Showing posts with label free. Show all posts
Showing posts with label free. Show all posts

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

"Can’t Buy Me Love" by Martin Humphries

Can’t Buy Me Love
by Martin Humphries

Can’t Buy Me Love by Martin Humphries

Can’t Buy Me Love is the first book in The Cost of Loving series by Martin Humphries. Read an excerpt below and download your FREE copy today. Also available: Love For Sale, Free Love, Love Don't Cost A Thing, The Price of Love, and Love Hurts.

It’s the sixties, and London might be swinging, but not for our girl Edith. Raised in a miserable home full of anger and hate, life for poor Edith seems to hold little hope. But she finds plenty when she teams up with her older gay cousin, Ronnie, who makes her his mission with a plan to re-shape her into the fabulous young woman he knows she deserves to be.
Once free of her father and her weak, defenseless mother, her transformation is swift and dramatic. Suddenly, life is an exciting adventure, full of twists and turns, as Edith’s coming of age becomes a roller-coaster ride of glorious highs and frightening lows, including a father who comes back to haunt her. But where will it take her, and how will it end? Who will win, and who will lose?
This Can’t Buy Me Love Bonus Edition offers the first two of six volumes in The Cost of Loving series. If you like stories of success over adversity, family dramas and sexual diversity, then you will love Martin Humphries’ bitter-sweet voyage of discovery through some of the most exciting years in living memory. Years chock full of changes of every kind, when being gay usually spelt trouble with a capital T.
Start traveling this fascinating journey through the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s today by buying Can’t Buy Me Love, and follow Edith through London, Europe and Hollywood, over two decades, as she matures from troubled teenager to famous beauty.

