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Sept. 20, 2022

A New Life for Cesar

A New Life for Cesar

When Cesar, a young man from the streets, volunteers for the Navy during the Vietnam War to escape Mr. Mike, a gangster working for the Cartel, only to find out that he's fighting a battle on two fronts. Both will either make him stronger, or kill him before he reaches his 20th birthday. Learn about what inspired author Andre Lewis Carter to write his latest novel, Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea. Join me as I run solo to answer your questions to uncover what the story behind the story truly is.


We Discuss Things Like

  1. Facts about the Authors
  2. Aristocracy or Revolutionary Change
  3. Immigrational Stress
  4. The Final Request
  5. Character Inspiration
  6. Sergey and Mr. Mike
  7. Why Now?
  8. The Search for Cesar
  9. In the Navy
  10. Negative Character Traits
  11. Culture Shock
  12. Reliving Your Inspiration
  13. Marccella's Inspiration Corner
  14. Final Thoughts

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Transcript

Andre Lewis Carter

[00:00:00] Maccabee: Hello everyone, my name is Maccabee Griffin, I am running solo today because Miss Marccella had a doctor's appointment, but everything's good. And uh, it's gonna be pretty simple with this today. I'm not holding too much against our next guest because you know, the Army Navy thing. The only reason why I'm not is because of the fact that he was a Vietnam vet. So I have so much respect for these, these gentlemen and women that were part of this. There was a lot of different things going on back then comparative to anything as of today. There was a lot of heat, not only back in Vietnam, but a lot of it was still within the streets itself as well here in the states.

[00:00:48] So they have so much respect from me and the reason why I'm saying this is because the book that we're gonna be talking about with Mr. Andre Lewis Carter here is [00:01:00] called Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea. And it does take place around the Vietnam era. And it deals with a lot of different things that are coming up, but I'm not gonna get into it because I'm gonna bring in the Afro Cuban himself. Mr. Andre Lewis Carter, Mr. Andre, welcome to the show.

[00:01:19] Andre Lewis Carter: Thank you. I really appreciate you having me. And I, you know, you're you're Army, but you're good guy. So it it's cool.

[00:01:28] Maccabee: Well, I appreciate that. I appreciate that. So we always do this thing where we ask you just introduce yourself, but really wanna know something that we can't find about you on the internet.

[00:01:40] Facts About the Author

[00:01:40] Andre Lewis Carter: Ooh. Okay. Name's Andre Lewis Carter. In addition to being in the military, I was, I've also written the whole time that I was in the military. So I've been publishing things since '94. So poetry, short stories, and this is my first novel. I didn't put a lot of stuff on there about where I come from, that kind of [00:02:00] stuff. So I born and raised in Columbus, Ohio. Only been back to visit didn't live there. My wife's from LA and she said, oh no, they, we, we can't live here, honey. Okay. So,

[00:02:10] Maccabee: I can understand why. Yeah. I can definitely understand why.

[00:02:13] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. And, and that's another reason why I enlisted is to get away from ohio. So,

[00:02:19] Maccabee: Oh, I thought you were about to say the wife for a second.

[00:02:22] Andre Lewis Carter: No, that, that's why I'm not there so I could stay with the wife. Yeah.

[00:02:27] Maccabee: Ah, gotcha. Gotcha. Well, I thought what's funny is that when you go into the beginning of your book, mm-hmm right under your under your picture. There's a part of it that states that he is married to a very patient woman who occasionally tells dirty jokes.

[00:02:46] Andre Lewis Carter: Yes. Yeah.

[00:02:47] Maccabee: So this is one of the things I really like about you and the way that you had presented this is the fact that if you know that you have a good woman in your life.

[00:02:58] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. Mm-hmm.

[00:02:58] Maccabee: When she can just be [00:03:00] bad as you can be on literally anything and everything.

[00:03:03] Andre Lewis Carter: Mm-hmm yeah. Yeah. She's a, she's a sailor too, so.

