25 July, 2015

#Interview with Christopher Slayton, #Author of Chaos Company

About the Author:
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 videogames into his writing, helping him finish his first ebook Chaos Company.

Find him on Twitter

Interview with the Author:

When did you first realize that you wanted to be a writer/ a storyteller?
I found myself wanting to write ever since I was in middle school. But didn’t write my first full story until I was 16, which was the rough draft for Chaos Company. I had to take a step back from writing when I was college and picked it up again since graduating.

What inspires you to write?
Knowing that I’m creating something that a person can get excited about, relate to on some level, all while making them think, is very inspiring to me.

How did you come up with the idea for your current story?
I grew up reading a lot of comics and being into superheroes. The primary reason I got into writing was so I could create my own heroes, people who fought hard to overcome impossible odds and dangerous adversaries.

Are there some stories tucked away in some drawer that was written before and never saw the light of the day?
No. At least not yet. Everything I’ve ever written and completed was for some reason or another; whether it was my first book Chaos Company or short stories I’ve written in high school or college. I like to write knowing that someone is going to take a look at it. I think if I keep something tucked away I’m denying myself to grow as a writer.

Tell us about your writing process. 
I’m a fan of working on stories piece by piece. I always try to write at least write three or four pages a day. Writing large blocks at a time usually isn’t my thing unless I’m really in the zone. Back when I was writing Chaos Company it took me three weeks to complete a chapter. But I remember vividly when I was working on chapters 17 and 18 (which both run about forty pages total) I finished it within a day. Right now I’m trying a new style where I work on two projects at once and switch between the two whenever I get stuck on one. This method has really helped me develop each story at a faster pace.

What is your favorite scene in the book? Why?
Chaos Company is compiled of 20 chapters. Chapters 17 and 18 are definitely my favorite. These two chapters are what lead to the final showdown with the protagonists and their opposition. Each team member in Chaos Company plays a critical role in these chapters; whether it’s protecting civilians against armed gunmen, chasing down the main antagonists throughout the city, or providing support and intelligence from a helicopter, everyone is at their best to insure the security of their country.

Did any of your characters inherit some of your own quirks?
Oh definitely. My closest friends say I have jokester qualities and I added that to Chaos Company team member Vincent Lockhart. He’s always joking around, even during sad or stressful situations throughout the story. I have a tendency to be single-minded when it comes to completing a task and I definitely added that sort of behavior to the characters Desmond Striker and Anna Young. For the main antagonist Liam King I wrote him as an arrogant jerk and if I’m being honest I can get that way when I’m practicing martial arts with my teammates.

What is your most interesting writing quirk?
The most common writing advice I think people hear is “write what you know”. I know video games and martial arts very well. People that have reviewed my book catch on to this right away when they get to the action scenes. I can’t think of any other writer whose scenes are influenced through video games and competing in martial arts tournaments.

Do you read? Who are your favorite authors and how have they influenced your writing style?
I read. Not as much as I like but I do. Anthony Horowitz who wrote the Alex Rider series is my favorite author. His take on combining action, thriller, and science fiction were major influences for me as a writer. I also am a huge fan of Robert Kirkman and Jay Bonansinga’s Walking Dead novels. The character development and dialogue in that series helped me shape how I wanted my characters to interact with one another.

What is the best piece of advice you have received, as a writer, till date?
The best advice I received so far was from my college professor who actually wrote a children’s book for Disney. He told me that every day I need to either write or promote my writing. I live by those words every day. If there is a day that I’m not writing it’s because I’m putting time to submit to publishers, agents, and book reviewers and bloggers. If there is a day I’m not doing that I am writing. Plain and simple. A day not developing or promoting my work is a day wasted.

