CONTRIBUTORS: PAGE TWO

Our main goal here at The Kyanite Press is to uplift indie voices. We hope to discover new talent, work with established authors, and create a truly unique and cutting-edge journal. Please check out our contributors and support them by visiting their websites, following them on social media, and purchasing a copy of The Kyanite Press!

You can find out more about Gary on his website and follow him on Twitter.

“Classified:  Agent of D.A.R.T.”
– Halloween 2018

“Mother of All Storms” – JAN/FEB 2019

Gary Fagan is a Thirty-Six year old bachelor with no children or major responsibilities. And so, he spends much of his free time creating stories that interest and amuse him. He thought that if he enjoyed the stories, others might as well; which lead him to start sharing them with friends and loved ones.

From there he tried unsuccessfully many times to garner the attention of agents and publishers alike. The rejections process stung, but he continued writing anyway. He wrote them because in his mind, they needed to be written or they would have driven him mad.

[Editorial Note:  A little madness is a healthy part of the creative process.  – B.K.]

What are your favorite kinds of stories to read?
My favorite kinds of stories to read would be in the Urban Fantasy genre; if I had to nail down any one specific genre, but I also enjoy classic noir detective novels and the occasional Weird Tale.

Who are your favorite authors?
My favorite Authors are: Jim Butcher, Laurell K. Hamilton, Terry Brooks, Terry Goodkind, Cassandra Clare, Rick Riordan, Robert Jordan, Mickey Spillane, Franklin W. Dixon, and Piers Antony.

However, my favorite storyteller is Scheherazade. Simply for the fact that telling compelling stories literally saved her life.

Other than what we see here, what else do you enjoy writing about?
I enjoy writing about a broad spectrum of subjects. From awkward romances to high flying action. Usually I tend to write about the stories I tell myself before I go to sleep. Sometimes they’re thrilling and filled with action and…uhm…yeah. Other times they’re filled with drama and emotion.

What books and/or authors would you count among your primary influences?
I would say my biggest influences in the urban fantasy genre are Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files and Laurell K. Hamilton’s Anita Blake and Merry Gentry novels. When it comes to Weird Fiction and Sword and Sorcery I’d say my influence would be Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series and his Conan collections.

Felix, Kati cropped

You can find out more about Kati at her website, and follow her on Twitter and Instagram.  She also has poetry on Allpoetry!

“The Gate” – Winter Digest 2018

Kati Felix began her bizarre and fascinating career in middle school. As she grew older, writing morphed from a hobby into a full-on obsession. With international experience and a solid literary background, she hopes to share her writing with as many word-lovers as possible. When she’s not scaling the Swiss Alps in search of dragon eggs, she can be found among stacks of empty tea boxes and buckling bookshelves, typing out yet another story about immortal vikings or the ill-behaved Fae.

What are your favorite kinds of stories to read?
Some of my favorite stories of all time are Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson and The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allen Poe. The former is pure adventure, and the latter is darkness and terror. All these elements have shaped what I read and what I write.

Who are your favorite authors?
Without a doubt, Diana Gabaldon is top of the list, followed by Patricia Briggs, Tolkien, Anthony Ryan, Larissa Brown, Madeline Miller, and Holly Black. I have so many more, but these are always at the top of my TBR pile. Also anything about Vikings or Scotland is a huge bonus.

Other than what we see here, what else do you enjoy writing about?
While adventure, romance, and a twisted theme are compelling, I also adore writing characters who see themselves as deeply flawed and still try to give their best to others. I identify so much with the Aragorns of the world, the Vaelin Al Sornas, the October Dayes, and so many more.

What books and/or authors would you count among your primary influences?
For UF/PR – Patricia Briggs. I began reading her Mercy Thompson and Alpha&Omega series in high school, and it has been an epic love affair. I mentioned Diana Gabaldon before. The way she uses subtle physicality to depict deep emotion and personality is a huge influence on my writing process.

