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Monday, September 3, 2012

I Like Tanks

On the spectrum of female stereotypes, I'm probably more on the "tomboy" side than the "girly" side. I'm at my most comfortable in jeans and a t-shirt, and I still get together with my (male) friends for marathon video game sessions. (However, in the interests of full disclosure, I do own a ridiculous amount of shoes.) That said, many of the stereotypical "male" interests do nothing for me. I don't care about cars or guns. When the aforementioned gaming sessions revolve exclusively around first-person shooters, I'll sometimes whine. (Hacking stuff to bits with a sword, though? Sign me up.)

There is one of those areas that gets me almost excited as my guy friends: tanks. Tanks are cool. Tanks are fun. I'll quit my bitching about games I don't really care for if I get to drive a tank. Also, in the history of movies and television, I am always entertained by tanks running over stuff. It's just funny. I tried to go old-school and find the clip of Major Frank Burns losing control of a tank on M*A*S*H, but my search skills were failing me. You'll have to settle for Tim Taylor impaling a sign and demolishing some golf carts:

See? Never not hilarious.

Now, what does this have to do with writing? My current work-in-progress is a sci-fi/erotic romance. Unfortunately, I sometimes find myself lacking when it comes to the "sci" half of "sci-fi". Luckily, I have a friend, the invaluable Boobulon, who is willing to 1) teach me all the SCIENCE, and 2) is doing some artwork for me in an art exchange we worked out.

I was working on "It was Chapter Three, but now it's Chapter One" that I referenced in my last post, and got to the point where my main character gets severely injured. He was already riding in a fairly basic tank (with a few snazzy futuristic upgrades), but he needed to go up against something bigger and stronger. I asked Boobulon for help. I believe my words were something like, "I want it to be more than a standard tank, but I don't want to get into hokey Transformers territory or anything like that."

He read my mind and managed to verbalize exactly what I was going for. After a lesson on how different vehicles could move over different types of terrain, and what sort of weaponry the enemy tank could have in order to maximize damage to the MC without killing him, he knocked out a super-quick sketch for me:
Unless he's the operator of the tank, that guy down there is probably gonna get fucked.
That is one badass tank. I love it. I want to find more opportunities to use it in everything I write. If I ever get the urge to write a contemporary romance or a murder mystery, that tank is making an appearance.

I like tanks. Tanks are awesome. Happy Labor Day!

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