Ronnie’s Story …
“Do you think he’s diddling her?” Mum asked one Sunday as we all sat quietly eating our roast dinner.
I liked to come home for those as often as I could because - well, let’s face it - I was a young man living on my own and, of course, I couldn’t cook for toffee and certainly not like my mother could. Normally, the conversation was idle at best, but not today.
Something was niggling at her.
“Well, that makes a change from ‘pass the gravy’, I suppose. You’ve got my attention.” That was my father. He, normally, just liked to eat and not get involved in issues that might divert him from concentrating on his food, especially Sunday lunch.
We both stared at her.
“Well, it’s just that I was talking to Evey yesterday and she was quite angry about Billy. She never gets angry about Billy. She’s a total softy where that husband of hers is concerned, but she’s worried about Edith, I can tell. For somebody who keeps her blinkers firmly in place that only means more trouble as far as I’m concerned.”
“Yes, but that doesn’t mean that he’s being a naughty boy with his own daughter. Honestly, I don’t know where you get these ideas from sometimes, Stella, I really don’t.” Dad was rolling his eyes.
“From my brain, Freddie. From my brain. Where I do my thinking, which is what you should be doing sometimes. This is family we’re talking about. My family. My sister.” Mum wagged her fork at dad’s face and poked her tongue out at him. “You should show more concern. Anyway, I’d bet you the crown jewels that that’s behind all this.”
“That he’s diddling his own daughter! You know as well as I do that he’s made his mind up she’s not his. Are you going to change that for him? Good luck!”
“You don’t believe that, do you?” I chimed in.
“It doesn’t matter two figs what I believe, Ronnie. It’s all about what your uncle Billy thinks and if that’s what he thinks then nobody’s going to change his mind for him. Only he can do that. But, knowing him, I bet he’s taking it out on Evey - and Edith, poor thing - just to get his own back.”
“I hate to say this but she’s no catch, Mum. Why would anybody have a go at her?”
She rolled her eyes. “It’s got nothing to do with her looks. It’s all about vengeance. He’s getting his own back the only way that bastard knows how to.”
“Stella, language at the dinner table.”
That was my dad again.
Silly arse.
“Dad, we’re all grown up here, don’t forget. I think we can have the odd bastard over the dinner table and an occasional bugger and shit.”
“Ronnie that’s enough.”
My mother this time.
Silly cow.
“I swore because I’m upset. You know how I am when we talk about that pig and my sister and the miserable life he’s created for her. For them. And besides, Edith wasn’t always like that and that’s what makes me wonder.”
“Wonder what?”
“What he’s done to her, silly! To turn her from a kid who was full of life to that drab and lifeless rag of a girl she is today.”
And that, I had to admit, was true.
Being a decade older than Edith, I had seen her grow from a baby to a child to a girl and now to a wretch. It was sad to see the light in her eyes go out and to watch as she became a moody, sulky, miserable girl with a temper that sometimes she could barely control. Mum was probably right. Edith’s anger and aggression were, no doubt, a defense against her vulnerability and feelings of helplessness.
And it was sad to see.
She had been a fun-loving, lively kid and her world was all about the three W’s – where, when, why? Question after question after question until you thought she couldn’t know more if she’d swallowed every volume of the Encyclopedia Britannica. She wanted to know the reason for everything.
And then she didn’t.
That had all been well and truly kicked out of her now. She had become an empty vessel which we all wanted to fill up again. As a child she had shone and sometimes dazzled, but that light had flickered and died - that glow of a child revelling in the exploration of life.
I, for one, wanted to re-ignite it.
Why me?
Because I had been there myself.
