Mike Jones is a writer and creative producer working across screen, page and digital media. He is head of story development for interactive media company, Portal Entertainment and an award-winning screenwriter. As a novelist Mike is published internationally by Simon&Schuster and is currently commissioned to write a 3-book series of gothic horror novels entitled ‘Transgressions’ for release in 2015.
Hi, what’s your name?
Where do you hail from?
Who do you work for?
I write for both old and new media forms, working with traditional film & TV producers, book publishers as well as interactive and multi-platform developers.
Tell us a bit about you – how did you get to where you are today?
From the time I was a kid writing and storytelling were always my first love. My first professional writing gig was a stage play in 1996 but I quickly realised if I was going to make a living as a writer I had to be flexible in the mediums I wrote for. I spent time working in Los Angeles in my early years which shaped my understating of narrative structures and writing process. Later I worked in museums and galleries that engaged me with online and interactive experiences. Since then Ive been working in platforms old and new – books, TV, digital series, interactive and cross-platform projects.
What are your career highlights?
Writing can be brutal, so every very time I manage to finish a project feels like a career highlight! And in truth, just the idea of ‘making up stories’ for a living is an achievement Im actually very proud of. But winning an Australian Writers Guild award was a huge confidence boost that really opened up doors for me both in Australia and overseas.
Who or what inspires you to get out of bed in the morning?
I’m inspired by imagery and ideas that are beyond the ordinary. The fantastic, the supernatural, the wild, the incredible, the vibrant and dynamic and larger than life. Myth and Metaphor gets me in front of my computer to write everyday. Big images, big ideas, encapsulated in extraordinary worlds that resonate with weight and scale and imagination. I love the fusion of craft discipline with creative vision so I’m often drawn to photography and illustration as inspiration for my stories.
Which other storytellers do you admire?
Writers that write the kind of stories I never could imagine myself being able to write. Authors like Neil Gaiman, Neal Stephenson and Umberto Eco amaze me but also often depress me with my own mediocrity. I admire storytellers that really understand the complexity of narrative craft, of episodic structures and mythic patterns, notably TV showrunners like David Simon and Vince Gilligan. And I love writers who commit to the discipline and professionalism of being a writer – Stephen King’s book ‘On Writing’ should be compulsory reading.
What do you plan to share at Storyology?
I’ll be talking about being a platform-agnostic writer, developing narratives that can flexibly move across mediums, and the key conceptual tools for writers that shape multiplatform experiences through effective Storyworld design.
Where can we find you?
LinkedIn: Mike Jones
Facebook: MikeJones Writer