Monday, 29 January 2007

Chapter 7: Tom

The suspect was very well behaved on the ride to the station, sitting quietly and staring out of the window, weighing up his fate. We had to lock all the doors and roll up the windows just in case he decided to make a run for it so the car was hotter than ever as the morning sun burned through the windscreen.

I didn’t care though. I was tired, hungry and emotionally drained. In a few hours I’d be able to go to bed and I wasn’t planning on moving from it for at least a week.

“Do you mind booking him in on your own?” Dave asked.

“Why? Have you got something better to do?”

“Yeah, I’ve booked some vacation and it’s due to start this afternoon if I’ve got nothing else on.”

“Yeah, no problem,” I said, “What are you doing with your time off?”

“Taking Janine and the kids away”, he said, “We’re going up to the lake. I’m going to teach the boys to fish.”

“Are they old enough to go fishing?” I asked.

“Pete, the eldest, he just turned nine last week,” he corrected.

“Time flies,” I said, hoping to cover up my faux-pas, “seems like yesterday you were rushing off to the maternity ward.”

“It certainly does. Twice as fast when you’ve got kids. I’ll be packing them off to college before I know it.”

Dave was a good family man, married for God knows how many years with three kids. He was one of the only people I counted as a true friend and even though we had worked together on and off for many years, he had only been my official partner for the past six months.

He talks about his kids all the time but I get mixed up with the names and we’ve known each other far too long for me to ask him to remind me which one’s which. If I had a girlfriend or wife, I’d ask Dave and his wife round to my place for dinner. As it happens, I’m single and planning on staying that way so I don’t suppose they’d be too interested in coming round to my apartment for Heineken and TV dinners.

I was married once, a long time ago. Her same was Sarah. We were very happy together, right up to the day she told me she hated me and wanted me to move out. She told me I was spending too much time on my work and not enough with her. We had endless arguments about it but she was right.

She gave me the choice of my work or her but didn’t let me make the decision. As soon as I paused to think about it, she knew what the true answer was and walked out of the door without saying another word.

The marriage lasted five years which isn’t too bad in this day and age, or so I keep telling myself. Looking back, I guess I wasn’t really husband material and when I look in the mirror, I realise I’m even less suitable now than I was back then. I always wanted kids but wasn’t sure why; probably because that’s what everyone’s brought up to believe in. Go to school, get a job, get married, have kids, retire, have grandkids, die. That’s the way it’s supposed to go, isn’t it? Looking back, it’s probably a very good thing for the kids that I didn’t get past the “get married” stage.

One day Sarah called and told me she wanted us to get back together. I was ecstatic. I moved back into our apartment and took as much time as I could off work so we could spend quality time together like normal couples. When I went back I took a desk job, started at nine and walked out of the door dead on five every day so I could get home to spend as much time as possible with my beautiful wife.

Everything was going well until Michael Hudson was released from prison.

Michael Hudson was the first murder suspect I arrested early in my career in homicide. He caught his wife cheating on him and took revenge on her with a baseball bat. After beating her body for over an hour, almost all of her bones were broken and her entire body was bruised and bloody. He then went to the kitchen, made himself a cup of coffee and went to visit her lover to do the same to him.

He received a twenty year sentence but served only nine years. They said he was released for good behaviour but as far as I knew, he hadn’t done anything in prison that I would consider good behaviour and certainly hadn’t given enough back to the community or the justice system to warrant giving him eleven years of his life back.

On the day of release from prison, most people visit friends, a bar or a brothel. Michael Hudson went to a sporting goods shop, bought a baseball bat and paid a visit to our apartment. I wasn’t at home but Sarah was. She didn’t stand a chance against nine years of pent up aggression.

He was given a life sentence with no chance of parole for twenty years. I still don’t know if I would have preferred the death sentence. I’m the one who caught him and I always thought there would be closure once he was out of the picture.

I was wrong.

Every day for the last five years I have thought of different ways to take it all out on him but nothing could bring back what he took away. Even though he’s probably going to be locked up for the rest of his natural life, every day I expect to get the call to say he’s got a release date.

After he was put away, I threw myself into my work. I don’t always play by the rules and I’m not in the job to make friends but I always get results. My investigations have led to more convictions for homicide than any other detective in the department for the last three years. I’ve tried talking to the department shrink but that didn’t do much good. It only made me think about what happened to Sarah so I just blank it out the best I can. That’s why I turned myself into a workaholic: so I don’t have to think about the life Sarah and I could have shared.

