Tuesday, April 2, 2024

The Cyborg's Crusade - Day of the Deus Ex Machina by Benoit Lanteigne ~ @bl98 @GoddessFish #SciFi #GuestPost

The Cyborg's Crusade - Day of the Deus Ex Machina

by Benoit Lanteigne 

Genre: Science Fiction



How did it come to this? My life used to be so simple. Back then, I hated it; I found it boring. Let me tell you: boring’s good. Boring’s great! I should’ve been thankful…

It was supposed to be a date like any other for James Hunter, a simple convenience store clerk. Nothing more than watching a movie in the town of Moncton. A place as unknown and unimportant as he considered his own existence to be. And yet, while walking to a cinema, James teleports to another world. There, a hostile crowd surrounds him, including various mutants with strange deformities.

Before he can even gather his wits or make a dash for it, a lone ally presents herself in the form of a winged woman named Rose. An important cultural figure in the country where James appeared, she offers him both protection and a home.

Soon, James learns that this new world is divided by a cold war. On one side is Nirnivia, home to Rose. The other, Ostark, led by a mysterious cyborg. James is unaware that the cyborg has him in his crosshairs, thinking of him as the Deus Ex Machina that will end the war in his favor.

But, the cyborg is far from the only potential threat to James. Soon after his arrival, BRR, a terrorist organisation, kidnaps him.

What would a rogue group out for revenge seeking to turn the cold war hot want with someone like James? Is there anyone also aware of this other world who will try to find him? Or is he on his own? If so, how is he supposed to escape? If that's even an option...

Guest Post ~ The End is Part of the Journey:

For as long as remember, there’s been a bit of a debate about stories’ endings. Some people believe the ending is one of the most (if not the most) important parts of a story and that a bad ending will ruin the whole thing even if everything before that was excellent. Then, some feel the ending isn’t anything special. It’s about the journey, not the end.

For a long while, I wondered on which side I was, but I came to realize I agreed more with the first group, though not by that much. One important note, to say the ending alone defines the quality of a book is a major exaggeration. It’s quite possible to have a good story despite a lackluster ending. However, I think nailing the ending is important and can have a major impact. Sometimes it can be the extra push that makes a story good instead of mediocre.

First, the important thing to realize is the ending is part of the journey. If it’s the journey that matters, then the ending must matter too. I doubt many would disagree on this point. The question remains, why would the ending matter more? After all, shouldn’t each part have the same weight, so to speak? An example I’ve seen people use is to compare a story to travel. If you go to another country on a holiday, have a ton of fun, and then at the end of it your plane is delayed; does that ruin everything? More drastically, for each of us, our life ends in death and pain to various degrees. Do you judge the value of a life only by its death?

Both previous examples are flawed. To see why, let’s take each of them and push them to their extreme. The traveling might’ve been enjoyable, but what if you returned home to find your house burnt to the ground and you could’ve easily prevented it if you had been there? Not only that, all your friends and family died and because you were gone, you missed your chance to say goodbye. I assume many would regret leaving, no matter how great the trip was. As for death, let’s say we have a person who lived a mundane life with nothing of consequence, but then they die sacrificing themselves to save a thousand people. Wouldn’t that person prefer to be remembered for that instead of how boring they had been? Of course, that doesn’t mean the end of the trip, or death is always the most important part, quite far from it. I’m only trying to show that sometimes they can be. It doesn’t matter all that much anyway, because there’s a far bigger reason those two examples are flawed. They are based on reality and stories don’t have to be realistic. I’d even argue often they shouldn’t be.

Why does this matter? Well, because unlike life or a trip, the quality of a story is defined by its narrative structure. Unlike in life, everything that happens in a story drives the narrative toward what should be a logical end. Because of this, if everything leads to something lackluster, it feels unsatisfying. Plus, since they are the last thing readers experience, endings are often what readers remember most. If it disappointed them, that disappointment might well be how they remember your story. If only for this reason, we should strive to build satisfying endings. After all, even if you disagree with me about their importance, why would you want to risk your fans remembering your work by its worst part?