[00:03:07] Maccabee: Oh dear sweet baby Jesus, I don't know if I could deal with that.

[00:03:11] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:03:13] Maccabee: So, let's just go straight into this book because again, great book. There's a lot of different things that go on within this book, but [mm-hmm] we're just gonna hit the beginning part of this because I think there's a lot more in that [mm-hmm] that just really sets up our protagonist mm-hmm Mr. Caesar.

[00:03:37] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:03:38] Maccabee: And Cesar junior is the, the protagonist, but I wanna talk about Sr. Cesar, Cesar Sr., say that three times fast and Annabel because his family bloodline is from Cuba. [Mm-hmm] correct?

[00:03:53] Andre Lewis Carter: Right.

[00:03:54] Aristocrats or Revolution?

[00:03:54] Maccabee: and the one thing I thought was interesting was the relationship when it came to [00:04:00] the, the ideologies of whether or not they're going to support the revolutionary side of it, or are they going to stay with the aristocrats [mm-hmm] and I thought it was kind of confusing in a way, because you stated that they always got into fights about this [mm-hmm] and I wanted to know, like, what was really the beginning point of these arguments per se. Mm-hmm what was the fuel that really set that on there? Mm-hmm from an architectural point of view. Was it more something that they saw? Was it something that they were getting from the families?

[00:04:31] Andre Lewis Carter: It's something that they saw. Cesar Sr. was a manager in a tobacco factory and he saw himself as one of the aristocratic folks and his wife clean houses. And she saw how these people lived and treated their servants. And that was the catalyst for her that it's go toward the revolutionary thought. But they left because. He saw [00:05:00] himself as one of those people and the revolutionaries would have seen him as one of those folks and they had a baby now, so they left.

[00:05:09] Maccabee: And I thought it was interesting because in my mind, when I'm thinking of a guy that's a, a floor manager [mm-hmm] who, as Annabel puts it, you're not the jefe.

[00:05:18] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. Right.

[00:05:19] Maccabee: You are a floor manager at a cigar factory.

[00:05:21] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:05:22] Maccabee: But I thought it was interesting to me because if I was in that position, [mm-hmm] you would be around it all the time. You would be around all these laborers having to deal with this life.

[00:05:34] Andre Lewis Carter: He's one of those guys that started there and then worked his way up the floor manager. So, you know, he saw himself as above those people.

[00:05:44] Maccabee: So it was basically just because he got promoted into being the part of the lower part of the management.

[00:05:50] Andre Lewis Carter: Right.

[00:05:51] Maccabee: But in his mind, he's like, I'm making more money. I'm middle class now.

[00:05:55] Andre Lewis Carter: Right.

[00:05:56] Maccabee: So that means I'm part of that. So it was more closer to the greed that [00:06:00] was really pushing him towards the aristocrat than, [yeah]. Anything else?

[00:06:05] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. That's exactly it.

[00:06:06] Maccabee: Okay. That makes sense. That really does make sense because in my mind, when I was reading it. Man, I would think they would both be on the revolutionary side because of seeing their friends or seeing his old companions, being treated a certain way [mm-hmm] and..

[00:06:24] Andre Lewis Carter: You know, there's always those folks that they see people that, you know, supposedly above them and they want to be one of them. They, they don't think about how people are being treated. They just think about themselves.

[00:06:39] Immigrational Stress

[00:06:39] Maccabee: Yeah. And that's what I, that made sense too, because when they got on the last plane, Prior to the gorillas getting to I'm presuming Havana [mm-hmm] because historically that's one of the last planes we're at cuz Havana was all the way on the other side of the island.[00:07:00]

[00:07:00] Andre Lewis Carter: Right?

[00:07:00] Maccabee: So for me, I was always thinking, cuz Caesar jr. looks at it's like I'm riding a plane for them first time.

[00:07:08] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:07:09] Maccabee: And I'm gonna tell my friends [mm-hmm] we're gonna get back. Cause he has no clue what's going on cuz he is four years old.

[00:07:15] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. Yeah.

