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Meet the Authors > Pete Carter - Science Fiction, action and mystery

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message 1: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments I've been a member of the UK forum for over a year, and have been so engrossed in the multitude of threads that it appears I've never found the time to introduce myself - on this thread anyway. So hi guys!

Unlike many authors I don't stick to a particular genre, but rather I develop story ideas that pop into my head in completely random order. My characters do the writing - I just hit the keys in the order they tell me to.

That said, an element of sci-fi seems to creep into most things, but not in the sense of evil aliens, galactic destroyer fleets and the like. More in the way of near-future technology that helps put an edge on stories that might, but for that, be present day.

Take The Fence for example. Extremists plotting to rid the world of all non-believers. Good guys vs bad guys. Very topical, (but please read the synopsis and reviews to find out what the story is about - I'm not repeating that here.) The scene is set about 150 years in the future, which has allowed technology to advance, but not to a really mind-boggling extent.
So, The SF ingredients: Just a deadly electronic barrier around the Middle-East, in theory to contain violent extremism; an advanced sentient computer, kept secret by its owner; and a micro-chip which the radicals will do anything to get hold of. All the rest is current day technology, well almost, although the authorities will never admit to that!
And The story ingredients: A group of characters, both good and bad, human and AI, who react differently to the situations they find themselves in, as a result of their backgrounds, training and journeys through life. Not all make it to the end of the book. Be warned - it's 620 pages!

Two more books are planned for the series.

Or take The Day Uncle Jimmy Learned to Fly. This is a humorous fantasy aimed for the curious child dwelling in all of us. It takes place on a world much like our own, and technology takes a back seat to stupid characters, everyday things that don't behave in everyday ways, and one charming young character who, unlike Uncle Jimmy, copes by taking everything in life for granted. The ending, which presents a logical solution to the apparent illogicality of this world will come as a thought-provoking surprise! Few people will read and remember the opening quote, and even fewer will realise it's a spoiler - until they get to the last page:
‘When I see a bird that walks like a duck and swims like a duck and quacks like a duck, I call that bird a duck’
James Whitcomb Riley 1849-1916

‘Riley should have got out more’.
James Jones, Geological Survey Corps, 6182-


In the pipeline is a set of short stories, loosely sci-fi, or perhaps supernatural, or both (I hate genre categorisation!). The third story I was writing for that book has grown legs, so will be published in its own right, hopefully Jan/Feb 2015. Look out for The Museum of Alien Artefacts. To put your mind at rest, there is no museum, not any more. The story is present day, but involves a time-traveller. In writing this my mind has become as raveled and knotted as a ball of wool the cat has played with. My challenge is to maintain the reader's sanity until all is revealed in the final chapter. Perhaps
I'll succeed, perhaps not...

Anyone wanting to discuss with me how my twisted mind works (all answers gratefully received!) or discuss my writing, please feel free to reply on this thread.

And while I'm at it, I want to say how immensely useful Goodreads has been in putting me in contact with a really crazy bunch of readers and authors, many of whom I am in regular contact with on and off GR.

My books are available world-wide on Amazon Kindle and the main ones are also available as paperbacks. Here are the links:
Pete Carter Me!
The Fence by Pete Carter The Fence
The Day Uncle Jimmy Learned to Fly by Pete Carter The Day Uncle Jimmy Learned to Fly
Red Jake by Pete Carter Red Jake


message 2: by David (new)

David Staniforth (davidstaniforth) | 7939 comments Hey, Pete, finally official.


message 3: by Jim (new)

Jim | 21943 comments Hey Pete


message 4: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Thanks guys - fame at last!!!


Rosemary (grooving with the Picts) (nosemanny) | 9087 comments There'd better be bacon.


message 6: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Rosemary (The Nosemanny) wrote: "There'd better be bacon."
My wife had a gammon steak for tea. Is that close enough? (There's still one left in the fridge - I could email it to you if you're desperate.)


message 7: by Anna (last edited Nov 10, 2014 11:05AM) (new)

Anna Faversham (annafaversham) | 1707 comments So this means that Patti has succeeded in adding to the Authors' folder rather than depleting it. Well done, Pete.


message 8: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Anna wrote: "So your this means that Patti has succeeded in adding to the Authors' folder rather than depleting it. Well done, Pete."

