17 June 2018

One last edit on “Upon A Far Distant Shore,” then it’ll be ready to go.

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From A Different Perspective: He’s Worrying Again…Probably For No Reason…

…so there I was, sitting at my desk in the Section Alpha field office in Lakeland, Florida. It had been an ordinary day so far, just routine paperwork while I finish recovering from my little jaunt to the pocket dimension Balthazar created. Boring? Maybe a little. But after fighting my way out of that dimension (and finding out that for six years, I was a sentient lab rat), I was glad to have some peace and quiet.

I was working my way through three months of paperwork when an email came in. Nothing unusual about that…except that there was no sender address. No name, no address, nothing. Normally, I would just delete an email like that. At the very least, it could be spam. At worst, it could be a virus. But something inside made me trust the unidentified sender. I opened the email and realized it came from…him.

The message was short:

Artemis,

I need you to write a blog post for me. I’m afraid people will think that, because most of my MCs are female, I’m pushing some kind of an agenda. You know I’m not. I hate         agenda driven works. So could you do me a solid and explain that to people?

Thanks in advance.

MPD

You know, it’s pretty sad when a writer turns to his characters to point things out to the readers.

(What’s that? How do I know I’m a character in a story? Seems kind of obvious to me. Wait…don’t you know you’re a character in a story? Oh? How do you know you’re not?)

I’ve looked over the first seven books he’s published. Yeah, there are a lot of female main characters. There are a lot of male characters too. For the most part, it looks to me like his male and female characters are on equal footing. Each character knows fully the strengths and weaknesses of their respective partners. In On A Cold Wind, Murphy knows full well that Carly is better suited to scout ahead than he is. He harbors a bit of concern for the woman he loves, but he trusts his partner completely. They just happen to be the same person.

In Rae, the reason Kevin takes the lead is based on seniority. Rae is just out of the Academy. Though he’s only been with D5 for a short time, Kevin has been with EGS for a few years. Kevin does trust Rae’s judgement, even when she doesn’t follow directions.

In “Stranger,” one of the completed stories he’s about to continue editing (after getting my story ready for publication), the main character, Probationary Agent Denise Bell, is partnered with an experienced agent, Special Agent Nicola Baldwin. When he started writing the story, ages ago, Denise’s partner was named Martin Baldwin. Somewhere along the line, he realized that almost all of his EGS agents were in teams of one man, one woman. Sensing a pattern, our author decided to make a change. Changing Martin to Nicola, rather than Denise to Dennis, took less rewriting.

Our esteemed author is also a bit concerned that some will feel my team mates put so much effort into trying to get me out of the pocket dimension because I’m a woman. Apparently he’s forgotten how many time I mentioned that Section Alpha doesn’t leave anyone behind. I even told the story of what happened to Tristian in Manchester, New Hampshire.

But he’s a neurotic sort, complete with bouts of depression, a short temper, low self-esteem and a self-image that would have to improve to be bad. He worries about things like this. In the back of his mind, he knows he shouldn’t worry until there’s a reason…but he still worries.

He tries. Really, he does. And I think he succeeds. I’m proof of that. My team mates weren’t trying to rescue me because I’m a woman. They were trying to rescue me because I’m a fellow agent, and no one is ever left behind. No more, no less.

(Although, he could’ve skipped alluding to the brief fling I had with Grant. It was just sex, after all.)

His only agenda is to tell the best stories he can, with the best characters he can. He tells a passable story (except for mine, which he told exceptionally well). He’s trying to tell the kinds of stories he likes to read. If some think he’s pushing an agenda, that’s on them.

I just wish he wouldn’t stress over things he really has no control over.

I was about to submit this little diatribe when another email came in…

Artemis

Thanks for the blog post. I knew I could count on my former newest character. (Sadly,        you’ve been replaced by Brianna’s older brother, Sean Crowe.)

MPD

Wait a minute…former newest character? Son of a bitch…

 

Quick Book Review: We Have Lost The Coffee (We Have Lost #3) by Paul Mathews

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Coffee Wars…impossible to get a cup of real coffee…only poor quality synthetic subtitutes…pretty much my end of the world scenario…

I enjoyed We Have Lost The Coffee. It’s the first book by Paul Mathews that I’ve read, though I do have plans to read the othes in the series. I found the characters relatable, the humor not forced. All in all, an enjoyable read. I look forward to the rest of the series.