[00:07:16] Maccabee: So for me, I, I was always looking at it as, and I wanted to get your insight into it too, what was the relationship after they got into Florida between Annabel and Caesar senior [mm-hmm]? Was there any, what's the word I wanna say, tense moments within that [mm-hmm] because of that decision?

[00:07:38] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. As I said, stayed in the book, she was a good wife by traditional means, because you knew that you got the machismo, et cetera. And she said, okay, well, I'll, I'll go with you and wherever you wanna live, I'll live with you. I'm sure they still argued, yeah, because..

[00:07:55] Maccabee: Well, you know, they also made sweet, loving after [00:08:00] that too, every time.

[00:08:01] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:08:02] Maccabee: What was the statement?

[00:08:03] Andre Lewis Carter: But he actually died not long after they arrived in..

[00:08:06] Maccabee: Right.

[00:08:07] Andre Lewis Carter: The states.

[00:08:08] Maccabee: Yeah. I was about to say like in your mindset, How long do you think it was prior to him? From the point that they landed mm-hmm to the point where he passed away and was it of natural causes or did something happen?

[00:08:21] Andre Lewis Carter: It's within a year of them arriving and, yeah, it was natural causes. He had a stroke or something. Uh He's under a lot of stress, you know? Yeah. He had to leave in his country and now he's someplace where the you know, English is the main language, so yeah. And he had to find a job and all those headaches.

[00:08:41] Maccabee: Yeah. Cause I figured it was gonna be something like a stroke or something, but you know, it's, it's always good to ask the author just in case they wanna set something up later on.

[00:08:51] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. Yeah.

[00:08:51] The Final Request

[00:08:51] Maccabee: So for me, I, I thought it was interesting that the one statement he really told her [mm-hmm] prior to his death was [00:09:00] don't move into the Afro Cuban community. [Mm-hmm] What was so different about the regular Cuban community comparative to the Afro Cuban community?

[00:09:11] Andre Lewis Carter: [Mm-hmm] Well actually there was an Afro Cuban community in Orlando, which is where he decided to go because he thought there would be less crime there. So it's not that he wanted to be separated from his people, but Miami, he just didn't feel like that was a good place for his son to grow. Now of course he was wrong because crime is everywhere and, you know, [mm-hmm] but yeah.

[00:09:36] Maccabee: Okay. So the Afro Cuban community was considered more Miami than it was Orlando?

[00:09:42] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:09:43] Maccabee: Okay, cause yeah, I've never heard that before so that's another reason why I was asking, cuz I was like, what's so different between these communities [mm-hmm] that they would act like that he would make this statement [mm-hmm] in his? Was it in his will or is it just his last promise [00:10:00] to her? [Mm-hmm]

[00:10:01] Andre Lewis Carter: Well, you know, it, it is not so much that because Cubans are more more what's the word homogenous than Americans. So the fact that you're white or black or whatever, if you're Cuban you're Cuban. So, that's the way they look at it.

[00:10:16] Maccabee: Or as Fluffy put it at one point it's like, look, mom, they make 'em in this color too.

[00:10:21] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah, yeah.

[00:10:24] Character Inspiration

[00:10:24] Maccabee: So, the reason why I'm asking these questions is because we're always looking at these characters in a certain way. What's pushing them? What is the situation that's really making do the things that they're doing, [mm-hmm] react a certain way to the situation itself. [Mm-hmm] majority of the time it comes from something within the family.

[00:10:45] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:10:46] Maccabee: And so asking those questions are always great because one of the questions that Marccella always asks is how much of these characters [mm-hmm] are based off of you, family members, friends or anything [00:11:00] like that?

[00:11:00] Andre Lewis Carter: There are some, but I was in a Navy for 30 years, so I met so many characters, you know, and I'm a people watcher that's I think most writers are, so it's a big hodgepodge of people that I've known. I entered the Navy to escape from where I was and he's entering the Navy to escape. So there are some parallels, but he's definitely not me.

