After a successful career in mathematics and computer science, receiving grants from the National Science Foundation and NASA, and being listed in Who’s Who in Computer Science and Two Thousand Notable Americans, James R. Callan turned to his first love—writing. He wrote a monthly column for a national magazine for two years, and published several non-fiction books. He now concentrates on his favorite genre, mysteries, with his fourth book released in February, 2013.
And now, BEHIND THE BOOK: A TON OF GOLD
A number of years back, I decided I wanted to write a book where the protagonist was involved in information retrieval. I had done a little research in that area while working on a Ph.D. and have a son who is a professor directing research in the area of information retrieval. I thought it might be fun to incorporate some of that in a novel.
Then a couple of years ago, I read an old Texas folk tale about a wagon load of precious metal being pushed into a lake to avoid having it captured by the Mexican army. I began to wonder, how an old folk tale could affect the lives of people today.
Eventually, I connected these two ideas and the result was a 95,000 word mystery/suspense which I called A Ton of Gold. It is a contemporary novel, although the prologue brings in the old folk tale dated around 1834.
Of course, I added a subplot so that the heroine, Crystal Moore, has not one but two big problems to deal with. Actually, there is a third problem, but it is not on the scale of the other two. It was a fun novel to write because I introduce three interesting characters who, in different ways, help Crystal. One is a former bull rider, now owner of the informational retrieval company where Crystal works. One is a streetwise housemate for Crystal. So, while Crystal is brilliant in her field, her housemate is wise in other areas, and often is teaching Crystal. And last, but certainly not the least, is Crystal’s 76 year-old grandmother, Crystal’s only remaining family. She lives on a 320 acre tract in the middle of a forest, has a will of steel and sees things very clearly.
While Crystal learns a lot from these three, so did I. In developing these characters, I found myself immersed in their view of the world. Each of the three has a different point of reference, a different attitude, a different reaction to the events occurring. It looked a bit diverse from what I saw through Crystal’s eyes. And in looking at the situations from varying angles, I broadened my personal view. So, I learned as I wrote.
Links to purchase A Ton of Gold:
Purchase links for A Ton of Gold;
at Oak Tree Press http://bit.ly/WJXcWl
on Amazon http://amzn.to/UQrqsZ
on Amazon -Kindle http://amzn.to/12PeHJb