Jun 25, 2013

Killer Robot Space Dogs

Killer Robot Space Pug receives training
No new chapters until August, I’m afraid. I’m in the middle of writing a book on presentation skills and it's dominating my life at present.
But I had to comment on the recent saga involving the ex CIA employee, Edward Snowdon and the information he has leaked about the US government’s legally dubious attempts to tap the world. It makes you realise that it’s practically impossible for fiction to out-do real life in coming up with implausible scenarios. It’s as if the whole thing had been created by a Hollywood screenwriter.
Firstly, there’s the megalomanic scope of the National Security Agency’s ambition to label and keep tags on all electronic communication. I’m sorry, that’s just James Bond villain stuff. It would be a nice touch if the information was being piped out to giant servers stored on the dark side of the moon and protected by killer robot space dogs. When the film is inevitably made of this whole saga, I bet Hollywood will add that. You heard it here first.

Secondly, there’s the John Wayne aspects of the central character himself. Edward Snowdon is behaving like this because his core values have been trampled on by the nefarious activities of his employers. They’ve finally pushed him too far. This creates the necessary moral dilemma for the hero. If he does nothing, he risks betraying his core values. If he takes action he risks being perceived as betraying his country. Which is ironic because his values are the same values as those enshrined in the US constitution which the security agencies are supposed to defend.

Thirdly – and this adds just a small but wonderful splash of colour to the whole story – his girlfriend is a trapeze artist. Brilliant! I wish I had imagined something like that.

What I find encouraging for my story is that a key element in my plot – collusion between the British government and various Balkan elements in the smuggling of weapons into the Balkans, despite a UN resolution not to provide arms to either party – now seems entirely plausible. It’s even a little tame in comparison to real life. Oh well, perhaps I can pep it up with a couple of killer robot space dogs. 

Jun 2, 2013

Chapter 12 - The investigation begins

This chapter is something of a watershed. No explosions yet, but the rumbling is beginning and Celia is going to find herself in trouble soon.

The next chapters will probably be longer in development as I'm involved in another writing project until the end of July. However I shall post some thoughts and comments about the novel's development so far over the next few weeks, so I hope that you will still check in from time to time to see what is going on. Many thanks to all the people who speak to me about this project or send me emails or post comments. You are very important for my motivation and I'm grateful.

The story so far - Celia and her team have finished removing the plaster from the altar wall of Colonel Kaiec's chapel in Istria. Celia travels to Zagreb to report to the Colonel who is busy campaigning for election. While she waits for him to arrive for a meeting she bumps into the journalist Tomislav Lederer again. Has he found out anything about her missing brother, Ned Atkinson?

This chapter can now be found on the right under 'Good Stuff'