[00:11:23] Maccabee: I was about to say I I'm pretty sure you're not the one stealing money from gangsters off the south side of, of Orlando. [Mm-hmm] I was always thinking, it was like, I bet you, Andre was more of Sergey than anybody else.

[00:11:41] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:11:41] Sergey and Mr. Mike

[00:11:41] Maccabee: Sergey is the recruiter at the beginning of the book that gets young Caesar into the Navy itself.

[00:11:47] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:11:47] Maccabee: He actually does a lot of things he should have done.

[00:11:50] Andre Lewis Carter: Right, yeah.

[00:11:51] Maccabee: Calls in some favors and everything else because this takes place prior to Christmas, if I remember correctly.

[00:11:57] Andre Lewis Carter: Right. It's a late November.

[00:11:59] Maccabee: Is [00:12:00] there a certain reason why you wanted to do it more towards November than any other time? Is that just a, it was just out of blue. It was like, ah, I'm just gonna do November.

[00:12:08] Andre Lewis Carter: No, because they saw little under a year when the climax happens, the ride aboard the ship happens. So I wanted to build up to how he got there.

[00:12:21] Maccabee: Gotcha. Yeah. And can you explain a little bit about Mr. Mike who is, would you consider him an, an antagonist?

[00:12:30] Andre Lewis Carter: He's yes, he's antagonist and he is pretty much a monster. Although, there is a reason why he's a monster. So but, but yeah, he, he's definitely the Yin to Sergey's Yang.

[00:12:42] Maccabee: So give us a little bit of an insight into what makes Mr. Mike such a monster in itself and why?

[00:12:52] Andre Lewis Carter: Okay. There's a I give his backstory to and he was in a loving family, et cetera. And one day his father [00:13:00] didn't come back home. So his mother and he are left there. She had a job that didn't pay very well and his family would not take care of her. So they ended up homeless. They were on the street and she ends up being killed by someone they trusted. and that like opened the door for him, that okay. It's me against everybody in the world and I'm going to make the world pay. And that's how he viewed his life.

[00:13:32] Maccabee: So what kind of gangster was he? Was he more into the smuggling? The drugs? Prostitution. Cause it, I, I know at the beginning it really doesn't give us so much of an insight, but we just know that Caesar takes about what $500 from him?

[00:13:46] Andre Lewis Carter: Mm-hmm, yeah.

[00:13:47] Maccabee: So what was the major thing that Mr. Mike was involved in for, for him to just run [mm-hmm]?

[00:13:56] Andre Lewis Carter: Well, the reason he was running is because he dropped a [00:14:00] dime on Mr. Mike. He was coerced into dropping a dime on Mr. Mike mm-hmm yeah. So but yeah Mr. Mike was, he actually worked for the cartel. He wasn't a member of the cartel. He was way down on the totem pole, but yeah, so drugs were the main thing which is also why he brutalizes people because that seems to be what they do.

[00:14:23] Inspiration and Why Now?

[00:14:23] Maccabee: So what inspired you to actually tell this story? Was it merely just something that you've always wanted to be telling for a long time? Or was there something specific that just made you wanna go? I wanna write this story finally.

[00:14:38] Andre Lewis Carter: No, actually I usually start with a character and a situation. The idea of a young man trying to escape a bad situation. If I could say the title, Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea, is a nautical turn for a conundrum, meaning you have a bunch of choices, but none of them are good [00:15:00] and he makes that choice to escape Mr. Mike's wrath. So it it bit off from there.

[00:15:06] So I have to think about, well, Have this situation, where am I going to start the story? Because you know, you have the flashbacks, et cetera, to completely round the story. And yeah, as outside the recruiter's office was the perfect place to start.

[00:15:22] Maccabee: Yeah, I thought it was interesting that the very first thing we saw was Cesar out on the streets, [mm-hmm] waiting at the Navy recruiter's office [Mm-hmm] real early in the morning. And he's just terrified that he's gonna be found right by Mr. Mike [mm-hmm]. And to me, when I was looking at this, I was like, this is insane. He was terrified.

