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Author Christopher Besse's, Element reviews Element by Christopher Besse

Winner of the Dream Realm Awards for 2007, best Science Fiction

Author Christopher Besse, "Element"

Christopher Besse

Biography of

08-25-08: interviews Christopher Besse, author of the military science fiction novel Element.

MilSciFi: "Welcome and congratulations on winning the Dream Realm Awards 2007 for best Science Fiction."

Besse: "Thanks very much Mike, I appreciate your kind words."

MilSciFi: "What was your inspiration for your story?"

Besse: "I have always been a student of history, military history to be more specific. The inspiration for my story evolved over a number of years of wanting to involve an allied coalition of forces set in the future that would include forces from Canada, the US and other Earth countries, with famous ships from the past recreated in a space naval force."

MilSciFi: "Do you have any future plans for stories set in the same universe?"

Besse: "Yes, Element is the first book in the Element trilogy. I am eighty percent finished book two, entitled ‘Vortex’, and book three is outlined and ready to be written. I plan on having Vortex to my publisher before Christmas and book three by April, 2009."

MilSciFi: "What would your ideal project be if you could plan your own anthology?"

Besse: "Well, that is an interesting question. I would write an anthology of short stories based on future battle scenarios involving specialized teams and a Mech. Brigade, set on different planets. Some of those would be stories taken from snapshots of past events that happen in the Element trilogy."

MilSciFi: "What other upcoming works are on the horizon for you?"

Besse: "As I mentioned, I am working on books two and three of the Element trilogy and have plans to write a story about a Company of line grunts who get cut off and surrounded and their last stand."

MilSciFi: "How would you describe your experience working on the book?"

Besse: "In one word, Magic! I love to write and often I would get so totally lost in the story and characters that I would look up at the clock and realize that it was two o’clock in the morning."

MilSciFi: "If you had a chance to write one story just because you wanted to, and didn't have to worry about if it would sell or not, what would it be about?"

Besse: "First, I always approach my writing with one sole criteria; I write for me and the pure enjoyment and creative energy of writing, plain and simple. I never, ever write to please an editor or publisher; that would kill the enjoyment and make it a tedious task. So to answer your question is a bit on the tough side because I enjoy everything I write, whether it is a short story about how the grandkids hustled the dreaded grandma person for chocolate chip cookies or a Marine Sniper team holding the rear guard so their BLT (Battalion Landing Team) can find and fix the enemy. But just to enjoy writing a story flat out balls to the wall, pure fun, it would be about a Recon team. It would be fast, hard and dirty, attempting to fix in the mind of the reader the absolute terror and ugliness of war and the hidden valor it often brings out."

MilSciFi: "What is your favorite story you have ever written and why?"

Besse: "My absolutely favorite story I have written is called, “Outlaw Bikers” and the second would have to be “Crimes of Passion.” I would really like to tell you about them but if I did, unfortunately, I would have to kill you; no wait, that’s one of those over worked clichés in countless books. Those two short stories made more people laugh than any other stories I have written."

MilSciFi: "What are you working on next?"

Besse: "I am currently working on Vortex, book two of the Element trilogy."

MilSciFi: "Give us the details on your upcoming author appearances."

Besse: "I will be setting up several book signings at various Indigo Chapters book stores, libraries, etc. in the Central Alberta area. You can check my website for details –"

MilSciFi: "What advice would you give the aspiring military science fiction writer?"

Besse: "First, be authentic. Do your research and be real. Don’t write purple. Write lean and tight with an economy of words and be direct. Get your technology correct. Visit several military bases if you can, talk to people who have been there and, last and probably the best advice I could give you is read, read, and read some more the non-fiction historical accounts of period history. Not just by historians but by the people who actually survived."

MilSciFi: "Who is your single-most influence in science fiction and what impact have they had on our own work?"

Besse: "I would have to say William Keith Jr. is one of my greatest influences. He was a hospital corpsman in the U.S. Navy during the late Vietnam era and writes under two different pseudonyms. Writing under the pseudonym H. Jay Riker, he is responsible for the ‘SEALS: The Warrior Breed’ series and as Ian Douglas he writes the ‘Luna Marine’ series following the exploits of Marines in future conflict. The greatest influences for me are his detail and accuracy."

MilSciFi: "What is the one thing you find the most difficult about writing military science fiction?"

Besse: "Nothing, really. It is a wide open field, no stereotypes, no preconceived plans or battle scenarios."

MilSciFi: "Do you have any awards you would like to share with us?"

Besse: "This month, Element took first place in the Science Fiction category in the 2007 Dream Realm Award contest. You can view the write up and see the actual award here: "

MilSciFi: "Is military science fiction the only thing you write, or is there something else out there we should be looking for?"

Besse: "Actually I have an anthology of short, anecdotal stories about life, grandkids, and motorcycles and the people I meet on the road. The name of that particular book is called, “I Ride, Therefore I Am” and it is currently in the submission stage."

Christopher Besse's website is:

Element, is published by Mundania Press:



Copyright ©2008 Mike McPhail, All Rights Reserved.


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