Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Interview and Giveaway: Leadership and Redemption Series by Michael Cantwell


What inspired you to become an author?

I was a commercial real estate agent and when the market went in the tank, a friend bet me lunch I couldn’t write a best seller. Once I started writing, I found I enjoyed the process and began finding ways to improve my skills. I think after the first person told me that my writing made them smile, I was hooked.

How did you come up with the title for your latest book?

Since it’s the last in a series (for now) I wanted to look back on the main character and think of it in terms of how he saw himself in the series. 

Do you title the book first or wait until after it’s complete?

I generally like to get near the finish line before thinking of a title. I think the first book I wrote I had an idea for a title but didn’t settle on it until the last word was complete. The one I began last month, I had the title before I ever wrote the first word. That one as easy because it’s based on a kid who speaks with dead presidents and the working title is “44 Friends”. 

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Every book I write I hope pushes people to question what they would do if put in the same situation. I also lean heavily on people’s morals and ethics. I don’t try to push my morals on anyone with my writing. But I do hope the reader will question their own after reading the stories.

Is the book, characters, or any scenes based on a true life experience, someone you know, or events in your own life?

My first two novels, A Beautiful Song and Three Long Days have many stories based on things that have happened to me and characters I know in my life. In particular the second one, almost all the names expect for the main character are based on people from my past or current friends. The three soul books, many of the people who lose their souls are based on stories that were current events in the paper the day I wrote them. For example an athlete based in the Boston area charged with murder should be familiar to many Patriots fans, but I changed it to be the Bruins and changed some of the circumstances to make him a fictional character. But I use my life experiences or the news for much of my writing.

What is your current “work in progress” or upcoming projects?

It is only three chapters complete but it’s a story about a kid who talks with dead presidents. I don’t want to give away too much of the plot since it’s not written and could change, but the boy has recovered a book stolen from the White House with all the presidents secrets inside. It’s a book designed to teach young adults some history in a fun way.

The book behind the president’s story might be a story called “Evaluation Day” based on two societies. If you don’t show improvement from year to year in one society you are pushed into the other until you can prove you can reenter the other society. It’s a long way from being written or even fully developed in my mind.

Can you share a little of your current work with us?

My past three novels are about a character named Caeles Novo. He believes his destiny was to remove the souls from people who no longer can appreciate all that was given to them. He is part of a group of soul stealers who have grown tired of stealing souls and want to be like many people with ambitions of being community and world leaders. Caeles must convince them to return to their original mission. Along the way, he meets a series of people who have lost their way and Caeles must decide if they deserve a second chance and redemption or lose their soul forever. He also meets a few characters destined to help him, who themselves have major flaws, like a woman with multiple personalities and a doctor who wants to cure cancer and destroy Caeles while doing so.


Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

I’m a person who likes to finish a task. With writing sometimes you have to let the idea sit in your brain for a while. That is difficult for me. I want to finish it even though it would be better to wait. It’s a constant battle. I also get worried every time I can’t grasp the idea for the next scene to write. I worry I’ve run out of ideas, but fortunately the ideas do return.

Do you have to travel much to do research for your books?

I have never had to travel for my books. I usually do minor research to make sure if write something about say a particular guitar it was one used from that time or other things like that to make the time be correct. The one I am currently writing has a lot of actual history involved in the story, so I am doing more research for this book than all my five previous combined.

Who designed the cover of your latest book?

I have done extensive work with graphics and photography over many years in Photoshop. I created all of my covers. The last three I bought a graphic and came up with the rest of the cover. The first two books are my photos.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

Don’t take critiques or reviews personally. No doubt they sting at first but step back and consider the source. I had someone in my writers group tell me my work was horrible and when I asked why they said, “Well you can’t steal someone’s soul, so you can’t write about the subject.” When I asked about the writing they said, “It’s well written, good grammar, good descriptions, easy to read, but I don’t like the subject, so it’s a lousy book.” I had another tell me they didn’t like my first book because, “It had too much music in it and I don’t like music.” So, think about what they said before you get too excited. Other than that, write, write more and no matter what anyone tells you, keep writing.




Do you believe own a soul? Caeles Novo and his disciples know you do. 

If you don’t appreciate all that has been given to you, Caeles will steal it. He has removed the souls of musicians, stock brokers, fashion models, star athletes and hundreds of others. However, he is at odds with others like him who want to retain the stolen souls because their own existence is dependent upon the power derived from stealing dark souls. 

Caeles Novo wants to offer redemption to souls who want a second chance. He must battle the gatekeeper of the stolen souls as well as his own disciples to finish the mission started centuries ago. 

So be aware the next time someone is snapping your photograph or shaking your hand, you may have just lost something very valuable to you.

Soul Intentions
Leadership and Redemption
Book One
Michael Cantwell, CCIM

Genre: Fiction, fantasy
Publisher: KSM Publishing

ISBN: 978-0615725741
ASIN: B00A3DCRCI

Number of pages: 292
Word Count: 95,068


Book Description:

Caeles Novo has lost count at how many times he has taken a soul. He now fears his actions are not saving his existence, but damaging it. It is a painful transition when you question if your life has been a lie


Soul Directive
Leadership and Redemption
Book Two
Michael Cantwell, CCIM

Genre: Fiction, fantasy
Publisher: KSM Publishing

ISBN: 978-0615838359
ASIN: B00DJV4B9I

Number of pages: 302
Word Count: 87,067



Book Description:

Caeles Novo continues his journey of seeking broken souls that he started in “Soul Intentions”. Caeles is now the leader of his disciples and must discover the mystery as to why so few soul stealers remain on earth. He learns the high cost of both leadership and success. Caeles is assigned to remove the soul of an internet blogger who is spreading false information for the President of the United States, a man who trains fighting dogs and others. He meets up with a Doctor about to cure cancer and a woman with multiple personalities. He does all this while attempting to lead his people and be a good husband and father.


Fortunate Soul
Leadership and Redemption
Book Three
Michael Cantwell, CCIM

Genre: Fiction, fantasy
Publisher: KSM Publishing

ISBN: 978-0615937380
ASIN: B00HMTEIQ4

Number of pages: 328
Word Count: 90,620


Book Description:

In this third installment, Caeles Novo has been removed as leader of the Council. He now seeks revenge for those who have taken away his power to remove souls and is on a journey to return his disciples back to their original mission.

About the Author:

Michael Cantwell, CCIM (1958-present) is an author and commercial real estate agent in Florida as well as a published photographer. He was born in Ft. Campbell KY, raised in Trenton, NJ, graduated college at LaSalle University in Philadelphia, PA. He now resides in Palm Beach County, Florida. He is married with three children and one dog. He loves music and is a Miami Marlins, Dolphins, Panthers and Heat fan. He also enjoys strolling Florida with his camera at hand. He has served on many board of directors and volunteered many hours as a coach for baseball and basketball as well as for Junior Achievement in many schools around South Florida.


Web – www.ksmmike.com


Twitter - @ksmmike



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1 comment:

Michael Cantwell said...

Thanks for the exposure Roxanne ;)