[00:15:48] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:15:48] Maccabee: And that's the reason why I was asking a, about what made Mr. Mike so much of an antagonist that he was just so terrified. He It was almost like [00:16:00] he was afraid of the mafia.

[00:16:02] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. Well, and in that neighborhood, Mr. Mike was the, was the, the man and he treated Cesar like family, as much as those folks would do and Cesar I drop a dime on him and he, you know, you can't do that.

[00:16:21] Maccabee: Yeah. You don't loyalty's loyalty. You, you don't turn against the family.

[00:16:25] Andre Lewis Carter: Right.

[00:16:25] Maccabee: It's that's just mob 1 0 1. Yeah. Yeah. If, if Godfather taught us anything is never turn on the family.

[00:16:33] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. Yeah.

[00:16:36] The Search for Cesar

[00:16:36] Maccabee: One of the other things I really wanted to understand in terms of that situation was the after effect of them searching for him. And how Mr. Mike, like this was a personal vendetta.

[00:16:53] Andre Lewis Carter: Yes. Yeah.

[00:16:54] Maccabee: Compared to the it's not business, [No] this is personal. [Yes] [00:17:00] so..

[00:17:00] Andre Lewis Carter: He, he was one of his soldiers and yeah, he, he, and, you know, folks like that, they do have an ego and it's, it's like, nobody is gonna do this to me. Number one, because I'd killed him. But also he just, you he's the man, so no one's gonna cross him like.

[00:17:23] Maccabee: Right. I didn't know if he was really getting any pressure from now the cartel.

[00:17:29] Andre Lewis Carter: Right, right.

[00:17:30] Maccabee: Comparative to just him doing it for a personal vendetta.

[00:17:34] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. I, I, I did imply that. I, well, I think I implied that, but yes. The..

[00:17:40] Maccabee: Yeah, you did.

[00:17:40] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. The cartel was definitely interested in that situation. They want to know how he's going to solve that problem because you know, If he goes to jail. Of course. Yeah. [So] and then they'd have to set somebody else up. [Mm-hmm].

[00:17:59] In the Navy

[00:17:59] Maccabee: [00:18:00] And that's what I mean. It's like, if there's one thing, when it comes to this stuff, we've all learned from these true crimes, it's hard to set something up again. [Mm-hmm] You have to go through all the, the loops and the hoops and everything just to get it in there [Yeah]. And then resettle. Move people around, stuff like that [mm-hmm]. So after all that's said and done, [mm-hmm] Seyger gets him into the Navy. He pulls the strings. He gets him in before Christmas [mm-hmm] but it's how he got to the AFEES that was interesting to me. Can you explain that situation for our listeners?

[00:18:43] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. Back in the day, I, I'm not sure if they still do it now, but recruiters would gather up a group of people that's that's when they called you to go to the area and they would put them up in a motel. And [00:19:00] being young teenagers, well, what do you do? You go out and buy booze because it was legal. What, where I was and get wasted and a lot of folks had hangovers. When we finally, I, I was actually there for four days. So, you know, you, you can get into a lot of stuff in four days.

[00:19:20] Maccabee: Oh yeah. Yeah. I only had to do with the two days. I think between from back then it was called AFEES, A F E E S [mm-hmm]. And that is, let me see if I can get this Armed Forces Entrance and Exam. Is that correct?

[00:19:39] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:19:40] Maccabee: Okay. Cause they call it MEPS when I came in, which is Military Entrance Processing S tation.

[00:19:46] Andre Lewis Carter: Okay.

[00:19:46] Maccabee: Or services, excuse me. But it was very interesting because this guy is drunk as can be [mm-hmm] he's passed out on the bus.

[00:19:55] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:19:56] Maccabee: He gets there and to me. It was like, really these [00:20:00] guys are like way too nice. cause I remember when I went through with the MEPS, they were somewhat nice, but they were stern as can be. She's like, no, you get there. You do do it. So it was kind of interesting. It was like, cuz I always thought it was like the same way with you guys. Like get off my bus get off my van, get it in line, get everything set up and everything. But the way that you pictured it and this, I was like, oh, I gotta hear. Some type of experience from Andre on this one.

