Hello, and welcome to another edition of Lisa Burton Radio, the only show that brings you the characters from the books you love. I’m your host, Lisa the robot girl, and today we’re going to talk about Craig’s new book–. Hold that thought, we have an early caller.
“Hello, caller. You’re on the air with Lisa. What’s on your mind, honey?”
“Oh, hey… I’m on? This is live? Wow, this is so cool — I love Craig’s books — wait, is he there? Probably busy, right? That’s okay, I love girls and robots, too. I mean robot girls. Uh, I guess I’m trying to say I’m a big fan… Anyway, I’m Drake Stevenson. I’ve been wanting to call in for a while — long time listener and all. I guess I’m calling tonight because I have this weird problem. It’s kind of a girl problem…uh…wow, that sounded so lame…”
“That’s all right, Drake. Tell us a bit about yourself, and maybe we can come up with some solutions for you.”
“Where to start? My family — the Stevensons — we just moved to this tiny town in the middle of nowhere — Centralia? Yeah, you’ve never heard of it. Anyway, my dad had this heart attack back in the big city where we lived — he was a big-shot corporate lawyer, but now he has to take it easy, so he moved us way out here to run the biggest and oldest cemetery in the state. It’s been in the family for a long time — the graveyard, I mean, not the state…we’ve been in the state a long time… Anyway, I even help out — graveyard shift — uh, literally. I work nights here, after school…Okay, I’m rambling again. Sorry, Lisa.”
“Okay, the night shift at the graveyard sounds kind of creepy. How old are you again?”
“Sixteen. It’s not that creepy. Not usually. Not for me. You see, I’m not exactly like other boys my age. I have this, uh, thing. Oculocutaneous Albinism Type 1. Some people call me an albino, but I prefer ‘a person with albinism’. It means my eyes are super-sensitive to light, and it’s difficult for me to go out in the sun without crazy amounts of sun screen. My outfit is pretty cool, though! It’s as if I were Doctor John Griffin in H.G. Wells’ The Invisible Man, even though I kinda based the look on the anti-hero Rorschach from Alan Moore’s Watchman. What can I say? I’m a geek as well as a ghost.
“Ghost, that’s what a lot of people call me, especially my sister Brie… Anyway, so I met this girl. Actually two girls. It’s why I’m calling in. You see, I met this really cool girl — Sasha Morris. She’s the principal’s daughter and the only girl who’s ever spoken to me who isn’t also related to me. She invited me to this club, and we’re working on this video game together, it’s gonna be called The Graveyard Girl and the Boneyard Boy…Cool title, huh?”
“Sure. Spooky and indie.”
“This is where things get spooky, for real, Lisa. See, I met this other girl, Scarlet, but she’s…uh… Well she’s sorta different, too. Like me, I guess. Well, not exactly like me… She has this thing about her. A condition…umm…”
“It’s okay, Drake, you’re among friends here.”
“A ghost. I met her at the graveyard…where I work? So, um, yeah. There’s that…”
“That’s rough. I mean, a human and a ghost? Are you sure Scarlet isn’t using you to get the justice she’s seeking?”
“Oh my God, you totally get it. I mean, yeah, that’s exactly it. There was this accident, before I moved here, and no one will talk about it. I can’t figure out if Scarlet was involved, but I’m totally starting to freak about all this. I mean, what if someone killed her? And her grave is totally blank, except for two photos of her encapsulated in glass. It’s so weird. She doesn’t remember much about being alive. Lisa, I think she was killed. I think Scarlet was murdered by someone, and NO ONE is talking about this!”
“Have you told anyone about this? Sasha?”
“That’s where things get complicated. Sasha’s real, you know? Living. She’s super sweet. I don’t want to hurt her. I want to tell her about Scarlet, but I think I’m…falling for Scarlet. Oh God, did I just say that on the air?”
“Not for nothing, Drake, but lots of high school boys would be thrilled to have two girls to worry about. It doesn’t sound to me like your albinism is holding you back at all. Think about which girl it would be easier to take to the summer carnival, or to watch the fireworks on the Fourth of July. Both nighttime activities, I might add.”
