“Meet My Character” Blog Hop

Grindhouse1The “Meet My Character” Blog Hop is a tour through the blogs of various independent speculative fiction authors as they talk about a character from their latest work. Each week a new author discusses what makes their character tick, and this week I’m up.

But first, big thanks to Marina Finlayson for hosting the previous stop on the Blog Hop. Marina is a reformed wedding organist who now writes fantasy. She is married and shares her Sydney home with three kids, a large collection of dragon statues, and one very stupid dog with a death wish.

Twiceborn, the first book in The Proving trilogy, is her first novel.

Now it’s time to meet my character.

What is the name of your character?

Mimi St. Laurent. She’s the protagonist of the short story, “Deviltown,” from my latest release, Grindhouse.

When and where is the story set?

This is a great question – I don’t even know! When I wrote this story, I had it in my mind that it was going to be very dark, very noir – I don’t think I really pinned down exactly where it would be set though. Maybe New York in the late ‘80s, early ‘90s? But then I hesitate to even say that because there may be some modern references in the piece that wouldn’t lend themselves to that time period so whatever. I think the mood of the story is more important than where it’s set.

What should we know about him or her?

Mimi is probably one of my favorite characters I’ve ever written. She’s a pre-op trans hooker with dreams of becoming the woman she always wanted to be, and dreams of escaping the streets. She’s incredibly savvy, sassy, and she takes no shit. She’s probably the character most like me personality-wise.

She’s also a recycled character. I was writing a story for a literary magazine about a young boy who grows up around drag queens and Mimi was from that piece. She was the boy’s drag mother and I liked her so much that when that story didn’t quite pan out the way I wanted it to, I took her from that world and put her in this one. It’s kind of a shame because bad shit happens to her in this story.

What is the main conflict? What messes up his or her life?

All three stories in Grindhouse are revenge tales. They deal with women who have been victimized mentally, spiritually, and oftentimes sexually, seeking vengeance against those who hurt them. Mimi is brutalized by one of her johns and it really fucks up her head. She can’t think of anything else besides retribution. Her attacker committed a hate crime against her, tried to kill her even, and when she realizes the police don’t give a shit about bringing this man to justice (because of her lifestyle and gender issues), she decides she has to take measures into her own hands.

What is the personal goal of the character?

Mimi’s personal goal at the beginning of the story is to get out of the life and to have surgery to become a woman. She’s been trapped in the wrong body her entire life and she’s thisclose to having enough money to make her dream come true.

Her goal towards the middle and end of the story is to kill the bastard who raped and beat her, leaving her for dead in an alley.

What is the title of the book, and where can we find out more?

Like I said above, “Deviltown” is a short story in my micro collection of shorts called Grindhouse. You can find this book on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, Kobo, Smashwords, and other e-retailers.

When was the book published?

December 31, 2014. It’s my first non-spec fic publication (though the final story in Grindhouse, “The Beautiful People,” may or may not have a spec fic element to it).

Next week’s “Meet My Character” Blog Hop participant is Jennifer R. Povey.

As a fiction writer, Jennifer R. Povey has short fiction credits from a number of magazines including the Australian popular science magazine Cosmos (for their website) and long-running ezines Big Pulp and Bards & Sages Quarterly.

As a freelancer, she offers quality, human-readable web content and copy to individuals and businesses at reasonable rates. She also writes articles and guest blog posts on a variety of subjects, but specializes in material related to fiction writing, equestrian activities and travel. She also provides proofreading and basic copy editing services.

She also enjoys horseback riding, travel, role-playing games and hanging out with her highly supportive and wonderful husband, Greg.


Excerpt from Grindhouse by Elle Chambers: “Deviltown”

Grindhouse1“You said that was twenty, right?” the man said, wiping his mouth with the back of his hand.

“Nah, babydoll—I said twenty if I do you. Thirty if you do me.”

The man cursed under his breath, but pulled three crisp ten dollar bills from his wallet. “Here. Now get the fuck out, Ladyboy.”

Mimi scoffed. Ladyboy. Well…wasn’t he clever. The day a tranny-loving john with self-loathing tendencies came up with an insult worth a damn was the day she’d stop tricking. Shit, she’d probably hit the lotto first.

She slipped the money into her pseudo-cleavage, courtesy of rubber falsies and a Miracle bra, and pulled her leopard print skirt down over her still semi-erect appendage. She smiled.