[00:20:33] Andre Lewis Carter: Okay.

[00:20:34] Maccabee: Because again, Vietnam [mm-hmm] then you went in 1975?

[00:20:41] Andre Lewis Carter: Yes.

[00:20:41] Maccabee: Okay. Okay. I went in in 2005, so there's a little bit of a difference in..

[00:20:47] Andre Lewis Carter: Right.

[00:20:48] Maccabee: In timeframe [Mm-hmm]. But it was how he got off of there and how did he get off the van?

[00:20:56] Andre Lewis Carter: He actually, as you said, was hungover [00:21:00] bad and he looks out the window and sees this woman and he just like, wow. And he wants to go, you know, talk some smack to her, but he so hungover that he trips and falls on his face as he gets out of the van. Which of course she does find a really smooth move. And plus he looks pretty, pretty disheveled because as you said, he passed out the night before. So yeah, he's, he's not looking good when he gets there.

[00:21:31] Maccabee: Honestly, I actually thought that he was in trouble [mm-hmm] still back in when he woke up [mm-hmm]. Because the way that you paint it [mm-hmm], it's like is this guy already in deep crap right now? He's already missed the van and now he's got a body that he's laying on [mm-hmm]. Cause he reaches up and the only thing he, he fills is like a buttocks.

[00:21:51] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. Right. Yeah.

[00:21:52] Maccabee: And that's it. I'm like, he's like, oh no.

[00:21:54] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. What did I do? You..

[00:21:56] Maccabee: Exactly, he's all black out.

[00:21:59] Andre Lewis Carter: As you [00:22:00] can see in the book, he has a trouble with alcohol. So that, that was the introduction to that.

[00:22:06] Character Negative Traits

[00:22:06] Maccabee: So where did that trait come from? Was that something that was just how he, he just learned off the streets mm-hmm or did he. Find that through his dad going through this, his family going through this entire issue of immigrating to the states.

[00:22:23] Andre Lewis Carter: Well, he was so young when his father died that yeah. He learned most of his bad habits from the street. So and remember in my neighborhood is like a right of passage to get drunk. , you know, as soon as you could, so..

[00:22:38] Maccabee: Pretty much, yeah, pretty much. So what happened to his mom? Because it wasn't much longer after his dad died that his mom passed away?

[00:22:48] Andre Lewis Carter: No, actually it was a while.

[00:22:49] Maccabee: Okay.

[00:22:50] Andre Lewis Carter: She had passed away recently. So like..

[00:22:53] Maccabee: Oh, okay.

[00:22:54] Andre Lewis Carter: A year before or something like that. Okay. He was still missing her.

[00:22:59] Maccabee: Yeah, we [00:23:00] definitely see that at the beginning. He is like, his mom was his world.

[00:23:04] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. Yeah.

[00:23:05] Maccabee: In the sense. But when we get into the station itself, [mm-hmm] and he's starting to get lined up and ready to go [mm-hmm] and they're setting everything up. How much of what he was going through was close to exactly what you went through.

[00:23:26] Andre Lewis Carter: Well, you you're in the room with all these strangers and a bunch of folks that you didn't grow up with. My neighborhood was mostly black, so, you know, there was all these white people walking around and, but then it was also indigenous tribe members. And so it, I was kind of just kind of overwhelmed by the the whole thing.

[00:23:48] Cutlure Shock

[00:23:48] Maccabee: Yeah, because when he actually comes to me, he's shocked [mm-hmm]. Even at the motel and he sees these white guys in the bar just waving him in to come in and he's like, there's white people

[00:23:59] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. Yeah.

[00:23:59] Maccabee: [00:24:00] In the Navy?

[00:24:00] Andre Lewis Carter: In the, yeah, he, he hadn't fought that far ahead. Yeah.