Rachel Ford

You can find out more about Rachel at her blog and on Amazon. Also follow her on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.  

“Good Neighbors” – JUL/AUG 2019

Rachel Ford is a software engineer by day, and a writer most of the rest of the time. She is a Trekkie, a video-gamer, and a dog parent, owned by a Great Pyrenees named Elim Garak and a mutt of many kinds named Fox (for the inspired reason that he looks like a fox).

What are your favorite kinds of stories to read?
I love stories about ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances. If it has robots, dragons or aliens, well, that’s even better.

Who are your favorite authors?
Alexandre Dumas, H. G. Wells, Una McCormack, Victor Hugo, J. R. R. Tolkien, Agatha Christie and Jane Austen

Other than what we see here, what else do you enjoy writing about?
Time travel and space travel. Oh, and dragons and robots. Occasionally, robotic dragons.

Do you have an overall message you wish to convey with your work?
If readers took one message away from my work, it would be: never give up hope, and never stop striving to make the world right. There’s nothing as powerful as good people working for good reasons.

zach friday author pic

You can connect with Zach on Twitter.

“Last Man” – Spring 2020

Zach Friday is a fiction writer whose work focuses on horror and comedy, sometimes merging the two. His short stories have appeared in publications around the world. He lives in North Texas where he works as an editor for DBND Publishing, spending most of his time reading and writing horror stories or watching hockey with his dog, Bosco.

What are your favorite kinds of stories to read?

It sounds canned, but I like to read all types of stories and it’s difficult to say I enjoy one kind over the others. If it’s a good story with interesting characters, I’m in.

Who are your favorite authors?

Grady Hendrix, Eric Jay Dolin, Stephen King, Bernard Cornwell, George V. Higgins, Martin McDonagh.

Other than what we see here, what else do you enjoy writing about?

Anything I get the itch to write about, which can vary wildly depending on what’s going on in my life. I typically write horror and dark fiction, but I really like writing comedic stories as well.

What is it about speculative fiction that draws your interest?

Definitely the lack of rules. Whatever you can dream up, as long as you can ground it within your story, is fair game.

Hansson, Marcus

You can find out more about Marcus at his website and follow him on Twitter.

“Stone Faces” – Nov/Dec 2018

Marcus Hansson studied law in Scotland and Sweden, which is where he discovered his love of places cold and quiet. After graduation, the obvious next step was to try and make a paltry living writing and working in video games. It’s still paltry, but it’s getting there. Hire him to write something, why don’t you! Link is to the left! Marcus begrudgingly lives in Paris, wishing for cold and quiet, like a little old man with surprisingly smooth skin.

What are your favorite kinds of stories to read?
One of my favourite things in stories is when something in them gives form to a thought I’ve never been able to express. By doing that, stories reshape the world. Oh, and I’m a sucker for twists, revenge, and underdogs.

Who are your favorite authors?
Steven Erikson, Stephen King, Ursuka K. Leguin, Clive Barker. There will be more. I’m eternally grateful to these people. I’d be raving mad without them, or even worse, completely sane.

Other than what we see here, what else do you enjoy writing about?
I also write for and about video games. Branching dialogue may occasionally break my brain, but it’s too awesome to ignore.

Do you have an overall message you wish to convey with your work?
Sometimes. Not in general. But if I did, I’d tell you to go read my work and find out there.

TR-Hendricks

Find out more about Tim at his Website.
Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.

“Tears for Avalys” – Autumn 2019

T.R. Hendricks (Tim) is a former United States Army Captain who served two deployments in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom as a combat arms and military intelligence officer. He discovered his love for writing in the 9th grade when he composed a poem solely out of quotes from Arnold Schwarzenegger movies, subsequently earning an “A,” and has been doing it ever since. Hailing from a 60′ x 100′ plot on Long Island, NY he now lives in a different 60′ x 100′ plot on that same traffic congested spit of land. Tim is married and the proud father of two little girls.