Being a detective is pretty much the same as doing any other job I guess. It’s hard, boring work with the occasional moment when you realise why you decided to take the job in the first place. Today’s arrest was one of those moments.

Our hard work had paid off and now after two long, exhausting weeks of dead end leads and waiting around for forensic evidence, I was standing at the front desk of my police station booking in the prime suspect in a murder case. He was set to go before the judge the next day and I suspected he would either be refused bail or it would be set way out of his price range.

Someone else would have to interview him. Dave had already disappeared and I wouldn’t be around for another two weeks. Dave deserved the time off and so did I.

Friday, 26 January 2007

Chapter 6: Stakeout

Jesus Christ, it’s hot.

I’d been sitting in my car since long before the sun came up, waiting for our suspect to emerge from his house. A mixture of caffeine and the drone of commercial radio was helping me to stay awake. I didn’t know for sure if he was even here but his car was in the drive and none of our grasses had seen him out and about for days.

On the hour every hour, the newsreader on the radio reported on an attack at a pharmaceutical company. A lab had been bombed and three people had been killed. They didn’t say too much about it though. That was typical of this city. It’s an unfortunate reality that there would probably be more deaths on these streets before sunset and the bombing would be old news by the end of the day.

I thought I saw something or someone move inside the house so I lifted the binoculars off my lap and peered through them. The house was in a state of disrepair. Every visible piece of metal was coated with rust and the front gate was hanging off its hinges. Across the picket fences that needed a new coat of paint and the lawn that was slowly getting out of control, I checked each filthy window. Nothing moved. I lowered the binoculars and closed my eyes for a second.

I must be losing my mind. Get a grip, Tom.

If I hadn’t missed out on a promotion last year, I would have been sitting there with the air conditioning blasting away. Superficial I know, but it’s one of the perks of being a senior detective. Come to think of it, if I hadn’t missed out on a promotion last year, I would have been sitting in a comfortable office with the air conditioning blasting away. Apparently I was too valuable doing what I was doing so my boss couldn’t let me go.

In my experience, bosses don’t give a shit about you but as soon as you want to do something different and they realise you’re actually useful to them, they come up with some half-assed compliments about you being a critical member of the team and make up some bullshit about new challenges which keeps you doing the same job for another year.

That’s right; no one can sit outside suspected murderers’ houses all day long waiting for them to come out then kick them in the balls and read them their rights better than I can. Not that I don’t enjoy that part of the job to a certain extent but that’s not the point. I felt like I needed something new in my life.

I cracked open my second can of a disgustingly powerful energy drink and gulped it down in one. A shudder went down my spine and I shook my head involuntarily. These drinks can keep you awake when your body tells you it’s time to go to bed but why do they have to taste so bad?

The passenger door opened and my overweight partner, Detective David Thomas, shook the car as he crash landed in the faux leather passenger seat. Luckily the two cups of coffee in his hands had lids on the top otherwise we would have ended up wearing the contents.

“Here you go, Tom,” he said in his slightly high-pitched voice. “Get that down you, you’ll feel better.”

“Thanks, Dave. I’ll probably be pissing all day with all this liquid but I feel a bit better now. What, no doughnuts?”

Dave laughed. “The last thing you need is more sugar, partner. Anyway, my diet starts today,” he added with a wink.

He was right. It was just after eight in the morning and this was my third coffee of the day. A double espresso. I hadn’t slept for a few days. Well, not during the nights anyway. Dave reckoned it was because of all the coffee I drink. I knew he was right but by the time I feel like sleeping, I’m back at work.

I’d been up for days, reviewing endless security tapes. I eventually found footage that showed who had beaten Andre Lewis, a nightclub bouncer, to death. The killer is usually one of the first people we talk to and this case was no exception. The details weren’t important to me any more though. I had three very simple steps to follow:

Step 1 – Arrest this guy.

Step 2 – Take some time off.

Step 3 – Sort out the life of Detective Tom Ryder.

Dave lurched forward in his seat and snatched the binoculars out of my hands. “The curtains just moved.”

I looked across the street and saw the curtains of the small suburban house move. It was the first movement we’d seen since the sun went down last night. We had slept in shifts. Well, Dave had slept; I just closed my eyes and tried to fight the thoughts that were buzzing around in my head, keeping me awake.

“Could be the wind,” I suggested.

“The windows are closed.”

I picked up my gun, checked it was loaded and clicked the safety off. Dave did the same. Time for him to ask me if I’m ready.


