Birth of a Book Idea

On the morning of September 25th, my writing plans for was pretty well laid out for what books would be written in what sequence. The first two novels in a new, four book series based on a character by the name of Derek Almer were written. While my agent was contacting publishers about the first book in the new series – Flight of the Pawnee – and trying to place a non-fiction book called Gold & Silver Wings – Tales from Three Generations of Military Pilots with a publisher, I could beaver away on the third book in the Derek Almer series – The Ass’m Draggin.

That was the plan when I walked into the restaurant in Tucson on the evening of September 25th, 2018 with the owner of Penmore Press who publishes my first seven books. Note, the operative word is was.

During the dinner, somehow we got on the subject about books about the Royal Navy during the Napoleonic Wars of which there are many. I grew up reading C.S. Forester’s Hornblower series, Alexander Kent’s books about the career of Richard Bolitho and Patrick O’Bryan’s novels about Jack Aubrey adventures. He noted that there weren’t many about the American Navy during the period and he thought it would sell well.

We began discussing how the novel might unfold and before we parted company, I said I would think about it. Boy, was that an understatement.

I couldn’t stop thinking about it. After a quick, as in about half an hour or so, searching Amazon, I came to the same conclusion – there weren’t many books about the Continental Navy/American Navy during the Revolutionary War or during the Quasi War with France in 1799, the War with the Barbary Pirates or the War of 1812.

My mind raced as I typed a potential book concept that became a trilogy. The books will follow the careers of two men, Jaco Jacinto an American and a Brit by the name of William Smythe beginning when they entire their respective navies as midshipmen.

The story concepts for all three are done and I’ve started banging away on the keys to write the first one tentatively titled Raider of the Scottish Coast. To write these will require research not only into the historical context, but also into how ships were built and sailed, crews organized and into the war fighting tactics. It is fascinating but takes time to find ones that have the specific info needed to write a passage.

More on this series to come but I have go get back to researching and writing Raider of the Scottish Coast.

Marc Liebman

October 2018

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