Craig Boyack, master of the short story, has been allowed out to play on his own by the magnificent Lisa Burton. But only to introduce his new book… The Enhanced League…
Thanks, Sue, for lending me your blog today to talk about my newest release, The Enhanced League. This is about a fictional baseball league where anything goes as far as performance enhancing drugs. It also takes on more spectacle than regular baseball and could complete with pro wrestling on that front.
As an author, I look at my process as a journey more than a destination. I try to make improvements with every release, and I believe in trying new things. As such, I have a personal challenge in every book I release.
My collections of short stories and micro-fiction have been pretty popular. When I wrote my second Experimental Notebook, one of the stories I wrote was called The Enhanced League. I never intended for it to be anything more than that.
The story just kept gnawing at me. This was a pretty rich environment for stories, and I had quite a few ideas that would work in this setting. I knew it wasn’t going to go into an Experimental Notebook.
So there I was with one homeless story, a story I really liked. While my Experimental Notebooks are loose collections of stories, all of these stories were going to be set in the same environment. That’s when I decided that, while they didn’t have to be related, it would be fun to make them tell an overarching story when read together. I decided to tell the story of one year in The Enhanced League.
This was an interesting challenge, because I also wanted to touch base with some characters who don’t play on the field. I also wanted to have some female characters, but I wanted them to be strong women.
It soon occurred to me that on-field play for an entire book would be boring. While there is some exciting stuff that happens on-field, the human interest stories are what makes it all click.
Piecing this together was interesting, because the off-field stories introduce stress and possibilities. They illustrate that the team environment is fluid, and subject to change at any time. Some of these stories don’t relate to the main story thread, but they influence the main thread. This made it hard to use a lot of twist endings on the stories, and I had to step outside my comfort zone.
You’ll meet Darci, an up and coming businesswoman, who is deeply involved with an expansion team. This means land acquisitions, and concerns about the expansion draft where they get to choose two players from each of the other teams. Even the team where the main characters play.
Lara is a high school softball pitcher with dreams of staying in the game somehow. She receives a bit of good advice from an Enhanced League umpire.
I had to address the dark side of performance enhancing drugs, and a couple of tragic characters emerged. There are even a couple of unscrupulous General Managers working around some of the trade rules.
I even went into the broadcast booth with a team of goofballs who host a television show, dedicated to The Enhanced League, from their traveling studio.
The book is presented in calendar order from Spring Training through the Hotstove Season where the bulk of the trades happen. The overarching story is there, and it’s an enjoyable story. I sincerely hope you enjoy The Enhanced League as much as I enjoyed bringing it to you.
The Enhanced League is a collection of short stories and anthems centered around a year in a fictional baseball league. It has a slight science fiction background. This league has a lot more pomp than you might be used to, and nobody seems to care if the players use performance enhancing drugs.
Stories involve existing heroes, up and comers, and falling stars. While there are the obvious stories that take place on the field of play, there are also human interest stories that take place around the baseball gyrations. These stories involve scouting, trades, ruthless business decisions, and even relationships.
I enjoyed researching and bringing you The Enhanced League, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. — CB
I was born in a town called Elko, Nevada. I like to tell everyone I was born in a small town in the 1940s. I’m not quite that old, but Elko has always been a little behind the times. This gives me a unique perspective of earlier times, and other ways of getting by. Some of this bleeds through into my fiction.
I moved to Idaho right after the turn of the century, and never looked back. My writing career was born here, with access to other writers and critique groups I jumped in with both feet.
I like to write about things that have something unusual. My works are in the realm of science fiction, paranormal, and fantasy. The goal is to entertain you for a few hours. I hope you enjoy the ride.
Find and follow Craig
A speculative selection of micro-fiction and short stories. These were designed to be short reads for your commute, coffee break, and other times when readers are pressed for time. This book contains a bit of science fiction, some fantasy, and paranormal stories.
“The Experimental Notebook of C.S. Boyack” is a delightful – and occasionally scary – collection of short stories that combines humor and horror with a dash of fantasy thrown in for good measure.
Boyack wanders all over the literary map with this small collection and readers will, I think, be delighted with the tales he has to tell. A young woman who has been abused by a bully sees him get his comeuppance from a very unusual source; an alchemist plots his revenge on the world in the ruins of his home and… well, suffice it to say that Boyack will hold your attention with this collection.” Extract of Amazon review by
A second collection of short stories and micro-fiction. Every story can be read in a single session. This time there are a few tributes to the pulp era. Stories include science fiction, paranormal, and horror.
“The second Experimental Notebook by C. S. Boyack is another adventure into some entertaining and downright genius short stories. The beauty of most of the stories is they grab you right in the beginning and then lead you down a path you never expected. It is a path that you are glad you traveled but where it comes out is an unusual surprise. “Extract of Amazon review by John W. Howell author of My GRL.
There is something evil up Bergamot Holler, and it’s been targeting the Hall family for generations.
Patty Hall is fifteen years old. She loves stargazing, science fiction, and all things related to space exploration. This leaves her perfectly prepared for the wrong problem.
Patty is afraid her mother will send her to a care facility if she tells her what she’s seen. If she doesn’t figure things out soon, she’s going to join her father in the Hall family cemetery plot.
Patty has to come to grips with her own physical handicap, face the wilderness, and an ancient evil all alone if she’s going to survive.
Will O’ the Wisp is suitable for young adults. It involves elements of suspense, and is set in the mid 1970s.