Kidnapped: Agent O’Neal Book Saga Two

With my the second book of my Agent O’Neal Saga going live, here is a post dedicated to that. I have the link below, as well as a the first chapter for you reading pleasure.

I hope you enjoy.

Not everything is as it seems – especially when it comes to Des.

Des O’Neal struggles to do what is right in defending the orbital colony station, Jov 1-H. Then the walls close in around him as his brother is kidnapped, Susan is captured, his safehouse is destroyed and no one can be trusted.

Des and Elsie must find a way to save his friends, family, and the station. Except he has no back up, no plan, and there is no one else to do what must be done. Failure is not an option.

Can Des rise to the challenge and save his brother and station? If you like Space Opera and Spy Thrillers, then you will love this action-packed adventure.

Sample Chapter One.

Sixteen-year-old Des O’Neal stood on a skinny ledge three stories off the ground. He contemplated the events which got him to this unpredictable point in his life. Dressed in black, he was tall and scrawny for his age, making it easy for him to stand on the eight-inch ledge. His fingers grasped at the red bricks to keep from splattering on the ground underneath.
This is a foolish idea, Des thought.
He considered himself lucky it was nighttime, and no one would see him prowling around. With his luck, he would be spotted by a station guard and arrested like a common thief.
Des snorted derisively. Working for a tyrannical taskmaster, Captain Kusheeno with station security, Des was forcefully recruited into being a spy. He screwed up and got caught exploring through the station’s undercroft. A short bit of blackmail later and he now worked for the Captain.
Being employed by the asshat, had gotten him beaten up, almost thrown out into space, and chased across the station multiple times before the year was out. He had nearly died a couple of times. Des had tried to get out. Except, he was informed he was involved deeper than he fully understood. He had to see it through to the logical conclusion, or no one else would.
Des shimmied along the ledge. His plan was to shimmy along the wall to a ninety-degree corner. If he could get past without falling to his death, he could get to the unlocked balcony door of the target apartment.
This is very stupid, Des thought.
His feet edged his way along the ledge. Each time Des moved he gripped the cracks in the bricks for dear life. The task felt like forever as his soft-soled shoes scrapped along the ledge. He shimmied six meters to the corner. He grasped onto the corner and pulled himself over to the other side.
Des looked back at the building where he had come up. A large oak tree grew from the park beside the apartment building. Its large, thick branches were a route to the third story of the building.
Climbing up the balcony railings would have saved me thirty minutes of tree-climbing followed by scrapping along the narrow ledge. But no, there is none, Des thought.
He continued to shimmy along the ledge, reaching the edge of the balcony. The rain in the sealed colony station was not enough to cause more than fart of wind. If there was wind, it would have blown him from the ledge.
The easy way over was partially blocked by a large potted plant, hanging from a hook on the side of the building. Des hopped over the railing, twisting himself around the potted plant. With both feet firmly on solid ground, he let out a breath he didn’t know he was holding. He cared his feet were on something substantial, and he took a moment to enjoy the feeling.
He knelt onto the balcony and listened. Des hunted for any sign he was caught where he wasn’t supposed to be. After waiting a minute, no alarm had rung, and no heavy-handed station guards were going to beat him to a pulp.
Des walked up to the balcony door, checking to see if it was locked. Being on the third floor, it slid open with the lock disabled. Des had it from a good source the owner felt no one would be stupid to climb to the third floor.
He slipped into the apartment, sliding the door closed behind him. The apartment was a three-bedroom flat, decorated with fancy pictures and paintings on canvases bought before the war when those goods were easy to find. After five years of conflict, they would only be on a second-hand market to discover anything as nice.
Des walked through the apartment’s great room toward the front door. The target he hunted for was a key card, something the owner would shed when he got home. He would’ve left the card at the front door, in the kitchen, his office, or bedside table. Des hoped that it would be the first one and not any of the later ones. The owners were currently at home and asleep.
A few weeks ago, his espionage professor, Mr. Smith, gave Des a disk to insert into the computer of a teacher at the school. It would alter his grades and raise them. He hoped it would lessen suspicion from his peers and teachers. If he didn’t do something, he would get in trouble.
At the start of the school year, he was at the top of his class. The school and his family considered him a genius and allowed him to be pushed ahead a year. Once being wrangled into being a spy with its long hours, his grades suffered, putting him mid-level, causing a plethora of suspicion.
Some teachers made accusations he was getting in with the wrong sort of people. It wasn’t all his fault, not entirely at least. The stress of living a secret life caused him to lose focus, and his grades had suffered as a result.
The apartment belonged to Des’s history teacher, Mr. Mixon. A dull man with a nasally monotonous voice. He felt terrible to steal from the man. However, if everything worked out, he would get the key card back when he got to school.
Des reached the front door, and the metal entry table. On top was a pile of keys, small denomination credit chips, a wallet, but no key card. Des searched it to see if it was in it, but it was not there. Only his Station Identification Card, a bank card, an old photo, and another credit chip. He put the wallet back on the table and walked away.
His next place would be the kitchen countertop. Judging from the man’s need for coffee, it may be beside the coffee maker. He walked through the apartment, being careful not to make any noise. The last thing he wanted was to be caught by his teacher. Breaking and entering would be the least of his problems.
Des checked the kitchen, and it was spotless. No specks of dust or food debris were seen. The key card was not in the kitchen. The last place to check was the office or the bedroom. Being closer to where the teacher was sleeping. Down the hallway toward the bedrooms, a single light clicked on from a bedroom.
He’s up to use the bathroom.
Des crab-walked his way back toward the glass door. Sliding the door open, he exited the apartment and closed the door shut behind him.
In the apartment, the flabby figure of Mr. Mixon, wearing nothing but his boxers, appeared from the hallway. He looked tired and rubbed at his face.
Des twisted himself over the railing and onto the ledge. The soft soles of his shoes slipped, his left foot flying away from the wall. He grabbed hold of a brick. He held on with his fingertips and his right foot.
The noise of the sliding glass door opening rang in the quiet of the night. The slap of bare feet on plastic decking vibrated out in the darkness. Des looked back at the patio. Mr. Mixon left his apartment and leaned against the railing. He stared out away from Des at the station in the distance.
Jov 1-H Colony Station was seventy-five kilometers in diameter built like a large pop can with all the people living on the inside surface of the can. Most of the twelve different sectors had the glowing light of buildings, while only four of them were darkened as they were for farming.
The interior was made out to be Earth-like. It had plants and trees, wild animals roamed the parks, and birds sang when the daylight was turned on. It was different, but the only difference Des knew was a cramped colony built on the terraformed moon of Europa. Where he and his older brother grew up until their mother disappeared, and father died.
A woman walked out of the apartment, dressed in a tank top and panties, except Des didn’t recognize her from anywhere but pictures. It was his wife, Reanna.
“Can’t sleep?” Reanna asked.
“Just stress,” Mr. Mixon replied.
“School?”
“That and other stuff,” Mr. Mixon said.
“Well, come to bed,” Reanna said.
The two of them padded back into the apartment, the sliding glass door locking behind them with an audible click.

