That was the question that set off my first book, The Mad Doser Presents #1: VPI – the Saga Begins. It was the Summer of 1999 and Episode 1 just came out, the hype alone made every fanboy like me go crazy, and I was on vacation in Virginia reading Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman in the car when something in the pages made me stop and ask myself in all seriousness, if a Sith Lord were to try to take over the world right now, what the hell would we do?
Kevin Smith was huge at the time and my buddy and I were doing the sort of things in real life that Jay and Silent Bob were in the movies, which opened up a world of possibilities in the type of story you could tell. So I kicked the idea around for a while wondering exactly what a couple of idiots like us would do to stop something like that.
It really only started out as something to do on my lunch break to entertain my friends at work, but every day when I’d write a little more they’d laugh and laugh, so I kept it going. Before I knew it I was at the first turn and everyone wanted to know where I was going and how I would end it and things just grew from there.
I wanted the story to move like the Timothy Zahn Thrawn trilogy, which were just some of the most entertaining books I’ve ever read, they never get boring. Flow is important to me in storytelling because once I get bored and put it down I won’t pick it up again, and if don't like that then I refuse to do it to my readers. So I wanted a lot of characters to weave in and out of the storyline and come together at the end the way Zahn had so masterfully done it, while opening up storylines for things that I might want to try down the road. But at the heart of it there still had to be that goofy, not too serious fun that Kevin Smith gave us, albeit with a harder edge. After all, we were a lot cruder, and a bit rawer.
The funniest real life detail that makes it into the main characters, how I settled on two pothead private detectives, was how everyone everywhere actually thought that we were undercover cops. I guess it was in the way we dressed, and that certain swagger that we carried ourselves with, but even cops thought we were plain clothes cops. It didn’t hurt that I think Sam Spade is the coolest cat ever written.
Writing them became all too easy, a good deal of the scenes involving Vega and Pellegrino actually happened, or close to it, which in a sense not only makes it an homage to the creators that always inspired me, but to my buddies as well. There isn’t anything written in the book that wouldn’t sound like it would come out of my mouth, so it’s pretty natural and has a real feel to it because of that.
There are so many things that I love about this book. It taught me who I am as a writer, and you can tell that I get stronger and stronger as it goes on. But mostly, I really had a good time doing it, and so many people have told me what a good time they’ve had reading it. It’s just a fun story, with a lot of places left open to take you in the future, and I know for sure, if you’re a fan of Kevin Smith films, a fan of Star Wars and comics and don’t take yourself too seriously, well I know you’ll love it too.
You can find the book here for just $1.99 - The Mad Doser Presents #1: VPI – the Saga Begins.
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