Word count: 81475 | Since last entry: 783 | This month: 2827 I just killed two red-shirts and a major secondary character (well, he’s not dead yet, but he’s not at all a well cat) in a gunfight — the first such action in this book. I hope I didn’t make any major firearms or wound errors, but one of my critiquers is a Vietnam vet, so if I got anything wrong I’m sure I’ll hear about it. The shooting itself was over in a couple of seconds realtime; tonight’s 783 words (a bit less than an hour and a half of writing) cover at most three minutes of the fight and its immediate aftermath. Here’s a funny thing. I’m a pacifist, solidly anti-handgun, and before starting this novel I had never even fired one. But my Writers of the Future prizewinning story was about a commando and a terrorist, and featured several gunfights. One of the WotF staffers was surprised when he met me — after reading my story he thought I’d be some kind of big, burly military guy (I’m five-foot-five, 140 pounds). So, as unconfident as I am, I know I can write a convincing gunfight, especially with friends to check my technical details. Jason and Sienna are now almost out of the U.N. They’ll be bursting onto a New York sidewalk — bloody and carrying guns — in a few dozen words. They don’t have a car. How the heck am I going to get them out of this? (Okay, I have some ideas…)
David D. Levine is the author of Andre Norton Nebula Award winning novel Arabella of Mars, sequels Arabella and the Battle of Venus and Arabella the Traitor of Mars, and over fifty SF and fantasy stories. His story “Tk’Tk’Tk” won the Hugo, and he has been shortlisted for awards including the Hugo, Nebula, Campbell, and Sturgeon. Stories have appeared in Asimov’s, Analog, Clarkesworld, F&SF, Tor.com, numerous Year’s Best anthologies, and his award-winning collection Space Magic.