What are your favorite kinds of stories to read?

While I tend to gravitate towards fantasy, I’ll read anything that transports me from the here and now to the story on the page. My reading choices are as eclectic as my writing.

Who are your favorite authors?

Brandon Sanderson and Robert Jordan are all time favorites in the fantasy realm. I also enjoy Bernard Cornwell, Jonathan Maberry, Brad Thor, Justin Cronin, Jeff Shaara and of course, George R.R. Martin.

Other than what we see here, what else do you enjoy writing about?

Admitted genre jumper. There are so many stories bouncing around in my head it’s a wonder I can focus on anything. I have a thriller series underway, two separate fantasy series, a bunch of historical fiction standalones across different periods, and some horror and speculative mixed in for good measure.

Do you have an overall message you wish to convey with your work?

I believe in the ultimate triumph of good over evil. It may not be apparent, or even occur in your lifetime, but eventually light banishes the dark. In that regard you can bet my heroes will come out on top, it just might not be in the way you’re expecting.

Find out more about Benjamin at his Website.
Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.
Find his books on Amazon and Goodreads.

“The Rookery at Smeaton Abbey” – SEP/OCT 2018
“The Children of Blackmarsh” – Halloween 2018
“Baba Yaga and the Ailing Child” – Winter Digest 2018

Benjamin Hope is the author of Victorian gothic-steampunk crossover, The Procurement of Souls. His sequel, A New Religion, is due for release in 2019 and he is also currently working on a collection of cautionary fairy tales. He blogs regularly on the writing process and offers up recommendations in 60 words for speculative and gothic fiction on his website at www.benjamin-hope.com. He occasionally guest lectures at universities on public speaking and lives in Hertfordshire, in the UK, with his wife and daughter.

What are your favorite kinds of stories to read?
I’m a speculative man in the main but I love anything with a dark edge and messages or ideas that simmer below the surface. I love language too so poetic prose are a draw. Then again, I’m always ready to devour a brutal adventure from the likes of Joe Abercrombie.

Other than what we see here, what else do you enjoy writing about?
Countless authors have influenced (and continue to influence) me on my writing journey but to name a few and the reasons behind them: Edgar Allan Poe for his gothic verve; Joe Abercrombie for his pacing and characters; Susannah Clarke for her world building; and G.W.Dahlquist for his ingenious plots!

What books and/or authors would you count among your primary influences?
As The Rookery at Smeaton Abbey suggests, I love exploring fairy-tales, fables, allegories and everything in-between. Yet my newly released full-length debut, The Procurement of Souls, is a gothic-steampunk crossover about bio-alchemists! And this is the unifying factor; the thing that delights me most: story-telling through a gothic lens.

What is it about speculative fiction that draws your interest?
The thing I love about speculative fiction is that the only limitation is your imagination. There is no end to the creativity it can inspire.

ironside

My Facebook is public and documents my travels, writings, and other activities. Readers should feel free to reach out to me there.

“The Standing Stones of Uzul” – Autumn 2019

Luke Michael Ironside is an author and English teacher from the tiny island of Guernsey, just off the coast of Normandy. Aside from his writing, Luke is an avid traveler and takes inspiration from his journeys around the world. He has also lectured extensively for the Theosophical Society in England, India, and the Philippines. He has previously worked as a primary school teacher at state schools in Vietnam and presently works as a teacher for Chinese students online. He resides in Yerevan, Armenia.

Other than what we see here, what else do you enjoy writing about?
Most of my other writings have been non-fiction. As an English teacher, I have written some articles on teaching English as a foreign language. I have also had numerous articles published on subjects related to comparative religious studies (specifically Hindu studies) and on the history of the Theosophical movement. I intend to write further stories about Daaren of Eastmere, detailing his adventures as he matures and makes his way in the world.