The Winds of Venus

Venus rarely makes the scientific news let alone mainstream media. When scientists discuss space and technology, they talk about traveling to, stepping foot on, colonizing and terraforming Mars. It is the focus of plans like Mars Direct and Mars One.

The scientific community has been ignoring Venus, especially after the fall of the Soviet Union. Not including flybys, from the start of the history of space exploration, there have been twenty-three successful probe missions to Venus, twenty of them before 1990. There have been only three missions to Venus since 2000 and none in the 1990s. Of those three missions to Venus in the 2000s, one was the Venus Express, from the European Union Space Agency, and two were Japanese. NASA has not taken another serious look at Venus and the only operational probe is the Japanese Akatsuki orbital.

For Mars, the story is different. From the beginning, there have been twenty-nine successful missions to Mars, not including flybys, fifteen of them from after the fall of the Soviet Union. There are currently eight operational probes. The earliest one is Mars Odyssey, an orbiter launched April of 2003. The latest is NASA’s InSight lander launched in May of 2018.

However, could Venus be a viable solution for the problem of being a single planet species? Is it a good place to colonize?

The best places to live in the solar system needs specific qualities. Human colonies need approximate Earth gravity, temperature, and atmospheric pressure; that is the sweet spot for human habitability. The lack of gravity causes the loss of bone density and muscle mass. If it’s too hot, we will burn or too cold, we will freeze. No atmospheric pressure means colonists will need pressure suits and specifically built habitats.

