I believe I’ve mentioned before that I’m writing more modern action than fantasy these days. I am betting it’s due to my viewing and playing habits. I’m still going through Strike Back, which is okay silly fun, but is really starting to annoy me with the lazy writing. Still, the leads are charismatic and the action is pretty good. I’d like it better were it a bit more diverse. Seriously, one of my favourite action movies is Haywire, and not just because the lead is extremely attractive. I’d love to see Strike Back starring Gina Carano and Donnie Yen.
And for computer games, I’m playing a lot of Far Cry 3 these days. I like the collection of weapons offered and the ability to customize them with kit.
So I guess it’s natural that my instincts are tending toward modern action/thriller. I started another short with Reno, from “Boltcutter.” This one is also set in Africa, which also seems to be part of my streak of modern action stories. Then again, I know a fair amount about modern Africa and its politics, so I guess that makes sense. Also, if you want a “wild west” feel or even “corrupt gritty noir,” Africa is kind of your place.
Here’s the first 250 words or so of the new, unnamed Reno story.
You can see the opening of “Boltcutter” here.
The opening of another African-set action story here.
And here’s the teaser for the new story:
Norton held a handkerchief over his nose and mouth. His eyes watered. Reno would have felt sorry for the businessman, but since Norton had come to buy petroleum from pirates, perhaps a little suffering would be good for his soul. The same would be true of Anderson, the minder Norton’s company had sent. A walking tough guy stereotype, Anderson wore a sport coat, chinos, and loafers. They stood in what amounted to an inhabited garbage heap, and this alleged ex-operator wore loafers.
Their Nigerian contact, who identified himself as Ishola, had four men with him, all armed with Chinese knock-off AKs. He gestured to Reno, who had his SIG Sauer P225 on his hip, a suppressed Heckler & Koch MP5K-N with a reflex sight on a combat sling, and body armour. “You don’t need your guns.”
“Neither do you.” Reno winked, easy to miss in the darkness lit only by a couple of lanterns Ishola’s men had brought. Reno had switched off his weapon’s tactical light on arrival. He, Norton, and Anderson wore infra-red markers.
Reno hadn’t come alone. Having Anderson as backup had not inspired confidence.
“You think maybe you kill all my boys before we kill you?” Ishola laughed at the very thought of it.
“I didn’t think we’d come here for shooting.” Reno shrugged. “You want to do that, you’re welcome to try.” That made Anderson’s eyes bug out. Norton didn’t have so obvious a reaction, but his eyes narrowed slightly and the handkerchief slipped from his nose, if only briefly.
“Full trauma plates.” Reno tapped the front of his body armour. “Not enough to stop a full on AK hit, but I’m betting your ‘boys’ aren’t the most precise on the planet. If I can’t tag two of them before the other two start zeroing in on me, I deserve to die. And if you think I only came with the sharp-dressed man,” Reno gestured to Anderson, “. . . well, that’d be your mistake.”
Ishola laughed again, showing his big grin. “No need for this. I said no need for this. We are here for business, yes?”