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Since my father gave me a copy of Captain Horatio Hornblower, I have been a reader of fiction, particularly mysteries and historic sea adventures.

Following years of writing reports and investment memoranda, I started with a less ambitious thought of writing magazine articles. My wife suggested writing a mystery, if not the great American novel, something that would be fun to read in front of a fire or at the beach.

Except the wartime flashbacks, bits of history, trivia and geography, the novel is researched make believe. As I assume is typical, the chief character and I share some traits and values. I rarely drink alcohol preferring chocolate milk and iced tea, but I have an aptitude with firearms and think sailing is a gift from the almighty. Elizabeth was a tribute to my wife and the two are similar including their gross disregard for hot water on boats. Other than the ‘killer’ part, Ed is a composite of two old friends and their exploits. The Pinafore is also a composite based on two of my favorite boats.

Someone, maybe Stephen King, said a book writes itself; I found this an easy argument to defend as I was often looking forward to what would happen next.

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