What is the best piece of advice you would give to someone that wants to get into writing?
The best piece of advice I can give to a person getting into writing would be to exhaust every possible resource available to them. Writing isn’t the most difficult part to achieve success as a writer, but everything that follows afterwards. The editing, marketing, promoting is all part of becoming a successful writer. So is submitting to publishing companies, literary agents, and book review sites. If aspiring writers have people in their lives that can help them with this, or can afford to pay a professional to help them with these things I would advise them to do so. I’m not lucky enough to have any of these resources when I published Chaos Company, but with the help of book reviewers who like my work I’m now slowly building a network of those resources.

What would be the Dream Cast for you book if it was to be turned into a movie?
My dream list would be:
- Byron James or Aldis Hodge as Desmond Striker
- Karl Urban as Liam King
- Antonia Thomas, Meaghan Rath, or Naya Rivera as Anna Young
- Sam Witwer or Wenthworh Miller as Tyler Young
- Christopher Matthew Cook or Steve Howey as Cameron Wilson
- Brenda Song or Greta Lee as Kiyoko Hinori
- Colin Donnell as Vincent Lockhart
- Matthew Lewis as Jacob Hayes
- Meryl Streep as President Jennifer Grey
- William H. Macy as Secretary of Defense Thomas Hopkins
- Victor Garber as Professor Henry Wilbert
- Christian Kane as Mercenary James Westfield

If you were to be stranded on the famous deserted island, what three things would you carry?
- A knife or sword
- A backpack full of camping equipment
- A thirty pack of Dog Fish Head 90 Min beer

How do you spend your free time? Do you have a favorite place to go and unwind?
I mostly spend my free time at hitting the gym, going to cardio kickboxing class or tae kwon do class, or playing video games with friends while listening to music. My favorite place to go and unwind after a tough week is a speak-easy themed bar called Humming Bird to Mars. The place is amazing. Dim lights, live piano music, and wonderfully mixed drinks. It’s a grace place to go on a date or just hang sit and hangout with some friends.

Can you share with us something off your bucket list?
Sure. In fact, I’ll give you three.
- Compete in a martial arts competition on a grand stage
- Participate in an action film, whether it be acting, directing, or writing for the film.
- Go skydiving with a parachute and another time with a wing-suit

Tell us three fun facts about yourself.
- In 2011 I came in second place for the Mr. Delaware beauty pageant.
- From March 2013 to June 2014 I competed in 6 Tae Kwon Do Tournaments received 1st places honors in all 6 Tournaments for sparring.
- I got to sing on stage with a South African band this past spring.

What do you have in store next for your readers?
I’m working on two stories at once right now. The first being the follow up to Chaos Company. In the sequel readers will see how the team has adjusted to the events after the first story and be surprised by some of the individual member’s actions. Readers will also be introduced to new adversaries that will challenge Chaos Company both physically and morally. The second story I’m working on is an action-packed thriller that I’m keeping very close to the vest until I get the first draft done. I’m having a great time writing both and hope to release one of them by the end of the year.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with your readers?
I just want to say thank you for allowing me to conduct this Q&A. Also, I want to thank everyone that has shown their support since I released Chaos Company; whether it was through downloading it during the free promo, purchasing the ebook, reading and/or posting reviews, or even just taking a look at preview on amazon. I really appreciate it.
One more thing, if anyone follows me on twitter and direct messages me their email I’ll send them a free copy of Chaos Company in exchange for an honest review. I’ll be doing this until Sept 1st. My twitter handle is: https://twitter.com/Chris__Slayton

About the Book:

The highly effective team of genetically enhanced soldiers code-named Chaos Company has returned to the United States to be commended for their bravery. While on leave the team finds themselves at odds with the highly dangerous mercenary Liam King, who has been contracted to assassinate President Jennifer Grey. Chaos Company thwarts Liam’s attack, but at the cost of their team leader's life. 
With their leader killed the team looks to Corporal Desmond Striker to guide them in a hunt for Liam. During their hunt the team will find themselves in the cross-hairs of a private military company and have their abilities pushed to their limits. Before Chaos Company finally comes to blows with Liam they will discover that their greatest threat is a leader within their own country. 

No comments:

Post a Comment