Being queer in the fifties and sixties, you don’t survive without having the shit kicked out of you.
Sometimes for real.
I was one of the lucky ones.
I almost drowned, surfaced, found something to hold on to and survived, but you always stay water-logged no matter how hard you try to dry out. My light had extinguished and been reignited, but only a flicker remained.
The intensity was gone.
Just like Edith’s.
Maybe it will come back.
Maybe, in time, I’ll forget the mornings when I would wake up disappointed that I hadn’t drowned. Forget the helplessness, the hopelessness and the days when life didn’t seem the favoured option.
All that fear and confusion.
It all seems like self-pity, I know, but I only have one thing to say about that – what the fuck do you know? Just you try it.
And so I knew that, whatever Edith was struggling with, it was ugly and wretched and, quite possibly, life-threatening. That bright, lively, bubbly, inquisitive child who used to bob and sway like a balloon searching for more height with which to explore all of the world, stretching out far, far ahead.
What’s this?
What’s that?
Where’s the other?
Question after question after question, only to burst and sink, deflated, to a weedy, miserable corner of the earth where she could hide, abandoned, in a dreary place with no way that she knew of to free herself.
I saw myself reflected in those sad, deep pools whenever I looked into her eyes, and I wanted her to know that there was a way out and I would help her limp through it and get strong again. All she needed was someone standing in her corner. Someone strong enough to fight for her in the same way that I had longed, when I was her age, to have someone there to fight for me, as I struggled with my own demons.
 “So what are we going to do about it?” I said.
“What can we do? I’m her auntie but that doesn’t give me any rights.”
“Can’t we report him to the police?”
“For what? Beating his wife? They don’t care about stuff like that.”
“You don’t want to go dragging the police into it. It’s just family stuff.”
Dad again.
Daft sod.
“So, it’s alright to go bashing your missus about, is it? ‘Cos you only have to try that once with me, matey, and I’ll have your bollocks off and in the bird feeder.”
“Calm down, will you? All I meant was that if you call in the police for your sister then you’d have to call them in to half the families on that estate. It’s just normal family stuff. Wives get a bashing. It happens. It’s no big deal.”
“No big deal? I’ll take a swing for you one day and see how you like it.” Mum was almost shouting now. “And I know it happens alright. But kids don’t get messed about with where they shouldn’t ought. Then it’s time for the police.”
“Oh, yeah? And where’s the proof? Your sister wouldn’t say a word against that teddy-boy husband of hers; he can do no wrong in her eyes.”
“I bet she would, you know. If push came to shove. She won’t hear a word said against him but it’s not love that does that. It’s fear. She’s afraid of him. She’s afraid of him leaving her. She’s bloody afraid of everything is that one.”
Mum stabbed another roast potato, dripping with gravy, and raised it to her lips. She looked at both of us in turn with a fierce look that had a decision emblazoned across it.
“Mum, that was delicious. Now what’s for ‘dee-ssert’?” I said, stretching the word with my best American drawl.
Mum smiled the smile of a happy cook before her contented and admiring audience. “Glad you liked it. And you’ve been picking up too many words from that sister of yours. It’s still pudding in this house, mate, and don’t you forget it. Soon you’ll be asking for cookies and toemaytoes.”
“So? What’s for pudding?”
“Your favourite. Trifle.”
I swooned.
Sometimes it was worth coming home.
“Mum! I love you.”
“Don’t be so soft,” she said and smiled. “It’s only a bleedin’ trifle.” Then, just as she was about to start clearing up the dishes, she paused. “I think I’ll pay her another visit next weekend.”
“You know. My stupid sister - Evey.”
Ah. So that was the decision behind that fierce look.
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]