The significant issue with space travel is excessive periods of living in low gravity, which has ill effects on muscle and bone density. The longer a human exists in a low gravity environment, the greater the chance they have for long term bone and muscle problems. There are also no studies about the effects on a child born in a low gravity environment.

There are no other celestial bodies in the solar system with those conditions. However, what do we know about Venus and Mars? Gone are the assumptions from 1950s science fiction authors that Venus is full of tropical jungles and Mars is crisscrossed with canals.

Venus is closer to Earth than Mars which makes it easier to travel to Venus with a launch window every 584 days instead of the 780 days for Mars. It also has a mass closer to Earth’s at 0.815 Earths, while Mars is at 0.107 Earths. (“Earth” is a unit of measurement to describe multiple factors). Venus’s gravity is closer to Earth’s at 0.904g’s than Mars at 0.38g’s (1.0g is what is felt on Earth).

With the problems of space travel, Venus seems like it is the better candidate for colonization. However, those numbers do not tell the full story. The mean surface temperature on Venus is a cool 464 degrees Celsius. For comparison, lead melts at 327.5 degrees Celsius. Atmospheric pressure at the surface of Venus is 91 atmospheres. That’s 92 times the air pressure felt on the surface of Earth. For comparison, the same amount of pressure is felt at a depth of 940 meters under the sea.

Mars, on the other hand, has a mean surface temperature of a balmy -63 degrees Celsius. This is equivalent to Antarctica with its mean annual temperature of -57 degrees Celsius. The surface pressure is 0.00628 atmospheres. This is the same atmospheric pressure felt on Earth at 46 thousand meters.

When it comes to figuring out how to live on the surface of either Venus or Mars, engineering solutions for low air pressure and freezing temperature seem easier than the opposite. Most probes landing on the surface of Venus only last a few hours before the heat and high pressure destroys them. However, when many futurists talk about colonizing Venus, they don’t talk about landing colonists on the surface. According to a 2002 paper from NASA titled, “Atmospheric Flight on Venus,” fifty kilometers up from the surface, the situation on Venus change. The temperature lowers to 70 degrees Celsius. Five more kilometers up and the temperature lowers further to 27 degrees Celsius. At the same altitude, the air pressure lowers from the certain death of 91 atmospheres to be an Earth-like pressure of 1 atmosphere.

The numbers point to two important words that come to mind: Cloud City. Living with a temperature of 70 degrees Celsius is possible. It means using air conditioning in the habitats and a cooling suit outside. While building a giant floating metropolis is outside the reach of current technology, according to the paper “The Venus Sweet Spot: Floating Home,” it’s possible with current technology to build zipline-style settlements using helium and breathable air as its lifting gas. These ships can be built on Earth, shipped to Venus then set up in the atmosphere riding the winds of Venus. Once there, they can either stay there or head back to Earth. This strategy will put a long-term human settlement on Venus

Cloud City would not be a self-sufficient settlement with regular shipments of supplies from Earth. The weight would be an issue on the floating cities and having large sections for food production would have to be carefully balanced. The colony would be permanent and a vital place where scientific research is completed, and methods of colonization are engineered. Once scientists and researchers are living and working on Venus, they can study the planet and answer some questions plaguing humanity. What happened to Venus? Was it really a cool and wet world? Is there a way to reverse the planet? Can we use any new scientific advances we learn on Venus to help our Earth?

This journey is not something I can do alone. It takes support from many people for it to become a reality. The easiest way is to visit my Amazon Author Page and purchase one of my books. They are available in all countries and for free on Kindle Unlimited. I do have a tip jar set up at Ko-Fe, where you can buy me a coffee. Or you can also visit me on Facebook. Your help and support are much appreciated.

Contact This!: A First Contact Anthology Vol 1

So a while ago, I got wind of this anthology, and I thought it was an exciting idea. So I wrote a short story. The story I submitted was called “From Planet Everdark.”

Three years into a decade-long exploration mission into the far reaches of the precursor-gate network. Skipper Quigley Viveiros biggest problem was keeping his crew from bullying the scientists on board and keeping the scientists from blowing up his ship, the JSS Leda, out of boredom. Or at least that was his problem before he arrived at a rouge planet whose moon had an atmosphere, liquid water, and life.

