Today, I have author Julie Ann Walker here with us talking about researching Black Knights, Inc.
Welcome back to The Book Vixen Julie!
When you're writing about military men posing as custom motorcycle mechanics, baby, you better make sure you've got your shiznit straight... Or at least fake it really, really well. :-)
A big hidey-ho to all your romantic suspense junkies out there! My name is Julie Ann Walker and I'm delighted to be here on the Book Vixen today, talking research, research, and, you guessed it, research. Now, for those of you who don't know me, I write a series called Black Knights Inc. To give you an idea of what you can expect from these books, think Sons of Anarchy meets 007. I like to say my guys are grease-monkey motorcycle mechanics by day, Uncle Sam's last resort by night.
But then the question becomes, what do I, a former high-school mathematics teacher, know about military men and/or motorcycles. And the answer? Next to nothing. LOL! At least I knew next to nothing about these things before I began writing the series. Now? Well, I consider myself, not an expert by any means, but at least marginally well-informed. And how did I go from being a military/motorcycle dilettante to an, ehem, pseudo-proficient authority on the matters? Well... that's what we're here to discuss...
Let's start with the military aspect because that's the easiest. See, I've been volunteering at the USO for a few years now, which means I have the rare pleasure of being around service men and woman on a fairly regular basis. And, like a fly on the wall, I listen in. To their jargon and slang. To the way they interact with each other - usually heavy on the BS. I watch the way they carry themselves - shoulders back, head straight, eyes forward. We authors are the absolute worst when it comes to eavesdropping - shhh, don't tell. But the truth of the matter is, I get some of my best material from simply watching these folks be themselves. Then, of course, if I ever have questions about military hierarchy, weapons, high-velocity explosives, all I have to do is ask. They're more than willing to fill my head full of information. So full it's a wonder my ears don't start to bleed. Note to readers: never get a soldier going on the pros and cons of individual sidearms. You'll be there for days...
Okay, so the soldiery stuff I get from my volunteer work. What about the motorcycle stuff? Well, I have to admit, I get most of it from television, from watching shows like Orange County Choppers. I watch how they build the bikes, listen to the terms they use, pay particular attention to the process by which they put everything together. Of course, what I can't deduce from the show, I research on the web. I spend hours, literally hours, looking at bikes. Big bikes, small bikes, flashy bikes, simple bikes. I study their designs, research their components, ad nauseum ad infinitum. Who knew I'd become a motorcycle aficionado through the power of Google? LOL!
So now you know how I get all that boom and vroom into my books. It's a process. But one that I absolutely love!
Thanks to The Book Vixen for having me on today. Catch you all on the flip side!
Julie Ann Walker is the USA Today and New York Times Bestselling Author of the Black Knights Inc. romantic suspense series. She is prone to spouting movie quotes and song lyrics. She'll never say no to sharing a glass of wine or going for a long walk. She prefers impromptu travel over the scheduled kind, and she takes her coffee with milk. You can find her on her bicycle along the lake shore in Chicago or blasting away at her keyboard, trying to wrangle her capricious imagination into submission. Look for the first two books in her fast-paced series: Hell On Wheels (August 2012) and In Rides Trouble (September 2012).
He Never Misses a Target
Jake "the Snake" Sommers earned his SEAL codename by striking quickly and quietly - and with lethal force. That's how he broke Michelle Carter's heart. It was the only way to keep her safe - from himself. Four long years later, Jake is determined to get a second chance. But to steal back into Michelle's loving arms, Jake is going to have to prove he can take things slow. Real slow...
She Aims to Make Him Beg
Michelle Carter has never forgiven Jake for being so cliché as to "love her and leave her." But when her brother, head of the Black Knights elite ops agency, ticks off the wrong mobster, she must do the unimaginable: place her life in Jake's hands. No matter what they call him, this man is far from cold-blooded. And once he's wrapped around her heart, he'll never let her go...
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