Today we have Shawn Martin stopping by to give us a little insight into his life as both an author AND firefighter.
That’s right ladies, you heard me.
First, here’s his book
Shadowflesh (Shadowflesh #1)
Published February 28, 2013
By Vinspire Publishing
Torn from her home and fighting bouts of suicidal depression, seventeen year old Aileen McCormick lands in the small coastal town of Redcliff, North Carolina. Her first day of school promises to be the worst day of her life – until she falls into the arms of Addison Wake. Addison’s otherworldly charm and drop-dead gorgeous face leave Aileen breathless, but only for a moment. Grim and painful secrets lurk in his dark soul.
Addison Wake isn’t exactly like other boys. Far from it. He’s dead and has been for 300 years, locked in an ethereal prison by a lethal enchantress named Donelle. When she hungers, she blesses Addison’s tortured spirit with moments of freedom, allowing him to roam the mortal world as Shadowflesh. But that dark blessing comes at a price. He must deliver the souls of five unsuspecting humans to Donelle.
When four dead bodies pop up in Redcliff, Aileen asks herself is her love for the mysterious boy unconditional? Is the love worth the risk? And will she be the next victim?
Writing with a Hot Pen
When I meet new people, they often ask me somewhere in the conversation what I do for a living. With the recent publication of Shadowflesh, I’m inclined to tell them I am a writer. But that, as the judge says, isn’t the whole truth, so help me God. In order to keep the lights on and ink in my print cartridge, I have a day (and night) job. I work as a firefighter.
That usually gets the eyebrows raised, which is then quickly followed by a skeptical twisting of the lips. You write and fight fire? What two completely different occupations. It’s kind of like topping your ice cream with Dijon mustard.
Believe it or not, writing a book and fighting a fire actually have a lot in common. I see that skeptical look. Okay, here is what those two occupations which consume my existance have in common.
As I’m going about my daily routine, something unexpected bursts into my life. A story idea. It’s a lot like the alarm sounding. A rush of adrenaline courses through me. Somewhere an event is unfolding which requires my intervention. It’s time to grab the tools of my trade, rush to either the keyboard or the big red truck, and respond to that call for action.
Within minutes I see characters chaotically running about, pointing at the plot (or the fire), begging me to bring their world back into order. I suppose I could just stand there and stare like a spectator, or I could simply run from the challenge I’m facing. Instead, I dive right in. I have an idea of how things should end, how I would like them to end. But I know deep down that things never turn out the way you’re hoping. So many things come into play during the course of the work, twisting the plot, the characters, the conclusion.
As I make my way through the smoky house, I feel my way around and discover the little things which make these people real. Before I know it, I find myself face to face with what brought me here: the climax, the flames. Using every ounce of strength and creativeness I have, I pour myself into the work. Like magic, the flames are out and the story has come to an end.
Some of the characters live happily ever after, while others may not have survived. Regardless, everybody’s lives have changed.
But things are not over yet. After the story comes to a close and the flames have been dowsed, it’s time to clean up. Whether it’s rolling hose and sweeping soot off the floors or fixing commas and rewriting dialogue, more tasks beg to be done. Only after all the clean-up can I say my work is completed.
So, yeah, writing a book and fighting fire have a something in common. However, I’d never advocate putting Dijon on ice cream. It’s always better with chocolate.
About the Author: Shawn Martin lives with his unconventional wife, two amazing sons, and a clowder of cats in Springfield, Missouri. He graduated from Missouri State University with majors in Economics and Political Science.
His day (and night) job is being a firefighter. Aside from rescuing cats in trees and removing burnt pot roasts from ovens, he spends his time finding the hardest way to do the simplest of things. The rest of his time is spent imagining wonderful stories and weaving them into words.
Thank you so much for stopping by today, Shawn! Loved hearing your insight and we always love guest posters