Praise for the Book
“I found the book intriguing, depicting the life of a young woman coming of age in the 1960's, along with her gay cousin.” ~ Vern A’Dare Shoaf
“Interesting story. I grew up during this time period, too, so that made it doubly interesting.” ~ Renee Q Yancy
“Just a wonderful coming of age story set in the crazy 60s. The cast of characters would certainly make it on your guest list for the ‘It’ party, provided you are not a prude! Live this series and highly recommend!” ~ Ms. Maggie
“Being a baby-boomer I loved reminiscing through the music, fashions and lifestyle references. It was a very interesting story with several surprises. I enjoyed reading it.” ~ Kindle Customer
“A wonderful read. Much more than a take on homosexual relations. This is about growing up in the sixties and how it changed America.” ~ Joseph Skinkis
“I liked the book and enjoyed learning what it's like to grow up in the sixties. The main characters are well-developed and entertaining. I love how Ronnie takes Edith on as a pet project to turn her into wife material. It's all very interesting. I couldn't put the book down.” ~ Darcy Ya

About the Author
Martin Humphries
Martin Humphries is a first-time author who, once he started writing, couldn't stop. Now, after five industrious years, Martin has completed The Cost of Loving series of which Can’t Buy Me Love is the first volume.
Five more volumes, Love For Sale, Free Love, Love Don't Cost A Thing, The Price of Love, and Love Hurts, complete this dramatic coming of age story that spreads over two decades and two continents. It is a bittersweet, rollercoaster ride of a life lived in the spotlight and with the dark side well hidden from view.
After so many decades of life, Martin is full of stories that need to be told and is busy working on several of them right now. These include a sequel series to The Cost of Loving that follows our cast of characters through The Plague Years of the 1980s and beyond, when AIDS changed everything.
Martin lives quietly on Gabriola Island, one of the Gulf Islands off Vancouver, on Canada's wild and rugged west coast, but enjoys some excitement vicariously through his lively cast of imaginary characters.
It's a wonderful place to write, surrounded by so many other creative people, his partner of twenty-three years, Paul, and the best dog in the world, Alfie.

Sign up for the author’s newsletter and receive a FREE copy of Fun is on its Way, a prequel novella to The Cost of Loving series.

Fun is on its Way by Martin Humphries


Monday, August 6, 2018

"Gargoyle" by Christopher Slayton

by Christopher Slayton

Gargoyle by Christopher Slayton

Author Christopher Slayton stops by today for an interview and to share an excerpt from his latest book, Gargoyle. Make sure you grab your copy while it’s FREE. Also by this author and also FREE: Chaos Company.

Chaos Company by Christopher Slayton

By day Victor Fortune, heir to his family's wealth and assets, was an industrious businessman. But by night, he was the Gargoyle, a masked vigilante who spent his nights protecting his home city of Chicago. One night while off duty, Victor and his brother Elijah find themselves opposed by a dangerous group of people led by a man known as the Judge. Together Victor and Elijah fight off the ambush, but at the cost of Victor's life. With Victor killed Elijah finds himself taking on his brother's responsibilities as the Gargoyle and discovers the harsh learning curve of what it takes to be the vigilante. But in the midst of adjusting to his second life Eli must rise to the occasion of being more than a man in a mask, but a hero, or die trying.

