Tonight I made up the cover for book 2, The Hunt, so all the graphics are ready to go for its launch. Now I just have to keep plugging away at the book until it’s done. I’ll probably be taking a few days off from writing so I can get my reviews done for the next issue of Rogue Cinema and then get the new issue posted, but after that, I’ll be back at it with a vengeance.
I’ve added a widget over on the right side that has a progress report of where I’m at with the second book. Aside from the humor, this second book isn’t like the first book. This one is riddled with absolute carnage, some of it so over the top that it’s absolutely hilarious. I was even laughing as I was writing it. I can’t wait to get this thing finished and get it out there. I still have a long way to go, but I’m working hard on it. This one scene I wrote tonight with Tina and Sarah, it was like Lucy and Ethel meet The Evil Dead. 😀
Anyway, things are progressing along nicely. I’ll keep posting updates when I have them. 🙂
Since I’ve been alone here, I’ve had a lot of time to work on things, and by things, I mean the next book. I just finished up chapter 3 with 12,071 words. I’m about to start chapter 4. Things have really gotten exciting! I might post some more teasers at some point as well, but I don’t want to give too much away too early on. 😉
Update to this last report:
It’s now 5am and I’ve been up writing all night (again). Chapter 4 is done, and it’s a very intense chapter. In the last 24 hours, I’ve pumped out 12,033 words in three full chapters. That’s crazy stuff right there! Up to 17,229 words total now. Not bad for literally a couple of days worth of work, huh?
Yes, that’s right, I’ve gotten started on the second book in the series, and so far I’ve finished chapter 1. While Origins was intended to introduce and develop the characters, as well as the overall theme of the series, The Hunt is getting down into the meat of it. There’s going to be a lot more action and a whole new world to explore as the four make their way into another dimension in an effort to rescue Jarrod’s family.
Here’s a teaser from chapter 1 of The Hunt. This should tell you a little about the kind of stuff that’s going to be going on in this book.
“Do we have everything?” Jarrod asked as he threw a large duffel bag into the back of Derek’s truck. They’d decided to take Derek’s truck this time around, because Sarah’s car was too small to hold them, their luggage and all the gear.
“I think so,” Derek replied, going over a checklist they’d made. “Camo gear, bitch beaters, tasers, stun guns, a hunting bow and arrows, hunting knives, that dagger Jack made, gas masks. chains, leather belts, survival kits, first aid kits, flashlights, backpacks, personal stuff… Yeah, I think…no, wait. There’s something else I picked up for us. Crap, I don’t wanna forget those. Just a sec.”
Derek ran into his garage, and then came running out with an armful of small, metal canister looking things.
“What are those?” Jarrod asked, looking at them curiously.
“Well, remember how Patricia said we should burn the bodies to cover up the fact that they’d been murdered? Well that’s what these are for. They’re those little torches that chefs use. I figured regular sized torch bottles would be too big and heavy to carry, and would be more than we need anyway. These’ll do the trick just fine and they’re a hell of a lot smaller.”
Duane L. Martin grew up in Northern California, and later moved to Boise, Idaho, where he and his wife Sharon currently live with their two border collies, Buddy and Rusty.
An avid reader from a very young age, he’s been inspired by a wide variety of authors, including Robert Asprin, Jody Lynn Nye, R.A. Salvatore, Ed Greenwood and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. It was the Hardy Boys novels that he discovered in the second grade however that inspired his great love of reading.
Duane spent years working as a PC Technician, but as much as he enjoyed working on computers, writing had always been his first love. After several failed attempts at writing full-length novels over the years, in 2013 he finally hit on a story that inspired him, and from that one little spark of inspiration, the Unseen Things series was born. The first novel, Origins, was first published in November of 2013, and was subsequently followed over the next three years by twenty more books in the series, as well as one other non-series standalone novel, with more to come in the future.
Aside from his writing, Duane is also a musician. He took his first bass guitar lesson in 1987, and has been playing bass ever since. He also plays some guitar, a little keyboard, and can play some basic drum rhythms without embarrassing himself. As he’s always been a great lover of music, he often has it playing quietly in the background while he writes.
Ok, that’s all the stuff that’s in the “About the Author” section of the books. Now, here’s the stuff I left out… (Warning: This is a bit long winded.)
My life has been full of experiences that have shaped not only my writing, but my view of the world. One of those experiences is the long distance relationship I shared with my wife Sharon for over a year. I was living with my family in Northern California at the time, and she was living with her family in Jerusalem, Israel. Falling in love with someone you can’t be with and only being able to share words on a screen with them or a voice on the phone really makes you appreciate what true love is. I even attempted at one point to pack up my belongings and move to Israel so we could be together, but unfortunately for various reasons that didn’t work out and I had to come back home after a few weeks. Leaving her was the hardest and most painful thing I’d ever done, but in the end I didn’t have any choice. In June of the following year she came to live with me in the U.S. and a couple of weeks later we were married, which opened up a whole lot of immigration garbage we had to deal with, but we managed to get it all taken care of somehow.
You’ll notice that the characters in my books share great loves with one another, and this is the reason why. I know and appreciate what it means to love someone to the point where they’re simply an extension of yourself, and you’re an extension of them, and I’ve given that type of love to my characters. Not just on a romantic level, but on a familial level as well. Is it realistic that they would all share those kinds of relationships? Probably not, and some readers who thrive on reading about other people’s conflict may not appreciate them as much as someone who’s tired of reading such things in other books and is looking for something a little different, but it would be far less realistic to have them in the situation they’re in with them all constantly fighting with and irritating one another. My characters chose to become the family they have. They chose to be together, and as such, they all love each other and get along quite well, which is why their relationships are what they are.
