Monday, July 7, 2014

Author Insights with L.J. Bonham

Author Insights: Your books are often filled with action and adventure, what recommendations do you have for aspiring authors to improve their writing in this area?

L. J. Bonham: Accuracy, accuracy, accuracy. Action scenes and books, whether detective noir, tech-thriller, war, science fiction, or fantasy must have a basis in reality, regardless if the author’s world is modern, historical, or pure invention.

AI: Could you elaborate?

LJB: Every world, no matter how farfetched, has to have rules that govern how things happen. Soldiers, spies, guerrillas, and cops all do things in certain ways and have unique cultures. They are archetypes in their own right. Stories that work well set the character’s actions in a believable framework. “Starship Troopers,” by Robert Heinlein, for example, immerses the reader in a future world that is still familiar in its texture. The Mobile Infantry depicted in the book feel real because they think, talk, and act like soldiers have since organized conflict began.

AI: So where does an author learn about military life, espionage, and law enforcement?

LJB: I just ran across a great new book on the subject called, “The Writer’s Guide to Adventurous Professions,” by Clayton Callahan and Lee Roberts.

AI: That sounds perfect.

LJB: It’s a fantastic resource book. The authors are combat veterans and police officers. Mr. Callahan in particular has worked in Army intelligence. The book is fun and a quick read, but authors will want to keep it handy for reference. If you want your action scenes to have impact, you should get this book.

New Books

Owl Dance is a Weird Western steampunk novel. The year is 1876. Sheriff Ramon Morales of Socorro, New Mexico, meets a beguiling woman named Fatemeh Karimi, who is looking to make a new start after escaping the oppression of her homeland. When an ancient life form called Legion comes to Earth, they are pulled into a series of events that will change the history of the world as we know it. In their journeys, Ramon and Fatemeh encounter mad inventors, dangerous outlaws and pirates. Their resources are Ramon's fast draw and Fatemeh's uncanny ability to communicate with owls. The question is, will that be enough to save them when airships from Czarist Russia invade the United States?

The Puppet Master.
In an alternate time line, technology has advanced civilization where within a few years the world is several centuries ahead. Even though advanced, crime still happens, only now criminals have new ways to cover their tracks. Private eye Martti Seppanen tracks crooks in a Los Angeles that noir detectives would hardly recognize.

What happens when the murderer is someone who can control other people mentally? When the murder weapon is a bioengineered disease? And what if the victim is someone whose existence is a government secret and isn't quite considered human?
''An outstanding writer.'' —C. J. Cherryh

Lightning Wolves.
It's 1877 and Russians forces occupy the Pacific Northwest. They are advancing into California. New weapons have proven ineffective or dangerously unstable. The one man who can help has disappeared into Apache Country, hunting ghosts. A healer and a former sheriff lead a band into the heart of the invasion to determine what makes the Russian forces so unstoppable while a young inventor attempts to unleash the power of the lightning wolves.

The Writer's Guide to Adventurous Professions

Action, adventure, war!  How the heck do you write such stuff if you have no practical experience in the military, law enforcement, or espionage?  The Writer’s Guide to Adventurous Professions will give you the important information you need to produce hard hitting adventure stories that are accurate, believable, and compelling.  Written by two combat veterans, who are now police officers and writers, this fun, fast paced book takes you deep into the special world of soldiers, cops, and spies.