[00:24:04] Maccabee: Which is hilarious because he saw the old World War II posters..

[00:24:08] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:24:09] Maccabee: In the recruiting area [mm-hmm]. But yet his recruiter was black too, so yeah, that made it interesting as well. So I was like, that doesn't make sense. And then I realized. If you'd just been around Cubans all your life, more to the darker side of Cubans [mm-hmm], you really don't see a lot of white people.

[00:24:27] Andre Lewis Carter: No, no.

[00:24:28] Maccabee: So this was a huge culture shock even for him at that moment.

[00:24:32] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. Okay. So he pretty much stuck to his neighborhood because that's where Mr. Mike had the power and working for Mr. Mike, nobody mess with you. So he had the entire experience, everything is new to him. So, you know, man, he never even stayed in a motel before, so that was new to him. So there's a coming of age, along with the redemption in the story.

[00:24:57] Maccabee: Yeah. You, you definitely see that [00:25:00] straight from the beginning of this whole idea of like I'm going in an entirely different world that I've never dealt with before.

[00:25:09] Andre Lewis Carter: Would he figures, no one would follow him into the military.

[00:25:16] Maccabee: Which later on we figure there's, there's some other things in there I don't wanna give away cuz there's, it's too good to, to give away. But my final question in regards to the, the book itself [mm-hmm] was really just the interactions between them at the station prior to them going through all the exams and everything else [mm-hmm] cause even the lieutenants looking at him like. My God, what happened to you, man?

[00:25:43] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:25:43] Reliving the Process

[00:25:43] Maccabee: But that's what I mean, it's like the interaction is so different comparatively to reality sometimes mm-hmm and I just wanted to see if there was, is this really like, what was life for you to go [00:26:00] through at that time?

[00:26:01] Andre Lewis Carter: No. And you have to remember, this is most of this is through Cesar's eyes [mm-hmm]. And as I said, he's not experienced in anything. So how bad it was might not really have registered with them. He just figured that's the way it is. So he was more concerned with the people around him than the actual process. Now, no, for me, the process, as I said was overwhelming. It was, they asked you all these questions, they would they take blood or give me a shot or something, but yeah, it was pretty involving

[00:26:33] Maccabee: I think one of the statements that I love the most out of that, that last scene, that right there [mm-hmm], not last scene, but the one, one of the scenes was I don't remember if it was the Lieutenant or if it was one of the Petty Officer's, but he stated that I don't care if you have smoked pots, mm-hmm , you're gonna get a urine sample just as long as you don't do it after that kind of thing.

[00:26:55] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah. And that that's, that's literal. That was yeah. [00:27:00] Put you in the room that said, okay, here's your last chance? You know, anything you got any contraband, you got put it in the box and you start cleaning from there.

[00:27:10] Maccabee: And, you know, that's, that's a great way to, to end this because when I went through that's exactly the same way. It was like one of those things like, oh, you can have the time of your life [mm-hmm] prior to..

[00:27:22] Andre Lewis Carter: Right.

[00:27:22] Maccabee: In the motels and everything else have blast. Do whichever you want [mm-hmm]. But once you are on that van [mm-hmm] and you get to us, that's it.

[00:27:31] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:27:31] Maccabee: You're done. You, you belong to us once you start signing those doted lines.

[00:27:35] Andre Lewis Carter: Right, yeah.

[00:27:36] Inspiration Corner

[00:27:36] Maccabee: So this is time in the show where Marrcella usually has her great questions that she asks the author. So I'm gonna have to do it myself.

[00:27:47] Andre Lewis Carter: Okay.

[00:27:47] Maccabee: And I'll probably get some feedback from her like you're doing it wrong, this is not right.

[00:27:52] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:27:54] Maccabee: She'll probably get me on after that too. So the first question that she always asks [00:28:00] is what is your writing kryptonite?

