I am so excited to introduce ya’ll to Michele Hart, author of Mind-Blown! Thank you so much Michele for the interview. It is always exciting to pick the author’s brain and get answers to the questions that linger after reading a great novel.
COMMENT: Michele Hart says that fashion is a form of mind control. If so, what is your secret weapon?
As for me, black Lancôme Definicils mascara! It gives me lashes for days!
1. What inspired you to write Mind-Blown?
I’d recently read brain experts are reading minds with fMRIs. And I thought…there’s a story there. Then my best friend, Alisha Paige, an awesome Paranormal Romance author in her own right, told me about a strange job interview to which she’d gone that day. It became the opening scene. She was awesome to give me the story. In an alternate world, you might be interviewing Alisha for a book with a similar opener.
2. The book cover definitely plays with your eyes and is nothing like I’ve ever seen, what was your thought process when designing the cover?
Jinger Heaston and my publisher did the book cover, and I really like it. It’s definitely different and stands out. I don’t think I would’ve come up with such an eye-popping concept. Great job, Jinger and BookStrand!
3. What is your favorite scene in the book?
It’s difficult to choose. I like the break-in. I love how brave Jon is. I love that he’s a truth seeker who fell from grace and explored the depth of mind control. I’m glad he felt bad for it, was punished for it, but still he wouldn’t give Holly up. He wouldn’t walk away, even when she probably hated him. I love a man with staying power.
4. Holly Maddox is such an easy character to fall in love with. Did you model her after someone you know? Maybe even yourself?
No, she’s no one real, but I really loved her devotion to her role as a mother. She was determined to give up any social life to be the best mom she could be. Until Jon showed up, getting all brave, sexy, and determined. But really, is there a woman he couldn’t break with his own powers of persuasion?
5. Mind control via subliminal messages is very unique. How did you decide on this awesome concept?
Oh, much of the technology in this book is true! The use of an fMRI as a lie detector is happening. Companies right now are using fMRIs on job applicants to find liars with an accuracy in the ninety percentiles. Turns out, fMRIs are so accurate, we may see it used in court in a decade or sooner. Scientists can tell whether someone is thinking about a screwdriver or a hammer. They can identify a thousand words through fMRI brain scans. The microchipping is probably in our near future with all the identity theft and drive to put medical records in embedded chips. The subliminal-message mind-control technique I used in the story is, for the most part, true, though I altered the technique to fit my story. Scientists have found one-word subliminal messages do work. That’s according to the head scientist of the 1960s CIA mind-control experiments. Dr. Ramirez’s mad scientist grandfather is true, too. In the early seventies, he’d addressed a secret session of Congress with a full report on his huge successes in brain-washing. There is an undated and incomplete copy of that report on the Net. It’s shocking what this man could do with the human mind. There were corporations in that room…
6. Mind-Blown is definitely not a predictable story. Did the story take on a life of its own during the writing process?
I wanted to tell everyone what’s ahead. The characters of Mind-Blown are fictitious, but the technologies are indeed standing on our doorsteps right now. It’s the biggest reason I wrote this book, to let people too busy to read the news every day know. Employers are already creeping into our heads. The government and corporations can do some ugly things with microchips, if we don’t watch and keep our eyes open, stay informed. There’s no telling what science will learn with fMRIs. Amazing. The story begged me to tell it. It came very easily. : – ) I’m glad to hear it’s not predictable. That’s always the intention.
7. Do you have an upcoming new release? If so, can you tell us a little bit about it?
If you’d like a good suspense story that could well happen tomorrow, read Mind-Blown. If you like prison breaks, alien chocolate seduction, super weapons, doomsday devices, explosions, abduction, narrow escapes, murder-defying deceit, and threats of genocide, all while riding a harrowing roller coaster with a dangerous man wearing a holographic mask, check out Luminous Nights. Both are available at BookStrand.com now.
8. Where do you get most of your writing done? At home? A coffee shop?
I’m lucky to have an office next to my bedroom. I love it. It’s filled with kid toys and space stuff.
9. Do you have any writing quirks?
I’m driven beyond most people’s understanding. When I’m writing, I’ll sleep four or five hours a night, and it’s writing nearly every waking moment. I’ll write eighteen, nineteen hours a day for weeks without a day’s break. Even when I’m not writing, I’m working at other writing-related functions ten, eleven hours a day, few weekends off. I really wish all we authors had to do was write. There’s too much of this job that isn’t writing. Can I hear an amen from my author-siblings out there? (Amens fill the air.)
10. Do you have any special hidden talents?
I’m a gifted sarcasm launcher, and I can wiggle my ears.
11. What do you like to do when you are not writing?
Writing’s it. It’s my job to be a better writer.
12. What is your favorite soda?
I gave up Cokes several years ago, but, every now and then, I suck one down and shiver from the burn and exhilaration. It’s like committing a sin when no one’s looking.
13. What is your favorite science fiction or fantasy movie?
Mmm! Thank you for asking that! My favorite movie wasn’t very big for some odd and inexplicable reason! Christian Bale and Taye Diggs! Swordplay, gunplay, martial arts. A Sci-Fi story very believable! There’s lots of butt-kicking, great performances! Go rent Equilibrium! You may find yourself with a new favorite movie. As for the old classics, I love The Terminator! Guys will love it. It will always sit in my heart forever. The unstoppable killing machine, the desperate romance. The woman who ultimately triumphs! I want to write that every time!
14. If you could send subliminal messages, whose mind would you penetrate and what message would you sent him/her?
Oh… No one’s asked me that before… And change his mind about something, you mean. Well, it’s cheating. I have a terribly guilty conscience. If I did it, I would never know for sure if that person felt the way I wanted them to because I tampered with his mind or if it was real life. Never knowing is terrible. One would have to intentionally block their act from their conscious minds to live with it. I think the cost of it is too high. I really think I would pass up the opportunity. The cost of mind control was very high for Jon and could have been much worse. He could be doing life in a federal penitentiary.
We all influence one another’s minds with subliminal messages every day. Fashion is a form of mind control. With fashion, I can make you think I’m cool or wealthy or just don’t care. A night in front of the TV will flash you several ads for fast food, and the country’s gaining weight. That’s mind control. We are immersed in it. We should question it more.
Want More Michele?