Thanks Anna - I'm hoping to chalk up a good supply of replies and thus be immune from the 6 month chop! (Or rasher, for those who prefer their pig smoked and salted).


message 9: by Anna (new)

Anna Faversham (annafaversham) | 1707 comments Well you're off to a good start - four replies in 52 minutes.

I also write in whatever genre falls into my head, Pete. More fun that way.


Gingerlily - The Full Wild | 36808 comments Hey, do you want a few elephants. Guaranteed to keep your thread lively and interesting.


message 11: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Anna wrote: "So this means that Patti has succeeded in adding to the Authors' folder rather than depleting it. Well done, Pete."

Reminds me of a story idea I once had: A council decided it had too many committees. Committee this, committee that, so it decided to set up a new committee to look into means of reducing the number (see where I'm going with this?). So the new committee held its first meeting, and after an excessively much deliberation (yeah, I know, but it sounds right in the circumstances), which is what committees are really good at, it came up with a solution. It would abolish committees on the basis of 'last formed, first out'. Of course this committee was the last one formed, so acting in accordance with its own solution the committee took a vote and abolished itself.

This has got absolutely nothing to do with my thread, other than it's my story idea, but vividly reveals my opinion of the uselessness of bureaucracy.


Gingerlily - The Full Wild | 36808 comments I read an article somewhere about abolishing meetings. A lot of very sound sense in it. I wish I could remember where I saw it.


message 13: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments I've realised something else tonight - if you have GR notifications coming through while you're trying to write, you get sod-all done!

But actually, my brain hurts at the moment. I'm at that part of a story where I have to untangle the spaghetti-like threads of the plot, and all my characters are trying to speak at once. I'm useless at exerting any kind of discipline over them, so I just duck out, come here for a while, and let them get on with it. Seems to work.


message 14: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Gingerlily - Elephant Philosopher wrote: "I read an article somewhere about abolishing meetings. A lot of very sound sense in it. I wish I could remember where I saw it."

What a short memory you have - it's message 11, directly before yours!


Gingerlily - The Full Wild | 36808 comments No, thats committees. Meetings aren't exactly the same thing. I worked in IT in an insurance company, and there were people whose entire job appeared to be to attend meetings. Where nothing got done.


message 16: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Gingerlily - Elephant Philosopher wrote: "No, thats committees. Meetings aren't exactly the same thing. I worked in IT in an insurance company, and there were people whose entire job appeared to be to attend meetings. Where nothing got done."

That's also my definition of a committee. They spend hours debating issues when the solution to the matter is glaringly obvious to a 5 year old. And then they defer it to the next meeting. I have seen committees spend an hour debating whether Joe Bloggs' house extension is 6" too large, then go on to approve a 500 house estate without any discussion whatsoever. (Joe Bloggs is then instructed to reduce the size of his extension by 6", which he does, it gets approved 8 weeks later, by which time prices have increased by 5%, and he builds it 6" larger than approved, and no-one ever notices.) Aaargh! I could go on forever!


message 17: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Signing off for tonight.


Gingerlily - The Full Wild | 36808 comments The last project I was working on, we had a progress meeting every day. This meant that each one on the team would give a progress update. I had to sit through half an hour of people talking about stuff that was nothing to do with me, so I could give a one-sentence update. Which was half an hour I could have spent doing the work. Gahhh!


message 19: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Gingerlily - Elephant Philosopher wrote: "The last project I was working on, we had a progress meeting every day. This meant that each one on the team would give a progress update. I had to sit through half an hour of people talking about ..."

Ah, but when that team member buggered off to play golf and you were left to man the phones, you could tell the client why his project was late!


message 20: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments A camel is a horse designed by a committee.


message 21: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments In response to Kath's request, my thread is going to try and stick to the subject of my books. I did say try...

So Kath, since starting this thread, so long ago I can't remember precisely when, you'd like to know I have made no progress on my latest book, which is standing at 53,000 words. I say standing, but it's having a job getting off its knees. It's at the 'Miss Marples gets everyone in the study' stage. Still expect to publish in Feb sometime. That leaves me a month to complete the last 5k or so words, and 2 months for editing/cover design and publishing. Doable.

Tonight however, I've been playing about with a video prequel trailer for The Fence. So far I've nuked London and Paris. That's the easy bits out of the way! Why a prequel? It is to explain the background of the 100 years leading up to the start of the book, and gives the reader a visual head start over those who won't have watched the trailer.