What books and/or authors would you count among your primary influences?
I draw from a wide variety of authors, books, and genres as influence for my work. In the sword-and-sorcery genre, I am particularly influenced by the writings of Robert E. Howard (Conan the Barbarian) and Lin Carter (Thongor of Lemuria). I also draw influence from various other genres, such as Bildungsroman (coming of age), historical fiction, science fiction, and epic fantasy.

Do you have an overall message you wish to convey with your work?
As humans, we are hard-wired for stories. All stories attempt in some way to comment upon or reflect the human condition. I hope my work in some way presents a fictional representation of real life in which the readers can identify with the characters and situations they must face.

What is it about speculative fiction that draws your interest?
Speculative fiction boldly explores new worlds, systems, ideas, and ways of life. The only limitations are those imposed by the authors themselves. From the magical realms of epic fantasy to the far-flung star systems of science fiction, speculative fiction provides us with an imaginative expanse in which we may be equally entertained, inspired, horrified, and impressed.

You can find more about Sage at their website www.storiesundermyskin.com.
You can also follow them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr.

“I Love My Town” – Halloween 2018

Sage P. Irwin publishes creepy, strange, and speculative short stories to their website and is working on branching out to wider audiences. They like to ask questions, imagine alternatives, and be scared. They are a queer and non-binary author who strives to normalize and explore the existence of these identities through their work. They hold a degree in English and gender studies from the University of Toronto, work in the nonprofit sector, and do most of their writing from an attic room in the Kawarthas.

What are your favorite kinds of stories to read?
I love scary stories, weird stories, and imaginative stories. I enjoy stories with narrators that are personal, reflective, and occasionally a little “off”. I love fiction that closely resembles the world we live in with just one thing out of place.

Other than what we see here, what else do you enjoy writing about?
I write about haunted packages, alien encounters, demons, ghosts, and the end of the world. Currently, I’m working on a story about a journal that affects reality as well as a novella about a person and a gorilla roaming around a post-apocalyptic Vancouver.

Do you have an overall message you wish to convey with your work?
Queer and trans folks exist and we deserve to have our stories told. Gender neutral pronouns are something people should start getting used to. We are also allowed to be more than our identities. Not all of our stories have to revolve around coming out.

What is it about speculative fiction that draws your interest?
I love the way some speculative fiction explores the dynamics of power and oppression in this world and others. I think SF can make for incredibly effective social commentary, reflecting on the questions raised by philosophy and politics in a creative way.

David Jesson cropped

You can find out more about David on his website, and follow him on Twitter.

“Shadows of the Mine” – JAN/FEB 2019

Materials Scientist by day, writer by night, David Jesson is a Research Fellow at a British university and the cohost of Fiction Can Be Fun, a collaborative writing blog. David writes both fiction and non-fiction. He is working on a Pre-Cold War Spy novel (with an Urban Fantasy twist) with his writing partner, and also a pop-sci book about the use of materials in fiction. In reality, he’s not quite as dapper as his photo would suggest.

What are your favorite kinds of stories to read?
When it comes to reading, I’m pretty omnivorous: whilst I tend to read more SF&F than other books, fundamentally I’m after a good story, written well. A good story is more important than genre, for the most part.

Other than what we see here, what else do you enjoy writing about? Paraphrasing Asimov, science fiction is never just S.F. There’s always something else there as well – a detective story, thriller, politics – romance ever; whatever. The same is true of Fantasy. I like adding an SF&F twist, whenever possible, and I like trying to provide an S.F. update on folklore and fanatasy.

What books and/or authors would you count among your primary influences?
Oooh. Tough… I’ve got a WIP which is influenced by Fritz Lieber and JRR Tolkien. Sometimes though it’s a little thing that sticks with you. I find Eddings unreadable now, having read and reread his stuff for years, but I envy his ability to think big.

