Saturday, June 11, 2016

Straight from the Mouth of G.A. Minton, Author of TRISOMY XXI


From his early childhood, G.A. Minton has always been a diehard fan of science fiction and horror. Whenever a scary movie was playing down at the local theatre, he was there in attendance with his friends, loudly screaming in terror alongside them. G.A. enjoys many hobbies, but the game of golf is one of his favorites, having lettered on his high school golf team. Besides writing, he also enjoys reading, traveling, fishing, swimming, snorkeling, working out, listening to hard rock music, and watching great movies—especially those genres that encompass horror, science fiction, mystery, and comedy. G.A. is married, and lives in Texas with his wife, a son and daughter, and two Bengal cats.

Strangely enough, it was only after G.A. was rear-ended by a drunk driver and suffered a closed-head injury, that he developed a newfound passion for writing (even though this story has the makings for a cheesy Stephen King horror novel, it is nonetheless true—he is now called “the savant horror writer” by his friends).

G.A. penned his first novel, Trisomy XXI, which oddly enough also has 21 chapters, in only three months. He begins with chapter one and writes in a freestyle manner—almost in a stream of consciousness—using no outlines, formats, or templates to assist him. The narrative flows freely from his vivid imagination, creating a thrilling tale of terror that is formed from an ordered sequence of events.

After his devastating car accident, G.A. suffered from both memory loss and problems communicating with others, which frustrated him to no end. After numerous visits with the neurologist and weeks of taking medication used by patients afflicted with Alzheimer’s Disease, G.A.’s brain slowly began to mend itself. But now, after completion of the healing process, something was very different. G.A. noticed that he had developed this overwhelming urge, this compulsive drive to put on paper a story that had formed de novo in his mind. That’s how Trisomy XXI was born. One could surmise that the damaged neurons in G.A.’s frontal cortex had rearranged themselves into a different pattern, thereby enhancing the creative elements in his brain. God only knows . . .stranger things have happened!

G.A. has recently completed his second novel, a dark, supernatural tale of horror that takes Good vs. Evil to a whole new level. Currently, his brain is busy at work, meticulously processing the text for another story of the macabre—one that will both entertain and horrify its unsuspecting reader!


Thanks for letting us interrogate you!  Can you give us a go-for-the-gut answer as to why you wanted to be an author?

I really didn’t have much choice in the matter—destiny made it for me! To make a long story short, a few years ago I was rear-ended by a drunk driver, which sent my car straight into a concrete wall, completely demolishing it—I was indeed fortunate to have survived such a horrible accident! As a result of the devastating car crash, I sustained a closed-head injury, which not only adversely affected my memory, but also posed problems with my abilities to communicate with others. After weeks of seeing a neurologist and being on medication used to treat patients suffering from Alzheimer’s Dementia, my damaged brain slowly healed itself. But after my recovery, I noticed that something was very different now. I had developed a newfound passion for writing, an overwhelming urge to pen a story—resulting in the birth of a new and extraordinary novel, TRISOMY XXI. Apparently, the scrambled neurons of my frontal lobe had rearranged themselves into a different matrix during the healing process, thus enhancing the creative processes of my brain. Let me tell you that this entire experience has been very strange indeed—I’m just along for the ride!

Tell us (we won’t tell promise!) is it all it’s cracked up to be?  I mean what are the perks and what are the demands?

So far, I have thoroughly enjoyed my journey as an author. Writing is very demanding, and it requires discipline, but in my humble estimation, the end product is well worth the time and effort required to attain it. Just being able to put your thoughts down on paper, creating an entertaining story that can both be shared and enjoyed by others, will give you an adrenaline rush that no amusement park ride can even come close to. To me, that is what’s great about being an author! Probably one of the more difficult/demanding tasks associated with writing a book is the marketing and promotion that goes along with it.

Which route did you take – traditional or self-published – and can you give us the nitty gritty low down on what’s that like?

TRISOMY XXI is published by World Castle Publishing, a traditional publishing press. I chose to traditionally publish my novel because I believe that a royalty-paying publisher is willing to invest their money in a book that is not only well-written, but also has a storyline that will catch the attention of those readers willing to purchase a particular book. A traditional publisher is in business to make a profit, so I felt that my book had the best chance of attaining success through their professional editing, financial backing, and marketing support.