Many of the male characters embody my own personality and experiences, while still having very distinct personalities of their own. For example, Derek and Billy are very into working on cars and other mechanical things. I myself took shop classes in school, including metal shop, electronics and auto shop. Because of that, I had the knowledge to incorporate some of these elements into my characters. For example, in Infestation there’s a scene where Richard applies A/C power to a resistor and causes it to pop like a firecracker to demonstrate something to Jarrod. The only reason I even knew that was possible is because when I was taking electronics in high school, there were some guys in the class who used to do that for fun. It’s just one of many examples of how I’ve incorporated a wide variety of my personal life experiences into the stories and the characters. I’ve noted many others in the trivia section of this site, so you can check that out to find out more.
Something else about me is that I’m a great lover of smoking pipes. I bought my first pipe back in…my god, I don’t even remember how many years ago it was now, but I was visiting a friend of mine in Sacramento and we ended going to The Tinder Box at the mall there. That’s where I bought my first pipe and my first pipe tobacco blends. For quite some time I had stopped smoking pipes, but then about a year or two ago I took up the hobby once again, and I’ve been enjoying it ever since. I’m not one of those people who smokes several times a day. In fact, I don’t even smoke daily, but I do enjoy the occasional pipe in the evening, as I find it both pleasurable and relaxing.
Back in school, I was one of the fat kids. Was I the fattest kid in school? Not usually, but because I was overweight, I suffered through quite a bit of ridicule. Girls didn’t like me and I only had a few select friends because I wasn’t one of the popular kids in school or one of the jocks. I had played little league for a few years until I developed a problem in both knees with dislocating patellas, but after that I was unable to play sports anymore, and as such I continued to put on weight.
My sophomore year in high school I started working our with some free weights that my brother had, and I discovered that I really liked the feeling of my muscles tightening up the way they did. That inspired me to join a local gym and get into weight lifting. I started losing weight and gaining muscle, and by the end of my junior year two things happened. First, I felt a whole lot better about myself. I looked better, I’d bulked up with muscle and generally I just felt better physically. Second, I had a very distinct change of mindset. Thanks to someone at school who started asking me why when I would express certain opinions, I realized that often times when he’d ask me why I felt a certain way about something, I really had no answer other than that was the way I was raised to think. Once I’d realized that, it opened my mind up completely to experiencing new things. For example, I was raised listening to country music and I was very closed minded about ever listening to rock music. When I started listening to rock, I fell in love with the band Queen, which incidentally led to me meeting my wife on an IRC channel I was running for Queen fans back in the early days of the internet. She was a fan as well, so she came to the channel looking to chat with fellow fans. We hit it off right away and that was that. My love of Queen also got me into playing bass, and then later guitar as well. Being able to not only enjoy music but to immerse myself in it by being able to play it as well has enriched my life in ways you couldn’t imagine unless you’re a musician yourself.
I’ve always had a great love of technology as well. Computers, video games (I had an original Pong system), computer hardware, etc… I was a PC technician for eight years before I moved on to other things. Because I spent so much time on the internet, I’ve learned a tremendous number of things that may have at the time seemed rather unimportant, but they were things that I would later use in my writing. I’ve also learned a lot through having to look up things for my writing, such as how big of an explosion different amounts of C4 would cause and things of that nature.
In person, most would probably find me to be a rather boring person. I prefer a nice, quiet evening at home watching movies and smoking my pipe to going out and voluntarily placing myself amongst large crowds full of annoying people. I’m not the kind of a person who talks just to hear the sound of my own voice either, though I’m not the type to just lurk around either. I speak when I have something to say, and I’m not afraid to let you know my opinions on pretty much anything. I also have no patience for political correctness or hand-wringers who feel guilty about just being alive.
I’m just a regular guy. I’m not one of those snooty authors who tries to come off as being intellectually superior, nor do I write in flowery prose. I write in a way that I hope is accessible and real, so that everyone can enjoy reading my work.
I’m always happy to chat with anyone who’s read and enjoyed my books, so if you’d like to contact me, feel free.
That’s about it I guess. If I think of anything more to add to this, I’ll add it later on.
When Jarrod Grant was fourteen years old, some sort of a monster emerged from a portal in his room, grabbed his mother and little brother and then vanished with them back into the portal from which it came. Jarrod, whose father was a soldier that had been killed eight months earlier, was now left completely alone in the world.
Four years later, Jarrod is now a senior in high school. No one ever believed his story, and the therapists all said that he’d deluded himself into believing it because he couldn’t deal with whatever horrific events had caused the disappearance of his family. At school, he was treated like some kind of a freak and an outcast. That is, until he met Tina and Sarah – two girls who believed his story and decided that they were going to make it their mission to help him find the answers he so desperately needed.
They’re joined along the way by a new friend named Derek, who has a tragic past of his own, and a woman named Patricia who knows things that only a very few others in the world could even dream of. Together they’ll discover the truth of what happened to Jarrod’s family on that fateful night, and it’s a secret that will send them down a path that some of them may not return from.
Origins is book 1 in the Unseen Things series. It’s an introduction to the characters, as well as the overall theme of the series itself. It is currently available on Amazon and Smashwords, and will soon be available at the following retailers: Sony, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Apple, Diesel, Page Foundry, Baker & Taylor Blio, Library Direct, Baker-Taylor Axis360, Flipkart and Oyster.
The next title in the series will be called Unseen Things: The Hunt. It is currently in the process of being written, and you can look for its release during the first quarter of 2014. Check back for updates and teasers.