“It’s always a pleasure, Norman.”

She chuckled to herself when he flinched at the stroke of his cheek. So predictable. They all were. Couldn’t wait to suck and fuck in the privacy of a dark alley, their hands (and other orifices) full of her, but once that initial rush wore off and the nut was over, they acted like she was carrying the plague. Hypocrites.

Mimi climbed out of Norman’s (if that was even his real name) black sedan, careful not to stumble in her YSLs. She studied the stilettos for a minute, trying to focus on not falling over, willing her legs to strengthen after the mind-blowing orgasm she’d just experienced. Norman was an idiot who regularly said idiotic things, but his mouth was apparently good for something. She wondered if his wife had had the pleasure of his head game or if that little trick was something he’d been saving for this special occasion.

The sound of squealing tires behind her brought her back to the present. She needed to find her way back to the main street. This particular alley hadn’t been far from her usual stomping grounds outside McGregor’s Pub, but it was a homeless haven and she hated stepping over half-wasted, malnourished, and frequently insane men who’d grab at her ankles and beg for change. Shit, it was hard in these streets—she wasn’t giving a damn dime to nobody. If they wanted to eat, they’d work on their hustle just like she did. As her girl Trinny used to say, “A closed mouth don’t get fed.” Neither did legs or assholes for that matter.

Now with Norman’s thirty bucks, she almost had enough to cover this month’s rent in her shithole apartment. She checked her designer impostor watch. Ten fifteen. She had enough time for another trick or two if she worked quickly. Maybe she’d get enough to buy something pretty for herself, some non-necessity she could show off to the girls. It’d been a long time since she’d had the opportunity to do that. Davonte kept taking all her damn profits, talking about how he was owed it and if she wanted for something, all she had to do was give a little something. Which Mimi knew meant he wanted his dick sucked. She’d obliged his trifling ass on numerous occasions, but the shit was getting old. He took forever to get hard, and cumming was virtually out of the question most times. Then he’d slap her as if it was her fault his old crusty dick didn’t work right. Bastard.

But he was better than other pimps, she supposed. He’d never beat his girls like a lot of the others—only gave them a good backhand every now and again when they fell out of line. He never put none of them in a hospital, though, and for that Mimi was grateful. Her old man didn’t used to be as kind. He’d put Trinny there once, and she never came out.

She made it back to McGregor’s, only having had to curse out three bums on her way. Two more girls—a short redhead whose ass and tits practically sat in the street, she was so fucking tasteless, and a tall blonde the size of a toothpick—stood on the corner hooting and hollering at every free, and not-so-free, dick that happened to swing past.

“You young hoes need to stop being so desperate,” Mimi said with a smirk. She sidled up beside the girls, both of which were barely out of their teens, and took a cigarette out of her skirt pocket. “Didn’t I teach y’all nothing?”

The redhead, Sugar, lit Mimi’s smoke as she rolled her eyes. “The only thing you could teach us is how to remove our teeth when we get to be your age and still blowing broke tricks in parked cars like basic high school bitches.”

“Yeah, don’t get mad at us ‘cause your geriatric ass needs a bottle of Evian to get wet,” the blonde, Farrah, chimed in.

Mimi shook her head. “Disrespectful slores.”

The girls’ laughter rang through the busy streets.

“I’ll have you bitches know I’m twenty-five. And you skeezers better hope you make it to my age at the rate y’all fast asses is going. Y’all gonna mess around and get one of them Jeffrey Dahmer mothafuckas taking you home and tossing you six ways from Sunday, baby, in a garden salad with a bottle of Chianti as a teaser.”

The girls giggled as a red Mustang pulled up to the curb. They quickly composed themselves and put on their best “come fuck me” faces. Mimi shook her head. These young girls these days were so damn obvious. Not a lick of sense between the two of ‘em.

Their Lolita-esque facades slipped when the passenger side window rolled down and a kid who couldn’t have been more than twenty stuck his head out. He leered Mimi’s way.

“Hey mama, wanna come for a ride with us?”

“Who’s us?” Mimi typically didn’t do boys, but this one had a pretty decent ride and might actually have some money. Even better, he’d probably be the two-pumps-and-a-dump type, so she’d get back here in time to snag a real man before having to call it a night.

The kid smirked. “Me and my boy Braxton.”