“I wish that were true, Lisa. But I’m not just different, I am Different. Other. I’m the ‘creepy guy’ small kids cross the street to avoid. The ‘super pale dude’ that no one invites to the party. Before I met Sasha, I just played video games and read comic books in my bedroom. My sister Brie, she’s completely psycho. We’re total opposites. Cheerleader squad, prom queen, all that stuff! She’s tried to kill me several times. She once locked me outside at noon during a heatwave. I was six years old! This other time, she changed all the bulbs in my bedroom for UV daylight bulbs. She’s Joker to my Batman. I’m serious, if you look up Brie Stevenson, you’ll find her under CRAZY.
“Anyway, right now there’s this one jock, Chase Chesney, and he’s making my life hell at school. He’s obsessed with Brie, wants to date her. He bugs me about her daily since he found out we’re related. To make matters worse, Calvin Muller — he’s in charge of the video game project I mentioned — totally doesn’t like me hanging around Sasha. It’s weird, like he thinks she’ll say something to me. I overheard them talking one time, and I think he might know something about this whole accident thing…He’s super paranoid. I don’t trust him…”
“They tell me high school is like that sometimes. The phones are lighting up, maybe one of them has a solution for you.
“Hello, caller. You’re on the air with Drake and Lisa. Do you have a suggestion for Drake?”
“What. The. Actual… Drake? Where are you? Mom and Dad are practically murdering each other at the house, and you’re calling into some dumb talk show? What are you even talking about? Did you say something about ghosts? Holy crap, don’t enough people think you’re a freak without broadcasting the fact coast-to-freakin-coast?
“Who the hell is this Lisa robot anyway — your girlfriend? Oh my God, lame! I swear, if people find out we’re related because of this, I’m going to kill you. Not that any one cool is ever going to listen to some stupid show about some stupid robot—.”
“Hold please, we have another caller… Whew! Sorry about that, Drake. Are you still there?”
“The Psycho Fairy strikes again. Sorry, Lisa. But at least you see what I’m up against here. It could have been worse, I think she’s having an ‘up’ day. She takes meds. Lots and lots of meds.”
“I think we all understand after that call. We’re getting cramped for time here. Do you have any last thoughts for our listeners today?”
“Thanks, Lisa. You’ve been awesome. Bro-fist Craig for me if you get a chance! As for me, I guess I’m just trying to make the best choice here. I don’t want to hurt Sasha, but Scarlet… I have to help find her killer, Lisa. I have to help her. Scarlet is alone, totally alone. I know how that feels. Look, I don’t know how all this is going to turn out… Just wish me luck, okay? I feel like I’m going to need it.”
“You can learn more about Drake and how he tackles several of his problems in the book The Graveyard Girl and the Boneyard Boy, by Martin Matthews. I’ll post all of the pertinents on the website after I go off the air.
“Help a robot girl out, would you? There are some sharing buttons on the website, and if you use them, an angel gets its wings. I’m pretty sure Martin and Drake would do it for you, when your character appears on the next Lisa Burton Radio.”
Blurb: 16-year-old albino Drake Stevenson lives a life alone in his world of video games and comic books, dreaming of one day saving a real princess. But fantasy becomes reality when his lawyer father suffers a heart attack, and the Stevensons are forced to move to flyover country in order to take up the family business: Stewardship of the oldest and largest cemetery in the state.
There, among the weeping angels and willows of Centralia Cemetery, Drake meets Scarlet, an unusual girl who needs his help to find her killer.
Complicated by his albinism, a mentally unstable sister bent on high school domination at any cost, and a jock with a deadly secret, Drake sets out to find the shattering truth about a murder no one will speak of, to help a girl no one can see.
Black Rose Writing Purchase Link: http://www.blackrosewriting.com/childrens-booksya/thegraveyardgirlandtheboneyardboy?rq=the%20graveyard%20girl
Author Bio: Martin Matthews is an expat from England, Great Britain. After living in California for many years, he now lives in Central Illinois with his beautiful wife, amazing son, and a grumpy, old cat named Winston.
Martin began his writing career as a child, storyboarding Sonic the Hedgehog comic books for his family. Later, he progressed to writing Star Trek fan-fiction before attempting his first novel Merlania at 16 — a 200,000 word science-fiction epic. He’s been writing novels and short stories ever since.
Martin holds degrees in Art and Design, Graphic Design, and Computer Information Science. When he’s not writing, he can be found producing music, art, and fried rice.
My website: https://martinmatthewswrites.com