The Hero’s World Falls Apart

Colin M Barron Author Interview

Four Minutes to Zero follows a former SAS Sergeant whose wife is kidnapped by terrorists that want to create a New World Order, and he has to stop them. What was the inspiration for the setup of your story?

I used a template for writing the story which was described by author Kurt Vonnegut as ‘Man in Hole.’ This means that the story begins with the protagonist on top of the world. Life could not be better, Then , in a matter of moments, his whole world falls apart. Things could not be worse. Everything he does to try and put things right makes his situation even worse. Then, when things are as bad as they could possibly be, he pulls a rabbit out the hat and manages to come out on top. One example of this type of plot structure is the Hitchcock film ‘North by North West’ in which the hero’s world falls apart in minutes and he is chased across the USA and wrongly accused of a crime he did not commit.

I felt that the action scenes were expertly crafted. I find that this is an area that can be overdone in novels. How did you approach this subject to make sure it flowed evenly?

I just wrote from the heart and imagined a movie in my head and then described what I saw, using all my senses. I also ensured that there were quieter, more reflective scenes in between the action as constant action can become tiring. 

What kind of research did you do for this novel to ensure you captured the technical and military details you included? Did anything in your research surprise you?

I  used the method advocated by the late  film and TV scriptwriter Brian Clemens (who wrote The Avengers, The New Avengers and The Professionals TV series). He always wrote an initial draft of his scripts using just the information that was in his head. Then when he had finished that he went through the script again ,checking certain points against reference books. Nowadays you can find almost every piece of information you want on the internet. However, some pieces of information were classified, such as the exact appearance of the operations room and radar screens etc in a  Royal Navy Type 31 frigate. So I had to use my imagination. I was once shown round the operations room of a  Royal Navy Type 42 Destroyer in 1983 so was able to extrapolate from this ,making the technology newer. One thing that did surprise me was how technologically advanced Iran is. They were supplied with American F-14 fighters in the 1970s and have managed to keep them airworthy by manufacturing their own spare parts, something which US Intelligence thought would be impossible. Iran also makes very effective drones and have supplied thousands of them to Russia for use in the current conflict in Ukraine. 

I hope the series continues in other books. If so, where will the story take readers? 

I am sure that Rick Fernscale will return because he seems to have a habit of attracting trouble. As to what he will be up to in his next adventure I cannot say but I am sure it will be entertaining. 

Author Links: Amazon | Website

Former SAS Sergeant Rick Fernscale returns in another nail-biting adventure. A year after the events of ‘24 Hours to Doomsday’, Rick has married Maria and is living a life of luxury in Cyprus. The Fernscales have dream jobs, millions of pounds in the bank, two expensive cars and a sumptuous villa. Maria has just discovered she is pregnant. Life could not be better. Then one day terrorists attack the villa and kidnap Maria. They threaten to rape and kill her unless Rick carries out a dangerous mission. Rick is forced to comply. Soon he discovers that the terrorists are merely a small part of a plan to depopulate the world and introduce a ‘New World Order’ in which the survivors live a miserable, impoverished existence with no human rights. But will Rick manage to rescue Maria from the clutches of the evil villains and save the world?

From the writer of the award-winning ‘24 Hours to Doomsday’ comes another action-packed thriller full of cliff-hangers, twists and turns and heart-in-the-mouth moments which puts the reader on an emotional rollercoaster. ‘Four Minutes to Zero’ is a book which you will be unable to put down until you reach the last page.

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 22, 2023, in Interviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.


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