Soon I will be asking for volunteers to record voice-overs. I'll need that deep husky voice that all movie trailers are packaged with, an irate American President, and an Iranian howling with anger/rage, hopefully screaming something derogatory in Arabic. I'm sure I could fit in a dispassionate female voice saying 'ten seconds to launch sequence' or something like that.


message 22: by Kath (new)

Kath Middleton | 25063 comments Thank you. That was interesting.


message 23: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Kath wrote: "Thank you. That was interesting."

Did I hear you volunteer to do a voice-over? Please say 'ten seconds to launch sequence', preferably in Times Roman, and I'll let you know if you've got the job!


message 24: by Kath (new)

Kath Middleton | 25063 comments I have a deep, husky voice!


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments I was going to add an interesting tid-bit about meetings but as you want to keep this to dry, boring author talk, I shan't bother. ;)


message 26: by Kath (new)

Kath Middleton | 25063 comments Dry, boring author talk? And there was me thinking it was a book forum.


message 27: by Jim (new)

Jim | 21943 comments Kath wrote: "Dry, boring author talk? And there was me thinking it was a book forum."

This is the lady who wanted to see authors' souls.
Now she is one, she probably realises we keep them wrapped up warm in the thermals ;-)


message 28: by Kath (new)

Kath Middleton | 25063 comments I find them in their books, Jim. Not in their threads.


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments Kath wrote: "Dry, boring author talk? And there was me thinking it was a book forum."

If that's all we were, the group would have died long ago.


message 30: by Kath (new)

Kath Middleton | 25063 comments I'm going to answer this on the original thread.


message 31: by Jim (new)

Jim | 21943 comments Kath wrote: "I find them in their books, Jim. Not in their threads."

Actually, when I stop and think about it, you'll probably see more of our souls in the other threads. In our author threads we're probably on our best behaviour, and in our books, yes the soul is there, but there is craft and hard work and editors and proofreaders and such.
But in a discussion thread, suddenly, in a few words, barely chosen, the surface cracks and suddenly you realise that it was the soul that was speaking, raw, naked and afraid


message 32: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Patti (baconater) wrote: "I was going to add an interesting tid-bit about meetings but as you want to keep this to dry, boring author talk, I shan't bother. ;)"

I'm very interested in meetings, in a negative way, so please, go ahead!


message 33: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Patti (baconater) wrote: "I was going to add an interesting tid-bit about meetings but as you want to keep this to dry, boring author talk, I shan't bother. ;)"

I just told you I'd nuked London and Paris, and you think that's dry and boring! What does a bloke have to do to get noticed around here?!!!


message 34: by Pete (last edited Nov 10, 2014 01:17PM) (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Kath wrote: "I'm going to answer this on the original thread."

Kath - you can write what you like on my thread - esp. if it's dry and boring writer stuff! Or even if it isn't.

PS the original thread has now been frozen - presumably it was becoming dry and boring, or else the concensus had been taken and added to the Christmas menu.


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments Pete wrote: "Patti (baconater) wrote: "I was going to add an interesting tid-bit about meetings but as you want to keep this to dry, boring author talk, I shan't bother. ;)"

I'm very interested in meetings, in..."


Oh, okay. Twist my arm. ;)

A colleague has a ribbon on his desk that sez 'I survived another meeting that should have been an email'.

I reckon we should have a few hundred printed.


message 36: by Anna (new)

Anna Faversham (annafaversham) | 1707 comments And there you were, Pete, holding back from starting an author thread and look what's happened! And you haven't even had an invasion of elephants yet - that treat is to follow, no doubt about that! GL has a tough time finding space for her herd and we take turns in looking after them for her.

OK, so now you're wondering if starting an author thread was the sanest thing to do?


Gingerlily - The Full Wild | 36808 comments Well I did offer, but he didn't take me up on it.


Rosemary (grooving with the Picts) (nosemanny) | 9087 comments Also I see he's too fearty to hang any curtains.


message 39: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Patti (baconater) wrote: "A colleague has a ribbon on his desk that sez 'I survived another meeting that should have been an email'.

