective to show the negative aspects of the future, in order to compel people not to have that future happen! I also had to include a psychological thriller narrative because I have always loved psychological thrillers, and it was a way for met highlight the mental flaws in the main character.
L: How did you develop your plot and characters?
ME: The characters came to me before the plot did so developing the plot was actually quite easy.
L: Who or what inspired your protagonist?
ME: Due to mental health being a big theme in my novel, people close to me in my life who struggle with mental health issues inspired Natalie Parker, the main character. She is the heroine of the novel, but I hesitate to even call her that. She is extremely flawed... like I feel bad for her, she has to deal with so much, and she doesn't handle it the best, but I feel like she reflects how must people would handle life in her situation. Unlike other YA novels where the heroine is borderline superhuman, in Control Freakz the protagonist is utterly flawed and beautifully human.
L: Who or what inspired your antagonist?
ME: I'd rather not say, that's something that becomes evident as you read the book. All I will say that the main character is an allegory.
L: What was the most difficult part to write in the book?
ME: That's tough for me to say. Writing the book itself was a whirlwind. It's quite a large novel at 107,000 words, however, I wrote it 9 weeks, so to say those nine weeks were a whirlwind is an understatement. There was no section of the novel that was particularly difficult; the hardest part was really adhere to a strict schedule to write for a couple hours every day, no matter what.
L: What was your favourite part of your book to write?
ME: Oh definitely the part involving the President's psychopathic ex-wife. That was just great to write; I found myself laughing at my own jokes at times!
L: Are you a full time or a part time writer? If part time, what do you do besides write?
ME: I'm a part time writer! Maybe one day I will be a full time writer, but for right now I'm still working on pursing my high school diploma. I'm currently a sophomore in high school, so I have plenty of years of schooling left, but I hope that I can pursue writing full time after I graduate from college.
L:What are you currently reading?
ME: On Writing by Stephen King. That guy is great.
L: What are some of your favourite books or authors?
ME: Veronica Roth, Alexandra Bracken, Stephen King, Nicola Yoon, John Green, Scott Westerfeld, Lauren Oliver, Suzanne Collins... I can keep going for days!
L: What are your future projects, if any?
ME: Well, Control Freakz is actually the first novel in a trilogy! I have already finished the second novel Delusional, and it will be released in the fall of 2018 (date TBD, however if you follow me on social media you will be the first to know). I'm currently writing the third novel in the trilogy entitled Triggered, which will be released in the first half of 2019. I'm also getting ready to start writing my fourth novel this summer, which will be a YA Environmental Dystopian Thriller! That probably won't be released until the beginning of 2020!!
L: What is your preferred method for readers to get in touch with you and your books?
ME: I love connecting with readers on social media! Below are all my links:
If interested in reading more about my book or me you can go to my website! If you subscribe to my newsletter you will also get the first four chapters of Control Freakz for free! http://mevansinked.com/
And one last thing! If you are interested in purchasing Control Freakz (it is for free on Kindle Unlimited) you can here: https://www.amazon.com/Control-Freakz-Michael-Evans-ebook/dp/B076523XG8/
L: Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?
ME: Yes! First of all, don't just dream DO! And I have my three pro tips that I try to always remember myself when writing: 1. Write about something your passionate about! If you don't absolutely love your story then no one else will! 2. Write the first words that come to your mind! This may seem counterproductive but the bad stuff can always be cut out in editing. However, the first thoughts that come to your mind are always the most authentic and emotionally vivid. 3. Write everyday! I know it's tough, but finding time to even right for 15 minutes will help you develop the flow and tone of your story in much more depth!
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Quote of the Month
“Don't be pushed around by the fears in your mind. Be led by the dreams in your heart.”
― Roy T. Bennett