“On your feet, prick!” Francis Wallace said as he pulled the man he had just tackled up off the damp Chicago pavement.
The criminal, who had been beaten within an inch of unconsciousness, was nowhere near able to get to his feet unassisted. He squinted up at Francis through swollen eyes and spat blood onto the Chicago sidewalk.
Francis grabbed the young man by his collar and hauled him to his feet. “I said, stand!” While holding the man with one hand, Francis belted him across the face with the other. The man dropped to the ground again, groaning in pain as he crawled away from him and into an alley.
A wave of nostalgia rushed over Francis, bringing him back to his days as a Chicago Police Officer. He loved the honor that came along with wearing the uniform and the badge and being tasked with protecting his city, his home. At times, Francis was disappointed to leave the force. Being an officer was all he ever wanted to be. But after spending ten years with CPD, he came to the harrowing realization that his home was as broken as the day he was sworn into duty. But even though he left the job behind to become a personal bodyguard, some nights, righting wrongs was like an itch he just had to scratch.
Francis shook his head as his victim tried to crawl away. Francis kicked him, pushing the man onto his back. “This is what you get,” Francis said while kicking him again. “The gang life looks so appealing. . . ...until it’s not.”
“What the fuck are you talking about?” The man spat out, along with more blood.
“I’ve been watching you, Luis. It is Luis, right?” Francis asked him, watching the man look away from him in shame. “Yeah, you’re definitely the right guy. I saw you take that bag of cash from that corner store a few blocks back.” Francis pointed at the navy blue bag sitting on the curb.
“I never hurt them. And they handed me that money.” Luis assured him. “It’s for protection. Like, insurance.”
As Luis reached out for the bag, Francis picked him up and threw him deeper into the nearby alleyway.
“They only need protection from you!” Francis shouted at Luis as he used the side of the building to crawl to his feet. As he did, Francis grabbed him by the collar of his leather jacket, while slamming his palm in the wall, inches from Luis’ face.
“Just let me go, man. My people will be looking for me if you don’t.”
Francis cursed at Luis before taking a cheap shot at his gut, forcing him to fall on his knees and double over. Francis then took out his cell phone and offered it to Luis. “Go ahead. Tell your people where you are. I insist.” Francis gave Luis a few seconds to reach for the phone, but as he fell to his side and turned away from the offer, Francis looked up a number in his contacts and sent out a text message:
Got one.”
Location?” Francis’ contact replied quickly.
Francis texted his location and slipped the phone back in his pocket. “Tell me, what clique of shit do you rep?”
“What does it matter to you?” Luis growled, while holding his stomach.
“It doesn’t matter to me.” Francis fired back. “I just figured you’d like to start snitching now before my friend gets what we need out of you the hard way.”
The night was quiet as they waited. Once or twice, the beaten-up man tried to escape, but each time Francis caught him with a push or a punch. Eventually, Luis gave up trying and sat shivering in a puddle of his own blood, which mixed in with the rain water. Meanwhile, Francis had his eye on the sky. His contact never took long to arrive, once summoned, and he knew tonight would be no exception.
The next few minutes felt like forever for Francis. As he sighed in frustration for waiting, he caught sight of a black object passing quickly between him and the moon. Francis smiled, knowing that what had just flew by was the person he moonlighted for.
Francis stepped back as the shadowed figure landed close to him. While the individual was known as a madman to some and an urban legend to others, Francis knew him as the Gargoyle. Even though Francis had been face to face with the vigilante many times, he was still impressed by the Gargoyle’s combat attire, which was black with a red lining down his arms and legs, and a black helmet to match. Francis had seen the Gargoyle in action a few times, and he was in awe of how well the attire stood up to gunfire. Francis witnessed first hand how accurate the masked man was with his pistol, a M9 Beretta, along with the throwing discs magnetically attached to his belt. Francis had never seen a piece of technology as efficient as the Gargoyle’s discs, each with different properties, varying from a taser stun to explosive charges.
But the most impressive thing about the vigilante was his means of travel. Francis knew the vehicle as the glider. Every time the Gargoyle arrived and departed, Francis had seen the drone-shaped device. He had witnessed the hovering device soar through the sky at rocket speeds, moving in unison with the Gargoyle as he stood on top of it and operated it with confidence and finesse. This was the first time Francis had seen the vehicle this close up while it hovered above the pavement and its wings almost touching both buildings on its sides. He never noticed before how the nose of the glider was designed to look like a snarling beast, with horn-like ears curved behind his its head, similar to the Gargoyle’s helmet.
Francis had no clue who was underneath the helmet. The suit provided full body coverage, including voice distortion from the helmet, to mask the Gargoyle’s voice. Francis had his guesses on who it could be, but it could have been anybody. It could even have been one of his former colleagues back at CPD. That made the most sense to him, seeing how the Gargoyle carried himself.
“Who is this?” The Gargoyle gestured to the man on the ground while stepping off the hovering glider, jerking Francis’ thoughts back to the matter at hand.
“His name’s Luis. I caught him collecting protection money from a store a few blocks back.” Francis said. “I figured you’d like to know who he’s collecting for.”
“Who. . . ...who are you?” Luis said in a trembling tone.
“Shut up.” The Gargoyle said in a low tone. He turned to Francis. “Good catch.”
Francis nodded. “Thanks.” He was pulsing with pride.
