Oxford, Michigan doesn’t have a lot to brag about. We were once the gravel capital of the U.S. (and we have the windshields to prove it). We are home to the original radio Lone Ranger, Bruce Beemer. And we are home to a fixture in the thriller writer community, Mark Terry.
Mark and I know each other through the greatest of all social networks, high school marching band parents. Since I’ve chaperoned two trips to Mackinac Island and spent two nights in the freshman boy’s cabin at band camp (this is a smell, my friends, that should be marketed to the government for use in chemical warfare), I figured he should take part in my 52 Books Challenge and volunteer as author of the week. Being the lover of all things fiction that he is, he agreed.
So, I’ll turn this here blog over to Oxford’s newest claim to fame, Mark Terry…
Guest Author–Mark Terry
You may have heard on the news lately—I did this morning—that we’re still in negotiations with various parties around the world to try and solve the civil war in Syria … all while trying to get their tons of chemical weapons destroyed. So, in a way, this is where I’m living with my work-in-progress, VENGEANCE, a Derek Stillwater novel.
This will be my eighth book to feature Dr. Derek Stillwater. When we started with him, back in THE DEVIL’S PITCHFORK, he was a troubleshooter for Homeland Security. Two of the novellas visit him when he was a younger man in the early 90s and working for the CIA. In the last novel (THE SINS OF THE FATHER) and the current WIP, Derek’s on loan to the State Department.
I’ve been paying a lot of attention to this week’s meeting in Geneva between the Secretary of State and various parties related to the Syria conflict because, well, Derek is there. Okay, not really. Not even in the course of VENGEANCE.
But he is. You see, the part where I am now, Derek is traveling with the Secretary of State as he visits various parties relevant to the pace process—Russia, Egypt, Israel, and eventually they’re to land in Geneva, Switzerland for a sit-down and formal discussions.
Except, well, without giving anything away, they’re not going to make it to Switzerland. They’re going to have a major setback and, well, this is a Derek Stillwater novel, so everything is going to go to hell.
Writing about current events and bouncing off them, that’s what I do a lot of times. I’m not sure it’s the best idea. For all I know, by the time I finish the book the Assad government will have crashed, the rebels will be trying to form a government, and the US will be in a shooting war with Iran over the whole mess.
Of course, that possibility is spinning around in the background as Derek faces off with a terrorist named Sheikh Hussein Nazif. See, Derek and Nazif had an encounter when Derek parachuted into Syria early in 2013 to determine if the Syrian government was actually using sarin gas on its own people. And now, Nazif wants revenge. And he’ll kidnap the U.S. Secretary of State to get it!
The 52 Books Challenge
Thanks, Mark! And I hope that you’ll crank out more awesome thrillers this year.
Are you up to the 52 Book Challenge. Can you read a book per week? That’s just one hour less television per day (I promise…you’re not missing much). Join our facebook page and take part in great conversation and book talk. And be sure to invite your friends!