The Fiend was a small creature whose very existence dwelled on eating and not being eaten herself. Up until she saw a new prey to feast on; a Metal-Beast who traveled on fire from the sky. Perhaps she will be able to feast on something to sate the incredible hunger that dwells inside of her.

So if this is something that seems interesting to you. Or you are new to science fiction as a genre, take a look. Contact This! Has eighteen of the best science fiction authors from Paul E Cooley, J Daniel Sawyer, and Rick Partlow. You will not be disappointed.

They came in peace…

…or so they said. Here are 18 examples of how they lied. This is an exciting collection of First Contact science fiction stories, all completely different! Take a risk – venture into the unknown with us. Who is out there? What will they want from us? Come join us in our adventure to find out how 1st Contact pans out. It will be a great adventure!

 

Futurism: Mars Part 2

In this blog post, I am going to go into details in the different changes that happens to the Martian Colony over time.

The obvious one is that the colony grows larger. With 12 different colonies with different agendas and sponsors from earth, Mars becomes a real life version of the computer game Civilization. A hundred years and multiple generations pass. Most colonists, no matter which colony that they are from view themselves as Martians first and only the place of there ancestry grudgingly.

But before the advent of hostilities between the different colonies, the situation changed.

The colony’s themselves have a wide range of different problems and issues that must be fixed. The biggest one is taxation. The sponsors of the colony’s take a large portion of any money made by the colony for themselves before it is left to pay it’s people. Little money is reinvested in the colony itself and the expansion and maintenance of it comes out of the colony’s own funds.

From the colonies, all of the industries of space were controlled. The bosses all lived on the earth, but the people fixing the machines, building the probes and sending shipments back to Earth were all from Mars. The governments of Earth came to rely on the money from the Martian colonies more and more. Each year, they took more and more to support the failing societies on the planet Earth.

The colonists were also not allowed free travel between the different colonies. All communication between the colonies are controlled and regulated. Only official communications can happen. That means friends can’t have a phone call if they love in a different colony.

The colony’s are also directly controlled from mission control back on Earth with the colonists themselves having no say in what they do. They are only there to carry out there orders and not to question the minds of the people on earth.

The only colony not following orders in that regard, the only one that has gone off the reservation, is the first one. The Mars Corp. They are considered very rebellious in nature. Doing what they want and not listening to the corporate bosses. The bosses are happy about it. There profits are high, while the other colonies are barely surviving.

Then the corporate bosses of Mars Corp does the insane crazy thing. They move there Head Quarters from Earth, to the Mars Colony. They also move all of the personal that want to go and there families. The colony pulls all ties from earth except to pick up new immigrants to the colony.

Mars Corp becomes the first Mars Colony to become free. Free from the tyranny of being ruled by a group of people millions of kilometers away.

The other colonies took notice. The Mars Corp sent messages to each colony offering assistance with there transport shuttles if required.

Earth-side blocked all communication to Mars Corp. They couldn’t help as no message would go through.

Then after a couple years, one of the colonies failed. The one sponsored by the European Union. A sand storm damaged there oxygen processing and there power generation. An easy fix if you have the supplies. Mars Corp had the supplies. No message went through.

The colony went dark. It was two weeks before the news got out. A rouge agent of the EU Space Agency leaked the news to the colonies. Tensions boiled and 125 years after the first colonist set foot on Mars, the people rebelled.

In the year 126, the United Colonies of Mars was created. This started the first inter-planetary war as the governments of Earth cried out from the lack of money to run there nations.

Again. Information that probably will not make its way into a book, but this sets the stage on what the People of Mars are like.

Next time. Terra-forming. A mistake? Or intentional?

 

Futurism: Mars Part 1

In this post, I am going to talk about what I think will happen to the colony of Mars and how that will effect the story world that I developed.

First. Some information about Mars.

Mars is cold. Duh. It also has a very small atmosphere with no magnetosphere. Meaning that the solar wind has stripped the planet of its atmosphere over the course of a billion or so years. It also has no air pressure and is regularly blasted with solar radiation.

Mars does have water on it. Very important. It was also wet at some point in its history. Meaning that it was warm at one point.

