Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who you are, where you’re from, what got you into writing in the first place, and what inspires you.
I’m Mike Robbins and I write under the name M.A. Robbins. I’ve lived in Anchorage, Alaska for the past 32 years with my wife, Debbie, and our 3 year old chocolate lab, TBone.
It was my plan in high school to become a novelist. I was really into Poe and HP Lovecraft at the time. I lived in Rhode Island and it has its shadowy side that I found inspiring. The problem was that I wrote in the style of what I was reading and modern horror in the style of those two greats just didn’t fit.
Alaska has been an inspiration for my work. Most of my work has a connection to Alaska. For example, The Tilt takes place in Anchorage ten years after a cataclysmic event. Alaskans are a different breed and very independent, and I wanted to explore that in a post-apocalyptic setting.
The Zombie Uprising series starts in a small village in Northwest Alaska in the first book, then moves to Anchorage in the second. From there it moves into the Lower 48 in subsequent books.
Tell us a bit about your books and what you’re working on right now.
I started with the first book in The Tilt series. It’s a non-zombie post-apocalyptic story. I then started the Zombie Uprising series and finished that with Book 5 in April 2019. I’m currently working on the second book in The Tilt series and the first book in a follow-up series to the Zombie Uprising.
I’d always wanted to write post-apocalyptic, but wanted a fresh twist on it. I never want to write a cookie-cutter book. Whether it’s the location, characters, or the cause of the apocalypse, something has to be different.
I also have to have action. Lots of it. And neck-cracking plot twists. I’ve had a lot of reviews that have pointed those out.
What is it about the apocalyptic genre that you love? Why write books about it?
PA is one of those genres where you can do anything. You can let your imagination run wild. Most PA is on earth so you still have an anchor of the familiar but can go off in a ton of different directions. There’s still plenty of room for unique stories that still hit all the tropes readers love.
Name your favourite author or book.
I really love Richard Matheson and I Am Legend. But if I were to pick my favorite PA book it would be Stephen King’s The Stand. I’m amazed at how he had so many character viewpoints and subplots and was able to tie them all together at the end.
I’d love to see them remake The Stand like they’ve been doing with King’s other work. The Stand is so long their only option back in the day was to make it a mini-series. But now that many movie franchises are putting out stories in multiple movies (It, Lord of the Rings, etc.), I think that’d be a great way of getting a powerful version of The Stand out.
If you could be a character from a movie, who would it be and why?
It would be a Sam Eliot role, no doubt. Probably a western. I patterned some of Jon Streg in The Tilt on him and imagined him in the role. He’s just such a bad ass. Not physically, but more his vibe.
What is your top tip for surviving the apocalypse?
In a zombie apocalypse stay away from anywhere the government tells you to go. That never ends well.
Where can we find out more about you and your books?
www.marobbins.com is my online home. From there you can find links to my books and Facebook page. You can also sign up to my email list at uprising.marobbins.com and receive a free short story.