Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Keeping Up With The Tam

During my wander through the blogs I ordinarily follow this fine Christmas day (and, to be completely honest, to fill in the time waiting for the laundry to finish), I checked in with TamaraK - as you do - and read this

Now, I already have one of these in .22 caliber and really wasn't expecting to get into .177 also, but given the steeply discounted asking price, I simply couldn't convince myself not to hit the "one-click purchase" button.

Amazon is pleased to inform me it (with the spare "5 shot pellet clip" and can of pellets) will get here this coming Saturday.  I guess I'm going to have to gather up some getaroundtoit and put this together.  I've lived in this apartment complex for 12 years, it's time to test the neighbors patience see if all of those on-time rent checks bought me any special consideration.  There's a strip of grass that runs along a fence line that ends in an L-shaped corner behind the maintenance building and is right outside my apartment door.  The perfect 50' semi-secluded spot for some quiet Sunday afternoon practice I think.  We'll see how many others agree soon enough.

So, thanks (again) Tam, and Merry Christmas to us both.

'tis the season ...

Merry Christmas.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Waiting For Godot A Title

Or, let's talk more about this premise.

What I have is, a "Mexican-American drug lord" who needs to find a place for his money that he can't get into Mexico (or his foreign bank accounts) any more.  I have "Our Hero" who pitches him the idea of funding a series of Krav Maga schools around the state of Texas which are intended to serve as the basis for his personal intelligence gathering and political action arm within the state and country.  Each school will have a specific group attached who are all students and have semi-legitimate jobs to satisfy public and official appearances.  The group members real job will be to identify all law enforcement and political office holders within a specified region, with the intended purpose of coercing or killing them "come the day".

I've settled on the group size as being: a buddy (comprised of two individuals working as a dedicated pair), who are members of a (fire)team of two buddies (four individuals, working in dedicated pairs), who in turn make up a class (two teams who attend KM class as a unit), who together with five other classes comprise a school (and are the basic operational unit formation for each intelligence gathering effort - several more are implied to be in operation throughout the state).  School members have strict rules; no gang signifiers in their personal lives (no tattoos or distinct social or other behavior that LE identifies as being gang associated), no direct action of an illegal nature (they don't deal or transport drugs or commit other crimes, but are familiar with those who do and report on them to the drug lord - act as his criminal QA inspectors as it were), work to achieve accentless language skills, work to acquire KM and other professional qualifications and certifications, acquire quality firearms and other weapons and become accredited as instructors/educators in their use.  There will be others, and every team will consist of a buddy of two females (paired together).  School members all have a business or self-employment job that serves as a means to wash drug money as well as provide the individual members with social and legal legitimacy, bicycle repair and sales, automotive maintenance and customization, almost anything IT, car wash, self storage, and maker-type manufacturing businesses (indeed, all of them will have some capability and professional capacity for doing so).

Our Hero is probably going to be more of an anti-hero in nature (and certainly in behavior) and is the KM school founder (not sure yet how the drug money gets legitimized - may resort to handwavium as needed) and is completely in the know; he proposes this concept initially as a means to a socio-political end as a result of his personal conviction that "anarchy approaches" or some such schiesse.  The KM school legitimately teaches firearms use and defense as part of the curriculum for "more advanced" students (which is an effective means of access to the regional law enforcement community) as well as offering CHL training.

While not all members of the School are Hispanic (Our Hero isn't for one), most are and there will be a good deal of blatant racism displayed, not to mention sexism and all the rest of the PC cant (which sums up the basic attitude toward such belief within the School).  School members learn/display respect for each other (if in a quite disturbing fashion), but this is based upon either a personal relationship or an "us vs them" context.

I want to make the initial meeting between Our Hero and the drug lord believable, but I'm not writing a "how to .." manual here.  I'm attracted to them knowing (or at least knowing of) each other many years prior when both were either members of the US .mil or, and I like this better, both were employed as contractors working out of the US following their separate stints in the service (again, many years earlier - both are older men).  In late-summer 2009, Our Hero discovers the whereabouts and legal circumstances of the drug lord from online news sources and gets in touch with him, again online.  At the subsequent meeting, the initial proposition was presented and developed over the succeeding moths and years.  That's the opening, I think, and events resume in the summer of 2015.  I need to start building bios for both men (names would certainly be less ungainly) and what was Google Maps/ Earth like in early summer 2009?

That's the start of a workable outline I think.

Monday, December 9, 2013

And Now For Something Completely Different ...

... and maybe even original.

I've decided to try an experiment on this blog.  Before we get to all that, first some back story.

In the last couple months (since my return from Oregon in October), I was invited by to become one of the reviewers of stories under development by them. 

Frankly I have no real idea why they did such a thing.

The barely-restrained conspiracy theorist in me is certain it all has to do with the frequency with which I take Jeff Bezos' name in vain here and elsewhere around the web.  And, while there may actually be something to that, my somewhat more firmly grounded suspicion is that someone at Amazon decided there just might be something to the proposition that the amateur opinion is the audience and figured anyone who buys as many books and DVD's - and presumably reads/watches them - as I do, probably has an arguably informed opinion to offer there-on. 

In any event, I accepted and thereby discovered Amazon Studios, which is their in-house effort to create original content for them to produce and sell.  I should note that the two Amazon-related activities aren't directly linked to each other, in that you don't have to be an aspiring story teller to talk trash offer an opinion about anyone else's story.   Or, at least, I didn't; I was offered the review thing before signing up to have my own efforts put to the question. 


Whereby we close the bloggish circle.  I'm having difficulty getting started with the story I want to tell first, so I'm going to try telling (at least a good portion of) a different story here on the blog.  To that end I've created a new label, "my original fiction", which I will be using exclusively for this project.  My hope is to use the Blogger format I'm reasonably familiar with to develop the basic writers habit of writing something every day.  Yes, I know, how is that different from ordinary blogging?  Well, aside from the obvious distinction that this will be deliberate fiction, as inflammatory as what will appear is going to be, I hope to avoid at least some of the sillier accusations and suspicions that might otherwise arise if it wasn't labeled as explicit fiction.

I expect to write as much about my experience of the process of writing a story as I do actually telling a story.  [It's my blog; go write your own if you want it done differently.]   As introductory, what follows is my not-too-terribly-original premise:

At some undeclared point in the near future, there will be an explicit effort made to take advantage of the current societal discontent within the United States.  This effort will comprise an organized group of criminals funding the creation of a "resistance" (based rather loosely on my understanding of the experience of the French efforts during WW II) aimed at continuing their (probably drug related - at least in part) criminal enterprise, whatever the political climate within the US.

All details subject to authorial whim and inspiration, but I intend to use real people's names in a "ripped from the headlines" style of story context.  If you are also a blogger and wouldcare to risk your reputation'nt mind having your name taken in vain also, please let me know; one of the many problems I'm experiencing is coming up with character names (the bios are actually much less trouble - more on that anon).

Topics I hope to excite discussion on will include: story formatting, character development and presentation, quirks and idiosyncrasies of some specific aspect of life (law, motorcycle mechanics, welding, what-have-you, etc, etc, etc.), proper grammar ... well, you get the idea.  As to the story itself, it is what it will be; I kinda don't care if you care for it or not, and I'm quite confident you can write a better one, but I want to tell this one so as to get good enough to tell the one that's sloshing around inside my head and won't come out yet.  If I offend you (as seems likely) I'm not all that sorry.  Its not that I want to especially, it's just in the nature of this particular story, that's all.

More tomorrow ...