The first colonists settle on the surface of mars in pre-fab shelters. They do bring with them very sophisticated 3D printers so that they can manufacture items from the resources that Mars provides.

There goal at this point is self-suffencincy. How do they provide all of there needs without relying on Earth. The trip from Earth opens up only once every two years to get help. We have all seen ‘The Martian”. If not, go see it. That is probably the most accurate dipection of what living on Mars would be like. It does get some stuff wrong, but it is a movie. Forgive it.

After nearly a decade of work and a population nearing a hundred colonists, the colony still hasn’t reached self-sufficiency. It’s corporate backers, are getting worried. They had planned for a span of 15 years before they could start sending resources back to Earth. Now 10 years was up and they had still not gotten close.

They have a stockpile of food and water. Oxygen tanks full of breathable air and shelter for there current population.

The problem with the situation is that they are having a problem of building new structures to house new colonists, or expand food production, or to build anything. They are having to spend a large amount of resources and time to build the structures to be radiation proof. The lack of the planet’s magnetosphere is the source of the problem.

How is that a problem with self-sufficiency? Population of a settlement without anyone from the outside should be at a large enough number to be viable. Scientist call this minimum viable population. It is usually used for wild animals, but it works for space colonies as well.

If the colony doesn’t get to at least 2000 people, then there is a risk of genetic issues as the generations roll by. Without the additional people they will not have the manpower to start sending resources back to Earth for profit.

The colony discovers some caverns nearby. These caverns are spread out over the course of a thousand square kilometers and some go deep into the Martian crust. They discover that the Martian crust shields the caverns from solar radiation.

The colonists decide to move the colony from the surface to the caverns. They decide to live underground.

The caverns allow for the construction of the colony to happen at a faster pace. Each piece of the structure needs less material as it is only holding in the pressure for people to live and not keeping radiation out.

The colony expands exponentially. The population shoots up and by the year 20, the colony has it’s 2000 people.

Then its population really expands. With the invention of a magnetic launcher, the cost of space travel drops to about $500 per kg. That open’s up space travel for more people. Nations finally get off there butt, other corporations are founded, and the single Mars colony become 12 separate colonies each with it’s own backer.

I will leave the history lesson here. But the main question is, how does this affect my story that takes place a few hundred years from now?

And the answer is absolutely nothing. It will never show up on the page. The only thing that it does is that it creates the culture and people of Mars. You will see some similar aspects that will distinctly shape the people until the time of my stories.

That part does have a big deal in the present date of my story world.

I will stop there for today. Tomorrow I will go through some of the different aspects of Martian Culture that is adopted over the years and some of the details on the changes to the colony.

Futurism: Part One

This is the first part of a many part series of blogs that are going to talk about the science fiction world that I have created for my son’s Serial ‘Space Courier’ and others.

(Part One of Space Courier is nearing completion in editing and I expect to publish as an ebook on Amazon and a print version on Create Space.)

As a general declaimer, the information created for the world building of these stories is not intended to be thrown completely at the reader, but shown slowly throughout the stories as it becomes relevant to what is going on. Example, the main character, Des, in Space Courier lives on a giant space station Jov 1-H. He does not care what is happening on Venus or the price of tea there. As such, there is no mention of Venus or its Psychedelic Tea leaves.

So the story of Space Courier is set 500 years in the future. Why 500 years?

Good question. I picked it out of my ass.

Well. Kinda.

I selected 500 years as it is a good point in time that is far enough in the future that it gives me freedom to decide what has or hasn’t been accomplished at that point, but it is not too far away to be completely unmanageable. I didn’t want to be so far away that it I show life similar to modern day in many ways that it would break the story.

To start, I decided on a very rough history of how we, as a race, escaped the confines of Earth and became a multi-planet species.

There are two main schools of thoughts that have sprang up when you talk about us colonizing other planets.

The first is that it is obvious that it is a National or multi-National government that colonies other planets and moons.

But I don’t fall into that camp. I sit firmly in the other camp. I think that while governments have will power and money to do expeditions of this type, I don’t think that it is the case with interplanetary travel.

Christopher Columbus revolutionized travel to the Americas. He led an expedition to India and found North America. Everyone knows the story. He was also paid by the Spanish monarchy to do so.

