Mike Downs

Mike Downs

Passion is a sustaining element in my life. Passion for living, for producing good work, and for expanding my abilities. After a forty-year career of professionally racing sports cars, writing became a passion. As an avid follower of American history and early auto racing, I have combined the two in my novels.

I have found bringing to life fictional characters in historical events and locations to be another compelling passion. Making the stories and characters exciting is a grand and worthwhile challenge. The many hours in crafting a novel are enjoyable ones spent trying to become a better story teller. Finding new ways that I can illuminate a scene to bring the reader into the moment brings me satisfaction.

Living in Northern California I am able to indulge in another passion, research. The San Francisco area is rich in libraries, museums, old Army and Naval bases, and parks. My wife and I make frequent trips to Mare Island, going to the museum and hiking the grounds. Kathy, my wife, creates the cover art for my novels and does the editing. Both Kathy and I have businesses in an area of auto racing. Her business is in graphic arts, promotional products, and embroidery. My business entails building racing cars, and engines, along with restoring classic race cars. I also write articles for Victory Lane Magazine. Together reading (Kathy is voracious) and writing consumes our busy days.

My stories take place in the fascinating era of the 1920’s to the 1940’s. Auto racing then was truly death-defying, an adventure in itself. To that I add my characters living their fast-paced lives on the go. Sometimes their adventures are caught up with Nazi intrigues where they must raise their game in order to survive. Love and passion are essential ingredients for these characters also. For them, living life on the edge is sometimes more than they bargained for.

Two of my six novels are about the adventures of the men and women working on Mare Island during WWII. This was, at the time, America’s largest West Coast Naval Yard. 16000 workers filed daily into the yard during the war; they worked in three 8 hour shifts, 7 days a week. Ships of all types had their battle damage repaired on the yard. Our finest generation lived, loved, and dedicated their lives to the war effort. One of my Mare Island characters fights the enemy in a submarine. Another strives to protect the naval yard from saboteurs. A hunger for action and justice drives these characters.

This passion I have for writing is fulfilled by the joy of imagining, creating new adventures, and getting them in print.

Lenka's List had the pleasure to publish this interview on: June 11th, 2017
I needed a passion to replace racing. I had written magazine articles in the past and wanted to try and capture in words an era of racing and people I enjoy.
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Full news release:
Posted on: November 29th, 2017
Holiday Special

Two Book Special only available on our website www.mikedownsmysteries.com

Full news release:
Posted on: July 30th, 2017
Agent Keys Steps Out set for August Release

Agent Keys Steps Out, the second installment in the Barry Keys Mare Island Mystery Series is set for release in August 2017. Barry Keys and his wife, Mary, are back on Mare Island hunting for black marketers. What they find is a murderous Nazi saboteur intent on destruction.