Another kid leaned over and waved. Mimi couldn’t stop a smirk of her own from forming on her lips. He was wearing a white Polo shirt, his hair parted on the side, a shiny gold watch glittering on his wrist. Yeah, they most certainly had money, but those Young Republican types were also a bore, and she didn’t have the time or inclination to teach anybody how to be a decent lay.

“Sorry, boys,” Mimi said between a puff of smoke. “I’m off the clock.”

The boy in the passenger seat sneered, his face contorted into the ugliest grimace she’d ever seen.

“Fuck you then, faggot.”

He flipped her off as his friend, Braxton, chuckled and sped on down the road.

Mimi didn’t even blink. Children. They were all fucking idiots, and to get mad at them for that was to get mad at a pencil fresh out the box for being what it was—absolutely pointless.

“That piece of shit,” Sugar said, throwing her arm around Mimi’s corseted middle.

“Ignore him, girl. Yeeeesss…it’s a full moon tonight, hunty, and folks is gonna act the fool.”


A man’s shout caught their attention. Leaning out the door of McGregor’s was the man himself: big, round, and sweaty—and looking awfully pissed.

“What I tell you about hanging out in front of my bar like this is the goddamn free clinic? Git!”

The girls muttered expletives and waved him off, teetering down the street on their unsteady heels. They went through this song and dance with old man McGregor every other night. They’d humor him for a bit, but wind up right back out front the next evening. Maybe one of these days he’ll wise up and call the cops, Mimi thought. Then she remembered ninety percent of their clientele were patrons of his establishment, and she knew he’d never do it. He couldn’t afford to lose business, not in this economy.

Mimi checked her watch. Eleven. Davonte would be rolling up around one looking for his cut. If she didn’t want to end up short on rent, she’d need at least one more trick to get by.

“You, with the legs, come here.” A male voice shouted from a distance.

Mimi glanced over her shoulder and smiled. A nice Jag was idling by the curb. The passenger side window, tinted, was rolled halfway down. She couldn’t see the guy’s face, but his voice was resonant and strong, so strong her panties would have been wet from anticipation. If she was wearing any. Or had a puss.

The bluest eyes she’d ever seen peered out from the shadows of the car window. He met her gaze. “Yeah—you. Come here, please. I’d like to ask you for directions.”

Directions, huh? That’s what they were calling it these days. She smirked and sashayed over to the window. She could hear the girls behind her cursing her good fortune. Ha. Let the bitches seethe.

Mimi leaned in and smiled at the gentleman (and she could tell by the sharp suit he was wearing and the smell of his cologne that he was indeed a gentle man, definitely not from around these parts, no baby, not here).

“How can I be of service to you, Mister…”

“Reed. The last name’s Reed.”

“Well, Mr. Reed, you said you needed directions. You lost, babydoll?”

The man grinned up at Mimi. “You could say that.” He leaned back in his seat. “I’m also kind of tired and need to get on home. You think you could drive a stick? Help me out?”

Mimi licked her lips and felt a chuckle rise up around her Adam’s apple. She suppressed the urge to laugh. One should never do that when staring down at the bulge in a man’s pants—it’s bound to make him feel some kind of way, and Mimi St. Laurent wasn’t in the business of making anybody feel nothing other than pleasure.

“Yeeeesss, Mr. Reed,” she said, her voice dropping an octave to that deep, honeyed spot men loved. “I think I can handle that just fine.”

He hit the locks and Mimi tossed her cig, climbing into the car, waggling her fingers at the dumbstruck whores on the corner.

See ya in the morning, hookas.


Get your copy today:

Amazon (US)

Amazon (UK)


New Release Wednesday: Grindhouse by Elle Chambers


Warning: This triple feature contains graphic violence, strong language, sexual content, and extreme bloodshed. This is not for the mild-mannered. If you have any emotional triggers that can cause severe mental disturbance – Grindhouse is not for you. All others – read at your own risk. You’ve been warned.

Grindhouse is a short story collection featuring three disturbing tales:

“Little Girl, I Want To Murder You”: A young paralegal, on the way to the interview of her life, takes the cab ride from hell.

“Deviltown”: A pre-op trans hooker, looking to perform her last great trick, is in for a treat when she goes home with a stranger.

and “The Beautiful People”: High school is hell for awkward teenage girls. And payback is a bitch for the ones who’ve done wrong.

Get your copy on Smashwords today.

ETA: Grindhouse is now $0.99 on Amazon!