What is it about speculative fiction that draws your interest?
What’s not to love about Speculative Fiction? If I had to narrow it down to one thing though, I’d have to say it’s the opportunity to try out big ideas in safe mode – it’s a thought experiment with a narrative.

ashlyn johnson

You can find out more about Ashlyn at her website, and follow her on Twitter.

“Hollow” – Jan/Feb 2019

Ashlyn Johnson is a twenty eight year old author. She writes stories with aspirations to bring intriguing thoughts to the masses for them to enjoy in their spare reading time. In her own spare time if you do not find her reading or writing, you will find her gaming, watching anime, or looking up cute animal pictures.

What are your favorite kinds of stories to read?
Horror will always have a place in my heart. Along with Horror, all sorts of fantasy stories.

Who are your favorite authors?
Ted Dekker, Stephen King, and Joe Hill to name a few.

Other than what we see here, what else do you enjoy writing about?
Dark, Urban Fantasy is a big player in what I write if I am not writing horror related content.

Do you have an overall message you wish to convey with your work?
It’s not necessarily a message I want to convey, but I want those who read my works to feel something from it. I want to evoke emotions from others.


Darius Jones

You can find out more about Darius at his website, and follow him on Twitter and Goodreads.

“Breakpoint” – Nov/Dec 2018

Darius Jones’ stories have been published in Sobotka Literary Magazine, Strangelet Journal, Fiction Vortex and elsewhere. He lives in Virginia where he can usually be found in a local café writing his next piece.

What are your favorite kinds of stories to read?
Anything and everything. Comedy, satire, adventure, mystery, horror, science fiction, historical, philosophical, even literary fiction. I try to read and absorb the widest pallet of influences, voices and perspectives and then incorporate (steal!?) as many of their tricks as I can.

Other than what we see here, what else do you enjoy writing about?
I also write a lot of historical fiction of a faux-Orientalist nature starring the hero Yusuf ibn Yaqzan. And I write some literary-style fiction focused on my experiences in Russia.

What books and/or authors would you count among your primary influences?
I’ll give you my top 10, in no particular order: Dostoyevsky, Hammett, Poe, Borges, Rulfo, Basho, Chris Marlowe, Gogol, Orson Welles, Waylon Jennings. Anything that smudges the border between literary and speculative fiction.

Do you have an overall message you wish to convey with your work?
Nope…But seriously, I don’t write with a message in mind. I feel the author, in many cases, in the best cases, is as much an observer as the reader. And can have as valid an interpretation as any reader.

Crystal Kirkham

You can find out more about Crystal at her website.
You can also follow her on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

“Alert” – Spring 2020

Crystal L. Kirkham resides in a small hamlet west of Red Deer, Alberta. She’s an avid outdoors person, unrepentant coffee addict, part-time foodie, servant to a wonderful feline, and companion to delightfully hilarious canines. She will neither confirm nor deny the rumours regarding the heart in a jar on her desk and the bottle of readers’ tears right next to it. Her paranormal urban fantasy series, Saints and Sinners, is available on Amazon and her YA Fantasy, Feathers and Fae, is available from Kyanite Publishing.

 

What are your favorite kinds of stories to read?

Stories that are highly character driven, no matter the genre, are always high on my reading list. Characters can make or break a story for me.

Who are your favorite authors?

Bryce Courtenay, Spider Robinson, Alan Dean Foster, Stephen King and John Case all have significant space on my bookshelves.

Other than what we see here, what else do you enjoy writing about?

Exploring the darker side of the human psyche is one of my favourite things when it comes to writing.

What is it about speculative fiction that draws your interest?

I love being able to take the ordinary and look at it in extraordinary ways, and speculative fiction gives me a chance to do that—often in a world of my own making.

You can find out more about Eric at ericlahti.com and at his blog.
You can also follow him on Twitter and Facebook.

