Welcome Chrystian to the Naughty Nights Press blog, it is lovely to have you here, as not only are you one of our very first authors to publish with NNP but also one of our first Horror Suspense authors.
NNP: So Chrystian for those who haven’t had the chance to get to know you yet, would you like to tell us a little or a lot about yourself?
Chrystian: I’m a seventeen year old Med student who simply loves to spend his free time writing suspenseful short stories and novels. But if you’ve read any of my other interviews, you probably already know that. So let me start by mentioning something I’ve never talked about. Writing has always been my passion, and since a very early age I’ve been writing not only novels and stories, but songs and poetry as well. In fact, a local upcoming band - with whom I have a special relationship - has decided to let me write some of the lyrics to their music; which is something I’m really looking forward to. Also, it’s always fun to mention that English is actually my second language and that Danvers Asylum is my first published novel.
NNP: What was your inspiration for writing Danvers Asylum and is it based on a real or fictional place?
Chrystian: It is based on a real place and located in Danvers, Massachusetts. The building used to be called Danvers State Insane Asylum . I believe it was torn down in 1998 or thereabouts. And as for my inspiration, well, it was really a combination of two things: a song titled Asylum by the band Disturbed, and an image that came to me one day while I was driving home. I saw a helpless man in a straightjacket being carried down a narrow hallway by two careless guards. The man was screaming and crying and pleading to be set free, but the guards seemed to be ignoring him completely. I saw a door covered in blood. I saw an old man taking pleasure in all these things, and urging the guards to hurt the helpless man. In the end, I saw enough to make me want to see the rest of it. So I knew I had to write it. It was really a matter of personal curiosity.
NNP: Can you tell our readers how it was that you were “found” as a writer?
Chrystian: Well, while I was working on Danvers Asylum, I had a few excerpts (and other short stories) up on StoryWrite - a website where upcoming writers can post their stories and receive feedback on the quality of their works. When Gina Kincade, owner of Naughty Nights Press read these excerpts, she immediately fell in love with them and asked if I could send her the whole novel. And after she read it, she offered to publish it through NNP! It was one of the best days of my life!
NNP: How does it feel now, two months down the track since Danvers Asylum was first released?
Chrystian: You know what? It’s quite unbelievable! Still, after all this time, it feels like something that came out of a dream. I still feel just as blessed as I did on the first day. Sometimes, hard work pays off!
NNP: What did your family say when you told them that you were going to be a published Author?
Chrystian: They were really supportive of me. Both my family and friends said they would buy the novel as soon as it came out, no matter how frightening or ‘over-the-top’ it might be. I’m really grateful for their unwavering support throughout this entire process.
NNP: Now we know that you look up to Stephen King as inspiration but one of the reviewers who read Danvers Asylum said and I quote, “Danvers Asylum is an invite to hell with a great enjoyment for the horror genre..a great new voice in horror fiction. In the same vein as Clive Barker, this book delivers.” How does that make you feel to be compared to Clive Barker?
Chrystian: Clive Barker is an excellent author. I’ve read a couple of his books and they are horrifying to say the least. I really can’t say anything other than I am honored to be compared to the likes of him, and I hope that that review will give people a clear sense of what Danvers Asylum is all about: pure, unrelenting horror!
NNP: Will your fans be able to expect another book from you soon and if so, can you tell us a bit about it?
Chrystian: They can most certainly expect another book in the near future! I’m working on my next novel as we speak and . . . well . . . that book is unorthodox in almost every way imaginable. It’s horror at its core, of course it is, and every person who has read the first few chapters has turned to me and said ‘whoa, this is too much man; this is the most frightening thing I’ve ever read’, but it has so many other elements and characteristics that I don’t think I can describe it as being simply “horror”. I think you’ll have to read it and see for yourself. Personally, I’m very exited about it!
NNP: Have you got some type of ritual that you stick to when you are writing?
Chrystian: Yes. A very simple one, really: I just write a thousand words a day. No more, no less. And I NEVER plan on what I have to write on a daily basis. I try to make it up as I go. It helps to keep the story interesting for both the reader and the author.
NNP: Is there anything Chrystian that you would say to writers who are hesitant about submitting work to a publisher?
Chrystian: The last thing you want to do is hesitate. If you feel you’ve written something that truly deserves to be acknowledged - to be read! - then DON’T hesitate to submit your work and receive the feedback it deserves. Take it from me: if you don’t put yourself out there, you’ll never find the recognition you deserve. Just go for it!
NNP: If you could say anything to your fans, what would that be?
Chrystian: I’d love to say thank you - first and foremost - you (the reader) are the reason I find the courage and determination to write every single day! And also . . . if you enjoyed Danvers Asylum . . . you’ll adore the next book! I only wish I can finish it in time to share it with all of you! Thanks for reading, and enjoy your nightmares!
