Where are you from Mike?
I’m from Charlotte, N.C. Born and raised.
Tell us about your latest Project?
I re-released book one of my novel Hustlin’ Backwards on ebook last month and it hit #1 on Amazon’s Best Seller list. Book 2 was just released 1-30-15 and it debuted on the bestseller list as well. I’m trying to get it to #1 as well.
When did you start writing?
I began writing in 2001 while I was incarcerated in federal prison. i’ve always liked to write. Whether it was poetry, love letters or whatever.
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I first considered myself a “writer” when people started reading my work and giving me positive feedback.
What inspired you to write your first book?
Back in 2001 urban novels were rare. We only had Donald Goines, Iceberg Slim, etc.. Then along came Terri Woods with True To The Game and Vicki Stringer with her book. Once I read those novels, I knew they were pretty much telling MY story. Meaning, they were writing about things that I were actually going through at that time. So I figured, who better to tell my story than ME. So i began to write and “Hustlin’ Backwards” was born!
Do you have a specific writing style?
My writing style is simplistic. I write the way I’d like to read if I were purchasing the book. Short chapters and cliffhangers.
How did you come up with the title?
Hustlin’ Backwards is loosely based on my life or events that have occurred around me. When I wrote it I was incarcerated and I realized that everything I did while I was on the streets defeated the purpose of my hustling because it landed my in prison. So instead of hustling for forward progress, I was indeed HUSTLIN’ BACKWARDS!
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
There is definitely a message I want readers to grasp. I want them to see both sides of the game. I want them to see the glitz and glamor along with the deception, incarceration and death! The game is not worth it!
How much of the book is realistic?
100% of this novel is realistic! I think the reason so many people gravitated towards it is because of how close to reality it is. Every one who reads this novel can relate to at least one characters.
What books have most influenced your life most?
Truth be told. .. The Bible. Although I write street novels and urban fiction, believe it or not, I can’t read them.
If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
Michael Baisden and Eric Jerome Dickey.
*Look for part 2 of our exclusive interview of Author Mike Sanders …