Thursday, August 14, 2014

C. R. Asay's Heart is the Annihilation of Aliens

C. R. Asay (Christauna) dislikes aliens
Today the Blog Mansion welcomes debut author Christauna Asay, a woman with a name so weird she uses initials. C.R. Asay just released her first book Heart of Annihilation and I invited her to talk about her belligerent attitude toward foreign affairs in my friendly alien menagerie.

Johnny: So you were in the military?

Christauna: Yep. 19th Special Forces group, baby!

J: What were you?

C: A counterintelligence agent. Also known as Agent, Spook, and oh-crap-here-she-comes-where’s-the-shredder. I worked to counter the intelligence efforts of the enemy. It made me very well loved.

J: When did you get out?

C: A million years ago. Or more like fourteen years right after my first kid was born.
J: Uh-huh...

C: What?

J: Tell me about your book Heart of Annihilation.

C: It’s a thrilling tale of a young female Specialist who is confronted by a past she didn’t know she had. When she goes searching for answers to her Dad’s disappearance she discovers her bizarre connection to an alternate dimensional threat to Earth. A weapon called the Heart of Annihilation.

J: Uh-huh….

C: What? What’s the matter?

J: So you have aliens in your book?

C: I don’t know that “alien” is politically correct any more. “Beings of Extraterrestrial Origins,” BETOs, or “Beings of Alternate Dimensional Origins,” BOADOs, would be more accurate.

J: Okay, and these BOADO are being ruthlessly hunted by the mean ol’ military?

C: A renegade special ops team that think they’re doing the right thing. But are they really? So not the whole military. Just the mean ones.

J: Yeah. Cool. Hey, I’d like to show you something. Come this way.

C: Oh, okay… Whoa! Dude! Is this an airlock?

J: Maybe.

C: Wait, I know that guy.

J: This is Paul. He’s an alien and he’s a nice guy.

C: Right... from that one movie.

J: Keep your pants on, Paul.

Paul: Whatever. Get me some nachos.

J: I’m busy. I’m making a point.

C: What point?

J: Do you know the Abyss Alien. Pretty cool huh?

C: Yeah, that’s really neat. Do you remember where I put my AR-15?

J: Aliens are nice, Christauna. You shouldn’t perpetuate racial stereotypes.

C: Found it! It was right by my .50 cal.

J: Hold on a minute. What about Yoda? You wouldn’t shoot Yoda, would you?

C: How do you know Yoda?

Yoda: No kill I.

C: *loads magazine and hits bolt release*

J: Wait a sec. He’s just quoting a Star Trek episode, but that’s the theme.

Yoda: Talking to a Horta was I.

C: That’s pretty annoying. Do you have any more aliens stashed in that airlock? I need to know if I should conserve my ammo.

J: Tell me about your aliens.


J: BOADOs. Right. So, where did you get the idea for the book?

C: I started with the main character, Specialist Kris Rose. She popped into my head fully formed in a really bad situation. I wrote that scene and then spent the next few months figuring out how she got there. And who doesn’t love aliens and superpowers, right? Clearly you do. Love aliens, I mean…

J: BOADOs. How long have you been writing?

C: Since Junior High. But no one wants to hear about that. I’ve only been writing seriously with the intent to publish for about eight years.

Gandhi would not shoot BOADO's
He did not own an AR-15. Not even one.
J: Uh-huh.

C: Can you take a couple steps to the left? You’re in my shot.

J: Oh. Yeah, sure. Have you ever heard that if all you have is a hammer everything looks like a nail?

C: What’s your point?

J: Why must the military be involved? Why can’t we just get along?

C: You’re talking about my book?

J: This is Gandhi. What would he do with your aliens? Something to think about.

C: Yeah, since negotiations and peaceful resolutions make for an exciting book.

J: You’ve been brainwashed by the military. Don’t you see that?

C: I can see a BETO in my sites.

J: Don’t be that way. It’s just something to think about.

So sweet and cuddley, how could anyone... oh... never mind

C: I’m starting to understand your choice of tie-dye a little better.

J: Did you see President Truman’s warning about eh Military Industrial Complex? Here it is—

C: Uh… book… Or I’m likely to shoot something.

J: What? Oh right. Uhm, so you wrote a book. Tell me about Kris Rose.

C: She’s a pretty kick-ass heroine. She has a smart mouth and an overdeveloped sense of morality. In a word, she’s awesome. She gets roped into a bad situation, not realizing that she was in the middle of it to begin with, and it makes her question everything she’s ever known. Who is she really? Where did she come from?

J: How much is Kris Rose like you? Have you ever killed an alien? A poor peace-loving misunderstood alien? Can you shoot lightning out of your fingers?

C: I’m about to. Just say the word and I’ll save your life.

Kris Rose started out a lot like me as I stumbled through writing my first novel, and then evolved into someone completely different. In a lot of ways I wouldn’t mind being more like her, but on the other hand, I wouldn’t wish her existence on my worst enemy. She’s got a lot of darkness in her screaming to get out.

J: How did you go from writer to author? Tell me your path to being published.

Who would ET shoot?
C: I wrote Heart of Annihilation and its sequel over the course of a couple years and then steadily revised my way to publication. It took a lot of time and learning, since Heart of Annihilation was the first novel I ever wrote. The characters and storyline were so compelling that I couldn’t bring myself to let it go.

It’s been a long hard road crammed with a lot of rejection, thrills of acceptance and determination to get this book out there. I found a publisher a few of years ago but left them after 2+ when they breached contract. I then decided to give my book one last chance. I did a lot of research before I settled on two small publishers that had a great track record and some amazing books. A couple queries later and I was signing my contract. A year after that Heart of Annihilation hit the shelves. I cried when I held it for the first time. Where on the Internet can my readers find out more about you and send you angry letters of protest on behalf of alien culture.

C: I welcome all alternate viewpoints and questions, especially if you purchase the book first.
J: Before we go I think you should see a few more aliens. Once you realize how truly friendly they are, you’ll rethink your belligerent attitude toward them.

Okay, I admit these guys are assholes.
C: You mean like the Independence Day BETOs pouring out of your @#$% airlock? Johnny, don’t you know you can’t open an airlock like that and not expect to expose the Blog Mansion to every alien scumbag in the universe? Run!

J: You said “alien.”

C: Grab Yoda, take my AR and go! I’ll cover you with the .50 cal!

J: They’re not all like those ones. *puffing* I mean, what about Clyde here. He’s very friendly he likes to hug.

C: Oh, my mmmmmpppffff!

Christauna and Clyde became great friends

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