Gaithersburg Book Festival

You’re invited to join me on Saturday, May 17 for the Gaithersburg Book Festival in Gaithersburg, Maryland. I’ll be speaking on the topic of military thrillers with fellow thriller writer Rick Campbell, author of The Trident Deception. He and I will be at the Dashiell Hamett Pavilion at 3:15 p.m. For more info on other speakers and activities at the Gaithersburg Book Festival, please click here.

Sand and Fire

My new novel, Sand and Fire, comes to bookstores in July. But it’s available for pre-order now! Click here for links to order.Young_SAND_jacket3 thumb

Happy New Year!

A thought for the New Year, from T.S. Eliot:

“For last year’s words belong to last year’s language. And next year’s words await another voice. And to make an end is to make a beginning.”

Karjackistan!

Welcome to Karjackistan! A driver backs away (around obstacles) to escape a mock ambush. This came as part of a Protective/Evasive Driving course that I took for background research. Vehicle Dynamics Institute teaches a great set of courses for security professionals. Note the splatters from paintball bullets.
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Dereliction of Duty

Congress has passed a measure to pay active-duty military personnel during the government shutdown. So, lawmakers have solved the military part of the problem, right?

Wrong.

Thousands of full-time members of the Guard and Reserve serve most of the time in a civilian status. They’re called Civilian Technicians or Air Reserve Technicians. They perform vital functions for our nation’s defense every day, and on drill weekends or when called to active duty, they serve in a military status.

And they’ve received furlough notices while Congress keeps getting paid.

Creatures, Crimes, and Creativity

Had a great time at the recent Creatures, Crimes, and Creativity literary conference in Baltimore. Speakers included John Gilstrap and Jefferey Deaver, who gave informative and entertaining talks.

I had an opportunity to take part in two panels. The first panel addressed violence in genre literature. I asserted that an author can use detailed violence in quality fiction as long as the author also shows the cost of that violence–the grief, the impact on families, and even the impact on the person committing the violence. To provide an example, I read passages from a thriller that has stood the test of time, THE ILIAD, by Homer. Some of Homer’s lines are pretty darned graphic.

Writers’ Police Academy

Though I write military thrillers and not crime novels, I thought I might learn a lot from the annual Writers’ Police Academy in Greensboro, NC. I did not come away disappointed! Many thanks to Lee Lofland, the Guilford County Sheriff’s Office, Greensboro Police, Guilford Technical Community College, and everyone else associated with this event. Great opportunity for authors to learn how law enforcement professionals get it done. In this photo, a bomb tech suits up to demonstrate his skills.
Guilford County bomb tech

“Eye on Books” interview

Thanks to Bill Thompson for a chance to discuss The Warriors with him on “Eye on Books.” Click here to listen.

Vince Flynn, a fine author who left us too soon

Blackfive asked a number of thriller authors to offer some thoughts on the passing of Vince Flynn. Vince was quite a gentleman, and certainly tops in his field. For the full text of the Blackfive article, click here.

Rave reviews for THE WARRIORS!

Kirkus Reviews calls The Warriors “an expertly rendered tale of lingering hostilities rooted in the former Yugoslavia.” Booklist says “Young experienced the events of the Balkan wars firsthand, and his knowledge translates well to the page.” The Warriors comes to book stores on July 11.