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SKYBIRD:
Dale Brown’s Ops Report
Copyright © 2006, TDPI

EFFECTIVENESS REPORTS: Responses to readermail@dalebrown.info

Thanks to everyone for their e-mails. Keep 'em coming! Remember that I read ALL e-mails and reply to a few personally, but I prefer to reply in the newsletters. I will never reveal your name in the Ops Report.

3 July 2006

Hi, Dale -

Sorry to have missed meeting you at ITW -- I'm enroute from Oklahoma to Ireland and read Act of War while stuck in Atlanta for five hours. Just wanted to let you know I thoroughly enjoyed it and just posted a 5-star review on Amazon.com and on my blog. Great to see another AF-officer-turned-novelist doing so well!

All my best,

I should've announced on the Web site that I'd be doing a panel and booksigning at the first Thrillerfest book and author conference that was held in Phoenix, but my schedule was "fluid" to say the least and I had to cut my stay to just a few hours.

My impression of the first Thrillerfest: This thing is going to be big!

4 July 2006

Dale,

Just stumbled across your books, starting with a book on tape (Warrior Class). I like to read series that develop characters as you do with McLanahan et al. My question concerns the chronological order of the books written around McLanahan. I went back and started with Flight of the Old Dog, but what’s next? Is there an easy way to discern this info? I couldn’t quite tell based on the plot order on the website as some of the texts appear not to have McLanahan in them. I’d like to follow him through before I start the others.

Thanks for a great read,

I've related this story many times in the Ops Report, but it bears repeating here:

Although I love writing and always wanted to be a writer, even after two novels had been published, I really didn't believe I'd actually make it as a full-time professional writer. I was so convinced that I wouldn't make it that in my third book of a three-book contract I was going to go out with a "BANG"--jump ahead in time six years, kill off most of the characters, crash the Old Dog, and give the hero every possible obstacle to success I could think of. That was Day of the Cheetah.

But something unexpected happened: I was offered another three-book contract!

So now I had to explain what happened with Patrick and the rest of the crew since "Old Dog," so I wrote a series of prequels (Hammerheads, Sky Masters, and Night of the Hawk) which are set before Day of the Cheetah and fill in the "lost years" of the McLanahan saga. Two more novels (Chains of Command and Storming Heaven) were added that only briefly and peripherally include Patrick McLanahan in them but have a new set of characters.

By the next novel, Shadows of Steel, I'm back in line with the timeline I created with Day of the Cheetah, so I could stop writing prequels.

So the order of the books on my Web site http://www.megafortress.com/index03.htm is actually in "reverse plot order" (so the books most likely to still be in stores are at the top). But if you start at the bottom of the list with Flight of the Old Dog and work up, that's the proper order.

Silver Tower is not related to the other books--yet! Watch for news on book #19 and watch worlds collide!

11 July 2006

Good afternoon,

I've been an avid reader of all the Dale Brown books for many years. This last one I've just finished today "Edge of Battle" was great, in that it's so close to reality with the National Guard on the borders now.

My quick question is:

Did George Doublya get this idea from Dale Brown, or did Dale Brown get this idea from Georgie??

Thanks

I like to think President Bush got the idea from me, of course!

11 July 2006

Dale,

You did it again with the publishing of Act of War. I have read every one of your books and loved every one, as well. Having spent time in operations and technology, You capture the technical and people thing very well.

You characters are right out of reality.Page 54, Act of war, paragraph 4......bag of shit.......

This describes almost every executive in Manhattan and Long Island. They would sell their mother to make quarterly dividends. Probably some officers at Wright Pat, as well.

I am looking forward to Edge of Battle. Wow, you are cranking these out faster than Clancy.

Warm Regards.............

13 July 2006

I am a real fan and love your books but I think they are getting to technical. I have a hard time keeping up with all the terms and names used in the books. Keep writing!

I will definitely keep on writing…but I will probably stay pretty technical too. I know it might turn some readers off, but a lot of readers dig it--and frankly I like them pretty technical too! Doing the research is fun and interesting, and I like the challenge of putting the technical stuff in a work of fiction.

I hope I get better at it over the next 20 years!

14 July 2006

Dear Dale,

I first started out with Act of War, with the game, which I love and play almost everyday. Then, I decided to read the book. What a great novel! It drew me in so much that I almost could not stop reading it to go to sleep! What this e-mail is about is regarding an Act of War movie. Could you please tell me if there are currently any plans for a movie, and if not, if you are thinking about one. Thanks.

Nothing is in the works right now, although I've had many discussions about future motion picture or TV projects.

I try not to get too excited when the phone calls come in from the Hollywood folks because I've been disappointed so many times in the past. My objective is to keep on writing the absolute best novels I can and let the motion picture or TV opportunities come when they come. I'll be ready!

