Wednesday, October 11, 2017

The most misused word in the English language

Okay, I don’t really know this for a fact, but I’m pretty certain you’ll agree with me on this.
I recently received a manuscript back from my editor with much of the dialog marked up for incorrect grammar.  
Now, I try and make my characters as lifelike as possible so I listen to the way people talk and universally, whether educated or not, the word can is used in place of the word may. This is a sad bastardization of the English language, but none the less, in spite of the games we were taught as children the word may has all but disappeared from our language.
Remember “Mother May I “, a game we played for hours which was sadly replaced at some time by “Simon says”?
My English teacher in high school would answer, when the asked, can I do this or that; “If you are asking for my permission, yes you may, but you can only do it if you are able.”
So when a character uses can instead of may in his or her conversations, it is only a reflection of the times we’re living in.
Of course I’m not talking about Literary Fiction, which should offend the reader if the word is misused, but my characters seldom rise to the level of a literary professor or an English Major.

So, to keep my characters as true to life as possible, they seldom use may when asking a question, that is, unless they are a character from an earlier time when proper English was taught and spoken and not abused.
Check out my novels at www.Larrylavoieauthor.com

Sunday, October 1, 2017

What goes into a character?

Apart from people asking how I came up with an idea for a book, I get asked about my characters the most. I’ve been asked if they are based on me or people I know or if they can be a character in one of my novels.
All of the above are true to some extent. One of my main characters, September Gale, happened to be a real person I met at a restaurant. The name intrigued me and I later told her I had used her name as the lead detective in my novel Threads of the Shroud.
Sometimes I have a personality in mind when I develop a character, as if did with Trick, a support character in Yellowstone Brief. A longtime friend had just the personality I needed for the flamboyant, yet reckless and carefree geologist.
My latest series starting with Crater features Scott Tanner a former Navy SEAL. He’s middle class, handsome, rugged, and slightly introverted man who is suffering PTSD. Scott has taken up treasure hunting as a business. His partner is a polar opposite, David Stafford, a former UC Berkley nerd who happens to be a genius and uses his inherited fortune to push the envelope of technology. They are an unlikely pare who have formed a symbiotic relationship that gets them into and out of trouble. I haven’t a clue where these characters came from but they were necessary for the adventures.

Check out Crater, the first book in the series featuring Tanner and Stafford.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Sub Zero an Antarctic Thriller


Check out my latest Scott Tanner novel.
This is the second novel in the Scott Tanner series.

It’s not Global Warming that’s heating up the frozen continent. Russia has broken the 1959 Antarctic Treaty that forbids using the continent for anything other than scientific research.
 Scott Tanner and David Stafford are in Antarctica testing a revolutionary new type of machine called Sub Zero that can travel through and under the Antarctic Ice and are asked by the CIA to head a rescue mission for two environmental scientists thought to be held captive at Vostok Station, a remote Russian outpost.

Russian military is able to track Sub Zero as it travels under the ice allowing Lebedev, a Russian oligarch operating the illegal activities, to launch a plan to kill the crew and steal Sub Zero. With no US military on the continent to save them, Scott and David are forced to play cat and mouse with the Russian military as they race across and under the wasteland of ice trying to reach an American outpost. As the hunt goes on, United States President Tindall is faced with the grim possibility of launching a rescue plan that could lead to war with Russia.