Friday, November 16, 2018

Guest Post with William C. Dietz


Photo Credit: Joseph Walsh Photography

New York Times bestselling author William C. Dietzhas published more than fifty novels some of which have been translated into German, French, Russian, Korean and Japanese. Dietz also wrote the script for the Legion of the Damned game (i-Phone, i-Touch, & i-Pad) based on his book of the same name--and co-wrote SONY's Resistance: Burning Skies game for the PS Vita.

Dietz grew up in the Seattle area, spent time with the Navy and Marine Corps as a medic, graduated from the University of Washington, lived in Africa for half a year, and has traveled to six continents. Dietz has been employed as a surgical technician, college instructor, news writer, television producer and Director of Public Relations and Marketing for an international telephone company.

Dietz is a member of the Writer’s Guild, and the International Association of Media Tie-In Writers. He and his wife live near Gig Harbor in Washington State where they enjoy traveling, kayaking, and reading books.

      
  


GUEST POST BY WILLIAM C. DIETZ - RED ICE
Before I tell you about a character in RED ICE, I need to share the premise.

World War III is one month old. After attacking, and sinking the Destroyer USS Stacy Heath, the Chinese invade Tibet, and India counterattacks.

Rather than allow the Chinese to seize control of the subcontinent the U.S. sends 20,000 U.S. soldiers and marines in to join the fight.

The Russians use the opportunity to invade Ukraine, which
 leaves NATO with no choice but to respond. A full fledged ground war begins. 



American forces are spread thin, and the decision is made to evacuate all personnel from Afghanistan. Troops have already begun to pull out, when Air Force JTAC (Joint Terminal Attack Controller) Dan Falco, receives orders to kill a ruthless Taliban leader named Noor Mohammad Hashemi. But it won’t be easy. 

Falco must enter enemy territory with a guide who may, or may not be a member of the Taliban, take up a position above an enemy held town, and call in a targeted air strike on a man standing in the middle of a populated area. 

Meanwhile 7,000 miles to north, the Russians are holding a training exercise called RED ICE. Except that it isn’t a training exercise and, if American forces fail to stop the enemy, the Russians will land on American soil. An accomplishment that would be a tremendous blow to American morale, and would suck much needed resources away from the conflicts in Europe and Asia.

Army Air Force and even Coast Guard personnel will do their best to push the Russians back.

But will their best be good enough?

***

Well, as I’m sure you could tell from my summary, Dan Falco is one of the main characters in RED ICE, along with a fighter pilot named Kathy Parker. And I feel a close connection to both.

But as a secondary character named Captain Marvin Soto began to develop, I came to have a deep appreciation for him. Soto is in command of the Coast Guard icebreaker Northern Dawn, a vessel never intended for war, but because there aren’t any navy ships in the artic, the Dawn has to take on the role of a submarine resupply vessel. Here’s an excerpt:

Chukchi Sea, 25 miles northwest of Wainright, Alaska, USA
Captain Marvin Soto stood with his feet spread as the Coast Guard icebreaker Northern Dawn shouldered her way between two looming icebergs, and pushed them aside. The helmsman stood a few feet to Soto’s right with both hands on the chrome steering wheel. It was wrapped with white cord and looked very retro in an age when joysticks were used to steer large vessels. But even though the Dawn had been launched back in 1976, and refitted more than once, the old lady still retained some of her original elements. And Soto liked it that way. 

He was looking out over a layer of so-called “steam fog,” which occurred when a layer of cold air slid in over warmer water. “Warmer” being a relative term where the Beaufort Sea was concerned.

Soto felt the Dawn shudder slightly as powerful engines drove the ship’s steel reinforced bow through a four-foot thick chunk of floating ice. The icebreaker could break through sheets of ice up to twenty-one feet thick if she was required to. But that won’t be necessary today, Soto mused. The skeptics could say whatever they wanted to, but Soto had seen the ice pack shrink year-after-year, and he knew that global warming was to blame. Not that anyone was focused on that… They were too busy killing each other. 

Thinking about the war caused Soto to shift his attention to what he thought of as “the abomination” mounted on the icebreaker’s bow. A wisp of fog was blown away to reveal the five inch MK-45 deck gun. The weapon had no place on a ship like the Northern Dawn to Soto’s way of thinking, but had been added a few weeks earlier nevertheless. 

There had been a time when all icebreakers were armed. That was during and immediately after WWII. But things had changed since then. And by the time the Dawn put to sea in ‘76 icebreakers were no longer viewed as warships. The Dawn’s purpose was to keep shipping channels open—and to serve as a platform for scientific research.

Now everything was turned on its head. The Dawn still had an obligation to keep shipping lanes open. But the icebreaker had been given a second and equally important mission… And that was to serve as a submarine tender for the navy’s nuclear powered ballistic missile submarines, at least two of which prowled artic waters at any given time. They, along with twelve sister subs, carried fifty percent of the country’s thermonuclear warheads.

The other components of the so-called “nuclear triad” included long range bombers and land-based intercontinental ballistic missiles. Taken together those capabilities served to prevent countries like China, Russia, and North Korea from launching preemptive strikes against the American homeland. But even though Soto understood the strategic importance of his ship’s new role he didn’t have to like it. 

As you can tell Soto is a peaceful man. But later in the book Soto and his crew are forced to not only use the newly installed deck gun, but to confront an even greater challenge. One none of them ever expected to face.

