So, I wrote this thing?
Do any of the rest of you get that occasional moment of wonder that people – perfect strangers – are reading your story?
I guess it’s not quite imposter syndrome… instead of feeling like a fraud waiting for a man with a clipboard to come up and say I’ve been found out, I’m just standing here marveling that other people are interested and like my stories.
Peter’s coming up on 15 books out, and part of me is all “I should be perfectly blasé about this by now, given how many times I’ve gone through release day with my love.” But… nah, still nervous.
This story was extremely frustrating on several levels – it’s working title was Worst Vacation Ever. Because when Raina and Akrep first popped in to my head, I foolishly thought it was going to be a vacation romance. I mean, two people on a bus to a touristy souk, awkwardly trapped in the same seat together? Okay, by the time they got there, I’d figured out that he was a lot more than meets the eye, in a tradecraft way rather than transformers, but… And then there were knife fights. And bombings. And escaped genetic proof-of-concepts, with a grudge. And revolutionaries so focused on bringing down The Man that they didn’t realize what they were puppets for…
And then there’s Akrep. I didn’t expect I’d be writing it from two points of view. He didn’t care; I was going to tell the story from his point of view, too. (So much for a gentle learning curve on writing. It took a while to get my skills up to telling this story.) As well, I realized that this character was calm, competent, and knew exactly what he wanted (even if I didn’t.) So I figured it out by asking the competent men I know who’ve been interesting places and done interesting things what they would do in a situation.
Yes. I admit it. My standard was “what would Peter / LawDog / Jim Curtis do?” Which is how I learned a whole lot about interesting things, including the amazing amount of scrap lumber just the right size for kneecapping pursuers in Istanbul alleyways. Sadly, there was nowhere to work in the story about trading a safe full of classified documents for two pairs of Levis jeans, or the time someone decided to raid an army base to upgrade their helicopter’s weaponry… Another story, another day!