“Security System” – Halloween 2018

Eric Lahti is a programmer, author, martial artist, and generally decent guy. He writes urban fantasy with a smattering of horror and humor with the odd short story tossed in. He’s the author of the Henchmen series and his ode to Kung Fu Theater: Greetings From Sunny Aluna. His most recent book about devils, ghost hunters, witches, and magic should be available sometime this Fall.

What are your favorite kinds of stories to read?
I enjoy stories that make me wonder and sticks with me long after the story is over. I’m not particular to any genre, but I love stories that cover big stuff. Be it Sci-Fi, urban fantasy, or anything else, as long as it leaves something behind, I dig it.

Who are your favorite authors?
I love Richard Matheson’s work.  Tim Powers has done some absolutely amazing work, too. Heinlein, Asimov, Stephenson, Walter Gibson, Lester Dent, Stephen King, Harlan Ellison, Walter Jon Williams.

Do you have an overall message you wish to convey with your work?
Not overly. Some of my books are a reaction to what I see going on in the world, others just have larger themes. They all have the same underlying sense of something magical happening just around the corner. Maybe that’s the message: Keep looking and you might find something amazing.

What books and/or authors would you count among your primary influences?
Definitely Tim Powers. I love his work and the intricacy that he weaves into his plots.  Some of the bigger names of the 30s pulp world such as Walter Gibson and Lester Dent have also influenced me. Their love of adventure shines through their works.

Lea, Trisha

You can find out more about Trisha on her website; and can follow her on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

“The Wolf’s Bane” – Winter Digest 2018
“The Cost of Sight” – JUL/AUG 2019

Trisha Lea fell in love with writing at eight-years-old and has been honing her craft ever since. She studied theater at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy and has since returned to her first passion. She recently finished her first novel and Tweets daily flash fictions. She lives in Colorado with her husband, two kids, and two cats.

What are your favorite kinds of stories to read?
I like suspenseful, dark and gritty, and weird stories.

What books and/or authors would you count among your primary influences?
My favorite books are “The Library at Mount Char,” by Scott Hawkins, “The Bone Clocks,” by David Mitchell, and the Dark Tower Series by Stephen King. Since I’ve spent a lot of time in those worlds, they have dramatically influenced my writing style.

Do you have an overall message you wish to convey with your work?
Most people are afraid of monsters, ghosts, or the dark. I’m more afraid of other people and what they are capable of doing. I want my readers to question their ideas of good and evil, and find that maybe everyone has a little bit of both.

What is it about speculative fiction that draws your interest?
I love speculative fiction because it asks the question “What if?” Anything is possible, and if we can dream it, we can create it.

S. Lyle Lunt author pic

You can connect with Sandy on Twitter and Facebook.

“I Will Warm You With My Flesh” – Spring 2020

 

S. Lyle Lunt had her first short story published in 1979 and has been writing ever since. She lives in Georgia with her husband, and when not writing spends her time working on their fixer-upper, trying to manage the untamed acres it sits upon, and traveling. She hopes to have her completed coming-of-age novel, A River Away, ready for publication soon.

 

What are your favorite kinds of stories to read?

I’ve fallen in love with many different genres of stories, but the ones that grab me the hardest are those that are character-driven. I love getting into the minds and hearts of characters, especially if they’re lonely, quirky, weird, or disenfranchised.

Who are your favorite authors?

John Steinbeck, Mark Twain, Carson McCullers, J.D. Salinger, Wally Lamb, Stephen King, Anne Tyler, Gail Godwin, and Louis Sachar are just a few of my favorites.

Other than what we see here, what else do you enjoy writing about?

I write the ideas that pop into my head and won’t let me be. If there’s a uniting factor, it might be that the characters are often struggling internally with what’s right and what’s wrong.

What books and/or authors would you count among your primary influences?

The Secret Garden is the book that started me writing. I tried to build a river raft because of Huckleberry Finn. The brilliance of Wally Lamb’s She’s Come Undone, the beautiful simplicity of Tuck Everlasting, and the humor in the David Sedaris essays have also influenced me.