WARRIOR WEEKEND: Craig Martelle

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Hello Space Cadets! Today, I wanted to introduce you to another author from my WARRIOR WEEKEND INTERVIEW SERIES. Normally I would update you about what’s going on in my life but I’ve nothing new so Craig took the time to write his own introduction!  Cheeky, isn’t he?

 

Craig Martelle:  I’m a lifelong daydreamer and student of human interaction. I have some degrees, but those don’t matter when it comes to telling the story. Engaging characters within a believable narrative- that’s what it’s all about. I live in the interior of Alaska, far away from an awful lot, but I love it here. It is natural beauty at its finest.

Craig Martelle

 

Without further ado, let’s get this interview cranking!

 

Tell me a little about your military service?

Enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1982 and eight years later earned my commission. I retired at the rank of Major after thirteen years of commissioned time. I was a Russian Crypto linguist at the outset, spending two years at the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, California. As an Intelligence Officer, I served all over the world, Japan, Korea, the Middle East, Russia, and Ukraine.

 

How do you feel that your military service has influenced your writing?

Most of my books have a Marine or a Marine-like character. I know the lingo, I know the mindset, and I carry those ideals to this day, almost fifteen years after I retired.

 

Do you think your military service, and more specifically your training, adds to the realism in your books?  If so, how?

It absolutely does. Combat scenes, fighting, and those things can easily be described if you’ve seen some good war movies on TV, but the emotions of the moment, the different personalities you’ll find on the battlefield, the sights, and the smells are the kinds of things that I believe I put into my work. The spurious thoughts of your life back home. The jokes one makes in life or death situations. It is very unique and a challenge to get right if you haven’t seen it for yourself.

 

When did you start pursuing your writing more seriously?

When I retired from the consulting business in September 2015. I was still way too young to sit at home and do nothing. So I sit at home and write instead.

 

Of all your work, which was your favorite to write?

I love my Cygnus Space opera. It flowed the best of all my books from the outset. It is good fun in the way that Star Trek is.

 

How many of your characters were inspired by your military service?

Many, of course, probably a quarter of the characters can trace to people that I met while serving in the Marine Corps.

 

How many of the scenes you wrote were inspired from your service?

I typed The End on my 21st book today, so trying to tally the scenes inspired by my military service? Too many to count. Nearly all the combat scenes, many times when a character is away and misses home, his girlfriend, those are all service related.

 

That is fricking awesome!!  One day I’ll get there.  But this is about you, so do you feel like your writing has served any therapeutic value for you?  Has it helped you process your experiences?

It has not. I enjoy writing and that is a value in and of itself.

 

If you could serve with any of your characters, who would it be and why?

I like the Nomad in my new series co-written with Michael Anderle. He’s a stand-up guy who is just a little better than everyone else. He uses that help people and others think of him as Sir Galahad from the Knights of the Round Table.

 

If you would want to avoid serving with any of your characters, who would it be and why?

Usually those people end up on the wrong end of lethal fire in my books. As my XO told me once, “Sir, you don’t suffer fools gladly.”

 

What are you currently working on?

This survey. Is this a trick question? The Terry Henry Walton Chronicles – Michael and I will have published five books in eleven weeks (first right before Christmas and the fifth by March 15th). My next project is the third book in my Cygnus Space Opera. I’d like to get that one done in March, so come April, I can concentrate on getting the next three books done for Terry Henry Walton.

 

How can people find you? [will insert what social media platforms with direct links]

E-Mail: craig@craigmartelle.com

Amazon

Facebook

Twitter

Website

 

If this convinced you to find out more, look up Craig Martelle.  I hope you all had a great time getting to know about Craig, don’t be afraid to say hello here or on his website.  If he don’t respond quick enough, bombard the friendly Marine with Army memes!  Mwahahaha!!

 

 

Until next time, stay frosty and don’t forget to keep your powder dry!

brown_bess

JR

 –> As usual, all images came from the Google’s “labeled for reuse” section or are screen grabs taken by JR Handley for use under the Fair Use Doctrine.

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World Building Wednesday: Pulp Speed Writing

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Hey Space Cadets, how’s everyone doing today?  I’m doing great, making progress towards finishing Operation Breakout this week and getting into the production cue for my editorial team.  When I know when we have a release date, you can bet I’ll let you know so let’s move on to more exciting topics.  Like I’ve mentioned before, I’m a huge fan of The Dead Robots Society Podcast because it has been very helpful for me.  The proprietors of that fine establishment are willing to bend over backwards to help, all you’ve gotta do is ask.  Preferably in the Facebook Forum! Why do I mention this?  Because it gave me the topic for today’s post.

 

Okay, so for today’s World Building Wednesday we are talking about pulp writing.  My goal when I started writing was to write genre fiction. I have no allusions that my work is high literature, or that it will ever be taught in a classroom setting. I am an unknown unashamed pulp writer, and all I want to do is tell entertaining stories. As quickly as I can, as often as I can.

 

Author, and one of our generations current pulp writers, Dean Wesley Smith defines pulp writers through several criteria.  You have to writes at least 1 million words a year, those words are words which are published. Obviously, if you run your own social media or blog you will write way more. But the only million words to count are ones that’re stories you sell. Another criterion of his was you have to write every day, for the entire year. I tend to like and agree with his approach.

 

But how does somebody do that?  Write so quick, published so much?  I know the first thing you have to do is adopt the Michael Anderle model.  You have what he calls a minimally viable product, which you get to market as quickly as you can.  What is a minimally viable product?  For me, or at least as I apply it on my own work, this means that I accept that the story is King.  I can’t obsess over every word, every sentence, or every paragraph.  At the end of the day, the stories keying in the rest is just details.  This means that when I finish a book, while I love the characters and the setting, I have to put it out of my mind and move on to the next story.  Because let’s face it, there’s always another story, another adventure waiting to happen.

 

 

Is this approach for everyone?  No, probably not, but writing, like life, is an individual journey.  I’ll save you the sappiness, and acknowledge that we walk that journey with friends and family, but in the end, we stand alone.  We are responsible for our actions, and ours alone. It’s a harsh reality that I learned in the Army, one that has followed me into my civilian life.  I think it was the sort of mentality which allowed our ancestors to face the unknown and wander into the sunset.  Maybe I’m wrong, only time will tell.  What about you, are you a pulp writer too?

 

 

Until next time, stay frosty and don’t forget to keep your powder dry! 

brown_bess

 JR

 

 –> As usual, all images came from the Google’s “labeled for reuse” section.

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