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Saturday, July 4, 2020

Quarantine World: Trapped in the Coronaverse

Author name:  
Michael H. Hanson


Genre of book: 
Poetry Chapbook

Today, we have an opportunity to talk to Michael H. Hanson.  Michael has written the poetry chapbook, “QUARANTINE WORLD: Trapped In The Coronaverse.”  

 Can you tell us a little about yourself and what led you to start writing?

I am a Member of both the Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association (SFPA) and the Horror Writers Association (HWA). Though an experienced short story writer in the fields of fantasy, science fiction, and horror with over one hundred published tales to my credit (most notably in Janet Morris’s Heroes-in-Hell series and The Sha’Daa Series), I am also a active Poet. The son of a U.S. Army Sergeant and a Nurse, I’ve penned four published anthologies verse, ‘AUTUMN BLUSH’ and ‘JUBILANT WHISPERS’ (Racket River Press) and ‘DARK PARCHMENTS’ and ‘WHEN THE NIGHT OWL SCREAMS’ (MoonDream Press). I am currently compiling an illustrated collection of poems for children titled THE GREAT SOAP REBELLION. I recently announced the publication of my new full collection of science-fiction and fantasy poetry titled “ANDROID GIRL and Other Sentient Speculations” (Three Ravens Publishing, 2020). In recent years, my poems have regularly appeared in the HWA Poetry Showcase and the Rhysling Anthology, as well as in various other magazines, webzines, anthologies, and journals.

My earliest writing endeavors, for both poetry and short stories, began in High School. The local newspaper published three of my rhyming poems over the course of two years, and I penned my first short stories during creative writing classes my junior and senior years.

Though my poetry writing took a 20-year hiatus after that, I embraced short story writing and scriptwriting during my college years, but after graduation from Syracuse University spent my free time working exclusively on writing spec screenplays and teleplays.

Middle-Age, Divorce, the death of my Mother, and a two-week tour of Ireland to spread my mother’s ashes marked the end of my 12-year attempt to break into the film biz as a scriptwriter, and I found myself embracing writing poetry and short stories exclusively during every spare moment I had/have in my life in the intervening years.

In my late 50’s, I have come to terms with my demons and find that poetry and short stories are a genuine catharsis for all my existential challenges and dreads.

Do you write full-time or around another job? How do you schedule your time to write? 

I was recently laid off from my job of 24 years (a technical editor of engineering journals) and am currently looking for full-time work. I spent all that time writing on evenings and on weekends, and occasionally lunch hours. You take the time you are given as a writer and make the best of it. That is all there is to it.

Where do you get your inspiration, information, and ideas for books?

Everywhere and anywhere. I am both a short story writer and a poet, and I find a muse in the news, in movies, other poems and short stories and books, TV shows of all kinds, nature itself, conversations I overhear out in public, the taste of food, the smell of a pine tree… inspiration is all around us, in everything we do or are exposed to. We just have to listen to it… Also, Google and Wikipedia are great ways to begin conducting any and all research. 

What advice would you give someone who wants to be a writer?

Start typing! Stop putting it off. Write! Creativity is a muscle. The more you use it, the stronger it gets. Cultivate patience and discipline (it’s going to take awhile to get good, and setting aside time every day to write, lunch hours, before you go to bed, etc. is all part of the game).

Please tell us about your current release.

“QUARANTINE WORLD: Trapped In The Coronaverse” is a poetry chapbook, a small collection of poems about my perceptions and experience witnessing and dealing with the Corona Virus and Covid-19 throughout the first half of 2020. It is available on Kindle, will soon be available as a pocketbook-sized paperback on Amazon, and is also going to be released as an Audiobook on Audible in the near future!

Can you provide us with a small exert? 

Is anybody out there real,
I ask myself most every day
and if you are can you now feel
that we’re all in a shadow play.
Does anybody else exist,
I ponder staring at my hands
or did you all up and enlist
to ride spaceships to Mars’ red lands.
Will anybody know if I
just up and vanish from the Earth 
knowing that all things surely die
as counterweights to every birth.
Or did the universe espouse  
bringing expansion to a halt
and then contract down to my house
where I defy god’s harsh assault.
Please tell me how one can endure
defeat and solitude’s allure.

What exciting story are you working on next?

I’m currently editing and putting the final polish on two shared-world anthologies I created, and which contain short stories by a lot of talented authors. They are SHA’DAA: ZOMBIE PARK (which is part of The Sha’Daa Series and will be published in late 2020 by MoonDream Press) and NOT TO YIELD (which is a science-fiction military space opera that I plan to Pitch to a number of Big Publishers when it is finalized later this year).

Who are your favorite authors?

Oh the full list is endless, for both my favorite Poets and favorite Authors, so this is just a sample short-list:

Roger Zelazny, Emily Dickinson, Edgar Allen Poe, Pablo Neruda, Stephen King, Lord Byron, e.e. cummings, Robert Frost, Connie Willis, F. Paul Wilson, William Butler Yeats, Ursula K. Le Guin, Dr. Seuss, Nancy Kress, Mike Resnick, Sylvia Plath, Ray Bradbury, Walt Whitman, C.J. Henderson, Langston Hughes, Isaac Asimov, Andre Norton, Rumi, Shel Silverstein, Anne McCaffrey, Jay Leeming, Samuel R. Delaney, and oh so many others!

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?

My poetry collections and some of the Sha’Daa series have begun, and/or will soon begin, to appear as audiobooks on Audible!  I highly recommend you check them out. The Voice Talent in each publication is fantastic!

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