Every book, these days, is the result of the efforts of many people. Sure the writer sits behind the keyboard and bangs away at it like a deranged pianist (at least that’s what I do), but without the assistance of many other people along the way the writing is unlikely to see the light of day, nor is it likely to be any good when it does.
Have you ever picked up your cell phone while driving? How about answering the phone while typing at your laptop? Have you tried watching a film while talking to a friend? Which part of the conversation and how much of the plot could you remember afterwards?
What did you have for breakfast this morning? Do you really remember? How was it different from yesterday? What clothes was the person you are most emotionally attached to wearing yesterday?
Back in 2017, as I was preparing for the launch of The Sniper Mind I began putting together a series of Tweets. Some were quotes lifted directly from the book itself. Others were notes I had made in different sections that were designed to inspire me and give me a sense of direction as I was writing the book. Others still were thematic summaries, acting as signposts for what lay ahead or what was now behind a particular section of the book.
Cultural programming primes us. For all of the 19th century, at least, and half of the 20th war and its form were romanticized by a tightly controlled press and government propaganda. It was the Dolce et decorum est … era when the narrative of war was led by those who weren’t called to fight it but did choose to participate in it.