Posted by Ognian Georgiev
Our interviews continue with another extremely interesting author. Patrick Michael Murphy is a motion picture cameraman, who saw amazing things during his career in USA army. He won Emmy award for his works. As a writer Patrick is evaluated very high by Amazon readers. All his three books are with average rating 4.7 stars or higher!
Going down into the lines of the interview I started to feel some chill in my body. I remembered how I dreamed to be adventurer as a kid. I am wondering if you will feel the same.
– What is your last book A forest, A river and me: off-grid wilderness adventure about?
– A Forest A River and me, is a memoir about my time living an off-grid life in a small cabin I built in the wilderness of Northern Idaho, in the United States. Because it was located so far back in the woods, I often had to walk in carrying all my provisions, even as much as 4 miles each way from where I parked my car. It is also about my life, and the questions confronting me; questions that I think confront us all. It’s a search for reason and a simpler life.
– How you decide to write the story?
– I decided to write the story because I wanted to understand what had happened to me during that time. I became a different person in many ways. There were joyous times, and times of desperation. The experience peeled me to my core. I wanted to learn all I could from that, and so I used the benefit of times passing, and the exercise of writing it down. I also wanted to preserve my memories.
– What was the biggest challenge during the write up process?
– The biggest challenge to writing a memoir is to truly be honest with yourself and the reader. I didn’t want to tell only the surface experience… I wanted to better understand my world and my own choices, my situation, and to try and communicate that clearly, for whatever it is worth to the reader.
– Tell us something more about your main character? Is it 100% you or just for this adventure you changed from your normal life?
– This is a true, nonfiction memoir and accounting of what happened. Nothing is fictionalized other than a couple words, because I could not recall every word of every conversation, so I made certain to be true to the essence of every conversation.
– How much time you need to finish the story and to publish it?
– It took about one year to write the entire story, though that time was broken in two. I love to rewrite. Writing is rewriting, for me. A first draft and a final draft can be quite different. I sometimes rewrite 5 or more times. And it is very important to let a lot of time go in-between those rewrites, so I can gain separation – so that when I do go back and reread I don’t know every word or passage before me. It is, in essence, new reading. Mistakes, clunky wording, wordiness, pop out at me more this way.
– Tell me more about your other books On The Banks Of The Animas: Outdoor Adventures, Environmental Observations and Across the Desperate Miles?
– On The Banks Of The Animas: Outdoor Adventures, Environmental Observations is a collection of travel and nature essays from life experiences around the world. The stories range over a 45 year period of my life. Some are funny, some scary, others may make a person angry or awed. Across The Desperate Miles is my first novel (I have another on its way out in several months.) It’s about Rand and Kera, a husband and wife, who must journey across America to try and recover their children in a time of an uprising that has all government and public services at a standstill. It’s a contemporary fiction, with thriller aspects. It seems to resonate well with a lot of readers.
– Who are you?
– I was born in the Midwestern United States in the 50s, a small town, middle class guy who left home and got out into the world. I have been a bit of a wanderer and I have great curiosity about this planet we live on. I tend to be moved by wide open spaces and vast landscapes, not to mention a good love story, or a story of faith and companionship. My own relationships have been very hard work and I think that’s reflected in my writing.
– What are your writing habits?
– I was first a television cameraman and writer. Then I became interested in screenplays and novels. I love to write. I do take quite a bit of time on a project and between projects. When I am writing, I enjoy mornings the most, because I feel clearer. I used to write for many hours at a time, often eight. But I now seem to write for an hour or two at a time. I still work, running my own small business, so I have to keep moving. My experience is that once I flush out my idea, organize it in my head or on paper, I am able to write about two maybe four pages in an hour… I get into a flow. I don’t over edit as I write a first draft because I think it’s important to just let your creativity, your inner voice, speak. When I begin a day’s writing I usually read what I wrote the day before, then pick up where I left off… that gets me into the energy of it. Stories have not always gone where I thought they would go. Characters absolutely do come alive. Even in my memoir, my realizations as I wrote took chapters in new directions, or created new chapters entirely. I like that. I let go when that happens. Stuff gets birthed on its own, and in there is the gold.
– Are you satisfied by the sales of the book and do you plan another one?
– I would like more people to discover my writings. I do write to communicate with my human family, even if I am also writing to preserve my thoughts, experiences, and creations. I am not a grand publicist. How I wish I was. I believe I will always write. It’s my creative outlet and a way of considering things. I am writing another novel now and will have it out later this year, before Christmas.
– What are you doing to promote by the best possible way your book?
– I place my books on Amazon mostly, where I also have an Author’s page. I have my Facebook author’s page as well. I try to line up readings and book signings. I belong to a reading group or two. I speak with those I know. I just did a book giveaway on Goodreads. I strongly believe in word of mouth. I feel that if I write well, those who read it will let others know.
– Which story that you covered in Army is the one that you will never forget?
– One is my five trips to Enewetak Atoll in the South Pacific. It was used as a nuclear testing site in the 40s and 50s, and afterward the United States had to return and clean up the islands. It was a terrible project in a magnificent place. A tragic story really. I wrote about that in On The Banks Of The Animas.
– To record a good video or to write a story? Which is more difficult for you?
– They are unique and each a wonderful challenge in their own way. Video or film, you have to capture light and motion and sound. You have to be ready at all times, intensely prepared. You often piece intricate scenes together to make a whole, and it needs to make sense and be fun and interesting to watch. The written word, you have one plane you are working on. People cannot hear or see what you hear and see unless you write it well. You have time to reflect, but also time to lose the passion of the moment, of the exchange. Or you try to communicate that motion, that light, that sound, that emotion only to find… you can’t quite capture it with your words. It’s humbling. In either case, you have to tell a story. If no one knows what you are trying to reveal, or consider, in your message, it falls as flat as a bad joke in a comedian’s standup. Very frustrating for all concerned.
– What is the adventure that you dream to do?
– One lifelong dream was realized and told in A Forest A River and me. I have another dream of living freely, unencumbered by economics and the constraints of my own thinking. That would be my ultimate adventure – to be free to simply experience anything I wanted in this grand life and world we live in, and to get out of my own way.
Find out more about Partick at his facebook page