I reckon we should have a few hundred printed. "



I think you should have a meeting to discuss the idea first. And a group to look into funding, and another to manage distribution. And, of course, you'll need a committee to decide which 'meetings' are worthy of the ribbons and which are not, if any. And you'll need to send a circular around to everyone (redundant phraseology there, sorry) to instruct that all meetings must end with a show of hands as to whether it should be nominated for a ribbon handout.


message 40: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Anna wrote: "And there you were, Pete, holding back from starting an author thread and look what's happened! And you haven't even had an invasion of elephants yet - that treat is to follow, no doubt about that! GL has a tough time finding space for her herd and we take turns in looking after them for her.

OK, so now you're wondering if starting an author thread was the sanest thing to do? ..."


Now you've done it! She's found me! I suppose I'll have to take my turn - hope they eat bacon sarnies and not bales of hay - haven't got room for all that stuff.

No - I think starting an author thread is extremely wise. Sometime in the next thousand messages someone is actually going to look at my profile and decide to give one of my books a chance. Trust me, I'll know if it happens!

PS: has anyone ever tried leveling a wonky table leg with an e-book? I always had a suspicion that paperbacks had their benefits.


message 41: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Gingerlily - Elephant Philosopher wrote: "Well I did offer, but he didn't take me up on it."

Go on then - just two. I'll sell the eggs to pay for the hay. (See, I know my elephants!)


message 42: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Rosemary (The Nosemanny) wrote: "Also I see he's too fearty to hang any curtains."

Girly stuff.


Gingerlily - The Full Wild | 36808 comments I'll find you a couple of nice polite little ones who wont do too much damage.


message 44: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Gingerlily - Elephant Philosopher wrote: "I'll find you a couple of nice polite little ones who wont do too much damage."

You're too kind.


message 45: by Anna (new)

Anna Faversham (annafaversham) | 1707 comments So do you now have elephants in your thread, Pete. I wonder if they are the ones I had.

You can read to your elephants, you know. Mine got all sleepy when I read my time travel book and one insisted he was in Regency England when he woke up and I had to dress him in a nice frilly ruff.

Do tell us which book you read to them.

(Ssh... Pete. No one will know this is a scheme for you to get your thread back on track).


message 46: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Anna wrote: "So do you now have elephants in your thread, Pete. I wonder if they are the ones I had.

You can read to your elephants, you know. Mine got all sleepy when I read my time travel book and one insist..."


Thanks Anna, for reminding me to post something.

They might be the same elephants- I tried reading to them, well actually I just passed the Nexus over; they flipped through my library - 'read it, read it, read it' in really bored voices (or do all elephants sound like that?). Sounded more like a pond full of frogs to be honest. Then I remembered - I don't keep copies of my own books, but I do have the paperbacks (wow Pete, that was subtle) so I started with The Day Uncle Jimmy Learned to Fly. I got to the part on page 2 where the cow's head fell off, and they didn't like that. I told them the cow was already dead, although it wasn't actually dead dead, if you know what I mean. They didn't, said they'd heard enough, and stormed out of the door.

I don't know if they're going home, or just terrorising the neighbourhood, but at least it's quiet around here for a while. If they come back, I'll try a bit of The Fence. They might like that - only humans get killed. (apart from the lab scene, and I won't read them that!)


Gingerlily - The Full Wild | 36808 comments Oh dear, my poor elephants get very upset if you mention death. Ever since great grandma Eleanor got shot and hacked to pieces in front of them its been a touchy subject. They don't like pianos either for some reason...


message 48: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Gingerlily - Elephant Philosopher wrote: "Oh dear, my poor elephants get very upset if you mention death. Ever since great grandma Eleanor got shot and hacked to pieces in front of them its been a touchy subject. They don't like pianos eit..."

Electronic keyboards have plastic keys - they should be ok with those. By the way, they haven't come back yet - should I be getting worried? Did they come with a warranty?


Gingerlily - The Full Wild | 36808 comments When elephants come things get messy.

But seriously, I think they popped over to the Elephants Graveyard for a bit of quiet contemplation. I'll make sure theyre ok when they get back.


message 50: by Pete (new)

Pete Carter (petecarter) | 637 comments Gingerlily - Elephant Philosopher wrote: "When elephants come things get messy.

But seriously, I think they popped over to the Elephants Graveyard for a bit of quiet contemplation. I'll make sure theyre ok when they get back."


Thanks, and can you ask that big angry one if he's finished with my pencil sharpener?


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