Andy, freekin, McNab an inspiration and pain in the arse

Posted: November 21, 2011 in Crazy stuff

Before I go into this I need to clarify, I am not claiming anything untoward, I dont have paranoia about it and understand this to be a complete coincidence, albeit an unhelpful set of serendipitous events but in no way am I saying anyhting is going on. That said I have picked up a new book, a work of fiction for the first time ine ages and I went back to my favourite writer and in many ways my favourite Englishman Andy McNab DSM, his writing has always appealed to me from the factual stuff is brilliant but its his alter ego Nick Stone who has inspired me in my own writing, this hard nosed ex SAS trooper who lives in a high adrenalin world of terrorists and gangsters albeit usually against his will is a great hero with flaws and skills to be looked at with awe.

All this being said I bought the next in the series, or at least I thought it was and spoiler alert here folks, if you havent read the book and are planning to go to another blog for a while. I have written a novel, not an inconsiderable thing I’m sire you’ll agree and I am quite happy to admit the character I have based the book around is inspired by Andy and to a lesser degree Stone, they both served in the regiment, my hero Tom is still a trooper at the start of the book and they have come form the rank and file to become elite fighters with a very specific set of skills which they bring to bear on the situation they find themselves in, its a fact Andy is a big factor so the fact there are some similarities is understandable and to be expected, although I will add I tried very hard to differentioate between them for obvious reasons. If I ever get published I would no doubt have cited Andy in my blurb and done so unashamedly. problem is the new book I have just started to read is uncannily like mine that it freaked me out as events unfolded. So much so I had to check i hadnt read it and unconciously copied some of the details, I am 100% certain i havent read or heard of the story before so there is no chance I have done anything by accident.

I have read Nicks story and wondered about what ifs all along and this was where my book started, what if the hero , with all his skills and effort was handicapped by something he wasnt equipped to deal wiuth, somnething so debilitating as to be a game cganger and this is what I did, Tom my hero finds himself suffering from inoperable lung cancer just as he sets out on his final adventure, maybe it was a natural progression but it wasnt looking like Nick Stone was going to be dying anytime soon, at least I hoped no along with many thousands of fans of the stories but lo and behold I start the new book and Nick is diagnosed with a brain tumour, and just like my hero he refuses to be treated with chemo etc as it will take away his ability to die on his feet, wierd but not too far a stretch to see where it might come from. the next coincidence is the name and appearance of his closest friend, Jules an unusual name I would say so not likely to come up often, in my story Jules is a grenadan whereas in Andys he is a black man also, this is a little too close for comfort and I cant explain how this could happen but it has.Now I accept that Andys book was probably written two years ago, its in paperback now so it must be somewhere in that bregion, I first wrote the story down about five years back and I have never told anyone too much about my idea and as it was one of many why would I, Andy may be a top notch espionage operative but he didnt get anywhere near my idea and Nick is a long standing character so he wouldnt need to go down this route just to trump an unpublished wannabe so where does it come from.

As I said straight off this is coincidence but a worrying one as i have been sending the manuscript out unaware of andys book and the agencies may have writtne it off as a copy cat effort which on the face of it I understand, the problem is its not and this could literally kill the project before it ever gets off the ground and I have invested a hell of a lot into this story so I would be upset if it didnt happen due to some bad luck rather than bad writing, if it was just a case of it wasnt good enough then fair enough, but if its written off as a piece of attempted plagiarism I would be upset. I knwo my strange thought process’s will have a field day with this and the paranoid fantasy will set in but I have written this in the hope I will come back and read it at those times to remind myself of the truth, which is a very uncanny set of events that have been just bad luck for me, as usual Andy has written a blockbuster and more credit to him he tells a great story without fail.

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