15 July 2006

Dear, Dale Brown

I just began reading your books about a few months ago when I noticed Air Battle Force in my local public library. I read it and when I finished I knew I would love more of your books. I read on to Plan of Attack and then two more books, Act of War and Edge of Battle. they were all very interesting and I could hardly put one of your books down. I was just wondering, having just finished your latest book, will you be making more books including Major Richter and task force TALON? I would really like to know. Thanks for your time.

A reader.

Jason Richter and Task Force TALON will definitely be back--most likely merging with Patrick McLanahan's universe in future books! Stay tuned for THAT!

17 July 2006

Decent book. It is entertaining. HOWEVER there are a few things you have forgotten since you were in the military. First of all, a Sergeant Major in the army , Even a Command Sergeant Major, is still enlisted swine. REalistically there is no way he could get away with speaking to a field grade officer in the described manner, no matter who sent him on the mission. SGM's simply do not have that authority. I just keep wondering when Ricter is going to find his testicles and tell the sgm to shut the hell up, or, better yet, shoot him in the ass to get him out of the picture. Techie or not, he is still a field grade officer.

Other than that the book is pretty good.

Yes, it has been a long time since I've been in the military. But…

I have dealt with many, many high-ranking non-commissioned officers in the Pentagon and various units throughout the country, and although they are outranked by the greenest second lieutenant, that doesn't diminish their authority and experience one bit. Any senior non-commissioned officer will NOT hesitate to straighten out an officer, even a field grade officer, who consistently fails to show him the proper courtesy and respect. He will most likely do it in private and very respectfully himself, but he WILL do it. In the real world, a senior NCO who can't get through to an officer would probably go to the commanding officer and ask him to "counsel" the offending officer.

In my universe, Sergeant Major Jefferson did it himself. The REAL Ray Jefferson, my long-time friend and Army Reserve Command Sergeant Major, demonstrated to me many times how he directly but politely handled ill-educated or disrespectful officers. He could do it with a smile, but he left no doubt that he could make life miserable for any officer who didn't get the message.

18 July 2006

After reading several of your books I can’t hold it in any longer: thank you so much for giving the world such good reading. You are definitely setting yourself up to leave the world a better place than you found it.

19 July 2006

Hi, Mr. Brown;

I just finished 'Edge of Battle'. To my recollection, it is much more political than any of your other works to date. As a resident of Texas, the topic of illegal immigration is important to me. You approached the topic from virtually every viewpoint. I appreciated that and how you integrated the timely topic with a 'thriller' story line.

I'm a professional pilot, so I got hooked on your writing from day one. I'm staying with you as you evolve into topics that are not exclusively aeronautical.

I enjoyed 'Edge of Battle'. To prove how realistic your theme was, I found myself reading at night before going to sleep, then the next morning trying to separate fact from fiction as I reviewed the morning news regarding immigration.

Keep up the good work.

19 July 2006

As a person who had spent many hours in a F111, I thought I should let you know of the RAAF F111 that made a forced belly landing using the arrester hook in Queensland Yesterday.

The video can be found on www.ninemsn.com.au under news videos.

Thanks for all your great books, keep up the good work.

Regards

Like the Navy F-4-series before it, the F-111 series of fighter-bombers kept their tailhooks even when they entered service in the U.S. Air Force.

One reason was the success the Israeli Air Force had employing their F-4 Phantom fighters with the tailhook arresting system. The Israelis discovered they could turn their fighters faster in combat if they used the tailhooks and arresting wires to stop the jets at one end of the runway, rather than allow the big jets to roll all the way down the runway and pop a drag chute. They could even recover and launch planes simultaneously on the same runway.

In the U.S., the tailhooks were used mostly to keep a damaged aircraft from rolling all the way down the runway, flipping upside down or careening off the runway into nearby parked planes, and possibly closing the entire base. As you'll see in the video, even a jet flying pretty fast can be stopped quickly and safely using the arresting wire.

I've been unlucky enough to have taken the arresting wire twice in my flying career in the FB-111A: once as a student when we had to shut down an engine, and another time with an unsafe gear indication. Both times we landed without incident. As with the Australian crew, my pilot and I walked away safely and unhurt. The F-111-series aircraft was originally designed to be a Navy carrier-based attack aircraft, and so was extremely rugged.

20 July 2006

Dear Dale,

I just wanted to send a quick "Thank you" here from Munich, Germany, to you in Nevada, USA, for the hours of fun and entertainment I had from reading your books. After a tour of Clancy and Coonts, I found your titles on Amazon and started reading with "Flight of the Old Dog", and I finished "Night of the Hawk" just yesterday (I am following the plot order on your website) - all in English to avoid being lost in translation ;-).

I really enjoy your books, especially the character of Patrick McLanahan and his fellows, and I can't wait to start the next one - it'll be "Storming Heaven".

Thanks again!

