Tell me a little about yourself, personally.
That’s a big question! Where to start? Well, I was born and raised in Florida, near the coast. I spent a couple of years in the Army right out of high school, then worked graveyard shift in a motel while going to college. I worked my way up in the hospitality industry to be the General Manager of several oceanfront resorts, and since then I’ve worked in healthcare administration, consumer electronics retail, electroplating, and manufacturing. In between all of that I’ve also done some food service and other odd jobs. A little bit of everything! I’ve also moved around a bit, spending time in Alabama, New York, back to Florida, North Carolina, and now in Tennessee. I retired from the day job for medical reasons, so writing and publishing are now my full-time career. Storytelling has been a passion of mine since I was very young, so I’m lucky to have the opportunity to pursue what I love now.
What is the name of the book or books you have published?
What Once Was Home
Science Fiction, Alien Invasion, Post-Apocalyptic
When aliens invade the Earth and society falls apart, Jace Cox must become a man and a leader in the aftermath. He soon discovers that the greatest challenge isn’t overcoming the alien invaders or even his fellow man; it’s holding on to his own humanity in what once was home.
The Ravencrest Chronicles
Fantasy, Dark Fantasy, Classic Urban Fantasy
In the city of Seahaven, the common folk struggle to survive in poverty under the yoke of the wealthy aristocracy. Against threats that lurk in the shadows, the peasantry must rely on thieves, pirates, and scoundrels to be their hidden heroes in the darkness.
Accomplished thief Gareth never intended to be a hero until an encounter with vampires. Now, he must reluctantly hunt the creatures of the night the only way he knows how: from the shadows.
The Hunter’s Apprentice
Miles discovers that there are deadlier things awaiting in the night as the dead roam the streets of Seahaven. With Gareth’s help, he must hunt them down and discover the source of the unnatural blight.
The Giant and the Fishes
After avenging his father’s death, Fergus joins a pirate crew. As the shadows behind him grow ever darker, the challenges ahead muster like a furious storm on the sea. Will find the atonement for which he strives?
Tales From the Lusty Mermaid
Pull up a seat and grab a full flagon of ale, because tonight is bound to be a night full of action, adventure, and romance! At The Lusty Mermaid, tall tales of all sorts are told every night, and this anthology collects some of the best.
The Ravencrest Chronicles: Omnibus One
Within these three novellas and a collection of short stories, flash fiction, and poetry, the world of The Ravencrest Chronicles comes to life with a level of gritty realism seldom seen in print. Seahaven, The Hunters Apprentice, The Giant and the Fishes, and Tales From the Lusty Mermaid collected in one volume.
The Night Trilogy
Science Fiction, Hardboiled Detective, Cyberpunk
When a routine murder investigation turns up more questions than answers, homicide detective Harold Peterson finds himself unraveling a decades-old conspiracy.
As various threads start to come together, the big picture is revealed to be more than Harold ever bargained for. As bullets start to fly from every direction, the only thing Harold knows for sure is that he isn’t being paid enough to deal with this.
The Tales of Durgan Stoutheart
Fantasy, High Fantasy, Heroic Fantasy
Follow the Tales of Durgan Stoutheart, a dwarf who must learn what it means to be a hero and a leader in this series that takes the often side-lined fantasy race of dwarves and puts them in the spotlight!
Warriors of Understone
Durgan must struggle to overcome his common birth and the prejudices of a stagnant culture to become one of the warriors of Understone. He may defeat opponents with axe and shield, but can he change the very values of society with the same tools?
Beyond the Veil
Horror, Cosmic Horror, Alternate History
In an alternate history 1940’s, American treasure hunter Richard Jericho and British archaeologist Wilkins Chapman travel the world and delve into the ruins of antiquity in an unlikely partnership. Some things, however, are best left undisturbed.
Parting the Veil
In the jungles of Peru, Richard and Wilkins discover more than they expected. As the fabric of reality comes apart, they must journey across the globe chasing clues. And the more they part the veil, the more of what lies beyond the veil spills into our reality.
The Burning Sands
Fantasy, Sword and Sorcery, Sandalpunk
The Burning Sands features a land of barren deserts and mysterious cultures. Following in the footsteps of Robert E. Howard’s “Conan the Barbarian”, the adventures of Brego are fast paced adventures in exotic lands!
Blood of the Desert
After escaping a life of slavery, Brego crosses the wastelands fleeing slavers, bounty hunters, and other more nefarious threats. As he sheds the iron bonds of his youth, he seeks something he has never known: a home. In the process he finds something he never expected to find: a family.
Where can they be found?
They can be found direct from kyanitepublishing.com, and through major retailers like Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Kobo. There’s links to my own website in the list above, and the landing pages have retail links.
Do you have any current WIPs?
Always! I always have at lot in the works. Right now, my main focus is on Night Life, the sequel to Night Shift and second book in my neo-noir hardboiled detective cyberpunk trilogy. There are outlines for a few others, mostly sequels to books I’ve already published.
Companions of the Stone Road will be the sequel to Warriors of Understone. There are two more books coming after Blood of the Desert: Into the Red Wastes and Empire of the Scale. And I have three more books planned for The Ravencrest Chronicles: Midnight Masques, Tapestry of Lies, and Cult of the Shadow Queen. That trilogy-within-a-series is going to shake things up there. The prior books were mostly one-off stories, but these three will have an overarching conflict.