But the numbers don’t add up.

Columbus was using old technology. Sailing ships have been around forever and the style that he had were around for many years. Further more, he knew that the Earth was round. They had known that for a while. He was an idiot and did not bring enough food to last the journey to India if there had been no North America around for resupply.

Nothing in his trip was experimental or difficult. They could navigate by the stars and the currents would bring him to the Americas even if he had no sails. His trip was nothing special in relative terms to what the first Space Travelers seek to do.

When we go to space, in real life as well as my fictional world, every piece of technology used is going to have been invented in the last 30 years if not sooner. That is getting all of the supplies, personal and material into orbit. The multi-month trip to the planet or moon, as well as that habitat that they will be living in.

The struggles that they have to face, especially the environment, is so much harsher that what Columbus faced that there is no comparison. I can’t come up with a single metaphor or simile.

Stating all of that and looking at the social and economic problems that are around today, I feel that it is not going to be governments that take people permanently to space. Governments will take Astronauts to space to play golf and maybe do some experiments when they can. They will not be taking people to space for permanent settlement.

They do not have the money or the political will power to do so.

What one government takes years to build up, it is often ripped apart by the next. NASA cuts programs all the time as one congress takes money away almost at a whim.

Also, the fact that the Spanish Monarchy payed for Columbus is not the same as the U.S Congress funding NASA. It would be like SpaceX going to congress for a lump sum of money to outfit an expedition to colonize Mars. Not a government bureaucracy getting a quarterly budget allotment that it MUST spend.

So, politics aside.

In my fictional world, NASA and China send over a couple manned missions to Mars and they play a killer game of golf. Among some really good discoveries that manned missions tend to do. There is no wind storm that disables stuff and causes a botanist to be forced to grow potatoes from his own shit. Sorry.

What happens after that is that there is a landmark legal case where a private corporation sues the world governments and opens up private space travel and privatization.

The legal basis of that idea is shaky at best, but it is something that happened 450 years before the main characters of my books were born. It’s okay for it to sound off. Listening to a history professor is like that. I know many times where I heard the history of what happened and thought to myself, “Really?”.

In my fictional world, the first permanent space colony was funded and built by someone that wanted to make money in the enterprise. I will go into more detail on some of the stuff that a corporation could be making money on in space next time. For now, this blog has gone on long enough.

Until next time.

 

Productivity

I have a dream. (Enter rest of song from Tangled here.)

Anyways. My 5 year goal consists of me making my living from writing novels and other creative pursuits. To do that I have a plan. And you have to have a plan. There is no way to get a to a goal other than to have a plan.

So what is my plan.

Easy.

Well. Kinda.

It is to be able to write six novels a year. That means writing everyday. No stopping. No days off. No fun.

Kidding. Kinda. Days off are fine. As long as the work gets done. As long as the projects get completed and published.

The way to do that is to vary the length of the projects. I have ideas for longer works as well as shorter works. By varying lengths I am able to complete more publishable works than if  I did one long work. Writing a 500k word novel is good if your last name is Sanderson and have huge advances to keep fed.

Me, however, I don’t get huge advances. I don’t have the capability of writing those long works. I also feel that the market for indie books is not for the doorstops. The people that buy indie books want smaller fiction that costs less and that they are able to get through faster.

So that means pulling back the scope of the books from 150k novels to 70k novels and making two novels. I also want to write even shorter length works. I like writing my 6 yr old middle grade sci fi book.

What does this mean?

That means that I must be writing for half the year. I must be be editing novels for the other half of the year. I must be writing between 1ooo to 3000 words a day. This is assuming that my editing takes half the time. If I can get my editing time down that means that I can spread the writing out between other days.

How do you do that?

Cleaner first drafts. Do I mean less spelling mistakes? Kinda. I mean less developmental edits. I mean that I am going to have to do more outlining. I have to plan my stories. Plan the work better. Get the story right the first time.

But this is not an over night thing. It will take time to build up to that. It will take time to get the productivity up to a point where I am writing enough. I do, however, have planned projects to get me to that part.

That is 4 projects under development. The 4 projects is translated into multiple planned novels. I have one current stand alone being beta read. One trilogy with the first novel being edited. My middle grade has the first book out of six being edited. The last project is a pair of novels. I might change it to a trilogy by cutting the same length of book into three parts.