“Always,” I replied, as usual.

The front door of the house swung open. There stood our suspect in his pyjamas and slippers; a very short, stocky man, only five foot two but almost as wide. We had to be careful. He had managed to beat a man to death with his bare hands who was a clear foot taller than him.

I was psyched. My heart was pounding and I felt adrenaline surging through my veins. Even though it didn’t seem possible, I started to sweat even more. I had to take this man down, for the sake of society and more importantly, for my own sanity. This man stood between me and a good night’s sleep.

I picked up the radio and announced, “This is Detective Ryder. We have positive confirmation of the location of the suspect. We’re moving in.”

“Let’s go,” Dave said.

We bounded out of the car and shot across the street, pointing our guns at the suspect.

“Police! Don’t move!” I shouted.

The suspect looked shocked and tried to make a run for it but his freedom didn’t last long. I shoulder-charged him into the wall. He stayed on his feet for a second but a swift boot to the balls sent him tumbling into his flower beds. My trusted size tens haven’t let me down yet.

Dave leaned over the squirming suspect with one knee firmly digging into his back. “Give me your hands,” he said. “Do you watch Cops on TV?”

“What? Er… yeah, sometimes.”

“Good, you already know your rights then, asshole. Keep still.”

As Dave handcuffed the suspect, I returned to the car and picked up the radio. “This is Detective Tom Ryder. We have apprehended the suspect in the Lewis killing.”

“Well done Detective Ryder,” was the reply, “we’ll prepare a nice uncomfortable cell for him back at the station.”

“Thanks, we’re on our way.”

I breathed a sigh of relief and watched Dave drag the suspect towards the car. I felt the weight of the world start to lift off my shoulders. My vacation and my sanity were within touching distance.

Wednesday, 24 January 2007

Chapter 5: Jane

The green glow from the digits of the alarm clock lit the corner of the room. Sitting on the bedside table were a purse, a mobile phone, a compact of makeup that was rarely used, a silver DKNY watch and a swipe card giving the highest level of access to the World Health Organisation’s global offices.

The name on the card was Jane Simpson.

Strictly tools of business. No wedding ring. No engagement ring. Not even a number in the mobile phone that wasn’t work related.

Jane was lying in the comfort of her king size bed, sound asleep in her pink satin pyjamas. Her head was buried in a pile of pillows and cushions, the covers thrown to the floor hours before to let her body cool down. She was halfway through a two-week vacation and hadn’t felt this relaxed for years. The project she was involved in wouldn’t come to fruition for another few weeks so she had allowed herself the time off.

Once the current phase of the project was complete, there would be a lot of work to do. Very dangerous work.

Even in her unconscious state, she knew that she had another whole week of reading, watching black and white movies and that old favourite that she never had time for: retail therapy. God forbid, maybe one day in the not too distant future she would even have time to call the guys that gave her their numbers. She’d have to find those business cards first though. They were probably somewhere under a pile of papers somewhere…

Then, just when all seemed rosy in the life of Agent Jane Simpson, her mobile phone started to ring. Her eyes opened and she sighed when the reality check kicked in.

Why the hell didn’t I turn it off?

She rubbed her eyes and looked at the alarm clock. Two in the morning. Wonderful. She answered the phone and heard a familiar voice on the other end. It was the voice she had expected to hear but really hoped she wouldn’t: the manager of the emergency response team. She had lost count of the number of times they had spoken to each other at this ungodly hour.

“They’ve got him,” he said. With that, she sat up in her bed. She was now one hundred percent awake.

“What about his work?” she asked.

“Destroyed. His office at Mantek has been bombed. We need you to find out what happened. A lab assistant was murdered so we’ll need to get the police department in on this as well.”

Jane got to her feet and opened the first door of her massive wardrobe to reveal her collection of work clothes. She had enjoyed not having to open this door every morning for the past week. Now it was time to get back to work.

She wasn’t looking forward to working with a cop. They never shared the same priorities. The World Health Organisation was completely focused on tracking the spread of known diseases and aiding the search for a cure. Cops only wanted to solve the crime, in this case a murder, or at least find some poor sucker to pin it on.

It was important that she got on the scene as quickly as possible. That way she could get all the necessary investigation underway before one of the local boys in blue turned up and slowed her down by sticking his nose in.

“I’m on my way. I’ll be there in twenty minutes.”

