#BadMoonRising The Ballad of Mrs. Molony by C.S. Boyack #IndieAuthor #Paranormal

Welcome to the first day of Bad Moon Rising!  Having been a fan of horror/paranormal/supernatural books and movies from a very young age (blame my dad for letting me watch some shows at a questionable age), I look forward to hosting this event every year.  Today’s author is known for his wildly creative speculative fiction novels and is here today with his newest book that released this week!  Many of us are familiar with Lizzie and the Hat, and The Ballad of Mrs. Molony is the third in the series.  C.S. Boyack is in the house!

Thanks for having me back, Teri. I look forward to Bad Moon all year. October is kind of my month, and I enjoy learning about all the other author participants.

Seems like I’m always the one to break the rules, so I’ll try to follow them as best I can. It’s a lot of pressure being first. I’ll probably bend one or two, since my bio is a graphic.

We start off with some fun questions from Teri.

Would you rather sleep in a coffin for one night or spend the night in a haunted house?

I choose the coffin. My bed is filled with my wife and I, along with two bulldogs. One night in a coffin might actually provide a decent night’s sleep.

Name three items you’d take to spend the night in a haunted house.

I suppose it depends upon the house, like are we talking a state of decay, or is there a decent couch? I’m just going to say, my iPad, my Remington side-by-side shotgun, and a six-pack of beer. (It’s still one item if the rings are attached.)

If you were in a horror movie, would you rather have a loaded gun or a car that wouldn’t break down?

That’s another loaded question. Depends upon the car. Do I get something like an original baby T-Bird out of the deal? Maybe a Shelby Cobra? Before you saddle me with an AMC Pacer, I’m going to go back to the shotgun I mentioned up above. I grew up outdoors and am familiar with firearms. Put me in a dark forest, give me that, and your horror antagonist might not be the scariest thing in the forest that night.

Teri also asked some authorly questions, so we’re doing those next.

If you had to give up snacks or drinks during writing sessions, which would be more difficult?

Drinks, for sure. I don’t snack when I’m writing, but I drink coffee almost constantly during the drafting phase. I’m pretty sure a lack of coffee would impair my abilities.

Which comes first for you – plot or characters?

This is a cool question, because the answer is neither. My Muse tends to deliver fully formed vignettes. They aren’t a plot, just a scene. They have characters, but not developed characters. It’s up to me to formulate the rest into something that looks like a story. Sometimes a few vignettes go into one story, sometimes it’s only one that leads to something.

What are you working on now?

I’ve been in promotional mode for months. I haven’t drafted a darned thing since early summer. That doesn’t mean I’ve been fallow by any means. I’m a storyboarder, and that’s my version of plotting. I’ve been working on about seven boards during this time. The main focus will be concluding the Lanternfish trilogy once I start drafting again this winter. I also want to have another story about Lizzie and the hat for Halloween next year. I have three boards for their stories and counting, so they aren’t going away any time soon.

That clunky segue, leads me into the next part of this post. The cover and blurb for one book to be featured.

I’m writing this in early September, but if all goes well, this is my announcement post. The Ballad of Mrs. Molony should be live on Amazon today. (This might be where I’m bending the rules a bit.) I’m writing this blurb for the first time here, so it might change before the post goes live.

Lizzie and the hat are back, and this time they’re chasing vampires across a subculture of America. A pair of rodeo cowboys are holding a woman captive to use as a milk cow since they joined the undead.

The person who put them onto the trail is also a vampire, but he has to be the worst vampire in history. Is he really that pitiful, or is he setting a trap for our heroes? Does the woman even exist? Can Lizzie and the hat find her before she also takes up blood sucking?

Follow Lizzie and the hat as they use their cover band to stalk vamps across the country music scene.

The Hat series consists of short novels designed for a long afternoon. They are paranormal themed, and full of dark humor.

Book One, The Hat. (Might do a free day to kick this off. Stay tuned.)

Book Two, Viral Blues.

Book Three, The Ballad of Mrs. Molony. 99¢ for a short time.

#NewRelease: HMS Lanternfish by C.S. Boyack #fantasy #pirates

Who here is a fan of root monsters?  Haven’t heard of them?  I have good news for both groups.  First, they’re back.  Second, if you haven’t had the pleasure of meeting them, now you’ll have two opportunities to get acquainted with this bunch of Minion-like, fun-loving creatures who will root (pun totally intended) their way into your heart!  Voyage of the Lanternfish, the first book in this series, is full of adventure on the high seas, a hint of magic, a touch of romance, and quirky characters – the aforementioned root monsters.  Craig Boyack is here today to tell us how these charismatic little critters sprang forth from his imagination.  Over to you, Craig!

Thanks for lending me your space today, Teri. It’s always nice to have places to promote when we have new books available.

