A More Satisfying and Enduring Read

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David Tunno Author Interview

Intrepid Spirit follows a disgraced Navy Lieutenant as he’s given command of an old warship and uses it and his intellect to stop a terrorist plot. What was the inspiration for the setup to your riveting story?

I combined my long-standing fondness for USS Constitution, US naval history and the age of sail with the events of 9/11. As Constitution was built to fight the Islamic terrorists of 200 years ago, it occurred to me to put her back in a fight that has apparently never really ended.

Moses Redding is an intriguing and well developed character. What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?

I wanted to distinguish the novel from the usual action/adventure military thrillers. I wanted it to be a more satisfying and enduring read. For that it had to have characters and human conditions the reader can relate to and become more emotionally involved with. I wanted to make the story as much character driven as plot driven. For that I needed a main character that needed a character arc to create conflict and resolution. He had to be a navy hero, suggesting an alpha male, but with a history and a complexity that creates both problems for himself as well as solutions for the broader conflict in the story. He was a lot of fun to write, especially the humorous parts. Making the ship herself a character that affects Redding’s transformation, and that he connects with, was key to completing that arc and setting Redding on a course to fulfill a destiny for the both he and the ship.

What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?

The most important one was the creation of a terrorist plot that was both global in scope and believable. I wanted the stakes to be as high as possible. A lot of research went into learning, for example, the number of terrorists organizations operating here in the US and around the world. That was eye opening, as was researching the relevant parts of the Qu’ran and the interpretations of them by Muslim scholars.

To carry out that plot, I wanted an antagonist who would be the equal of Redding. To lead a world-wide jihad, he would have to be brilliant and ruthless, but also charismatic and with a special quality that would destine him to that role. That need created Colonel Farzad, who prompted more research into mid-east politics and Islamic beliefs to build an authentic and very special character. Even that special quality he needed was the result of research into celestial events in that region in a year when Farzad could have been born, as well as Islamic culture with respect to such events.

Romance and magic were also important themes and, let’s face it, they go together. Sailing is a very romantic experience and I would ad a magical one at that. Constitution’s history includes recorded episodes of haunting. That played into my desire to make her a character in the story and one that affected not only the character arc of Redding, but the outcome of the epic battle itself. I wanted her to be like a giant sea creature with a cosmic connection who is seemingly aware of the humans riding on her decks and her place in history. Much to his surprise, Redding develops a kind of love affair with the ship that parallels his relationship with Dr. Miriam Hanna, another complex character with a history of her own that creates barriers between herself and Redding.

Finally, history itself was an important theme. The story ties the ship’s history, which is also the origins of the history of the US in the middle east, with the present day geopolitical landscape in that region, adding a hook and a twist to the story that I think only Constitution could provide.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

I’m working full time to get this novel published. All my energy is going there, but I have another military story in mind to write next. It’s a WWII story that will also need a lot of research, but should be both challenging and fun to write.

Author Link: Website

About Literary Titan

The Literary Titan is an organization of professional editors, writers, and professors that have a passion for the written word. We review fiction and non-fiction books in many different genres, as well as conduct author interviews, and recognize talented authors with our Literary Book Award. We are privileged to work with so many creative authors around the globe.

Posted on February 5, 2021, in Interviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.


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