State of Horror: North Carolina will release on Tuesday, February 10th. To celebrate this event, Charon Coin Press will feature each of the authors included in the book over the next week leading up to the release date. Each feature will have a little about the author, the synopsis of their story in State of Horror: North Carolina, and a brief interview to get to know the person beyond the words. Today, we launch State of Horror Featured Author with author Margaret L. Colton.
Margaret L. Colton is an avid history buff, especially in the areas of Medieval Europe, Ancient Greece, and American History. In other words, she loves all things history. She has been imparting her historical knowledge on her students for the past 12 years, teaching not only historical subjects, but psychology as well. Her teaching career has brought her back to the same school she herself attended. Even though she has two Master’s degrees in education, writing and storytelling have been calling to her.
Before returning to writing after many years, she began—editing—recently started ML Colton Editorial Services. Currently, her short stories appear in State of Horror: New Jersey, State of Horror: North Carolina, State of Horror: Louisiana and others scheduled for publishing this year. Besides dabbling with some short stories, she is the Editor-in-Chief at Charon Coin Press. This year will bring the release of her projects entitled Paying the Ferryman where she serves as anthology editor, and Carpe Noctem: Truly, Madly, Deeply where she shares the editorial duties with fellow author, Siobhan Kinkade.
She has two beautiful daughters and a granddaughter who share her love of books and fun as well as some amazing friends around her. Even though she lives in Missouri and is a rabid Cardinals fan, she loves to travel to some of her favorite places like New Orleans, Florida and Hawaii.
State of Horror: North Carolina
Story Synopsis- “Tools of the Trade”
“Did he lock the door after he came in? He looked frantically over toward the door as his heart pounded harder, about to burst out of his chest. He was torn between checking the door and finding a weapon, anything he could use to protect himself. “
Hunter Davis is being hunted by a crazed killer at his house during a storm. We do not know who the would-be killer is, but his situation is dire. As Hunter is chased, we flash back to a more normal period in his life where he is working his job as a part of the restoration team at the Biltmore Estate. Hunter gets an apprentice, a young graduate student from Duke, named Josie. Hunter’s boss sets up the internship as a successful matchmaking effort between Hunter and Josie—the two fall in love. As the two get to know each other, each have issues from their past that they must face. Hunter’s previous girlfriend Amy died in an accident in the woods near Hunter’s home. When the state troopers show up questioning Josie about her missing ex-boyfriend Todd, the events of their unpleasant breakup are revealed. Todd may be stalking Josie. The story heats up as the two find ways to deal with the challenges facing their relationship as well as trying to survive. That is until, the storm comes and Hunter is fighting for his life.
Fun Facts- Margaret L. Colton
Charon Coin Press: What inspired your story in State of Horror?
Margaret L. Colton: I really wanted to do a story with the Vanderbilt mansion, Biltmore, in it somewhere. It is a fascinating place with a rich history nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains. The Vanderbilt’s even bought the town back in the day. So I had my setting and then this psychological thriller came to me—the terror of being chased.
CCP: Is there a reason this particular state appealed to you?
MLC: I think North Carolina is an underrated state. It gets outshined from South Carolina and Virginia. NC has its own varied history and is really a different kind of state. It’s interesting what is actually in the state like Duke University.
CCP: What do you look for in a horror story as a reader?
MLC: I want a really strong story. Something that will pull me in and take me somewhere. I don’t need gore, just a story to get into.
CCP: What is your favorite writing snack food?
MLC: If I am being good I would say a handful of almonds. If I am not being good, there is chocolate, lots and lots of chocolate
CCP: What other works do you have out there?
MLC: I have a story in SoH: NJ, LA and some other shorts I am working on
CCP: What is one important thing the readers need to know about you?
MLC: I’m a complete history buff, can’t get enough. I love the real stories…
CCP: Who are your favorite authors?
MLC: This is tough. For horror I have to go old school and say Edgar Allen Poe. For other genres the list is pretty lengthy and it’s tough to pick just one. I will say that I’ve been reading a lot of Indies and really enjoying the creativity. There’s some great talent out there.
CCP: What drew you to State of Horror?
MLC: Love the concept—it is so cool. Horror stories from each state.
CCP: Do you have a favorite state or state you are waiting to open?
MLC: I like the states I have visited, but really there is so much info to be found on each state, it is almost like a virtual tour. One of my favs already opened—Louisiana. My home state is opening—MO. After that I’m looking for Hawaii, Alaska, and Wyoming.
CCP: Music or no music when writing?
MLC: I cannot listen to music when I’m writing because I need to concentrate on what the characters are saying. Yes, the voices in my head would compete with the music or have a dance party and nothing would get done.