This sounds like a really interesting series. I’m interviewing C.E. Martin today to talk more about his “Stone soldiers” and writing in general. You can learn more about C.E. Martin at his Amazon Author page here: http://www.amazon.com/C.E.-Martin/e/B0089W99VC/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1
1. What made you want to be a writer?
The Destroyer series by Warren Murphy and the late Richard Sapir. Reading all their great stories was thrilling and made me start thinking of stories myself. That turned me wanting to write as a job instead of as a goof here and there. Not quite 30 years later, and thanks to digital self-publishing, that’s becoming a reality.
2. You have it appears to be nine book in your series, “Stone Soldiers.” This looks like a fascinating concept, having soldiers made of living stone. Tell me about that.
I’m always frustrated watching movies, shows, etc and reading books where normal people struggle against unbeatable, often Supernatural creatures. One of my favorite reversals of that is the movie “Universal Soldier”. While binge-watching Supernatural, the show, a few years back, it hit me the two concepts could be combined. Basically, the stone soldiers are special forces-types turned to living stone and given superhuman strength. The idea is that they are now immune to most harm that would kill a mortal. They don’t need to eat or breathe. They don’t bleed. Nerve gas, bullets and even bladed weapons (or claws) are useless against them. But since their universe is full of magic and monsters, other paranormals also fight alongside the men of stone. And despite their durability, the stone soldiers aren’t indestructible. I hope readers get shocked when I kill one off here and there. Even with supersoldiers there have to be some casulties.
3. What’s the latest book about?
Richard Murphy is a semi-retired, Hollywood PI who can see and speak to the dead–a type of character we’ve seen many times before. Murphy’s twist is that his partner is a ghost who used to be his flesh-and-blood partner. While on a job, Murphy witnesses a murder–committed by a full-blown centaur. He tells this to an online friend, who turns out to be a member of the stone soldiers’ Detachment 1039 unit. The leader of the team, an immortal soldier who’s been around since the 50s, and who represents the old-fashioned, pulp-styled characters of the past, heads West to investigate. Turns out this isn’t just a centaur with a penchant for beheading people, and the Stone Soldiers are deployed and tackle one of their toughest enemies yet.
4. What’s been your toughest challenge as a writer?
Finding the time to write. I’ve got two kids and a lot of chores. Until recently, I worked full time. Now that I’ve semi-retired, I’m hoping the extra two days a week off will help me turn out more writing.
5. Who is your favorite writer, and why?
Warren Murphy. He’s turning 81 next month and is still writing. He’s the co-creator of The Destroyer series, which has a blend of action, comedy and mystery that really resonated with me (#150 was released last year). His online persona and comments on social networking sites portray a guy that I could really get along with.
6. What are you working on next?
#10 in my series, titled “A Lucky Day to Die”. It’s going to reveal a haunted Las Vegas and a scheming witch trying to control the Strip through black magic and blackmail.
7. What kinds of research do you do for your writing? Any particularly strange topics?
I’m constantly researching monsters and myths and the origins of both. I also research real-world information, like calculating terminal velocity for skydivers, floorplans for buildings, and the history of places the stories take place in. Book 12 will have me revisting the Apollo program and relearning all the space program stuff I knew when I was younger. To answer your question though, every book has something strange in it, so I’m always on the lookout for the odd as potential story material. The oddest so far has to have been the Black Knight satellite I built book 5 around. Some very interesting theories there. Very X-files-like.
8. What advice do you have for other writers?
Write! The gatekeepers lost their power when Amazon opened the self-publishing flood gates. There are readers out there looking for what you want to write, you just need to find them and actually write that story.