I’m also in the initial planning for a supernatural/paranormal cozy mystery series called The Strange Tales of Andre Broussard, set in a small fictional town just outside of New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1925. Finally, I’ve been spending over a year and a half now working on worldbuilding and outlining for an epic fantasy series and just started penning a few words for the first book, Heir to Eternity.
How are they going?
Like I mentioned, Night Life is the main focus right now. It’s about half-way done, and I’m hoping to find some time this month (December 2019 for those reading this later) to finish that. I might dive right into the next book after that, Night Shadow, which will wrap up that trilogy. Otherwise Companions of the Stone Road will be next on the front burner. There’s always something going on with the rest. Like any good chef I’m always stirring the pots on the back burner and making sure the oven’s okay.
What got you into writing?
When I was in fifth grade, we had a “Homeroom” class that was mostly free time to catch up on homework, but we could also read from a selection the teacher had curated. She had an eclectic variety available for us, and that year I ran through the likes of Where the Red Fern Grows along with the works of Edgar Allan Poe and a collection of Greek mythology. I absolutely fell in love with the power of storytelling and the written word. The amazing adventures, fantastic creatures, and mythological beings of the Greek myths alongside the emotional tension and absolutely masterful wordsmithing of Poe inspired a spark in me. I became a bookworm after that, and you’d almost never see me without a book nearby. I couldn’t even say how many books I’ve read over the years. I’ve also been writing off and on ever since. It’s been thirty years, and most of what I wrote ended up in the trash bin. I chalk it all up as practice, and I wouldn’t be able to write the quality I do today without that foundation to build on.
What keeps you focused?
Good, old fashioned discipline. This is my job, be it writing the next book, tweaking my website, or the work I do for Kyanite Publishing and Worldbuilding Magazine. I get up every Monday through Friday, usually at 4am. I make coffee, feed the cats, and sit down at the desk. I’m there until 11am. Those are my “office hours”. Outside of that I’m constantly responding to messages, jumping on things that need done, and often spend at least another four hours in the evening at the desk working on something. I try to take the weekends off to avoid burnout, but there’s usually something that pops up. I think something else that helps is passion. I love what I’m doing, and I want it to succeed, so even when the discipline feels like it’s wavering the passion holds it together.
What gives you inspiration?
The easy answer here is “everything.” There might be somebody with a curious personality quirk at the grocery store, and they could go on to inspire a secondary or background character in my next book. I say inspiration is everywhere, and we should always be looking for it. To narrow it down though, there’s two major things. First is storytelling in all forms. Movies, television, books, video games; they all have a lot to offer in their own ways. Even when I’m unwinding and watching a movie, in the back of my mind I’m analyzing the plot structure, character arcs, dialogue, etc. The other thing is history. I’m a big history nerd, and I take a lot of inspiration from that, especially in my worldbuilding. I say that speculative fiction is a great lens through which to analyze questions about the human condition, and the best place to find those questions is in our own history—be that something from last week or four thousand years ago.
How do you battle writer’s block?
As you can tell from the question about works in progress above, I have a lot of projects cooking all at once. I have them at different stages, from concept through worldbuilding, outlining, drafting, and editing. If I ever get stuck on one, I have something else to work on. I’d say that I don’t battle writer’s block as much as I side-step it. When it happens, I work on something else. I’m never staring at a blank page trying to figure out what to do next. I have too much I want to write and too little time to do that. This way, I’m always being productive on something. Sometimes I’ll work one project start to finish without branching off. Other times I’ll end up finishing two books within a week of each other because I’ve been bouncing back and forth between them for three months. Something’s always happening. There’s always some progress being made.
Did you decide on traditional or self-publishing?
I started out with self-publishing but fell into a fortuitous circumstance where I met up with some like-minded individuals, all of us who wanted to start our own small press. We started Kyanite Publishing, which operates on a traditional model. Since then, all my books have been published through Kyanite.
What made you make that choice?
Initially, we were all self-publishing authors. We joined together to start an indie book review site, and in the process of reviewing these books discovered that there was a lot of amazing talent out there going it on their own. In talking to a lot of these authors, we found that many of them were suffering in relative obscurity; lost in the crowd, so to speak. I had already self-published four books at this point and had the same problem. We all wanted that traditional book deal, but getting in with the “big guys” is a very difficult proposition. We wanted to see something where there was a way to traditionally publish, but where the publisher focused more on great storytelling than business, something author-friendly and open to uplifting as many independent voices as possible. That’s the passion that birthed Kyanite Publishing.
How does it feel to be considered an author?
It’s amazing. My heroes growing up were never athletes, actors, or astronauts—although I respect and admire those professions. My heroes were the likes of Mark Twain, Edgar Allan Poe, and Robert E. Howard. I grew up with names like Margaret Weiss and R.A. Salvatore staring back at me from my bookshelves every day. Those were my heroes, and there was something magical about how they could take the simple twenty-six characters of our alphabet and mix them in ways that would transport you to another world. I’ve always wanted to do that, and “author” has always been more prestigious in my mind as any other profession. To be able to call myself that is a dream come true, and at the same time a humbling experience filled with the responsibility to ensure that my own work is the best I can possibly make it.
What’s your social media platforms for people to find you?
I spend most of my social media time on Twitter, and you can find me there, @b_k_bass.
I’m also on Facebook and Instagram under @bkbassauthor.
Finally, Kyanite Publishing has a Discord server you can join here: https://discord.gg/S65C975. It’s open to the public, and you can interact there with many of our authors, contributors, and other readers!