Behind The Text’ Part 30_ Untold Stories
Steps Too Far
Over mainly over the last 7 years I’ve written 16 novels featuring Jonas Forbes. I’ve now called it a day, chiefly due to diminished energy. This Post lists stories which I MIGHT have tackled, given more time & energy.
I intended Jonas to be chiefly involved in historical events or situations throughout the period 1954-73. I’ve used Posts 5-20 to comment on existing novels. Here are potential plot ideas I’ve never tackled. They are the BASIC ideas from which I’d start research & so build up a proper plot. I add in RED an initial comment on reflection which is, perhaps, why they were never started.
1959 Aug India & Tibet. JF is sent to Tibet to rescue Desmond Thomas, an agent near Lhasa.. They set out but tare captured & Thomas is badly wounded in upper arm (left). They escape from the Chinese & head south The arm turns gangrenous & JF says he will amputate. Overnight Thomas, who fears disability, walks out & dies in snow. JF has map, compass, gun etc. & basic food but no lang. He pushes on, pursued by Chinese scouts & reaches the border of Nepal. A Chinese patrol continue the pursuit but are wiped out by Nepalese.
(Problem = weather conditions unsuitable for proposed dating)
1961 Dec Sharpeville. BOSS in still clamping down after the Sharpeville riots in Mar 1960. They are homing in on the ANC and a British agent based there is in danger. JF smuggles him out to S. Rhodesia. (Needs more detail to distinguish it from other stories)
1966 Jun 1966 Guang Dong, China JF is begged to rescue the family of Wou San San threatened by the Red Guards in the Cultural Revolution.(Wouldn’t JF be too conspicuous to carry out the job? Drop name as already used? What if Maoists were trying to expand into Hong Kong & authorities needed help for that to be stopped?)
1967 Apr Prague. The daughter of a leading Government politician is in danger. She’s married to a Czech dissident who refuses to leave. Time is lost and JF’s only escape route is east, deeper into the Soviet bloc. (Much too close to other stories, (esp. Book 10) except perhaps if employing unusual location or method)
1970 Jun Mexico An assistant coach has been murdered in a poisoning attack on the English football team. Mexican authorities are slow to help so JF is sent to deal with the threat.(Possible, but need to maximise football element)
1971 Oct Cambodia A British journalist is kidnapped & is being transported to N. Vietnam. JF is sent on a rescue mission financed by his newspaper. (Requires integration with US forces to introduce internal complications as well as external threats )