Kings of Chaos Behind the Scenes: the Bikes

 

Now that you’ve learned a little more info about the Kings of Chaos backstory and the world, let’s take a closer look at some of the badass bikes from the series.  When I developed the first idea for Crossroads, it was all based on my experience and knowledge of being a biker.  For me, riding out on the open road is almost a religious experience, so if I can share that wonder with people in any way, then it’s worth trying.  The machines that facilitate those experiences are just as awesome.  If you’re not a biker, you’ll just have to take my word for it and trust that I’m speaking gospel here.

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Blogumentary: Desktop Inspiration

Inspiration can be a fickle beast.  Sometimes it hits you like a ton of bricks…usually right before you drift off to sleep or are in a position where writing notes is an impossibility, like driving down the road or standing in the shower.  So, in times when I’m ready to write and can’t find my muse, I find it’s important to keep as much manufactured inspiration on hand as possible.  I try to keep trinkets, tchotchkes, and motivational items in sight around my work area to help me stay in the groove.

 

So far in my writing career, my main subject matter has centered around motorcycles.  It’s really easy to find Motorcycle knick-knacks, but I try to be as specific as I can with my totems.  For my ongoing Kings of Chaos Motorcycle Club series, I use my display poster board from signing events propped on the back of my desk like a backdrop.  I have a miniature replica of the main character’s motorcycle from the first book, and a topographic map of the Rough River in Kentucky – the real life geographic location for the fictional town in the series.  I even have a Lego mini-fig biker to portray the hero from the series.  Lastly, there’s a deconstructed and expanded bullet display from Ballistic Concepts. Continue reading

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Kings of Chaos Behind the Scenes: Big H Character Bio

 

Today, I thought it might be fun to get to know a character from the Kings of Chaos world.  After the release of Crossroads, a close friend suggested including him into my next book.  I don’t think he knew exactly what he was asking for at the time, but I sure worked him into the story!  And with that, let’s get to know Big H just a little bit better.

First, an excerpt from Big H’s introduction in Crossfire: Continue reading

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Blogumentary: Learning As I Go

I’ve previously shared about my lifelong love affair with writing.  However, I’ve also shared that English classes were never my strong suit.  I began writing simply because I love to read and thought I wanted to take a crack at writing my own stories.  I’ve never taken a single creative writing class.  I didn’t major in English, journalism, or communications in college.  My whole writing career has been a hands-on, learn-as-you-go type of experience up to this point. Continue reading

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The CKFiction Dictionary – All the Best Words

 

As a writer, I like to challenge myself when it comes to my vocabulary.  It’s fun to discover new words, or simply introduce under-utilized words whenever possible.  In addition to that, I’m a total hillbilly, and I was raised around some of the best sayings you could ever imagine.  I’d like to take a few minutes and share some personal favorites with you, just so we can all enjoy the wonder of these splendid words!  Let’s begin, shall we?

My top 25 best words on the face of the earth: Continue reading

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Kings of Chaos Behind the Scenes: Rough River Falls

 

Previously, I talked a little bit about how I selected the topic and story for Crossroads.  This time, I’d like to talk a little bit about the setting for the series.

When I started writing the first book, I just wanted to start writing.  I was too eager (and ignorant of the writing process) to do any world-building.  However, if you want your story to feel real, then you have to make the setting real.  I don’t mean that in a sense that the setting has to exist on the planet Earth, (obviously, hence science-fiction) but it needs to be believable.  The setting has to exist in the writer’s eye, so it can come to life in the reader’s mind.  Some writers build actual maps of the locations for their stories (if the places don’t already exist).  Others rely on a city grid taken straight from real life.  When I started Crossroads, I didn’t really plan on doing either.  All I knew was that I wanted it set in a real geographic location, so it would be tied with a tangible, physical place, but I also wanted to make it up as I went along to make it fit to the story.

I started with what I thought was a cool town name; Rough River Falls.  That originally started as White River Falls, but there is an actual White River in central Indiana, and that’s not where I wanted this story set.  I thought Rough River Falls sounded cool.  A quick Google search showed me that there is a Falls of Rough near the Rough River Dam in central Kentucky.  That was perfect!  A real geographic location that people could attach the story to, but there is no town of Rough River Falls, which means I still had the liberty to make it up as I pleased.  Or so I thought. Continue reading

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Book Review: Blind to Blood 2: The End Game

I’ve been on a roll lately with my reading, and my latest conquest is the sequel to George Kramer‘s medical horror/thriller, Blind to Blood.  The first book in this series was my introduction to Kramer.  Book-wise, that is. We had met more than a handful of times before I got a chance to dig into one of his books.  I thoroughly enjoyed the plot and unique story behind the characters.  It had its flaws though, and I was hoping to see those fixed with the sequel, Blind to Blood 2: The End Game.

Ben Berstgel is truly a unique character.  From his mustard-colored birthmark covering half of his body, to an interesting and well-thought-out backstory involving his mother, Kramer makes it easy to understand where things went wrong for Ben growing up.  Throw in the idea that this serial killer doesn’t enjoy physically abusing his victims, and you have one interesting psychopath.  This story also introduces some intrigue surrounding Ben’s twin brother.  Did he have one?  Did he not?  I’m very curious to see where this brother story line goes and would’ve really liked to see it explored further in this book.

With as much as I enjoyed the story for both novels, unfortunately, the sequel still wasn’t able to break free of some of the mistakes that I noticed in the first one.

I was really hoping to see a little more attention to detail in the editing and proofreading process.  There were several spelling and grammatical mistakes that could be caught with a more attentive editor and more time spent prior to going to press.  These things are generally small errors and easy to overlook, but as a reader, they take me out of the story while my brain processes and deciphers the information, and it tends to break up the pacing of the plot.  I also struggled with a contradiction from the main character himself, Ben.  He mentions several times throughout the book how he likes to punch his victims in the belly in order to get them to bend to his will.  As mentioned above though, there’s the idea about how he doesn’t like to abuse his victims, beyond the slaughtering, that is.  Those two thoughts tend to work against each other and distracted me from being able to fall completely into the story.

The first person point-of-view is not a common story-telling method, and I have learned myself about what makes it so difficult.  It’s not a bad method when properly executed, and Kramer pulls it off pretty well.  The biggest draw back would be when the main character, Ben, breaks the 4th wall to talk to the readers, again, taking the reader out of the action of the story.

All of that being said, overall, Blind to Blood 2: The End Game is extremely original and entertaining.  At the same time, the gruesome nature is quite cringe-worthy – in a complimentary way.  It’s a short, fast read that’s easy to get sucked into, hard to put down, and before you know it, you’re at the end.  I’ll give it 3 scalpels out of 5.

I know I already said this once, but this time I mean it.  Next up: Patrick J. O’Brian‘s latest release, Uncertain Terms.

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