From the 15th-19th March, my book ‘Samantha’ will be available for free in the Amazon Kindle Store.
“Samantha tells the story of a young girl forced into prostitution in the city of Liverpool. Can Sam’s love for Peter, a man she meets in a nightclub, save her? Or will Sam end her life in the murky waters of Liverpool’s Albert Dock?”
A theme running through my story, Samantha is that of evil. Barry (a pimp who owns an escort agency) drugs and rapes Sam. When she wakes he shows her pictures of the sexual abuse and threatens to send the photographs to Sam’s father unless Samantha agrees to work for him as a prostitute. Not wishing to induce another heart attack (Sam’s father has just undergone a heart operation) she agrees to work for Barry and enters a world of physical and mental abuse.
On discussing Barry’s personality with a close friend he remarked that I should consider endowing him with one redeeming feature or including in my narrative one act of kindness by Barry. I thought long and hard as to whether I should follow my friend’s advice, however Barry possesses no saving graces and I decided to portray him as the unfeeling psychopath that he undoubtedly is.
Barry possesses many of the classic traits exhibited by psychopaths. He is superficially charming (it is his charm which convinces Sam to accept a drink from him which unbeknown to her contains the date rape drug GHB). Barry has no conscience, he beats one of his girls, Tanya because she is unable to work due to being high on Crack and in the final chapter Barry attempts to kill Sam because she has had the temerity to tell him to “Go fuck yourself”. Barry is egotistical. In his world it is only Barry O’Connor who matters, the prostitutes he controls are mere means to his profit. Barry does not acknowledge that anyone other than him possesses feelings or if he does accept this, he shows no sign of caring about them.
To acknowledge that Barry is a psychopath with no redeeming features is not the same as saying that we can feel no empathy for him. In chapter 7 (http://newauthoronline.com/2012/12/18/samantha-part-7/) Barry has a nightmare in which he is, as a six-year-old thrown into a dark cupboard under the stairs by his mother. He bangs his head on the gas meter and is left bleeding there while his mother watches television. The terrible abuse which Barry has suffered as a child warps his view of women “they are all bitches and deserve everything that men do to them”. We rightly abhore and condemn Barry’s view of women and the abusive behaviour which flows from it. We can however understand (but in no way excuse) why Barry behaves as he does.
Barry is at bottom a thoroughly nasty piece of work. We can shed few tears when he meets his grizly end However had Barry experienced a loving childhood rather than one filled with abuse, would he have turned out as the cold hearted pimp he is trawling the streets of Liverpool for girls to entrap into prostitution? .
I feel bereft. Since December 2012 I’ve been working on my story, Samantha and yesterday (20 February) I completed the manuscript. For several months Samantha and the other people in my book have been my more or less constant companions. While walking to the station to take the train into work my mind has been busy thinking about the storyline and rehearsing dialogues. Suddenly all that is over, ends have been tied up and the story put to bed.
Since December the actors in Samantha have become real to me, they have lived in my brain and become part of my life. At a fundamental level I know that the persons in Samantha are mere figments of my imagination, however to write convincingly one must believe in the people you create, they do at some level take on a life of their own. When Sam is abused by her brutal pimp it is a mere will of the wisp, a nothing which suffers. Sam does however represent those who are forced into the sex industry against their will and, as such she is real. Her pain represents the suffering of actual sex workers who have been compelled to become prostitutes so, at another level Sam does, most definitely exist.
I said at the start of this post that Samantha has been completed. This is not quite correct. While Samantha exists in draft form on my blog (http://newauthoronline.com/2013/02/20/samantha-part-16/), It is my intention to edit the book with the view to publishing my manuscript as an ebook. During this process changes will be made although the fundamentals of the story will remain the same.
In order to promote my collection of short stories, The First Time and my forthcoming book, Samantha I have an author’s page on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/newauthoronline). Please like my page on Facebook. Many thanks, Kevin