Best regards from Munich

21 July 2006

Dale,

First, let me say that I enjoy reading your novels. I am a retired Air Force Chief and former B-52 maintenance man, so I especially enjoy the action in your stories. Your technical background is certainly evident as you make your readers feel a part of that action. Keep up the good work!

Secondly, where you ever stationed at Blytheville Air Force Base? I retired from Eaker (formerly Blytheville) in 1988, and you look familiar to me. In addition, I thought you may have been stationed there because you have Sky Masters Corporate Headquarters located there. You are obviously familiar with the base history and know it was closed in the early 90’s. I spent 18 years of my career in SAC so if I didn’t run into you at Blytheville, then possibly we met at another SAC base.

Thank you for taking my E-Mail. Best wishes as you continue with your successful career.

No, I've never been assigned to Blytheville/Eaker AFB (which is now Arkansas International Airport). But I have family in northern Arkansas, and once the base closed I thought it would make the perfect place for a high-tech defense contractor.

Although it gained the nickname "Hooterville Air Force Base" and was probably not tops on the list of anyone looking for an assignment, Eaker was a short drive north of Memphis, the flying conditions were generally great (meaning it was usually WARM there, as opposed to northern Strategic Air Command bases), and it enjoyed a lot of support from the community.

21 July 2006

Hello Mr. Brown,

Enjoyed 'Flight of the Old Dog' till the book fell apart, and played the PC game 'Mega Fortress' for years until the new computers came out and wouldn't accept 5 1/4" Floppies. Might this game become available again in Disk format for Windows XP? It was one of the few games I really enjoyed and I miss it! Why not make a movie out of this title and Xbox will have a game developed before the movie even comes out! Take care.

The PC game "Megafortress" and its add-on scenario disks were one of the most advanced computer games in their time (made for IBM 386 machines under DOS--remember those?). Players could play FOUR DIFFERENT crew stations aboard an EB-52 Megafortress bomber at the same time, and it had other innovations such as target and bomb camera views so you could replay the bomb runs from different external point of views.

I had a great time being involved recently with the production of the Atari PC game "Act of War," and I'd welcome any other opportunities to work with the computer gaming industry. But "Megafortress" probably will not be resurrected.

22 July 2006

Dear Dale Brown,

I just finished reading your book Act of War & I wanted to tell you that I used to read quite a few of your books.

Your are a good author - HOWEVER, I won't be reading any more of your books because I got so fed up with the metric system mentioned in this book. I am an American & I do NOT care to try to decipher distances, etc with the metric system - I live in the United States of America and I find it very boring & a nuisance to try to figure out just what the hell you are talking about when you list the distances in metrics ---- meters, kilometers liters. They tried to force the metric system on us Americans years ago & it didn't work. I refused to accept that & from now on - I will browse thru your book BEFORE I make my purchase- It was a distraction and took away the interest from the storyline.... It's a shame since I did enjoy your writing BUT ------

former reader

Thanks very much for your e-mail.

Although yours is the first e-mail I've received expressing dislike for the metric system, I agree that it is confusing for American readers. I truly hope some day that the metric system is adopted in the United States because it is so much easier to use than the English system, but until that happens, using the metric system is confusing for many folks.

Starting with "Edge of Battle" I went back to my usual practice of using the English units in all narrative and in U.S. dialogue, and the metric system in countries that use it. To me it wouldn't make sense for a Russian or Iranian soldier to mention miles or pounds when they normally use kilometers or kilos.

Be aware, however, that the U.S. military many times uses units other than English as a normal part of their procedures, and I won't alter that. For example, the U.S. Air Force and Navy exclusively uses "nautical miles" instead of "statute miles" (6,032 feet vs. 5,280 feet) and the U.S. Army uses the metric system in most of its distance measurements (kilometers, meters) instead of nautical or statute miles.

Click here for more on Edge Of Battle

[AMAZON.COM]
Get Edge Of Battle At Amazon.Com!

Edge Of Battle (May 2006)

Violence and tensions along the U.S.-Mexican border have never been higher, sparked by battles between rival drug lords and an increased flow of illegal migrants. To combat the threat, the U.S. has executed Operation Rampart: a controversial test base in southern California run by Major Jason Richter and members of Task Force TALON.

But their success is thretened by a drug kingpin and migrant smuggler named Enrique Fuerza, and the Mexican president, a nationalist who causes a storm of controversy on both sides of the border, calling for a revolution to take back the northernmost "Mexican states"-the southwest U.S.

Soon Richter and his force are reassigned to the FBI to investigate the murders of several Border Patrol agents-a deadly mission that will set off a wave of bloodshed that threatens to become an all-out guerrilla war.

The "best military adventure writer in the country today" (Clive Cussler) takes it to the terrorists with high tech firepower in this electrifying new military thriller.

Contact Information:

Rights:
Robert Gottlieb
Trident Media Group
(212) 262-4810

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