Ten years have passed. The war goes on. The 5-state coalition of citizen militias hold the line. Book 2 saw Aunt Dani, Militia member, Rory, and an unnamed Militia member, all get killed. In war people get killed, we can hope not too many of the good people, but they do anyway. Book 3 will see two more character deaths. No need to name them now.
In my war, Vietnam, over 50,000 young men and women were killed. A quick check online lists 58,220. I just called Vietnam “my” war. It was only in the sense that I was in the navy at the time and my submarine on patrol sailed close enough so that I could see land, tropical jungle and a waterfall. I wondered how a war–or anything bad–could be happening in such a beautiful place.
Five close friends/neighbors/relatives did go to war there, one Marine, the rest Army. One was killed. One later committed suicide after he got home. The other three, likely, were forever changed. Another friend went to the Air Force and worked (highly classified) in Thailand, helping plan bombing runs on the Ho Chi Minh Trail. Another friend also went to the Navy (he and I have not discussed what we saw or did.) A brother-in-law joined the navy at the end of WWII. Some time after my discharge a nephew also joined the Navy. Another nephew joined the National Guard about then. An uncle served in Korea. I guess I could go on and on, but won’t. We all have veterans for friends and family.
In my books it hurts me to create a character, fall in love with her/him, and then have to “kill” her/him in order to move the story along. In one of my earlier books “The Bellwether” my dad read, and said to me “Why’d you kill Jacqueline?” He didn’t like it. But, “I had to, Dad.” (I didn’t explain to him “why” I had to. At the time I was so new to writing that I didn’t KNOW “why.”) My dad read several of my early books. We lost him in 1996. I think about him every day, and miss him every day. He and I were friends—”buddies” as he said once. So many good memories of him. I don’t mean to leave my mother out. I miss her too, but my relationship with her was not the same.
Eventually in this 6-book series I will kill my favorite character. I never write (or rarely even think about writing) unless I’m sitting at the computer. One day while driving the scene just came to me where I killed my favorite character. I actually cried. Tears actually flowed. I didn’t write anything down while driving, but the moment I got home I did, and the tears flowed again, and again, and again while editing. I must have fallen in love with my creation. I’m alone in the world so I can believe that. Sorry I can’t/won’t name the character here, but as you go along I think it will become clear who my favorite is.
About editing one’s writing. After finishing a novel or short story—whatever—I will edit until I find no mistakes, which can mean 10-15 times, up to 10,000 words for a short story, and 234,000 words for such as “The Bellwether.” I’ve worked with other beginning authors who say, “But can’t you edit too much?” My answer, “I edit until I find no mistakes.” By that I mean, misspellings, missing commas, periods, just little things, and believe me, readers will see your mistakes. I think these other young authors mistake editing for re-writing, in which I agree: one can re-write to death. In reading these other writers’ works their “uncorrected” mistakes stand out like very sore thumbs. When I see that too many times our relationship ends. If they won’t fix their work then I can’t help them.
Sorry, been getting off track.
In Book 3 ten years have passed.
Six-book series available at Amazon, $2.99 digital, $15.00 paperback. Click on the cover for a free-read right here.
Carter, 57, is now Militia Leader under his daughter, Chantal, 37. Jocelyn is now a warrior, a graceful, strong, and sinuous seventeen-year-old, joined at the hip with her Grandpa Carter as his lieutenant, aide, and protector, always battle-ready. Dodie is now a vibrant and beautiful sixteen-year-old, nearly a perfect picture of her mother, Chantal, and—as we will see—also, a warrior. She escapes her abductors and fights her way across the Mediterranean, the Atlantic, Occupied America, and gets home to witness a mass wedding (including her mother marrying a stranger) and see that Jocelyn has taken her place with her mother and grandpa.
Think of it–you have just fought your way across several thousand miles of unfriendly country, paying for your passage the only way possible, the only way a young girl with no money CAN. You get home–what you have dreamed of for ten long years–and see someone else in YOUR place!
So what would you do? Dodie doesn’t even think about it. She attacks!
After ten years of battles with mostly the cyborg-like super soldiers, we will soon see that the super soldiers are no longer so cyborgish-like, except the ones fresh out of hibernation.
At the end of this Book 3 the militia battles an overwhelming force of United Nations soldiers and forces the militia into their ONE unplanned retreat.