Thank you so much Chrystian for joining us here today. It is such a delight to get to know one of our Naughty Nights Press Authors and I am sure our readers have learned a lot more about you. Good luck with your future endeavors and we hope to have your happy, smiling face, gracing our pages again, in the not too distant future.
Links To Chrystian Marrero:
DANVERS ASYLUM CAN BE PURCHASED
THROUGH THE FOLLOWING SITES:
SMASHWORDS: Use the code word HC96G to purchase your copy of Danvers Asylum and receive a 20% Discount. This discount is available until September 8th 2011
AMAZON: Available on Kindle
Can you handle a stay at Danvers Asylum? Insanity is the only way out!
Welcome to Danvers State Insane Asylum, home to some of the most demented men and women in the country. Doctor Eugene Charles - head of the asylum and manager of its inner workings - has seen his share of insanity in the eyes of every patient residing behind the walls of his asylum. But the newest addition to his facility will redefine the meaning of insanity once and for all. John Stephenson, an American writer of horror/fiction, is about to publish his latest creation and the haunting, subliminal messages that go along with them. His books are the works of a madman and the hidden verses within them will change the lives of whoever reads them . . . including yours.
AN EXCERPT FOR THOSE WHO ARE GAME ENOUGH TO READ IT!
The man with the golden mustache bent over and grabbed John by his feet, clutching the ankles with hands of an angered man hiding the subtle hint of fear hovering over his thoughts for a mere instant and urged the “newbie” to take hold of the unconscious man’s arms and lift him. Both men grunted heavily as they lifted John Stephenson up in the air.
“This guy’s heavy!” the rookie complained.
“Sure is. He doesn’t look like it, though.”
John’s body swung from side to side like an old, ragged hammock waving through the wind as the guards marched through the empty hall of the grand facility. Distant screams were echoing all around them, bouncing off the walls and creeping into the ears of those unfortunate enough to roam the deadened corridor leading into the facility’s West Wing; a special part of the establishment for a special kind of person.
“They say dead bodies lose a fair amount of weight after a while, but I’ve always thought the quite the opposite. They actually seem to put on a little bit more weight just before they start to rot – at least three or four pounds – and it works just as well for unconscious bodies. It’s as if their souls become… denser; sort of heavier, by the minute.”
As the two men made their way through the narrow and seemingly endless hall holding on to a battered middle-aged novelist by the name of John Stephenson, the screams surrounding them focused on the west. The unsettling shrieks of terror and pain were coming from the depths of the very direction in which they were headed. At the end of the corridor there were two iron doors blocking their path. They were really old, perhaps almost as old as the building itself and yet they held the most important job within the whole facility. Beyond these imposing iron doors lay the unthinkable – a special place for special people. That’s where they were taking John Stephenson – the tremendously feared West Wing of Danvers State Insane Asylum.
Haunting images of lingering death and perpetual sorrow plague the mind of whoever disturbs the macabre domain of the asylum’s West Wing, distinctively enveloped by the feeling of extreme human suffering and its surreal resemblance to some kind of emotional torture chamber. It is the one part of the entire facility that is best left alone. Ignorance is bliss when it comes to that section of the asylum.
Suddenly, the vibrant screams of those locked away beyond the rigid iron doors were degraded and silenced by the monotonous and irritating sound of a wretched rattling released by the guards’ rusty key chain, announcing their arrival to the tune of little metallic, golden keys rubbing against each other through an abrasive choir of intimidation.
The prisoners of the West Wing knew all too well the nature of that sudden visit by the guards. They only received three visits a day and this one wasn’t a regular. The first one usually took place about an hour after dawn, which was followed by a second mid-day visit. Then, right before sunset, the doors would open for a third time and they’d receive their final meal of the day before being locked away and left forgotten until the early rays of light of the following day would liven the hall with its benevolent presence.
But this time the doors were opened off schedule, which they knew meant either someone had been chosen for a much dreaded trip to the third floor, or a brand new inductee was about to grace the family of the damned. The latter seemed to make more sense to them all, and so they waited patiently for their chance to greet the newcomer through the bulletproof glass of their respective iron doors.
As the uniformed duo made their way through the narrow hallway of a place that felt haunted to all who dared intrude, they discovered something odd within one of the rooms.
It was a long and narrow hallway with small, rusty doors on both sides of it. Ten doors to the right and ten to the left; all separated by no more than a twelve-foot gap between them. They were all padded isolation rooms meant to contain the so-called “extreme” patients with great help from the infamous straightjackets they all wore inside. The compressed and overly private interiors of these deadened chambers gave them a very unique feel; they seemed to be little cubicles of grief and despair.
“What the fuck is that?” the brown haired novice guard shouted in shock.
“Over there; third door on the right. Is that blood?”
“Oh shit! I knew this would happen.”