TEN RANDOM FACTS ABOUT RED ICE
  • I had the idea for the book more than a year before I wrote it, but didn’t start, because I knew how demanding the research would be. But the idea wouldn’t leave me alone. So I had to give in.
  • William H. Seward, the United States Secretary of State, negotiated the Alaska Purchase (also known as Seward's Folly) with the Russians in 1867 for $7.2 million. According to one estimate it’s worth $4 trillion today.
  • I can’t share the basic concept for RED ICE without giving too much away, but I will say this, it’s technically feasible.
  • The Imagery Intelligence Systems Acquisition Directorate is part of the NRO.
  • The Red Flag Aggressor Squadron that the character Kathy Parker belongs to actually exists. 
  • The Pugachev’s Cobra maneuver which the Russian pilot uses against Parker, can be executed with the right pilot and plane. 
  • The USS Nevada (SSBN-733) exists.
  • The Diomedes islands are split between Russia and the United States.
  • Tin City exists.
  • The U.S. Airforce Combat Controller motto is, “First There.” And for good reason. Combat Controllers often operate behind enemy lines, and lead the way for others to follow. 
WRITING BEHIND THE SCENES
I like to write all of my first drafts in longhand. I can compose at the keyboard mind you, a skill learned while writing TV news, but I find that the flow is better when I write using cursive.

And when you write by hand you can add notes in the margins, draw arrows to show where text should go without actually moving it yet, and don’t have to worry about spelling! The mechanical stuff takes care of itself when you type the handwritten copy into your computer.

MY JOURNEY TO PUBLICATION
I had always wanted to write a book, and promised myself that I would do so by the time I was 40, even if the product wasn’t good enough to submit. So when my 39th birthday rolled around, and I hadn’t written a word, I knew it was time to get going. The year was 1984, and being an avid SF fan, I set out to write an action adventure story about a futuristic bounty hunter. It was called WAR WORLD. (Later changed to GALACTIC BOUNTY.)

Personal computers were a rarity back then, and I didn’t have one. So I wrote the book on an old typewriter after work, and on weekends. Then I sent WAR WORLD into ACE books at Penguin. A month passed without the much anticipated rejection slip, so I called in, and spoke with an editorial assistant only to learn that the manuscript had been misplaced.

Long story short (pun intended) she found it, read it, and made me an offer. I made use of the proceeds to purchase my first PC.

The book did fairly well, so ACE bought another, and another--adding up to dozens of novels over the ensuing 30 years. First submission-first sale stories are rare, but they can happen. 

AND FINALLY, THE TEN THINGS I WOULD CHANGE ABOUT HIGH SCHOOL IF I COULD
  • First, I would apply myself, and get better grades.
  • Second, I would stop smoking two packs of cigarettes a day.
  • Third, I would get in shape.
  • Fourth, I would spend less time looking at girls. No, never mind. 
  • Fifth, I would thank people I should have thanked, but didn’t.
  • Sixth, I would make an attempt to learn more about politics.
  • Seventh, I would keep a diary.
  • Eighth, I would prepare myself for college.
  • Ninth, I would learn more about my extended family
  • And last, but not least, I would buy AT&T stock. (Remembering that Microsoft, Apple, and Google didn’t exist then.)
For more about William C. Dietz and his fiction, please visit williamcdietz.com. You can find him on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/williamcdietz and you can follow him on Twitter: William C. Dietz @wcdietz   


From William C. Dietz, the New York Times bestselling author of the America Rising novels, comes RED ICE. A military thriller so believable the story could be ripped from tomorrow’s headlines.

World War III is a month old. After attacking, and sinking the Destroyer USS Stacy Heath, the Chinese invade Tibet, and India counterattacks.

Rather than allow the Chinese to seize control of the subcontinent the U.S. sends 20,000 U.S. soldiers and marines in to join the fight.

The Russians use the opportunity to invade Ukraine, which leaves NATO with no choice but to respond. A full fledged ground war begins.

American forces are spread thin, and the decision is made to evacuate all personnel from Afghanistan. Troops have already begun to pull out, when Air Force JTAC (Joint Terminal Attack Controller) Dan Falco, receives orders to kill a ruthless Taliban leader named Noor Mohammad Hashemi. But it won’t be easy.

Falco must enter enemy territory with a guide who may, or may not be a member of the Taliban, take up a position above an enemy held town, and call in a targeted air strike on a man standing in the middle of a populated area.

Meanwhile 7,000 miles to north, the Russians are holding a training exercise called RED ICE. Except that it isn’t a training exercise and, if American forces fail to stop the enemy, the Russians will land on American soil. An accomplishment that would be a tremendous blow to American morale, and would suck much needed resources away from the conflicts in Europe and Asia.

Army Air Force and even Coast Guard personnel will do their best to push the Russians back.

But will their best be good enough?


You can purchase Red Ice (Winds of War Book 1) at the following Retailers:
        

And now, The Giveaways.
Thank you WILLIAM C. DIETZ for making this giveaway possible.
1 Winner will receive a Copy of Red Ice (Winds of War Book 1) by William Dietz. 
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1 comment:

  1. I lived in this apt.with my 1 year old daughter. My husband was out of town and 3 of his friends knocked on the door. I told them that he wasn't there. Instead of leaving they tried to break in. I ran into the bathroom with my daughter and called 911. The police got there really fast and got them to leave and patrolled my apt. All night. I have never been so scared.

    ReplyDelete