I’m pleased to announce that I just finished writing the last words of No Remorse (Decker’s War Book 6). Yep, I’m done. Now for a few weeks worth of editorial massaging and proofreading, but there you have it: Eric Thomson’s eleventh novel. It came in at about the same length as the others, meaning a slice above 400 pages, or just short of 110,000 words. Decker fans will learn a bit more about our fun-loving, hard-fighting Marine’s past, and perhaps even get a hint about his future, or at least a possible future. The story picks up several months after the fallout from Black Sword, but it is self-contained even though some familiar names and faces from the previous installment make a return visit, because as will become apparent to those who read No Remorse, fighting Decker’s War is growing beyond the ability of one man and his partner, no matter how skilled and determined they may be. And that’s as much of a teaser as you’ll get for now.
As they say in the ad world – look for it at your favorite retailer in late March.
Just a quick word to let you know I’m busy finishing No Remorse (Decker’s War Book 6), so there won’t be a regular blog post this week. I’ve reached the 95% mark, meaning the first draft will be completed within the next two or three days. Then it goes through the rounds of editing and proofing, but I’m still optimistic for a late March publication date, since my editor has confirmed she will clear full week for me the moment it’s ready.
This morning, Mrs. Thomson and I finally made it out onto the woodland trails for a bit of cross-country skiing. We’re blessed with many places within an easy drive where we can enjoy nature. And even though I’m probably as little a fan of winter as it gets for a Canadian, I have to admit that the forest, after a fresh dusting of overnight snow, was delightful. As were the other skiers and snowshoers we passed — smiles and friendly hellos at every encounter. We also rediscovered that cross-country skiing uses a set of muscles different from the one we exercise at the gym, but it’s a good ache, especially at our age. And speaking of age, it was interesting that pretty much everyone we saw out there was of our generation or near enough. It made me wonder what the younger folks do for exercise and fresh air on a beautiful February Saturday.
But now I’m back at the keyboard while a new dusting of snow is erasing tracks and footprints. I’ve just passed the three-quarters mark for the first draft of No Remorse (Decker’s War Book 6), and as it always happens when I come to the final act, my writing speeds up so I can stay ahead of characters barreling towards the story’s climax. I don’t want to give anything away, but the story involves people from Decker’s distant past, as well as his more recent adventures, especially the previous two. I figure I’ll be done by the end of the month, and I’ve already warned my editor to clear her calendar for March. Once this one is in her hands, it’s back to Without Mercy (Siobhan Dunmoore Book 5).
Last week I wrote about stubborn characters, and since then, I’ve had another altercation with my creations in No Remorse. I wanted Decker to meet with an investigator working a case involving someone close to our favorite Marine. When one of Decker’s friends tried to set up a meeting, the investigator’s superior, a very minor character with no speaking part, unexpectedly denied permission. Huh? That was a first. My characters have never refused to obey me this way before. Of course, it sent the storyline spinning off into an unplanned but so far exciting direction. The mind of a writer indeed works in incredibly strange ways, and that’s one reason I’m happy to fly by the seat of my pants rather than obsessively outline. I’m discovering the story, just as readers will in a few weeks after it’s published. But things are moving. No Remorse is at the two-thirds mark now, and with things happening at an ever-increasing rate, as they usually do at this point in my novels, my productivity is up.
And on that note, back to work. When I downed tools last night, Decker’s enemies have him in their grasp, and he is on his way to an uncertain fate, wondering whether he’ll be able to stop a disaster that could spell the end of peace in the Rim Sector.