Kicking off a new week with author Craig Gaydas. We’re chatting about his sci-fi novel The Cartographer.
Welcome, Craig. Please tell us al ittle bit about yourself:
I was born about a million years ago in New Brunswick, NJ. Currently most of my time is spent managing materials within supply chain for a Fortune 500 company. I do rope off my spare time accordingly to dedicate writing the next book or at the very least storyboarding for one. I currently live in Jacksonville, Florida with my son and the voices in my head enjoying the sun, surf and fishing while still finding time to cram as much pizza down my gullet as humanly possible.
Please tell us about your current release.
The Cartographer is the first book in a trilogy.
What inspired you to write this book? I was always a huge Star Wars fan and my desire to write a “Space Opera” style book was always a life goal of mine. I prefer writing books that are designed to be more “in your face” but The Cartographer challenged me to create characters defined not by emotional or ideological difference but with physical and cultural differences as well. I wanted the read to visualize exotic aliens from far off locales, almost like a graphic novel of sorts.
Excerpt from The Cartographer:
The creature wore something like a scuba suit without the helmet, and it glistened as if he just emerged from the pool in the corner. It slipped a three-fingered appendage into the folds of its suit and retrieved something that looked a switchblade. I couldn't see it clearly, though, because his huge frame blocked the light in the room. It pushed a button but instead of a blade, a twelve inch long light extended from it, making a popping sound like a cork from a wine bottle. I would have laughed at the absurdity of it all, but my face was a frozen mask of fear. The creature reached over and sliced through my lifeline with ease.
"Hey the rope gave out, are you ok?" I heard Sam call out. Even though he was no more than forty yards from my location, at that point in time he might as well have been forty miles away. I was too frozen in fear to respond.
The beast looked toward the source of the voice and I prayed that Sam would stay put. The creature grunted and picked me up by the tattered rope ring before I had a chance to react. Its dark, beady eyes bored into my soul and he held me up like a snagged fish. Withdrawing a syringe—one that looked bigger than any I had ever seen—he held it in front of my face. Instead of a vial it contained an empty hour glass, surrounded by a gold-colored metallic sheath. At the end of the hourglass sat a four inch needle point that shimmered like water reflected by moonlight. The beast hesitated briefly and the needle dangled ominously in front of my eyes. I wished more than anything that I could close them but my facial muscles were paralyzed with fear.
I started to think he second-guessed his decision to stab me but then he plunged the needle into my arm. Oddly, I felt no pain, only a warm tingling sensation. Slipping through the skin uninhibited, the wet sensation spread across the site of the injection. A clucking sound escaped from the creature’s throat as it moved in to look closer.
I started to lose consciousness and tried to call out to Sam, but the only sound that came out was a choked gasp. My tongue became ten times too big for my mouth and my throat felt like I had gargled with sand. Darkness enveloped me as I slipped from consciousness.
This is Nathan Chambers, signing off.
What exciting story are you working on next?
A steampunk fantasy titled The Dance of the Magi. It’s a mix of Game of Thrones, Mad Max, and Dune. Ok, I may be embellishing a bit but it will be highly entertaining, I guarantee it! Expected release date, December 2017.
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
Probably when I finished writing my Walking Dead fan fiction. I sat back and said to myself: “Craig, you might be able to do this!”
Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
I am not a full time writer. My full time job involves slamming my head into a keyboard, writing various inspirational quotes on sticky notes and plotting world domination from behind the iron walls of my cubicle within the confines of a Fortune 500 company.
What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
Every time I sit down to write I plug in my headphones and listen to Epic Music on Youtube.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A police officer. Scary, huh?
Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
For readers who enjoy stories that are in your face, unputdownable as one may say, give some of my stories a whirl. I write across many genres so chances are you may find one you like.
Thanks for being here today, Craig!