Interview with Author Michael K. Rose and New Release, “Chrysopteron”!

31 Dec

It’s a new year and The Tarasphere is back again, this time highlighting an author who is putting science-fiction back on the map. 2013 looks to be a year of ingenuity and heralds the promise of bright new things on the horizon. With that, it is only fitting that we bring to you an author who is making waves and doing fabulous things within the realm of science and speculative fiction. Welcome, Michael K. Rose and his new release, “Chrysopteron”!

Chrysopteron closer clean

Captain John Hayden, haunted by memories of war and still grieving the death of his wife, is about to embark on the most important mission of his career: to discover the fate of the Chrysopteron, one of five generation ships which left the Earth centuries earlier. The descendants of the Chrysopteron’s original crew had successfully colonized their planet, but less than a hundred years later, all contact was lost. Hayden knows that a mysterious new religion which was formed aboard the ship may have played a role in determining the fate of the colonists, but there is no way to know what he and his crew will find when they finally arrive.

In a story that touches on issues of faith and self-determination, Chrysopteron explores the fundamental elements that define our species. Even though we may leave the Earth, we cannot leave behind that which makes us human.

Here’s the interview:

What was your favorite part of the book?

The second part of Chrysopteron, which follows a couple of characters named Lon and Kayti is, I think, my favorite. I really felt like I got to know them intimately and was moved by their story.

What was the hardest part to write in the book?

The Chrysopteron is a generation ship, so I have to cover events spanning a few hundred years. Nearer the end of the Chrysopteron’s voyage, as they approach and reach the planet they’re going to settle, I had a hard time figuring out exactly what was going to happen and ended up rewriting several chapters.

What do you wish was different about the book?

Chrysopteron began about three years ago, so I’ve had a lot of time to think about it. I think it’s too fresh for me to look at it objectively, but in a year or so I will probably find things I wish I would have changed.

Who are your favorite authors? Favorite books?

In science fiction, my favorite author is Arthur C. Clarke. 2001: A Space Odyssey is actually my favorite novel. But I also like the other big sci-fi writers: Asimov, Bradbury, etc. and I read a lot of 19th century literature as well, particularly Henry James and Arthur Conan Doyle. I also like some of the pulp writers like HP Lovecraft and Robert E. Howard.

What sparked the idea for your novel?

It evolved out of another novel that had a similar theme but a completely different story. I began it too long ago to remember my “Eureka!” moment, though. Most of my ideas are like that. They’ll ferment for a while, then one day I’ll sit down to start plotting and the ideas will slowly transform into stories.

How personal is your writing?

It varies from project to project. In Chrysopteron, I explore ideas that I care about strongly, but there are no characters that are any fictional version of me. I have written some short stories, however, in which the main character is essentially me if I were put into certain fantastical situations.

How strict are you with plotting? Do you outline or go where the story takes you?

I outline novels very broadly. Essentially, I’ll have a single sentence of what must happen in each chapter. Beyond that, I let the story take me where it will. I do not outline short stories, though. I’ll have an idea and sit down and, usually, have it finished in one or two writing sessions. I like both approaches, and writing short stories as well as novels helps to keep my creative juices flowing.

What is your writing routine?

I almost always write at my desk in my study. I write late morning through the afternoon and very occasionally late at night if inspiration has struck. There may be music—classical, if so—but I make sure it’s nothing too loud. Piano sonatas and string quartets usually fit the bill.

Which comes first? The character’s story or the idea for the novel?

The idea. My characters always seem to evolve as the story unfolds. I know some writers write out biographies of their characters. I may jot a few notes on my outline, but I like to let the characters tell me who they are by responding to the situations I put them in.

How did you choose the genre you write in?

I mainly write science fiction because it is what I love as a reader. I like asking the “What if?” questions and then being able to answer them.

How did you come up with the title?

I came across the term Chrysopteron, which means “golden winged,” while doing research for another story that I never did write. It refers to the Greek goddess Iris, and the name ended up becoming not only the title of the book but driving the force of the story as well.

What project are you working on now?

I’m preparing Sullivan’s Wrath, the sequel to Sullivan’s War, for publication. I’m also working on the third Sullivan novel which I hope to have out in the summer.

Now the fun questions:

Favorite junk food?

Nachos, chips and salsa… anything along those lines.

Tea or coffee?


Favorite superhero(ine)? Why?

I’ve always admired Superman for one simple fact: with his power he could rule the planet, but he uses it for good instead. Batman may be “cooler” but Superman has strength of character that is hard to come by.

Favorite color?


Favorite place you’ve visited?

Egypt. I’ve been several time and the monuments never fail to fill me with awe.

What’s one quirky or fun fact about you?

I’m a miniature gamer. This means I assemble and paint models then use them to play war games. I also like building and painting non-gaming models. I find the whole process very relaxing, even though it is a challenge to get them looking just right.

Headshot 1 300x

Bio: Michael K. Rose is primarily an author of science fiction who also dabbles in horror, fantasy and paranormal fiction.

His novel Sullivan’s War has been called “…a sci-fi thriller that definitely delivers!” and his collection Short Stories has been praised as “…the purest form of literature, as rich as a bottle of Montrachet 1978 and as tasty as a generous cut of Wagyu beef.”

His newest novel, Chrysopteron, is already being hailed as a “…gem of a novel…” and “a masterpiece.”

Sullivan’s Wrath, the sequel to Sullivan’s War, will be released in early 2013.

For more information, please visit



Amazon US

Amazon UK

Barnes & Noble


Amazon Author Page

Facebook Author Page





One Response to “Interview with Author Michael K. Rose and New Release, “Chrysopteron”!”

  1. Wo3lf January 5, 2013 at 5:00 am #

    Cool interview, Tara. Thanks.

    Michael, I love the premise of Chrysopteron and have placed it on my Amazon wish list. I’m a bit behind with my reading, but will get to it soon, I promise.


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