“We need to know what he knows. Who he works for and where we can find them,” the Gargoyle said, his voice still low while looking at Luis.
“We’re cleaning up this town.” Francis was on a high from the night’s work and felt that nothing could bring him down. “At this rate, Chicago will be crime-free before the decade’s out! How many does this make so far?”
“For you, me, or in total?”
“In total.”
The Gargoyle gazed into the distance. Although it was impossible to read his expression, thanks to the mask covering his face, Francis thought he seemed pensive. “Not enough. Not even close.”
“Should we interrogate him?” Wallace asked. “Maybe try to ID his clique?”
“No. Let’s hand him over to CPD. If he’s in the system, they’ll be able to find who he has ties to faster than we can. We’ll piggyback off their info when they find something.”
“Come on man, not the cops!” Luis pleaded. “I already got two strikes with them! And my people will know if I’m in there!”
“Sounds like a personal problem.” The Gargoyle pulled a spool of fiber-optic twine from his belt and handed it to Francis. “Tie his hands and feet.”
“What good is that?” Francis said in an aggressive tone. “Their file on him will be flimsy at best, if he even has one. We have him right here, right now. Let’s have him show us where his people are and end them tonight!”
“No!” The Gargoyle growled at Francis. “My way is safer. We’ll call in an anonymous tip to have the kid picked up.”
“I thought we were about cleaning up the streets,” Francis protested. “I thought this whole thing was about making Chicago safer, not some glorified catch and release program.”
“Your way is too risky. We need to learn more before making a move on this kid’s people.”
Francis sighed. “Learn more? What is this, an after-school special?”
“What would you have me do?”
“We make him hurt until he gives us what we want. Then, we end him.” Francis said. “Then we go see his people and kill them too.”
A long pause filled the air as The Gargoyle first looked down at Luis and then stared at Francis. A nervous tension occupied Francis as the Gargoyle stepped closer to him. “That’s not how I operate.”
“I've seen you kill before.” Francis shot back as the Gargoyle turned away from him.
“When necessary I’ve killed.” The Gargoyle replied, sharply. “I’ve never gone looking to take lives. I’m not a killer.”
“We could be,” Francis said. “I could be. Just think about it. Word would travel so quickly. Commit a crime in Chicago and you die. Everyone would clean up their act in a big hurry, especially the crooks that run our city's government. And you wouldn’t have to keep doing it forever, either. It would just take a few good moments like this to really get our point across.” Francis paused for a second, thinking out his next words carefully. “And if you can’t handle doing it, then I can. For you. For this city, I can do it as the Gargoyle. Just until I don’t have to anymore. Then we can both walk away from this.”
The Gargoyle was silent for a long time. Francis waited, his breath in his throat.
“No,” the masked man said, finally. “You couldn’t.”
His words made Francis’ stomach sink. “What? Why not?” he asked in a frustrated tone.
“You’re all anger inside, and that’s not good for anyone who lives here. Your ‘any means’ approach could get a lot of good people killed.”
The mugger, bound on the sidewalk, exhaled deeply. “Oh thank God! I’d rather take five years upstate than what this psycho was proposing.”
Francis seethed. “I can do it,” he said.
The Gargoyle regarded him stonily. “Contact the police,” he said. “Let them know what he’s been doing and he's here to be picked up. Make sure they take him into custody. After that, it’s up to them. We’ve done as much as we can, for now.” He turned to walk away.
“Hey!” Francis shouted as the vigilante had one foot on his glider.
The Gargoyle stopped but did not turn back.
“How can you say that? How can you say you’ve done as much as you can and walk off when we both know you can do so much more?” Francis took a step back the moment the Gargoyle turned around, almost bumping into Luis. A trembling fear engulfed Francis as he did his best not to show it. “Look at all the tools you have. All the tech. Imagine what you could do for this city if you didn’t hold back.”
“I hit criminals as hard as I need to. Not as hard as I can. This isn’t a war-zone,” the Gargoyle said. “We do this my way or not at all.”
Francis watched as the masked man stepped onto his glider just before it took off vertically into the night sky, leaving by a low humming noise to bounce off the alley walls.
On the ground, the mugger was still chortling. “Guess the boss isn’t too impressed with you.”
“Shut up,” Francis growled and kicked him again.
“At least if I get sent upstate I can tell my people inside Joliet Correctional I came face to face with the Gargoyle and lived.” Luis uttered a small laugh. “Hell man, that on top of the money I bring in for my people, I should be sitting pretty until I get out. And when I do, I’ll have a bigger name on these streets than when I went in.”
“I said shut the hell up!” Seeing red, Francis whipped out the knife he kept concealed in a sheath on his belt. He dropped to one knee and jammed it deep into Luis’ throat. The mugger’s words turned to desperate chokes as he writhed, his hands slapping at Francis’ shoulder.
Kneeling on the sidewalk, while the dying man watched with horrific eyes, Francis took out his phone and dialed 911.
“911. What’s your emergency?” the dispatcher asked.
“There’s a gang-banger bleeding out,” he replied while meeting the man’s eyes. “Someone should trace this call if you want to come pick him up.” He dropped the phone and walked out the alley. Francis’ hands shook as he thought back to what he just did; challenging the Gargoyle and stabbing the kid. As he walked down the street the faint sound of Luis choking on his own blood, scratched at Francis’ psyche. But as while he walked more lively, as the sound of sirens bounced off the nearby buildings, and he never looked back, because he knew what he did was right. More importantly, Francis knew he needed to repeat the same measure over and over until the residents of his Chicago could see his means were just. Even if that meant coming at odds with the Gargoyle.
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]