Monday, 22 January 2007

Chapter 4: One Star Motel

The clock on the dashboard clicked round to midnight as the rented saloon pulled into the car park of the Lone Star motel. There were plenty of parking spaces to choose from. The saloon came to a stop and the tall, thin figure of Doctor Andrew Owen stepped out.

A concrete box with thirty or forty rooms in it
, Doctor Owen thought as he surveyed his surroundings. Architecture straight out of the low point of the seventies.

Above the entrance, a grimy sign pointed the way to a swimming pool at the rear of the motel. Doctor Owen would bet his bottom dollar that all the pool contained was two inches of green slime but suspected there wasn’t anyone here that would take his bet.

Lone Star Motel? One star motel would be a more appropriate title
, he thought, half expecting the capital L to fall off the sign. Still, beggars can’t be choosers and when you’ve got to lie low, there’s nowhere lower than the sewer.

Doctor Owen checked in and paid for his room, which was unreassuringly inexpensive. Without getting out of his seat, the desk clerk handed him the key and went back to watching the tiny colour TV sitting on the desk.

What an easy job
, Doctor Owen thought, I’d give anything to swap places with you right now. You can have all my money, all my qualifications and all the secrets I know.

All I want to do now is put my feet up, watch TV and forget about everything.

But he couldn’t do that and he knew it. He had a responsibility to his wife, his friends and everyone he worked with. Hell, he even had a responsibility to the kid sitting there watching TV without a care in the world. That responsibility was to stay alive and finish his work.

For the first time in his life he was glad he didn’t have any kids. The doctor and his wife Emily had considered it for many years but as was the case with many other aspects of their personal life, his work came first.

Emily had left him several times but always returned. She knew that living with the potential saviour of the human race would be difficult. It wasn’t as if he was a sex-addicted lothario or a clandestine alcoholic. When they were together, he was a model husband: caring and considerate, and they both thought they would have been perfect parents.

They had argued and cried about having children countless times but they always came to the same conclusion: once his work reached this stage, they would be in mortal danger and it would have been selfish for them to think the safety of the children wouldn’t be affected by his work. She remained loyal to him and he prayed that she had remained safe since they temporarily parted earlier that day.

Warm, musty air and the stale, lingering stench of cigarettes hit Doctor Owen in the face as he opened the door to room thirty-seven. As expected, what stood before him was a basic motel room: a bed, a TV and a bathroom. Everything he needed for the night. Tomorrow he would check into another motel and attempt to make contact with Doctor Forrest, who led the research assignment.

He threw his bags on the patch of the mustard carpet that held the fewest stains and went into the bathroom. He splashed cold water on his face and looked at himself through the film of dirt on the mirror.

Am I really the saviour of humanity? Can I live with the responsibility?

He decided it was too late and he was too tired to be contemplating the meaning of his life so he threw himself on the barely clean bed sheets and fell asleep almost immediately.

Deep in sleep, Doctor Owen didn’t hear the door handle click and a floor board squeak as a heavy size eleven stepped inside. Nor did he hear or see a tall dark figure approach the bed. The only thing he noticed was a tight grip on his neck a split second before a chloroform-soaked rag covered his face.

Saturday, 20 January 2007

Chapter 3: Mission Accomplished

Danny Johnson was a young research assistant, working away quietly in one of the many labs at Mantek. All the other labs were empty, which pleased Danny. He found it a lot easier to get work done with no one else around. All day long, other scientists and assistants were popping in and out, borrowing samples and equipment or asking for advice. This way, there were no interruptions.

His supervisor, Andrew Owen, had been eager to leave early that afternoon so Danny was more than happy to do some overtime. Doctor Owen’s boss, Doctor Forrest, hadn’t shown his face in the lab for a while. Danny had heard them talking about a breakthrough and it surprised him that he hadn’t seen more of them that week and that he was left in the lab to do all the hard work.

What the hell, may as well stay in the ice cool lab than brave the heat outside and get some extra cash at the same time.

Anyway, the quicker he did the work, the more overtime he could claim and profit from. A little white lie never hurt. He had only been left with simple instructions of what to do. Doctor Owen had not told Danny the relevance of what he was doing; only that he had to put some of the yellow liquid in the blood samples, look at it through the microscope and save the images to the lab computer.

Easy money.

For the last time that night, Danny put a drop of blood onto a thin glass slide and clipped it under the microscope. He looked into the microscope and saw the same thing he had seen all night: human blood with a high level of white blood cells but lacking in red blood cells and haemoglobin. He hit a button and heard an artificial camera click as the computer grabbed the magnified image and saved it to the hard drive.

