When I first started writing for Ellora’s Cave, I wrote a story called Summer in the City of Sails. It’s a contemporary story with a slight suspense element. Nikolai, the hero is in the military, part of the New Zealand Special Air Services, our elite force.
From the start, I had lots of emails from readers and reviewers about Nikolai’s two fellow NZSAS friends and also about Summer, the heroine’s two brothers who are also military men. Readers wanted to know if I intended to write stories for these characters.
“Yes,” I said, because I was curious about these characters as well.
But, that was where things came to a screeching halt. I couldn’t think of exactly the right idea, so instead of working on a follow-up, I moved on to other stories and series like my Middlemarch Mates.
Fast forward at least three years, and I saw two documentaries on television here in New Zealand. There was one that followed the rigorous training of the applicants who wanted to become members of the NZSAS. Another documentary followed the journey of New Zealand soldiers who had left the military and taken up jobs in the private security sector in countries like Iraq and Afghanistan. Finally a member of the NZSAS was awarded a Victorian Cross for valor, one of the few awarded internationally since the Second World War. All these things bubbled together in my mind, and suddenly an idea was born. Soldier of Fortune became the next story.
Soldier of Fortune features Louie, who is one of Nikolai’s friends. Here’s the blurb:
Joanna “Mac” McGregor loves her father, and she’ll do anything to keep him safe after Alzheimer’s starts to steal his mind. That takes money, and Mac uses her only skills—those of soldiering—when she takes up a security contract in Iraq. She doesn’t have time for men, her last vacation fling in Fiji relegated as one perfect moment to hold close during the grim reality of war.
Soldier Louie Lithgow is tired of fighting, the constant danger, and has decided this is his last contract. He wants to retire, sink his savings into a place on the beach, and find the sexy Joanna, his holiday lover.
Mac’s arrival in Iraq causes consternation. They’ve both been economical with the truth, but the attraction sizzling between them flares hot and bright. They embark on a clandestine affair—professional and confident during their high-danger day, passionate with the release of emotional stress during their torrid nights. One thing is clear—they have different goals and the future is both murky and dangerous. If they survive their contracts.
One thing I’ve found with writing is that inspiration for stories comes from all directions. I read lots of different magazines, watch movies and TV shows, read newspapers and watch documentaries. The library is a great source too. I wander the aisles and pick up non-fiction books at random. I never know when inspiration might strike.
Buy link: http://www.jasminejade.com/pm-7810-127-soldier-of-fortune.aspx
Buy link: http://www.jasminejade.com/pm-6126-127-summer-in-the-city-of-sails.aspx
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