I love airplanes. I want to be a pilot when I grow up, even if it is only of a drone.
Nicola: Thank you for joining us, Robert! You are a Third Culture Kind, aren’t you?
Robert: My parents, and my brother and I, were born in the same city but different country. Strange, but not unusual. At the turn of the 20th century, borders changed all the time. My parents were born in Marburg, Austria, and after WWI, it changed to Maribor, Yugoslavia.
Then, after WWII, the communists took over Yugoslavia. Due to their oppression many fled, including our family. We escaped to what was then West Germany. Then, five years later, seeking better opportunities, my family moved to the land of freedom and opportunity: Canada
So, how’s that for being a cross-culture child?
Nicola: You have several countries covered! What did that mean for your language training?
Robert: I’ve retained my German language from childhood. I’ve translated short articles from German into English, I’ve always had a desire to translate one of my favourite authors, Karl May. Once I retired, I seized the opportunity and embarked on translating a series of 5 books, entitled ‘The Hussar’s Love.’
Nicola: You have a pretty amazing father and you wrote a remarkable biography of him.
Robert: I’ve always listened to my father’s stories and grew accustomed to them, but it wasn’t until I embarked on my writing career that I started paying attention. I quickly realized that there was a lot of substance to them, and what’s more is that they were true, not made up to impress others. When I approached my father with the idea of writing his memoir, he brushed it off at first saying that he was just an ordinary man. I eventually persuaded him that even ordinary men can accomplish extraordinary things.
Nicola: Did your Dad have a role in your love for airplanes?
Robert: My interest started many years ago. I was part of the Air Cadets in Manitoba, and fortunate enough to be awarded a flying scholarship. I obtained my ‘wings’ in 1973, and maintained my private pilot’s license for about 25 years. Also, I can’t resist going to local airshows and love the roar of a jet engine as the plane flies overhead.
Nicola: I know! The rush of adrenalin that shivers the fibres of your heart, both from the supersonic boom, and from the risk and daring of the pilots give me a high too! How did your love for airplanes turn into a World War Two Aviation History Novel?
Robert: Let me set the scene. It’s 1944, the height of the European war. American bomber pilot, Jack Swaggart, finds himself stranded behind enemy lines and teams up with an unlikely ally, Hilde Augsberg, a plucky young German. The pair barely manage to stay one step ahead of Horst Kloster, a relentless Gestapo agent. Jack needs to get back to London and convince the Allies of the looming threat –the Horten bomber.
Stealth, weaves true historical events, about a WWII warplane, the Ho-229, designed and built by two German innovators, Walter and Reimar Horten, with larger-than-life swash-buckling characters in a fictional plot that will leave you clinging to your ripcord. All of which is sure to make for an exciting read.
I happened to catch a documentary on the History Channel several years ago. The focus was on two brothers, Reimar and Walter Horten, German aircraft designers from the WWII era. The program was a docu/drama, and gave a realistic portrayal how two unknown designers caught the eye of Hermann Göring, chief of the German Luftwaffe. He liked what he saw and sanctioned the development of a prototype that actually flew. I was hooked and decided to write a fictional account surrounding their airplane.
Stealth has it all: adventure, romance, deception, and twists and turns that will surely keep you strapped in the pilot’s seat, wanting to check out the “logbook” for more.
Robert: This is my first venture with Indiegogo. It’s a fundraising platform that allows for writers/entrepreneurs to raise funds for their project. What I like about it is that aside from obtaining the necessary funds, I can partner with backers and get them involved in the process. Also, rather than just donating money, the backer can select a perk to suit their taste.
In partnership with Siretona Creative, a Canadian boutique publisher, and me – a local author – my backers play an important role in publishing Stealth. Choose your reward (perk)!
- Substantive and Copy-editing of the manuscript. This is an integral part.
- The cover design. (The mockups currently on display are temporary). I will update the cover to reflect progress on the design.
- Layout and formatting of the paperback and ebook version.
- Printing and shipping.
- Launch and promotional efforts associated with the campaign.
- Production of a limited edition print of the cover.
- Once I pre-sell 100 copies of my book, I will publish the paperback and ebook.
- Once I pre-sell 150 copies of my book, I will publish an audiobook.
- I will also be offering some exclusive rewards for those who pre-order the novel.
- A personally signed paperback copy.
- Your name will appear in the acknowledgements.
- Early access to the introduction (beta reading) and select excerpts.
- An opportunity to be involved in the selection process of the cover design.
Nicola: What a privilege you are giving us! To be part of the creative process, and maybe even name a character in the book! And help to bring aviation history to life!