Very carefully, he picked up the pipette from the flask of yellow liquid, dropped it onto the blood sample and looked back into the microscope. He had no explanation for the reaction he was watching but it had become more familiar to him as the night wore on.

Let the doc try and work out what’s going on, I’ve had enough for one night.

Danny hit the button again to capture the image of the reaction and rubbed his eyes as he looked up from the microscope. It was reaching ten o’clock and Danny decided to call it a night.

He was starting to pack the equipment away and put the blood samples back into the refrigerator when he saw a silhouette block the light from the small window in the laboratory door.

“Hey, Jeff, is that you?” shouted Danny.

Jeff was the security guard that did the rounds twice a night. He had a good relationship with all of the insomniac scientists. Like many pharmaceutical companies, Mantek had problems with animal rights protestors and they had to keep a watchful eye out for infiltrators. Just six months previously, a whole lab full of rhesus monkeys had been set free by an animal liberation group, most of which ended up under the wheels of trucks on the main road outside. The irony was not lost on the employees of Mantek but it didn’t stop the protestors trying again when the new batch of primates arrived just days later.

Danny didn’t receive an answer to his call.

The door handle slowly turned and the door opened just a fraction. White light from the corridor illuminated a hand that reached inside and flicked the light switch. Just before the lights went out, Danny saw something left behind on the light switch from the stranger’s finger: a drop of blood.

“Hey, what’s going on? Who are you?” he asked, raising his voice this time.

Still no answer.

The door opened wide. A tall, dark figure took a step inside the lab, set a black briefcase down on the floor and closed the door behind him. Before Danny could adjust his eyes to register what was happening, he was plunged back into darkness.

“What do you want?” Danny’s voice broke a little.

The dark stranger shot across the room and grabbed Danny’s head in his massive gloved hands. Danny punched the man’s sides with all his might but he didn’t flinch.

“Where is the doctor?” the stranger demanded in a deep, rasping voice.

“Doctor Owen? He went home.”

“Don’t lie to me. He’s not at home. Where is he now?”

“I don’t know. Probably in the city somewhere but he didn’t tell me where he was going. I really don’t know where he is.”

That was the last thing Danny said before the stranger squeezed his hand and bent the young lab assistant’s head into an unnatural position, quickly breaking his neck with a sickening crack. The stranger released his grip and Danny’s limp body slumped to the floor between the refrigerator and the filing cabinet.

The stranger picked up the black briefcase and carefully placed it on the workbench in the middle of the lab. He clicked the briefcase open and flicked a switch inside then quickly made his way out of the door and down the corridor. In exactly five minutes’ time, all traces of his visit and the doctor’s work would disappear in a ball of fire.

That wasn’t the end though. Doctor Owen was still out there somewhere in the city. For the sake of the cause, everything depended on him being found before they got to him.

The stranger walked through the reception area of Mantek, past the dead body of Jeff the security guard lying face down on his desk and out to the car. As he threw the Mantek surveillance tapes onto the back seat, his mind was on the third and final order. It was as simple as the first: get back without attracting attention. Once he had taken care of the security guard waiting in the booth at the front gate, there would be no evidence that he had visited Mantek.

Mission accomplished.

But this is only the beginning.

Thursday, 18 January 2007

Chapter 2: A Stranger Approaches

Present day

The fifth day of the heat wave was coming to an end and the sun was overstaying its welcome, casting long shadows of the city skyline across the freeway towards the suburbs. The commuters lucky enough to own air-conditioned vehicles sat in relative comfort while others peeled the sweat-drenched shirts from their backs as they inched their way home.

The late September sun finally dropped out of the sky just before
nine o’clock, taking with it the blinding light but leaving behind the stifling, sticky heat. Every store that stocked electrical fans had sold out of them much earlier in the week and local air conditioning businesses were doing their best end-of-season trade in years.

One man who didn’t have the heat wave on his mind was driving a lone black car along the freeway into the city. He had specific orders: the first was get to his destination as quickly as possible but stick to the speed limits. Do not attract any attention. The whole cause would be in jeopardy if the authorities were alerted to his mission or, worse than that, if they found out what was going on.

A gloved hand changed gear and the other steered the car towards a large industrial complex. The driver stopped the car next to the security booth and hit the button to roll down the blacked-out window. The security guard got off his chair for the first time since the sun went down and shook himself free of his damp uniform. It immediately stuck to him again, feeling uncomfortably cold and wet.

