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I felt badly that Harry plays only a small role in my sophomore book so I went into outlining number three with one thing in mind. The Medusa Stone After this book was in the stores for a while a reader commented on the internet something to the effect “What’s up with the title?
I think everyone has had an uncle, or neighbor like Harry, rough around the edges but with a heart of gold, okay Harry’s is silver, or maybe copper but you get the point.
Computer Generated Imagery has come a long way since then so production costs would be considerably less and I still get the occasional whisper out of Hollywood but for now Mercer lives on only in the minds of the readers.
I had just finished writing Charon’s Landing when Vulcan’s Forge was published.
Setting a book in Africa also gave me the excuse, and tax write-off to sightsee from Cairo to Nairobi.
If Mercer was going to go to Africa there was only one thing I knew he had to do and that’s find the Legendary King Solomon’s Mine.
And while I hate the old ‘kidnap a friend to motivate the hero to do something’ cliché I was forced to use it here in order to launch Mercer on his adventure.
The number one comment I received about The Medusa Stone concerned Mercer and Salome crawling their way through he ancient mine workings and Mercer becoming stuck.I was working on another novel at the time, an unpublishable heap of six hundred pages that still makes me cringe whenever I think about it.The idea was about an undersea volcano that is artificially accelerated.Charon’s Landing was optioned by a Hollywood production company for a time, however the option lapsed. First was when Mercer and Aggie tip over an oil rig in order to escape it and the second was the commando assault on a sinking supertanker in Puget Sound.Both scenes would have looked fantastic on the big screen but I think that the production would have bankrupted a studio.Because so much of the book had to do with geology I turned my CIA agent into a mining consultant.