Monday, November 15, 2010

John Stanton, Versatility Personified

John Stanton is nothing, if not versatile.  His published works are the 422 page tome, A Jesuit in Belize: The Life and Adventures of Father Buck Stanton in Nineteenth Century Central America and his paranormal fiction, The Truth About UFO's, Aliens, and All That. 

John talks about his books at his site:

This biography of Father William ‘Buck’ Stanton follows the life and times of a Jesuit missionary in turn-of-the century Central America. It paints a portrait of a gentle priest that traveled the world as an explorer, scientist, teacher and humanitarian. Though recently updated, the story was originally published in the 1920s and captures the coarse social attitudes of the day.

The reader gets an intimate look at a good natured explorer fluent in three languages that could kill and eat an alligator on his way through the jungle to teach children to read and preside over weddings. It is also a snapshot of a turbulent time in world history lost to the memory of recent generations.

And on UFO's:

Aliens from outer space don't exist and that really pisses them off. But now, the collective consciousness of the human race has given them awareness, technology and a strange agenda we don't understand. They have everything they need to breach humanity's tenuous veil of belief separating real from unreal and somebody’s going to get probed.

Cassandra Vega is a workaholic survivor of violence struggling against severe obsessive compulsive disorder. Her battle against her personal demons becomes ground zero in the battle against little gray people abducting earthlings. As the attack escalates, a group of oddball characters including a toilet paper salesman, a dominatrix and an Army General are drawn to the epicenter of the most dangerous threat the earth has ever faced.

The Truth about UFOs, Aliens, and all that is a surreal novel set in the gray area between sci-fi, comedy and self-parody.


Currently finished and seeking a publisher is The Lone Star Used Submarine Company, a wonderful tale of a man whose every touch turns gold to straw. He aspires to set up a business giving underwater tours, but in attempting to buy a used submarine, finds himself instead cheated by the seller, and on the run in an old submarine from several national navies.

John's current work in progress is The Dimensional Slacker, the story of Alden, a man with a mysterious ability to teleport, whose encounter with Cara and her foster-father, the mysterious former-great magician, Alexander, and his host of secrets, changes his life.  I am lucky enough to be in on the listening and editing to this story and am enjoying every minute.  John writes wonderful characters who come to feel like old friends, and as real as your own friends and neighbors, each with their quirks that make them endearing and memorable.

Alden knew that he was cursed but never understood the real difference between a gift and a curse until that night. He’d known he was different for a few years and had found a peace with it all. The excitement of being special had worn off and it turns out that the world was not a good place to be special anyway. The happiest people on earth were people who were just like everybody else. He was in college being trained to be like everybody else learning that there was no such thing as magic, that miracles had roots in science. Anything slightly magical was instantly swarmed with scientist taking samples, dissecting tissues and sticking cameras up its butt. Then the politicians would come trying to use it to sway public opinion, develop it as a weapon or have sex with it.

Alden could conceal his uniqueness but he couldn’t hide from it. It found him in his sleep in the form of a dream that everyone has. He dreamed that he was falling through the sky. The primordial human anxiety of falling bubbled to the surface as he slept tossing fitfully in his bed. Blue skies stretched around in all directions as he thrashed in the blasting wind. Suddenly, he was kicked awake as thin cold air punched him in the chest and sucked the breath out of him. The nightmare was real as icy condensations stung his skin with his flapping white boxer shorts the only protection from the terminal velocity. He gasped and choked desperately on the freezing air trying to find any traces of oxygen in the altitude. His skin started to burn from exposure and ice crystals began forming at the corners of his eyes. He flopped back in his bed with his cold skin dusted in frost as he gasped and coughed struggling to breathe. He got out of bed wheezing and stumbled onto the floor shivering in the fetal position.
 
In addition to writing novels and non-fiction, John does spoken word at local venues.  He has some perennial favorites about third grade bullies, strange encounters in parking ramps, flying monkeys, and meeting God in a bar, and continues to introduce new pieces.
John will be speaking and signing books this Friday, November 19 at Borders Books at The Shoppes at Arbor Lake, in Maple Grove, MN, from 5:30 onwards. 

He'll be appearing again at the Maple Grove Arts Center, 7916 Main Street in Maple Grove, MN, on Saturday, December 4, from 3pm to 7 pm.  Future appearances of his spoken word are planned for the Maple Grove Arts Center.  See the events page at Night Writers for details.

John is a scuba-diving enthusiast, and a native of Texas, now living in Minnesota.  Find out more about John at his site.

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