My newest is called HMS Lanternfish. It’s the second book of a planned trilogy, and I’ll include a link for the first one if people want to catch up. I’m going to make this one of those behind the scenes author posts about part of the story.

When I wrote Voyage of the Lanternfish, I had a rescued slave named Mal who turned out to be kind of a witch doctor. I’m one of those authors who plans, but I discover a lot of my story during the drafting phase. When you have a witch doctor, he has to have something useful to do in the story.

This started out with my lead characters running from the law on land, prior to their first act of piracy. They needed someone to watch their camp, so Mal planted some peelings from an old yam in the window box of a wagon they had. These things grew fast, and when they got to camp he harvested them. They were little creatures who could watch the camp that night. I called them the root monsters.

Mal was from a tropical island, so I decided the little buggers would speak in a kind of pidgin English. That way they could receive assignments and carry out their tasks. When I first created them, I thought they might only live one day. With his old yam, Mal could grow new ones whenever the group needed a bit of extra help. It’s a fantasy world and this seemed like a good idea.

The root monsters turned out to be kind of sassy and accomplished their goals in weird ways. I decided they were fun and started using them occasionally as a kind of section break. Rather than a cluster of asterisks, we’d get a little something from their angle before the tale moved on to the next location. By this time, it was kind of obvious they weren’t going to have short lifespans, and they were a bit of comedy relief.

That’s when my mind started dwelling on other uses for them. These guys don’t have a goal, they’re along for the ride and are part of the ship’s crew. It became kind of funny to grow more and more of them until it became a point of concern. Just how many of the little buggers did the captain need? Absurdity seemed to work, so I kept going.

These guys are tiny, like walking talking parsnips if you will. Swarms are scary. Pirate tales need a bit of violence. They became a formidable force, but only as a swarm.

They became keepers of a verbal history of the crew’s adventures. This is almost tribalistic, but they tend to relate their stories through their own filters. What readers got from the adventure isn’t necessarily how the monsters relate the tale somewhere down the line.

Readers from the first book got eased into their pidgin English, to the point they could speak root monster by the end. That was kind of a fun thing to pull off as an author.

What I never saw coming was how beloved these guys became to my readers. I was even asked for a stand-alone root monster story a couple of times. I declined, because I think they’re better in small doses. It’s the old leave them wanting more concept.

In my mind they were a means to an end. They could sneak into places and steal things under the cover of night, run small errands, even sound a tiny horn to protect the crew. My readers loved them. If you followed the first tour, and now on this tour, you’ll see a lot of comments about the root monsters. They’ve almost overshadowed the main characters.

Do I care whether my readers enjoy the monsters the most?… Not one bit. If readers enjoy the tales, that’s all I care. Enjoy whatever parts you like.

I’m here to tell you the story has some solid main characters. I’ve always gone with more stoic main characters, then used supporting characters for any light hearted moments. The stories are fun adventures in a fantasy world, but that world also includes root monsters. It just wouldn’t be the same story without them.

Part of the challenge is to find ways to exceed whatever they’ve done up to this point. Their appeal is their absurdity and sassiness. They’re along for the ride in HMS Lanternfish, and even staged a rave party aboard the ship one night. You’ll have to read the new book to find out about that part.

I’m already thinking about how to wrap this trilogy up, and have a good storyboard in production. Oddly enough, the denouement for the root monsters was one of the first parts to come to me. I guess they stuck with me, too.

If you’re up for adventure on the high seas, with root monsters included, check out the Lanternfish books. The newest one is the middle of the trilogy and is priced at 99¢ for the time being. Since this is a trilogy, you’re going to want to read book one first, but grab book two before the price goes up.

I’ll leave Teri with a cover and blurb, along with those all-important purchase links. I’m also including a poster of Lisa Burton, my personal assistant, posing with the root monsters to give you a visual. (Lisa’s the big one.)

Blurb: The Lanternfish crew completed their original mission, but got exposed to a more global problem. An entire continent is at war, headed up by a head-strong young king with dreams of power, and pushed from behind by a mysterious religious order known as the Fulminites.

Rather than let their country fall under the iron boot of conquest, James and his crew set sail once more to see what kind of muscle Lanternfish can lend to the war effort. Acting precariously under an unofficial charter as a privateer, even his allies aren’t always his friends.

HMS Lanternfish explores new worlds on its way to war, and drifts considerably off course. It features an international crew of characters, and for fans of the first book, the root monsters are back, too. Tall ships, a few con games, martial arts, and everything you loved about the original book is all returning.

Hoist the colors and wheel out the guns. Lanternfish is taking to the high seas once more.

HMS Lanternfish: 99¢ for a limited time.

Voyage of the Lanternfish: Book one of the trilogy.

You can contact Craig at the following locations:

BlogMy NovelsTwitterGoodreads | FacebookPinterestBookBub