Praise for the Book
The Gargoyle by Christopher Slayton took me on a trip of adventure and vigilantism, not my typical read yet held my attention to the end, Gargoyle was a nice intro story I would be interested in reading a follow-up novel.” ~ Antwan Floyd Sr.
“Good read. This book reminds me of Batman with more gadgets.” ~ Amazon Customer
“This kept me interested till the end. I highly recommend reading the book. I can’t wait to read more about the Gargoyle.” ~ Tessa Navarro
“This is a superhero style story with Victor Fortune venturing out at night to fight crime and put fear into the criminals. But after a high society party is attacked by gunman Victor and his brother Eli escape down an alleyway, shots are fired. The police want the criminals and the Gargoyle, families want justice, but can everyone get what they want or deserve? A Superhero story to relax and enjoy.” ~ M. Sneyd

Interview With the Author
Author Christopher Slayton joins me today to discuss his new book, Gargoyle.
For what age group do you recommend your book?
16 to 35.
What sparked the idea for this book?
As a huge fan of comic books and vigilantes, I wanted to introduce a character who doesn't have the desire or drive to become a vigilante but is pushed into the situation.
So, which comes first? The character's story of the idea for the novel?
The idea of the novel definitely came first. I knew what I wanted to write about before I started this story. The character came shortly after. But his personal conflicts are important to me because they come from personal experience.
What was the hardest part to write in this book?
There is a section in the book where the main character is taken by surprise by a thug. In that scene, I wanted the readers to experience the same sense of fear and loneliness that the main character experiences. The idea of being a vigilante like Batman or Daredevil, or even The Punisher, seems so heroic and righteous. But there is a massive level of risk and fear that isn't displayed much, and that is what I wanted to capture in that scene.
How do you hope this book affects its readers?
I hope when people read this they can see that heroes, especially real-life heroes, are just people with the same motivations and fears as us. The only difference is that, when something bad happens, they run towards the danger, even when they are scared, which makes them bigger heroes than we can ever imagine.
How long did it take you to write this book?
It took me almost nine years to finally write this book. It's something I wanted to dedicate my time to years ago, but life had a different plan for me. But I am glad it took me that long because it allowed me the time needed to form a complete story. And I think by completing my first book Chaos Company back in 2015 the experience I had with that story really helped me develop the story for Gargoyle.
What is your writing routine?
When I'm working on a story, I usually write on Sunday and Wednesday mornings. How much I get done varies, though. It can be anywhere from 1 to 6 pages. But throughout the rest of the week, I'll do what I can, write a few paragraphs here and there.
How did you get your book published?
Amazon's Kindle Direct Publishing. I used to have a publishing contract with Desert Breeze Publishing, but I was, unfortunately, let go before my book Chaos Company could be released. So both books can currently be found published through KDP. That is, until I can find representation once again.
What advice do you have for someone who would like to become a published writer?
Writing is a journey, and throughout that journey, you're going to come across more trials than any one person can count. The best advice I can give is to write what you know and/or enjoy, and do so as much as possible.
What do you like to do when you're not writing?
Physical exercise, like running, weightlifting, and practicing martial arts, are all things I like to do. I find it easier to stay in my room and write after a good workout session. I'm also a fan of playing video games, specifically party games like Super Smash Bros and Mario Kart,
What does your family think of your writing?
For the most part, they are verbally supportive.
Please tell us a bit about your childhood.
I grew up in a family of four, my mother, father, and brother Derrick. I wasn't the most popular guy in school, but I did have a close circle of friends. I remember, as a kid, my parents used to fight a lot. It wasn't until I was twelve that it was revealed to me that my mom would argue with my dad a lot about his addiction to drugs, alcohol, gambling, and women.
Did you like to read when you were a child?
Definitely. From Clifford The Big Red Dog to Goosebumps, I read anything that caught my eye. I think my favorite stories to read were the choose-your-own-adventure books. Those were a lot of fun.
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
When I was fourteen. My 8th grade English teacher Mrs. Cirino tasked my class with writing short stories every other week. Those were my favorite assignments to do. It was such an exciting thing to do back then, creating a character and putting them through trials and challenges. It's still exciting to this day for me.
Did your childhood experiences influence your writing?
Absolutely. I was a big fan of superheroes growing up. My cousin Travis got me into comics at a young age, and that influence can be seen in a lot of my writing. But the hardships, like my parent's strained relationship and my experience with bullies, have affected my writing as well. That being said, I think I've only scratched the surface of infusing my deeper hardships into my writing. But I do look forward to doing so with other stories I plan on writing.
Which writers have influenced you the most?
Tom Clancy, Eric Jerome Dickey, Jay Bonansinga, Anthony Horowitz, Suzanne Collins, Ryan Coogler, Frank Miller, and Brian Michael Bendis are all writers and storytellers who have influenced my work, just to name a few. Each of these storytellers has a very intense and unforgiving way of storytelling that I try my best to incorporate into my own writing.
Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say?
I do, actually. Especially for my book Chaos Company. People are always going on how they enjoyed the villain Liam King and how I plan on raising the stakes in the next book. I'm just now hearing back from people about Gargoyle. Most people tend to like the main character and his arc, commenting on how gripping his challenges are for the readers.
And, of course, publishing my books (especially self-publishing), I get my fair share of criticism. But I know I have to take the good with the bad and use all of the feedback I receive to make my next project even better. Writing, to me, is like practicing martial arts, both are lifelong hobbies that can always be improved upon.
What can we look forward to from you in the future?
I'm currently getting a team of writers together to publish a series of short romantic stories, so be on the lookout for that. I'm also almost done with the rough draft to the follow-up to Chaos Company, and I hope to have that out sometime next year! I officially got back to writing on the first Monday of August and will be using my social media more often (mostly Twitter) to keep people updated on what I'm working on and when they can expect more from me!
Anything else you would like to add?
If anyone reading this is a fan of action/adventure novels, then my writing is perfect for you! Go check out and download Gargoyle now! And, if you haven't already, go check out Chaos Company as well! Both are free to download!
Thanks for stopping by today, Christopher. Best of luck with your future projects.

About the Author
Christopher Slayton
Christopher Slayton was born and raised in New Castle, Delaware. During Chris’ high school years, he earned two All-Conference awards in lacrosse and three national awards in JROTC. Chris attended the University of Delaware, where he earned a B.A. in Psychology. While in college Chris was a UD ambassador, and wrote sketches for his school’s comedy show. Chris was a member of his school’s Tae Kwon Do team, where he earned multiple honors in nine tournaments. Chris has incorporated his passion for both martial arts and video games into his writing, helping him finish his first book, Chaos Company. His latest book, Gargoyle, is now available.
He is looking to create high-octane, adrenaline-pumping stories that are centered in the modern world and focus on gritty and realistic topics, such as crime, political corruption, criminal perspective, love and loss, purpose, friendship, teamwork, and overcoming tragedies.