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Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Salvaging Truth, Hunters & Seekers, Book One~by Joanne Jaytanie

I have found that many people believe writing fiction stories are less complicated because there’s no research involved. My writing process always begins with a single idea, one that inevitably leads me to research. Not only before I write the first sentence of my first draft, but continuously throughout my manuscript. Salvaging Truth is a prime example. I came up with an idea – one that I verified had yet to be viable-today. Then I added ex-SEAL team salvage divers, which also lead to interacting with the Coast Guard. If you’ve read my previous post, Fact or Fiction?...Both! You will discover how I accumulated and verified the details with regards to the military. 

My fictional romantic suspense, with a few roots in real life, will hit the cyber-shelves on January 31st. Here’s your first look at what you will find between the pages.

Book Excerpt: 
As she approached Sheridan Enterprises, the flag flying was at half-staff. Her vision misted as she fought back tears.
More than five hours had passed since Riley first listened to the voicemail. She pulled into the first open spot and killed her engine. Clutching the steering wheel with both hands, she dropped her head against it, closed her eyes, and struggled to steady her breathing as she replayed her mother’s call over and over in her mind.
Her mom was a seasoned diver and an excellent swimmer. Riley was sure she would be found—she just had to be.
Riley couldn’t begin to fathom how she would live if Mom wasn’t a phone call away.
There was a sharp rap on the window, making her jump. Wayne Samuels stood next to her door, arms crossed and staring down at her.
“Wayne, you scared the life out of me,” Riley said as she rolled down her window.
“What are you doing here, Riley? Didn’t my assistant assure you I’d keep you updated? There’s no news and I have a million things to do today. Our missing research vessel has left me with an unending list. The insurance company has already contacted the office. How the hell did they find out already? What are you doing here, don’t you have classes?”
She put her hand on the door handle, but Wayne refused to move out of the way. “Mom is not only your employee, she’s your friend. You don’t seem too upset about her disappearance.”
He sucked in a breath and sighed heavily as he let it out. “Of course I’m upset. You’re right, she is my friend. But she’s not the only one missing, nor my only friend on board.” He tried to appear sympathetic, but it didn’t quite reach his eyes. “There are eighteen other employees missing and eighteen families demanding information. And that’s to say nothing about the media firestorm this accident will cause for the company.” Wayne finally stepped back from her car.
Riley changed her mind; Wayne sounded plenty upset…about all the work that just landed on his desk. How could he be so self-centered?
“Now, tell me what exactly is being done.” Riley demanded.
“All the appropriate steps have been taken.” Wayne assured her. “The Coast Guard has been notified of the missing ship and the search is underway. We’re doing everything possible to locate the ship. There’s nothing here for you to do. Go teach your classes.”
“I have no intention of teaching today. My mother is on your missing ship. My assistant is filling in for me. I intend to remain here until I have answers.”
“I told you—” His body stiffened as he leaned closer with a warning glower.
Refusing to let him intimidate her, she lifted her chin and glared back at him.
“I heard you,” she snapped.
“Well, hell…fine. I don’t have the time to argue with you any longer. I’m on the way to my office. Let’s go.” He turned and walked away at a brisk clip, leaving Riley hurrying to catch up.
“Hold the elevator,” Samuels bellowed, as his heels snapped smartly across the gleaming marble floor of the spacious lobby. He stepped directly into the center of the elevator, forcing people towards the walls.
The doors closed directly behind Riley as she rushed in after him.
“Morning, Mr. Samuels,” Kathy, his secretary, greeted him as they exited the elevator. “Good morning, Ms. Rawlings.” Kathy handed Samuels a cup of coffee and cocked her eyebrows in Riley’s direction in a silent question.
Riley shook her head. Her stomach was still churning. Now it felt like a volcano ready to erupt. What she wouldn’t give for a fistful of antacids.
“I’m so sorry about your mother’s ship. I’m sure she’ll be fine, just fine.” Kathy reached out and patted Riley on her arm. “Mr. Eastin arrived early,” Kathy said. “He’s waiting in your office.”
Samuels threw his secretary a smoldering glare. “What have I told you about allowing people in my office unattended?” Samuels snapped.
“I didn’t think it would be a problem. He asked where he could sit to make phone calls. I thought he might like some privacy.”
Samuels ignored Kathy as he opened the door to his office. Riley followed. An imposing man sat in one of the high-backed guest chairs, head down, typing away on his tablet. His sable hair appeared nearly black, a riot of wavy layers, tight on the sides and back, longer and almost curly on top.
“Eastin,” Samuels said.
The man looked up, his magnetic topaz-colored eyes skimming over Samuels and locking onto Riley’s. “Hope you don’t mind. My day started at the crack of dawn. I finished my prior work early and decided to come straight here rather than return to my office.” His gaze never wavered. “You look like your mother.”
“Dagger Eastin, this is Riley Rawlings,” Samuels said as he walked to his desk and sat in his chair. “We’re planning on hiring Mr. Eastin’s company as our investigators for our missing research vessel.”
“Are you referring to the sunken vessel the Coast Guard is currently involved with?” Dagger asked.
“Yes,” Samuels said.
“Then I’m afraid my company will have to pass on your offer.”
“Excuse me. Aren’t you a salvage and investigation company?” Samuels frowned.
“We are, yes. However, we’ve already been contracted by San Diego Police Department to assist them in this investigation.”
“What! Why is the SDPD already involved? Whatever caused our ship to sink, it was an accident.”

Until next month...


Debby said...

Research is very important. It makes the fiction more real.
debby236 at gmail dot com from FL USA

Cara Marsi said...

Love the excerpt and the story premise. You're right that research is very important in fiction.

J Jaytanie said...

Thank you, Cara. Funny, the general impression of fiction. I have some author friends who write historical romance. Talk about research - wow.

J Jaytanie said...

I totally agree, Debby. Thanks for stopping by.

Andrea said...

Great story, liking this one
From Alaska.

J Jaytanie said...

Thank you, Andrea.

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