[00:28:02] Andre Lewis Carter: For me, it's actually time and that has to do with some of some gifts I got from being 30 years in the Navy. So I have some issues with my stamina and of course I am married, so I have family. So finding the time to do some quality work. What I used to do prior to the pandemic actually went to the public library or Starbucks or somewhere for three or four hours and just be immerse myself in the story. But say the system pandemic I've been writing at home and. That's a little more challenging.

[00:28:37] Maccabee: Yeah. I, I think Mr. JV Hillard said the same thing last week. Instead it was more, it's not the family. It's the dogs.

[00:28:45] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:28:45] Maccabee: That's the reason why he went to the, the coffee shops and everything too.

[00:28:49] Andre Lewis Carter: Mm-hmm, yeah.

[00:28:50] Maccabee: Second question [Mm-hmm]. Is there a quote or a person or song, artist, whatever the case may be that inspires you to continue writing?[00:29:00]

[00:29:00] Andre Lewis Carter: Oh, James Baldwin and Tony Morrison. And Tony Morrison, she said she really became, started to be because, you know, she started it as an editor and she really started writing books because she couldn't find books about things that she wanted to read about. So she started writing those things and that really had a big impact on me.

[00:29:26] Maccabee: They always say, write what you know, [mm-hmm] so why not?

[00:29:30] Andre Lewis Carter: Yeah.

[00:29:30] Maccabee: One of the five questions [mm-hmm]. What's next for you?

[00:29:33] Andre Lewis Carter: Right now I'm finishing up a screenplay, not of this book maybe in the future and I'm started my second novel.

[00:29:41] Maccabee: So we've come to the point where we just call the shameless promotion corner.

[00:29:47] Andre Lewis Carter: Okay.

[00:29:47] Maccabee: Please tell everybody where they can find you. If you have any events coming up [mm-hmm] the floor's yours.

[00:29:53] Okay. I do have a website and there's links to the book, et cetera, but you can find it at the usual [00:30:00] suspects: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, et cetera, online or the brick and mortar books. For people who live in Portland, you can find it at I think it's Crown Bookstores. But it's, it's a local local bookstore that's one of the largest in the United States. Since we can find it there. And I also have Instagram and Facebook and LinkedIn. So I share by information there as well. As far as things coming up, I've just have some more podcast interviews that I'm doing.

[00:30:30] I've only had one live reading since the pandemic, and that was at the, at the library where I wrote part of the book. But yeah. So you can find me on social media and then my website, you're getting actually leave questions for me on those platforms. And you can send the email to me through my website as.

[00:30:49] Andre. Thank you again for being on the show. We really appreciate it, man.

[00:30:52] Andre Lewis Carter: Well, thank you so much for having me and I appreciate your service and wish you will.

[00:30:57] Maccabee: All right. Normally this is [00:31:00] where me and Marrcella put in our 2 cents. Well, I put in my 2 cents. She is up to like $200,000 worth of an opinion right now. It's an endless thing. She knows what she's worth. And she says it every time. I just try to be the extreme for her. So for me, if you like historical fiction and dealing with true crime, military, everything in between with that, this is a really good book. I would honestly give it a four out of five right now. And honestly, yeah, go find it, get it. It's a great read. It's an easy read and you know, it's something that I think everybody needs to have on their shelf is definitely one of those that's on my shelf already. So, go out, find it. Support our author here, Mr. Andre Lewis Carter, [00:32:00] and just celebrate his, his novel with everybody else around you. And as I always say, keep writing, keep inspiring and keep sharing as you go beyond the pin.

Andre Lewis Carter Profile Photo

Andre Lewis Carter

Author/Navy Vet

André Lewis Carter retired from the U.S. Navy and now writes fiction, poetry, essays, and plays in the urban sprawl of Portland, Oregon. His short stories have appeared in “Soft Cartel,” “Page and Spine,” and “Down in the Dirt” magazines. His poetry appeared in “The Journal of Graduate Liberal Studies.” André’s one act play, "Reaction," was given a staged reading at the Last Theater Conference in Valdez, AK. “Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea” is his debut novel.