Read Excerpt Two: 

The world whirled around James. Soon, all distinct shapes vanished, superseded by a haze of colors. Shades of green, red and blue filled his vision. An agonizing pain flared across his body, and James screamed. His stomach floated up to his throat, while his intestines… he preferred not to think about them. Then, at last, the forms returned, though muddled. The sensation lasted only a few seconds, but it brought James to his knees as he gagged and vomited on the pavement. Once done, he wiped his mouth and coughed. Revolted screams erupted around him. 

James almost mumbled an apology for the mess, but then he realized: who was yelling? He and Nadia stood alone and yet… wait, those dark figures surrounding him on the ground… shadows? And over there, feet and legs… where had these people come from? 

Perplexed, James tried getting up, but he wobbled and fell. His new position gave him a view of the trees he had scrutinized before the incident, except they had morphed into a yellow brick building. James’s heart raced and his body tensed. Trying to relax, he took a few deep breaths through his nose and scowled. That stench, a mix of decayed food, feces, and puke, permeated the air. Of course, his own actions explained the last odor, but still, Moncton never smelled so bad. No wonder, with all the garbage littering the street. However, the road he’d strolled along had been so clean just moments ago. 

As he pondered the change in scenery, James’s vision cleared. He took it as a good sign and attempted to stand up again. Though he swayed, he remained on his feet. Perhaps because of his movement, the confused chatter around him intensified. Bronze-skinned people glanced at each other and recoiled, a few pointing at him. James scanned the crowd in search of Nadia. Unable to locate his lover, he found his attention drawn to a stranger in the distance instead. The man held a leash, but without a dog at the end. A pink glob of goo replaced the expected canine. The horror waved its many tentacles, sometimes caressing passersby. James gasped. Covered in perspiration and shaking, he averted his gaze and spotted a young boy with a miniature leg sticking out of his belly through a hole in his shirt. 

Author Bio and Links: 

So, my name is Benoit Lanteigne and I’m a French Canadian (outside of Quebec) who’s trying to write in English. That can be tricky. I’m a computer programmer and I enjoy it. I see many inspiring writers who hate their jobs and hope to quit someday, but that’s not my case. Mostly, I’ve worked on websites and web applications. 

Back in school, I enjoyed writing and according to my teachers and classmates; I had a talent for it. Well, not so much for grammar and spelling, but they liked my stories. Once I went to university, I dropped writing as a hobby. There were other things I wanted to focus on, such as my career. Then, in the early 2000s, around 2006 I’d say, I had a flash of inspiration. At first, it was a single character: a winged woman with red hair. I didn’t even know who she was, but the image stuck with me. From there, I began figuring out details about her origins and her world, but I only started writing for real in 2009. 

It’s been roughly 10 years now, and it’s not yet finished. That’s in part because I write in my spare time, and in part because the scope of the project is huge. Maybe too much so. Still, I’m getting close to the point where I could release something. The question is what’s next? Self-publishing? Attempt traditional publishing? Nothing? I don’t know the answer yet, I’m trying to figure it out. Frankly, sharing my writing is difficult for me, and whatever I end up doing, as long as I make it available to people I consider the experience a victory no matter what comes out of it. 

Website: https://thecyborgscrusade.com/ 

Newsletter: https://thecyborgscrusade.com/fanclub.html 

Social Media Link Hub: https://thecyborgscrusade.com/hub.html







The book will be $0.99 during the tour.


Amazon:  https://www.amazon.com/Cyborgs-Crusade-Day-Deux-Machina-ebook/dp/B0CBZZRDZ4/ref=sr_1_1


Giveaway Details:

One randomly chosen winner via rafflecopter will win a $25 Amazon/BN.com gift card.

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  1. Thank you so much to Sapphyria's Books for featuring The Cyborg’s Crusade. Releasing books from this series was a long journey, and it’s a thrill to see it happening. Though, with any luck, the journey is far from over; the series isn’t finished yet.

    As for you, dear readers, I hope you’ve enjoyed this post and are intrigued by The Cyborg’s Crusade. If so, you can get a free copy of the first book by joining the fan club here https://thecyborgscrusade.com/fanclub.html

    While I do work during the day, I work from home and I’ll do my best to check the comments every hour or so. If you have any questions about The Cyborg’s Crusade, me, or anything really, by all means, ask.
    2 months ago Reply

  2. I like the blurb and excerpt. Sounds really good.