I am excited to help introduce the next upcoming work of fantasy author CP Bialois, author of the acclaimed Sword and Flame books. This latest tale, the novella Stranger Passing, will be released 22 April and the cover you see below is a new reveal. It looks both awesome and intriguing. I’ve invited CP to pen the first-ever guest post here at the Weathered Journal. It’s a good one, too. In it, he gives you some insight into the writing craft, and some history of his series.
So without further delay, please enjoy CP’s post, and take a look at Stranger Passing when it comes out 22 April!
A Glimpse in to My Insanity
by C.P. Bialois
Hello everyone! Before I get started I want to thank William for allowing me the opportunity to share some of my thoughts on my upcoming novella, Stranger Passing and to all of you for taking the time out of your busy day to read this.
Where do I start? I guess the best place is the methodology of my ideas and system. You see, when I get an idea I take some time to let it simmer. I can usually get a decent sized story or even a full sized novel out of a single idea. I just sit down and start writing and allow the characters to tell me what they experience. Sure, I have an idea about the climax and possible ending, but the real meat and potatoes of the story are always a mystery to me.
That was how the original Sword and the Flame book began. It was nothing more than an idea to have a group of people come together and go on an adventure for treasure that was protected by a dragon. Meant as a thirty page story, it quickly took on a life of its own and after nine months sat at five hundred typed pages or about a thousand once formatted. I loved the story and some of the subtle character developments that found their way into it. Due to its size, I decided it’d be best to cut it in half instead of one mammoth of a book. That easy a series was created, but what did I intend to do with it? Good question.
I love the epic fantasy genre and have read the Dragonlance books more times than I can count. The idea of having my own ideas in something similar did appeal to me, but I didn’t want to do something under the “just because” excuse. If I would write anything, it’d be something I enjoyed doing and hope my readers would as well. That’s when the idea for this story came to me. (On a side note, I’m not much of a conformist and I don’t “pick my spots” to do things. For better or worse, if I have an idea I do it and don’t look back until the dust settles.) I thought, “What would happen if a Halfling decided to become a warrior?”
In my stories, 90% of Halflings are thieves and the rest are traveling entertainers (dancers, bards, etc), with thievery being the expected and respected path for one to choose. So my thinking was what if one of them has a different outlook similar to the dreamers of yesteryear that used to wonder what it’d be like to fly or go into space. How would he/she choose such the life of a warrior and how would he be received?
To be honest, I didn’t do much with the idea until the June NaNoWriMo Summer Camp in 2012. My wife talked me into taking part (again) and I needed a story. Being that was the only idea I had at the time, Eron the Great became more than an idea. I thought it was a perfect opportunity to expand the world of Pyrain into what I called the Wilderness (Pyrain’s forested version of the Wild West). With new characters and ideas, I felt energized and dove into the project.
I planned on dividing the book into three equal parts which happened to be eight chapters each. As it turned out, I was forced to leave huge gaps of time in the middle book to fit it into the eight chapters. When NaNo was finished, I felt the project was a steaming pile of poo (Sorry for the graphic image) and set it off to the side to be reworked at a later time. That’s where the inspiration for this novella came into play.
The messages I received from readers about how much they loved the Sword and the Flame books and asking if there would be any more got me to thinking. Since it was originally meant as a standalone novel, aside from possibly a few short stories about the characters, I didn’t have a large scale novel planned out. Over time, a couple of ideas began to gnaw at me so I started to write the next novel and brought in additional characters and guess who one of them was? Yep, you guessed it. Eron.
As soon as I pulled him and his cohorts into the novel, I had the urge to release Eron’s book as a series of novellas with the third novel being the third part of his story. The idea became a more linear telling of the Sword and the Flame universe I liked. It helps me in that I don’t have to shoehorn stories into the universe out of order and I hope is something my readers enjoy.
I want to thank you all once more for joining me to hear my story and I look forward to seeing you when Eron’s journey begins in Stranger Passing on April 22. Thank you all for your time. Have a great one!