“Putting in some overtime, Doc?” the security guard asked, hoping for some friendly banter to bring some respite to the tedium of the long night ahead. “Can you believe this heat? Should be at home with a cold one but here I am, working for the man.”

He hoped for a clever reply but didn’t even get a boring one.

Oh well, some people are just like that, especially people like Doctor Owen here who works all the hours God sends
, he thought to himself.

In the low light, he couldn’t see the driver’s face but he’d lost count of the number of times he’d waved that badge through after hours so he didn’t think there was any point in making a fuss.

“You’re clear to go, Doc. Have a good night.”

The driver nodded and continued his drive up to the front door of the research labs of Mantek Pharmaceuticals. He picked a black briefcase off the back seat and stepped out of the car.

The bright white light that illuminated the reception of the Mantek building spilled out into the darkness of the car park. The man carrying the briefcase walked up the steps and through the front door with a purpose. His long dark shadow slithered into the building behind him.

Time to carry out the second order.

Wednesday, 17 January 2007

Chapter 1: Prologue

One year ago

He was frantic.

The straps binding his arms and legs gave way and he leapt to his feet. The figures standing round him were frozen in shock. Before they could attempt to hold him down, he bolted for the door and ran faster than he had ever run before. Something was flowing around his body, carrying him at a speed he never thought possible, something that had been explained to him many times before that he didn’t want to believe.

He was in pain. Incredible agony.

There was a fire in his stomach. The pain stabbed him in the belly and he doubled over, stumbling into the wall. Using his hands to steady himself, he got back onto his feet and continued his dash for freedom.

The shouts of his captors echoed behind him.

“Don’t let him leave! He can’t be allowed to escape!”

“Shoot him if you have to!”

“No! Take him alive.”

“It’s too late, doctor. He’s beyond help now. There’s nothing more you can do for him.”

He was dead.

He was sure of that already, but if he could make it down the long stone-flagged corridors to the front steps and make a leap for it, he might have a chance of survival. Two figures appeared in front of him but he immediately barged them out of the way, sending them skidding along the smooth floor. Just in front of him were the heavy doors that stood between him and the outside world.

He paid no mind to the possibility that the doors might be locked. Without a pause to think about his actions, he felt all the power in his body flow through his arm and up his side and shoulder-charged the wooden barricade, knocking it from its hinges. The cool fresh air washed over his face as the rain poured in torrents from the darkness above onto the gravel drive and lush green lawn ahead of him.

As soon as his feet left the top steps, he heard a gunshot behind him. He kept running down the steps onto the drive and wondered why there were no more shots. Then he lost all feeling in his chest. He put his hands to his heart and knew what was happening. As he fell to the ground with his life ebbing away, the voices of the men who had held him against his will for so long and done hideous things to him rang in his ears.

“There goes another one.”

“We’ve learned a lot from him. I think we know what we have to do.”

“How long will it take to reach the next stage?”

“Give me twelve months.”


Rebirth is a horror/thriller novel that I wrote between August 2005 and August 2006. I was inspired to write it while lying by the pool on holiday, reading a novel by a well-known thriller writer and not really enjoying it. I thought to myself: “I could do this type of thing - it can't be that hard.”

Those who know me know that I’m a big fan of the movies so it won’t be a surprise that the idea for Rebirth came from an idea for a movie I had. A few years ago I took a course in Film Studies at night school and one of the assignments was to draft storyboards for an original film. The storyboards I drew were the opening to the film (chapters 2 and 3 in the novel) and from that point I kept putting ideas down until I had a plan from beginning to end.

After finishing the aforementioned novel, I started on my first opus and kept plugging away at it every now and again until it was in a state that felt like I could let people read it. A few friends read it and seemed to like it so I sent it off to some publishers and agents but I quickly tired of waiting for the standard "thanks but no thanks" letter so I’ve decided to serialise it in this blog. That way I can get on with writing the follow-up (maybe a little spoiler there?). If anyone chooses to read it, great. If not, at least it’s online so I can point anyone towards it who is unfortunate enough to ask me what I do in my spare time.

I hope you enjoy reading Rebirth and comments (both positive and constructively negative) are always welcome

Scott McKenzie

PS I’m not totally sure how often I’ll update the blog. I’ll probably start at 2 or 3 updates a week but we’ll see how it goes. If you sign up with one of the subscription options at the top left of the page, you'll be notified when the next chapter goes online.