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Beyond the Wail Blog Tour: L. K. McIntosh

Posted by Rampant Coyote on October 14, 2015


What is it about fear and the unknown that pulls so passionately at the human heart? Perhaps we are drawn not to the darkness itself, but to the resolution, the overcoming of what we most deeply dread. After all, the more terrible the struggle, the greater the victory when it comes at last. Presented in this anthology are twelve remarkable stories of the darkness that overshadows us, and the resolution that may be found beyond them. They are stories of fear and oppression, but ultimately stories of hope, stories that will take you BEYOND THE WAIL.

The Xchyler Publishing blog tour for the latest paranormal anthology continues here today with a spotlight of author L. K. McIntosh. One of the very cool things about anthologies is that it’s a great opportunity to sample new authors – or at least ones that are new to you. It’s extra cool being one of the authors in that I get to run into some of these really talented and creative people at conventions and book signings.

Xchyler authors range all over the world, but I suppose through word-of-mouth networking and their strong appearance at a couple of Utah conventions, we seem to have a pretty strong contingent of Utah authors! That, and Utah’s got a reputation for having an extremely high per-capita number of speculative fiction authors. Something in the water, I guess. So I’m doubly excited to introduce you to my fellow Utahn and my fellow author in Beyond the Wail, L. K. McIntosh.

LK_McIntosh_200x274L.K. McIntosh has been making up stories about the people around her since she learned how to talk. She eventually discovered cultural anthropology, a fantastic and often macabre world of research rabbit holes and bare bones tales just begging to be fleshed out. She is irrationally terrified of sharks, which makes perfect sense, considering she has always lived in a landlocked state, and she is a proud supporter of the Oxford comma. She is currently working on two speculative fiction novels and several short stories. She physically lives in Salt Lake City, Utah, but tends to live life vicariously thanks to the Internet, books, television, and a vast array of interesting people.

Her story is entitled, “The ‘Grim’ Reaper.” When a soul reaper loses the source of their power, the reaper must either find the witch who stole it or a new purpose for living.

With that, here’s a barrage of questions for her:

How did you come up with the concept of your story?

Xchyler provided a prompt of “Losers Weepers”, and the genre was paranormal, so I just kind of brainstormed for a bit. I like creating stories that are a bit different than what one would expect, so I didn’t want to do a story involving ghosts or psychics or creepy demon children. I landed on the concept of a reaper, with a bean­sidhe being a supporting character.

Please provide some insight into or a secret or two about your story:

I decided early on that the story didn’t necessitate a gender for the main character. The reaper is just a bundle of energy (granted, we all are), and doesn’t reproduce. They are just kind of there, doin’ what they do, reaping souls. So, I’ve gone with gender neutral pronouns when absolutely necessary. The story is in first person, so it allows a reader to decide for themselves what gender the character is.

What was the most surprising part of writing this story?

How difficult it was. Short stories are so much harder than you think they will be. You have to condense a tale into just 20 or so pages, but still have great character development, good conflict and tension, and a complete plot. Writing a good short story is an art (see Ray Bradbury or Neil Gaiman for proof of this). I have no idea whether or not I succeeded, but I sure tried my best!

What is your preferred writing genre?

Speculative fiction that dips into anthropology. I love to research things and then mold what I find into the framework or details of a story.

How does writing impact other parts of your life?

It’s more…the opposite of that. At my full­time job it’s all facts, logic, and numbers, so it’s nice to come home and have more flexibility to be creative. But writing only ends up taking a small percentage of my time, due to work and other obligations. I try to make time when I can.

What is your advice to writers?

The same advice that I have to remind myself of every day – finish something. Even if it’s total crap, you can rework that into what you want it to be. Without a framework, your story can never unfold. So sit down, crack your knuckles, and start writing. No one has to see that first draft. Write it down, put it away for a little while, then come back and edit, and you’ll be able to get a better picture of your next steps – how to make your work into what your brain has envisioned.

Star Wars or Star Trek?

Star Wars, though I do like the new Star Trek films.

Harry Potter or Pirates of the Caribbean?

Harry Potter. Great stories, great character development, fairly consistent in the quality of the films. Plus, it’s a story I grew up with.

Vampires or Werewolves?

Vampires. Werewolves have too much hair, and the pack attitude gets a little old. Vamps can be molded into anything, and can be menacing without growling.

Sherlock: Robert Downey, Jr. or Benedict Cumberbatch?

Benedict Cucumberpatch. I think he’s a fabulous Sherlock, and his neuroticism is charming without trying to be.

You can learn more about L. K. McIntosh at her blog, Fantastical Observations. You can also follow her on Twitter or on Facebook. Or Pinterest, for that matter. And, naturally, Goodreads.


And – SUPER IMPORTANT! We’re giving away LOOT!!!!  Enter for some prizes to thank you for checking out these blog posts about the book (if it doesn’t work, try this link):

a Rafflecopter giveaway



Here are links to more blog posts that have already been published or are coming up over the next few days:


BEYOND THE WAIL: 12 Grave Stories of Love and Loss

Book Release Blog Tour

Featured Author: Danielle E. Shipley

Danielle E. Shipley

Saturday, October 10, 2015


Are you Afraid of the Dark?

John’s Writing

Spreading the Writer’s Word

Featured Author: Alex McGilvery

Alex McGilvery

Sunday, October 11, 2015


Ash Krafton: Emotion Between the Lines

Scott E. Tarbet, Author

Writer’s Law of Motion

Featured Author: T.N. PAYNE

Nicole Payne

Monday, October 12, 2015


png” alt=”L.K. McIntosh” width=”200″ height=”274″ />Melissa McShane, Author

Sarah’s Secret Stash

Notes from Author Ginger C. Mann

Featured Author: Ginger C. Mann

Ginger C. Mann

Tuesday, October 13, 2015


L.K. McIntosh

J S Brown

Fairies & Pirates

Featured Author: L.K. McIntosh

Wednesday, October 14, 2015


Rampant Games

Scotty Watty Doodle All The Day

Terra Luft — View From the Crystal Ball

Featured Author: Jay Barnson

Jay Barnson

Thursday, October 15, 2015


A Storyteller’s Journey

Creativity from Chaos

Christine Haggerty

Featured Author: A. F. Stewart

A. F. Stewart

Friday, October 16, 2015


Tales by Julie

Perpetual Chaos of a Wandering Mind

Anna Winter

Featured Author: Amanda Banker

Amanda Banker

Saturday, October 17, 2015


Sebastian Bendix

Alex Campbell

Semi Short chic

Featured Author: Julie Barnson

Julie Barnson

Sunday, October 18, 2015


The Ink Caster

The Road to Nowhere

Featured Author: Sebastian Bendix

Sebastian Bendix

Monday, October 19, 2015


The J. Aurel Guay Archive


Featured Author: Tirzah Duncan

Tirzah Duncan

Tuesday, October 20, 2015


Alex McGilvery’s World


Featured Author: F.M. Longo

F.M. Longo

Wednesday, October 21, 2015


Ever On Word

The Cult of Me

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