When I was in school, I loved to read and write. I had been born with a wild imagination and I allowed it to show in the things I would write about. I had always kept the stories to myself and most of the thoughts I had would be locked up in my mind, being afraid that I would be judged as even more of an outcast than what I already made myself out to be.
In ninth grade, my first year in high school, my English teacher announced that we were going to work on a brand-new idea for this year. She had asked us to simply take five minutes and think on a topic that we would like to write about. It didn’t matter if it was a story, poem, about a kitten, boyfriend, girlfriend, the future, or even about a dream one might have had.
I was excited, thinking we were going to take it, tear it apart, and rebuild it into a better example of our own work. I ended up writing a short story called “Charlie is Dead.”
At the end of the day, we had to turn it in. For the next two days, I actually pondered on the idea of some other details that I was going to add into the story to make it even more intense. Then, to my shock, the teacher announced that everyone in the entire school who had taken part in the project had their writings submitted into a contest and that all the students in the school were going to take part in voting for the best writers.
I begged my teacher to give me back my story because it wasn’t done. She declared that mine was one of the best ones she had read and it was too late. Long story short…I ended up getting third place out of over two thousand other students…and it was the last time I wrote anything for over 30 years.
It takes a special breed of a person to be able to handle the demands of driving a truck. Going from one point to another can be difficult enough but, when you add the super long hours of sailing down a road with just under 80,000 pounds of a killing machine under you, and having to reach impossible deadlines as you fight to survive and try to help others to stay alive around you can wear on your nerves. Fatigue can attack you at any time and, if you’re not careful, tragedy will strike. Seeing ghosts that aren’t there, images that disappear, animals and people that appear out of nowhere, and the unexplained feelings that momentarily overwhelm your senses can only be believed by other truck drivers. At times, things happen to confirm that God truly is watching over you. I’ve experienced many situation in which I should have, at the very least, been involved in a wreck – let alone escaped death – without a scratch on myself or my truck.
As a flammable tanker truck driver, I have to be more diligent about what is going on around my truck at all times since the haunting events of 9/11. The danger is still there. Other drivers and I have witnessed things that have not been pleasant. Others were downright unbelievable. Still other events were very humorous. Every day is an adventure out here.
One day while I was driving, I had gotten an idea for a short thriller truck driver story that ended up being called The Night Stalker. It had been dark out and I had just left a truck stop when my imagination had kicked in. Then, a few days later, the story “Andy” came to mind. I had been thinking about how hard it is to be married and having a career as an over the road truck driver, and what it can do to a family. To survive out here it takes a special strength, and an even stronger spouse, for a marriage to survive. Writing that story out ended up taking a completely different twist to a working relationship.
By the way, when I say ‘writing that story out,’ that actually means with pen and paper…old school. After writing several other ones out over a year and a half, I realized that I had been working on a series of short stories all involving the trucking industry. With every story being completely different from the others, and each of them having a crazy twist to them, I decided it was time to take a chance, and see where these stories would lead me.
With my brother, my mom, and the people at BookLocker, along with the rest of my family and friends backing me up, I took the plunge and completed a series called The Trucker’s Nightmare, with my first book of three being published and out on the market this past September. The next book, The Trucker’s Nightmare Continues, will be out soon.
About The Trucker’s Nightmare:
The Truckers Nightmare enters a darker side of the events that take place in the trucking world. Things can change drastically, literally without a moment’s notice. The simple task of delivering a load to a customer can very quickly turn into a series of events where one could possibly be facing his or her own demise.
The events in these stories are about the lives, hardships, and unexpected, life changing circumstances that occur in the lonely life of a driver out on the road. The fatigue, the stress, and the insanity that can consume the very life, and can even go as far as to destroy one’s family. The long hours, unexpected break downs, delays, and time away from home, along with the lonely nights and even longer days, test the men and women, bringing them to a point, in many cases, of no return. Many of them allow the insanity that consumes them to run rampant in their lives, while others become victims of circumstances, unaware of the consequences involved. Others become victims of their environment, not being able to have a say in what happens to them.
Each story in this series are each written with its own unexpected story line, along with twists to throw the reader off. 😉
Chris Hanly has been driving trucks for twenty years. His experience and the adventures he has gone through and seen has given him the ability and imagination in being able to write this book as well as the second book in the series, which will be released at a later date. He continues to travel around the country, writing stories in his free time while on the road and at home. Chris lives in Alabama with his wife Amelia and daughter Jetti, and son Trent, along with several pets.
This book is available from the publisher, BookLocker.com, as well as from Amazon, Walmart.com, BarnesandNoble.com, and many other stores. If purchasing from BookLocker, use this discount code when checking out to get 10% off: Backstory
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