My name is Daniel Springer and I am the author of The WILCO Project, a newly released mystery/thriller available in both eBook and print from Solstice Publishing. When people find out that I wrote a published novel I am usually asked, “How did come up with the idea for the story?” My answer is that I can’t honestly remember exactly how the idea came to me, but I am sure it had something to do with my background in computers and telecommunications and me looking to the future of cell phones and the types of games that would be possible on those devices. I wrote the first draft of the manuscript in 2004 when much of technology in my book was in its infancy and, as it turned out, I happened to get pretty close on what is happening in that area of technology. But, I can not actually pinpoint how I came up with the story idea.
The less often asked question and the one that I think may be more interesting is, “Why did you decide to write a novel?” That is a more complex question that certainly has a longer answer. The most basic answer is that I can remember wanting to write the great American novel as far back as high school. I am forty-six now, which would make that thirty years ago–so I guess you could say that for all of my adult life I have had the urge to write a book!
In the summer between my junior and senior year of high school I can vividly remember scratching out about ten pages of, what I thought at the time, was the first in my string of bestsellers on notebook paper with a black Bic ballpoint pen. I vaguely recall that the story had something to do with a young Air Force pilot that was part of an elite squadron being trained to fly a secret fleet of space ships designed to protect the earth from alien invasion. I never finished chapter three.
In college I had another idea that I got serious enough to jot notes about and tear magazine articles out with facts that would come in handy when I wrote the book–this would have been in the mid-eighties. I did not start writing anything down until almost ten years later. I had a pretty good excuse as I had to graduate from college, get married, relocate from Tampa to Tallahassee with my new bride, then move back to Tampa a year later, build a house, and grow my career. But finally I did start a manuscript, this time typed on my first PC. This was a “sophisticated” story of a small market profession baseball team that defied the odds and made a run at the World Series. The antagonist was a young TV executive who would loose his career over the terrible ratings if the team won the pennant and on the World Series–he would have to make sure the team failed. The hero was to be a rookie pitcher who would bravely ignore the mob threats to throw the game, thus, risking his life. What a fantastic story! I never finished chapter five.
In 1997 my son was born and my daughter came along two years later. We built a larger house to accommodate our growing family. For a year and a half I commuted from Tampa to Dallas for my job–life was crazy busy! Then, one morning in 2001, while out getting some exercise, a car hit me while I was riding my bicycle. Fortunately my helmet saved my life and I received relatively minor injuries and made a full recovery. The hit-and-run driver’s car impacted me at such a high rate of speed that I was launched into the air as the car sped under me and I landed some thirty feet in front of my bike! I could have easily been killed,
Needless to say, my appreciation for life changed as a result of that accident. So when the idea for The WILCO Project came to me, in July of 2004, I once again sat down in front of the computer to write the story. On this attempt, however, for six days a week I woke up a four in the morning and wrote for three hours. By late November I had completed the first draft, I had finally finished writing my novel. I guess I would conclude that I wrote my novel because I love to write and it was always a goal of mine–but, it also took a change in my outlook on life to give me the mindset to finish.
The WILCO Project won Honorable Mention in the 2005 Florida Writers Association Royal Palm Literary Awards. It was a Semifinalist in the 2008 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award contest. Publishers Weekly review says, “”THE WILCO PROJECT combines murder mystery with elements of a technological thriller, blending the genres in a deftly written manuscript…the author delivers a well-executed thriller.” Please check out my website: http://DanielSpringer.com.