Nowadays, it is very difficult to get your novel accepted for publication by a traditional publisher, especially considering the fierce competition involved. All authors have experienced their fair share of rejections by publishers, a reason why many choose to self-publish their own books. I was extremely fortunate in that TRISOMY XXI was accepted for publication by three different reputable, royalty-paying publishers, thereby affording me a choice. I’ve read horror stories (no pun intended) about authors dealing with their publishing companies, so I am very fortunate to have selected World Castle Publishing as my publisher. So far, my journey into the world of book publication is going smoothly and has been very enjoyable. All things considered, I couldn’t have asked for a nicer experience! Since the publishing industry is very competitive and constantly changing, it is extremely important that you do your homework. Research any publishing companies or small presses that you are considering submitting your work to. Check to make sure they are reputable and that they will remain in business. Unfortunately, there are publishers and literary agents out there who are just lying in wait, ready to scam the unsuspecting author at the drop of a hat. Don’t ever forget the old adage, “a fool and his money are soon parted!” Approach all book dealings/contracts carefully, along with a healthy pinch of paranoia.

Tell us for real what your family feels about you spending so much time getting your book written, polished, edited, formatted, published, what have you?

I have been blessed with a wife and family who have been nothing but supportive of my writing endeavors, and we all share in the excitement and enjoyment that is associated with publishing a book that will be read by readers everywhere.

This is for pet lovers.  If you don’t own a pet, skip this question, but do your pets actually get their food on time or do they have to wait until you type just one more word?

We have two Bengal cats, Phinneas (a male) and Shamus (a female), who stay out in our large, screened-in back patio, where they always have enough food, water, toys, and room to run around in. When I take breaks from writing, I always enjoy spending some time petting and playing with them.

This is for plant lovers.  If you don’t own a plant, skip this question, but if you do, are they actually still alive?

We have some Aloe vera plants inside, so fortunately, they don’t require much watering. We do have an abundance of shrubs, trees, and flowering plants outside, which are easily maintained by our outside sprinkler system.

In writing your book, how did you deal with the phone ringing, your family needing dinner or your boss calling you saying you’re late?

For me, that hasn’t been a problem. I am able to balance my time writing with doing everything else. It’s all about how you manage your time, but I do have an answering machine!

What was the craziest or insane thing that happened to you in the book publishing process?

Trisomy XXI will be published by World Castle Publishing on June 6, 2016. So far (knock on wood), everything has gone very smoothly, so I haven’t experienced anything bizarre yet. But I have heard about some stories from other authors about their horrific publishing experiences.

How about the social networks?  Which ones do you believe help and which ones do you wish you could avoid?

I should know more about which social media networks work best after Trisomy XXI is released in June of 2016, but to date, I have been using Facebook, Twitter, PinInterest, Instagram, Goodreads, Amazon, along with several other internet advertising modalities to get the word out about my book.

Book sales.  Don’t you just love them (or lack of?)?  How are you making the sales happen for you?

Besides advertising on social media, I have hired a book publicist to help me promote and publicize Trisomy XXI.

What is one thing you’d like to jump on the rooftop and scream about?

I would like to encourage more people to read, especially the younger generations. With the advent of new technology, i.e. cell phones, iPads, and video games, along with television and movies, many people are now too busy to read books anymore. This is very unfortunate, because in my humble opinion, people who don’t read are missing out on a world of enjoyment and education—things that only reading can deliver. I just hope that everyone who is a horror, science fiction, or mystery fan will get the opportunity to read Trisomy XXI, and that they will get as much enjoyment reading it as I had in writing it. To me, that’s what’s cool about being an author—knowing that your readers enjoyed the thrilling story you wrote especially for them!

Okay, too much sugar for you today!  Here’s a nice cup of Chamomile tea and come on over and sit under the cabana and watch the waves roll in.  Now…can you tell us what you love about being a published author and how all those things above don’t matter because it’s all part of the whole scheme of things and you wouldn’t have it any other way?

Because of the strange happenings associated with the head injury I sustained, and the resultant ability to write creatively, it appears that my surreal experience is indeed a part of the whole scheme of things—I can’t wait to see what comes next! As a result, I have developed a passion for writing, which is now a labor of love for me. Writing has also allowed me to connect with others through my stories, hopefully stirring up those emotions that will bring excitement and entertainment to all of my readers. Penning a thrilling tale of horror provides  peace of mind, a sense of accomplishment, and teaches me patience—a necessity for any author who wishes to write well. An author must always remember that “The pen is mightier than the sword!” Another exciting part about being a published author is the multiple 5-Star reviews that Trisomy XXI has received even before its release. My goal in writing Trisomy XXI was to produce a thrilling tale of mystery, horror, and science fiction that would mesmerize, enthrall, and horrify its reader. If readers do derive enjoyment from Trisomy XXI, and are unable to put it down, then I will have accomplished my mission!

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