But I will have to figure out how to add a projected 50k words into the ‘first’ part of the project. My wife says that I need to take a page out of the TV version of game of thrones. Add more sex scenes. I am not sure if she is joking or not…

That means that if I get the current projects completed that I will have thirteen novels. If I can get that done it will be amazing.

But this brings up the question of the night. How can writing and publishing works regularly mean that I can eventually quit my day job and write novels for a job?

By writing and publishing work, on Amazon, builds up a library of work that people can buy. As more books are published, means that more people will see the books and buy the books. They may go back and buy other books in your library. People do that.

Well. I rambled enough. More later.

Cheers.

Nathan Pedde

Ramblings: A story of how I manage to write novels while living with children

So I am a dad. More specifically, I am a father of two. I have a six year old boy named [REDACTED] and a five year old girl named [REDACTED].

My kids are great. I am not sure how it happened, but these kids are nothing like I was as a child. I was the child playing in the mud, ALL the time. I didn’t want to be inside the classroom, I wanted to be outside playing. I had multiple run ins with the Special Needs Teacher because they thought that I had a learning disability. It was just that I didn’t care, I knew the stuff, and I passed all the tests that they threw at me.

What can I say… I wanted to be outside.

My kids, however, love learning. They love doing things that expand their minds. My son, [REDACTED], loves science, math, and reading. He plays the piano and he practices for a couple hours a day. He is in grade one and is currently reading the 2nd book of Harry Bloody Potter. My daughter is a dancer and loves reading and drawing. She is the arty one out of the two of them.

Me? I have been writing for as long as I can remember and  I am pretty prolific. Not to brag…but I have a pretty high word count (more than some writers that I know). I manage the word count by writing whenever that I can. I  don’t have an office… I write my works in the middle of the living room  (which acts more like a study).

Often I find myself writing to the sound of Paw Patrol. (If you are a parent, you know what I am talking about. If you are not. Google is your friend. Watch a bit of it.) Thank God it is not Cailliou.

Now that you know the back story, I can tell you what is going on with my writing.

My son loves watching me write. He’ll sit beside me on the couch and watch me hack away at the words appearing on the screen. Now that he is reading Harry Potter, he is able to read what I am writing.

Word for word.

That makes writing sex scenes a little harder at times…

About 3 months ago, my son approached my with a bundle of printer paper, folded in half and stapled together. He was going to make a book. I encouraged him, and told him to write away. It didn’t last long. He got bored with it. He is six.

A couple weeks later, I caught him sitting on my laptop, on Scrivener trying to open a new project. He still wanted to write a book. He wanted to write with the keys as it looked easier.

He wanted to do what I do. I write novels, so he should too.

At that point I knew that there was nothing that I could do to get him not to write something. That’s not my way as a parent. I don’t believe in putting up road blocks to get my kids not to do something that I may find annoying, but isn’t harmful to anything but my sanity. (Sanity abandoned me on the roadside ages ago. It went on strike due to poor working conditions.)

And having [REDACTED] work on creative pursuits is not harmful in anyway. He isn’t climbing and jumping out of trees. Or eating mud. Or hitting his sister with sticks.

Like I did at his age. (Although, all but the hitting are still good past times)

So there was no way (in good conscience) that I could tell him no. He is too young. Or whatever lame excuse that I could come up with to get him to leave me alone so I can get another thousand words down.

My solution to this problem: Encourage him more. That’s right, I kept encouraging him, The same thing that got him wanting to write a book in the first place.

Now…My son, being six, has the writing skills of a six year old. He is advanced in sentence structure, but not that advanced… He is six…So I decided to do a collaboration with him. I sat him down and we started to brainstorm a story…

He decided the genre.

The setting.

The plot.

He named all of the characters.

All I did was be a guiding hand to keep it somewhat logical. I am the one that does all of the writing, but my son is the one that is in charge of the plot. We are constantly brainstorming ideas.

The book, temporarily named ‘Space Courier’ is now being written as a serial. Each book will be 25k in length, and we plan on 6 books for the first season.

That’s right. He wants multiple seasons.

In conclusion. I have created a monster.

May God have mercy on us all…