Mike Orenduff

what is your name?

Mike Orenduff

how would you describe what you do?
I write stories. Some are in the form of stage plays, and some are in the form of books  about a character named Hubert Schuze and his friends, family, and other people he runs into in the course of daily life. The stories are fiction, but they are intended to look life real life on stage or read like real life on the page. They take you into a world with humor, challenges, romance, confusion, crime, art, food, music, and excitement. The excitement in the books often arises from a murder, so they are classified as mysteries. I think of them as entertaining stories.

what are you currently working on?
A play called Locutions, and the fifth book in my series, The Pot Thief Who Studied D. H. Lawrence.

what has had the greatest influence on your work?
Lawrence Block.

what is the greatest misconception about you or your work?
As I thought about this question, I realized I have never heard any of my readers say anything about my work that I thought was a misconception on their part. Maybe my work is too simple; all my readers seem to “get it.”

With regard to misconceptions about me, I have no idea. I am still trying to figure myself out.

what do you see as the main strengths and weaknesses of the medium you work in?
The main strength, I believe, is the strong fan base for plays and books of the sort  I and others write. The main weakness is the decline of theaters and bookstores in the present economy.

how has technology impacted upon the work you do?
Technology (digital books) has not impacted my work, but it has impacted the ability of people to enjoy my work. For those who like e-books, the impact has been positive. For those who like paper books, the impact is negative.

what’s the greatest piece of advice you would like to pass on?
You can’t write a play or a book by following rules any more than you can write a piece of music by following rules. Forget all those books about how to write. Find a voice. Tell a good story.

what are you reading at the moment?
I am currently reading some very boring books because I am a judge in a writing contest that shall go nameless. The last book I read for pleasure was Promptings of Necessity by Robert Allan Richardson, an author I met when we were both doing a signing at Collected Works in Santa Fe. It is a collection of three excellent stories.

what are you listening to at the moment?
I am listening to the roar of a tornado that appears to be about five miles south of my house. I’m keeping a close eye on it. Fortunately, it seems to be headed east.

anything else we should know?
Any theater company who wants to produce my award-winning play, The Christmas Visitor, can have the rights for free for a limited run. I need to have it produced so that I can make a video of it. I guarantee the company and the audiences will love it.

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