Interview with Martin Shannon

Martin Shannon
I'm delighted to introduce you to another online friend this week - Martin Shannon, author of the Tales from Weird Florida series. The latest installment - Beaten Path - is out today!

Martin, welcome! When did you first start writing? And what made you start?
I first started writing in grade school. Thankfully, this was before the world turned color and prior to the internet, so none of those stories will see the light of day. Since that time I resumed again in 2016 when a health scare reminded me to “get busy living.”

What was the first full-length novel you ever wrote? (I realise this may not be the same as the first book you have had published!)
My first novel was “The Bone Line” which is currently available on Amazon. It was finally published last month. It’s the story I always imagined as a kid growing up in a sleepy beach town in South Florida. In my mind’s eye, there was always something more mysterious just beneath that simple veneer. The Bone Line is a middle grade adventure (I called it a STEM-venture) that dips its toes into those paranormal waters.

Your new book is just out. Tell me more about it?
Beaten Path is the third book in the five-part Tales of Weird Florida series. The book centers on our hero, Eugene Law, West Florida’s favorite Magician/Wizard as he navigates his new reality. Without giving away book one in the series, Gene is in rough shape due to some questionable decisions. In classic middle act fashion, our hero is “up to his armpits in alligators,” and not exactly sure which way is up.

What prompted you to write it?
Gene is a demanding task master. I have written over 500k words of his “family style” urban fantasy world of Weird Florida. Beaten Path was just the next step in an arc that shows us what it really means to make sacrifices.

What are you working on at the moment? Are there already plans for the next book after this one?
Yes, Bloody Deed (Book 4) and the finale, No Fury (Book 5) are done and complete, simply awaiting covers and launching. So, while Tales of Weird Florida is all wrapped up for now, I’ve been preparing a cyberpunk series that takes place in a flood-ravaged Miami. “Saturation Burn” should come out sometime after this pandemic stuff works itself out.

Where is your ideal writing space?
I am a word processor sort of guy. So, I use either a freewrite or an alphasmart neo2 to churn out the words. They are distraction free and let me do my thing without interruption. With that in mind I set them up in the guest bedroom and get to work each morning at 4am. When you have a family that’s the only time that’s quiet.

And now for some more random questions...
What’s your radio tuned to most often?
Amazon’s Modern Folk channel. I am a banjo player in my evening hours and love a good twang.

You’re stranded on an island. You can choose one of the following three things. Which do you choose and why?
1. Limitless supply of paper and pens.
2. A computer which will never run out of battery and which can access the internet, but you can’t post anything/get help via it, only read what others have put up.
3. An endless supply of loo roll.
I would take the computer, but only if it could be made of coconuts or something. You know, Gilligan’s Island style.

You can only wear one of the following colours for the rest of your life. Which colour do you choose?
Yellow. Orange. Green. White. Pink.
Who comes up with these questions? White—I’ll get markers.

Jason Bourne or James Bond?
I’ve always had a soft spot for Lara Croft 😛

Cats or dogs?
I’m allergic to cats, so it’s dogs for the win.

City or country?
Give me a cabin in the mountains for writing, or for impromptu horror movie material.

Real book or e-book?
Ebook! It’s a library in your pocket.

Fountain pen or biro?
I one time had a fountain pen blow up in my face. So, I’ll take option 2… or one of those tiny golf pencils.

Thanks very much for letting me bombard you with questions!

You can catch up with Martin at all of the following places:


And don't forget that right now, a group of us have put together a feast of urban fantasy for you to try on Kindle Unlimited (including Martin's book Dead Set). Just go HERE to see the full range.