Over the last few weeks, I’ve been writing about the sparks that led to my short stories and novels. You can read about Cayman Cowboys and Going Down with the Ship here. Since I’ve just re-released Flooding Hollywood and I’m giving away the Kindle version all this week, it seemed like a good time to focus on my second novel.
I wrote Flooding Hollywood in 2005 and it came out in the Spring of 2006. At the time, everyone was writing about foreign terrorists, so I wanted to avoid that topic. But the story really didn’t come together until I was playing with Google Earth one day. The software was pretty new, having been introduced to the world in 2004 after Google bought it from Keyhole, a company financed by the CIA. (Does that surprise anyone?)
I was playing with the software, flying around southern California when I realized there was a huge body of water in the hills above LA. A little research and I discovered it was an old water reservoir that was literally poised on top of the city of Los Angeles and Hollywood. At that point, my fertile imagination took over and it became a target in my mind. And of course, since I write about diving and underwater action, I realized that would be a chance for me to work in some freshwater diving as well. I also wrote my first underwater fight scene. It’s harder than you might think…
Here are a couple little pieces of inside information about the book. I originally wrote it as a screenplay; I even registered it with the Screen Actors Guild. Then I decided to go back and rewrite it as a book. When I was writing it, the name of the female lead character was Jennifer. When it came time to finish it up, I decided to change it to Diane, but throughout the development of the story, it was Jennifer. I had imagined that maybe I could get Jennifer Garner to play that role in the film version…we are from the same hometown, although I’ve never met her. There hasn’t been a film version yet and Jennifer Garner has no idea the story exists.
You can download the Kindle version free through Friday at midnight. If you want the print version it is $9.99. After the FREE period, Kindle copies will be $4.95. For more information on the book visit my website: Flooding Hollywood. To go directly to Kindle, get it here.
As a bonus, I’ve also lowered the price on the fourth novel in the Mike Scott adventure series Wreck of the Huron. You can now purchase a print copy of the novel for $12 and Kindle editions are only $7.99. The Amazon page for Wreck of the Huron is here.
Excerpt from Flooding Hollywood
As Mike swam closer, his mind started replaying the conversation he had with Commander Light following the takedown of the terrorist cell in Mexico. He could hear Light’s voice in his ear. “Pull out the detonator cap. This type of plastic explosive only needs one blasting cap. The rest of them will go off by chain reaction.”
Mike reached out and gingerly pulled the detonator out of the plastic explosive bundle. Realizing that the detonator was a small bomb itself, Mike picked up the timer. After a second, he found a switch and turned off the timer as well. It was then that he realized that only a few seconds remained on the countdown. They surely would have been killed when the blast went off underwater. The shock waves and concussion would have knocked them unconscious, even if they weren’t close to the actual blast. And that was assuming that the water wouldn’t have swept them quickly through the gap in the wall and down into the valley below.
After a second, Mike looked up to see Diane beside him. He gave her a big smile behind his regulator. Giving her the OK signal and then the thumbs up signal to ascend, she agreed and responded with an OK back. Mike grabbed his pressure gauge to see how much air he had left. He confirmed that it was time to get on the surface—immediately. They had been underwater for more than twenty minutes and had gone fairly deep; they were more than eighty feet down when they found the bombs. Their air supply was running low.
Carrying the detonator with them, Mike and Diane began swimming for the surface. Looking up as he ascended, Mike saw two divers descending toward them. Guessing they were members of the police dive team, Mike handed the timer and detonator to Diane and signaled to them, using his arm and then his light. The two divers altered their course and headed straight for Mike. As the men got closer, Mike began to have second thoughts about the identity of the other divers. As the gloom parted and the men got close, he realized it was the terrorists coming back. They had been watching the lake and returned to make sure the bomb went off as planned.