Veteran uses ghostwriting as an outlet

By Cristal Gomez

Army veteran Damien Winter is a ghostwriter for the Warhammer book series by Games Workshop. Ghostwriting is when an individual writes for a person or a company anonymously.

Winter went to Afghanistan from 2012 to 2013. During his time in the army he was part of the first Platoon. When he was in Afghanistan, he saw many things which have impacted his mental state. To escape the horrors he saw, Winter began to write down his emotions. He created short stories, novels and musings.

His passion for writing flourished when he was a child in a Catholic orphanage in England. The authors that inspired him were Stephen King, H.P. Lovecraft and Clive Barker. Winter said, “To escape my mundane life at the Catholic orphanage, I would write stories as a form of mutual respect to the authors I would read.”

When he began his studies at East Los Angeles College in 2017. Winter wanted to major in kinesiology. Once he received his degree he wanted to branch out intellectually for future employment.

Money was getting harder to get  as he couldn’t find a job to sustain himself. Winter decided to see if he could get profit from his written works and began to ghostwrite. He said, “Work is hard to get in this day and age. I got work wherever I could.” He had always wanted to be a novelist.

Winter has covered press conferences for Los Angeles Police Department and Montebello Police Department. The police departments will give him the information on what occurred at the press conference. Once the information is received, he improves the report of the conferences.

He has also worked on autobiographies for other individuals and helped improve their diction. When he works on these assignments, Winter researches speeches and other papers these individuals have done. In order to keep the subject’s voice present in the autobiographies as he writes for them.

Winter is currently working  on the “Warhammer: 40,000” sci-fi series by Games Workshop. The book series gives background to the players of the origin of specific characters in the game.

Winter was influenced by “Enders Game” series by Orson Scott Card. He said, “Card blended a lot of philosophy that worked well with the sci-fi sense.” He imputed some of his own philosophies within the character’s personalities. Some philosophies he placed into the series dealt with objectivism, personal freedom, and individual rights.

Winter writes about Blood Angels, a squad in the “Warhammer: 40,000” series that reflects some of his ideologies. Blood Angels serve to protect the Emperor of Mankind. They use strategic techniques to protect the Emperor, similar to how Winter found his targets during his time at war.

He said the character is similar to how he was during Afghanistan. Using hunting methods to find and kill the target. He explained how the relationship between the Blood Angels squad connected to his own philosophies. Certain ideas of the Blood Angels he included in his  own philosophies like their loyalty and determination.  

This project hasn’t been published but, the book is going through the final stages as it has been approved. Winter doesn’t know when the book will be published since his part of the story is complete.

He is hoping to get more projects from Games Workshop in the future. Winter will continue ghostwriting  hoping that one day his own work will be published with his name on the front cover.

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