When I started blogging here, I never dreamed I’d meet so many wonderful and fascinating people. So many of you make me smile each day with your comments. One man in particular always makes me happy. (You might remember him from a previous interview.) When he blogs, he often interacts with characters from his books, and he allows us to see not only a snapshot of his writing style, but he also cleverly makes us want to know more about these endearing characters.
For years, Craig imagined, told, and wrote stories. Finally, in 2014, he decided to jump into the self-publishing pool and share some of his talent with the world. He published four of his previously written stories over the course of the year while he worked on writing some new ones. I’ll let him tell you about what he published last year. Craig?
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Thanks, Rachel. Craig here. It’s good to be back. I’d love to share a bit about my work:
Wild Concept is the story of an experimental robot. Lisa was designed to show off corporate superiority, and was programmed with emotional response software. She winds up placed with the local police department to help solve a murder. The end of the experiment involves her being disassembled and studied to perfect a commercial version of robot. Lisa decides to make a run for it, rather than be destroyed. This story explores prejudices and what it really means to be human.
Wild Concept can be purchased here:
Panama is a paranormal romp set during the building of the canal. President Roosevelt knows Ethan can talk to ghosts, and that Coop dabbles in magic. Roosevelt sends them to Panama to investigate some mysterious disappearances. The boys discover a demon army under control of a Carlist rebel, bent on recovering Spain’s lost colonies.
Panama can be purchased here:
Arson is the story of Perry Wolfe, an elite firefighter who works in space. Big insurance is the villain here. Perry has a minor accident that ends his career. While trying to rebuild his career, his sister is murdered. He travels off planet to train as a federal arson investigator with ATF. It is there that he discovers some unusual ties to his sister’s murder. He tries his best, but discovers something else he needs along the journey.
Arson can be purchased here:
Which brings us to The Cock of the South. This was a pile of loose notes and electronic pages at the beginning of 2013. I’m counting it as one of the older stories, even though it wasn’t finished.
I always challenge myself with each new story. The challenge in Wild Concept was to write a non-human protagonist. Panama challenged me to write a buddy story with two main characters. The challenge in Arson was to explore a main character’s downward spiral. These challenges won’t matter to readers, but writers might find them interesting. The personal challenge in The Cock of the South was to use fairytale story structure.
The Cock of the South is a fantasy set during Greco-Roman times. It involves a group of non-humans, who are all on the verge of extinction, banding together to carve out a place they can survive.
The main character is Cobby, a Southern Dwarf who was raised by humans. At the beginning of the story, he assumes he is just a short, broad human. When his comfortable world collapses he learns the truth. His “father” killed his real family and claimed Cobby as a prize of war.
Cobby makes a great character for readers to learn about this special world, because he is just learning about it himself. The world is a much bigger place than Cobby realizes, and there are more problems than just attending religious festivals or selling his wares at the market.
This story is a scoop of Exodus, with spices of King Arthur, hang together or hang separately, and finding the lost city. It’s all set in a Greco-Roman environment and I really enjoyed writing it.
The Cock of the South can be bloody and brutal in places. Fairytale structure isn’t necessarily for kids.
It’s important to me to stay true to my genre. A fantasy ought to have something fantastic in it. This story includes special people like centaurs, a minor goddess, and a touch of magic.
I strive to create memorable characters in my stories, and went out of my way to include some strong female characters. Many women like the fantasy genre, and the female characters ought to do more than cook, get rescued, or bind wounds.
I hope readers will take a chance on this story. I had a lot of fun with it, and I think you will too.
The Cock of the South can be purchased here:
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Hi, friends. It’s Rachel again. I appreciate Craig stopping by to share some of his work with us. But what he didn’t mention was his upcoming novel Will O’ the Wisp. Actually, I was among the lucky few to receive an advance reading copy of Will O’ the Wisp, and I have to say, it’s fantastic! In fact, I’ll not only highly recommend it when it comes out, but I am hopeful that Craig will actually write a sequel. Yes, it’s that good!
And there you have it, friends. Doesn’t Craig’s work sound fascinating? (And besides being an awesome writer, he’s also a really nice guy.) If you don’t know him already, please hop on over to his blog and introduce yourself. And be sure to tell him Rachel sent ya.