Writing “Death March of Cambreadth” for Mars

When Superversive announced the Planetary Anthology, you’d have to figure that Mars was right up my alley.I’ve only broken, destroyed, trashed, and blown up any number of vehicles, places and people that I take one look at John Wick and see it as a challenge.

So Mars, god of War?

Blow crap up?

Count me in.

Strangely enough, I went small for this one. Don’t ask me why I did. But there was still plenty of violence. Don’t worry about that. Because if I have any message in any of my books, it’s Orwell’s “People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.”

In my collection of various and sundry people I collect, I’ve known two women who were divorced, and under fairly odd and bizarre circumstances. How bizarre? Well, in one case, one had a husband who worked for a federal agency, and he thought he had leverage over her because he had made a sex tape of them without her knowledge…

Yes, because a federal employee has NOTHING to lose by releasing a sex tape online. Sigh. Yes. He was that stupid. He did exist. And he was one of those federal employees who carried a gun. (Which doesn’t say much given that even the Department of Education has a SWAT team– yes, really).

So I took this guy, made him psychotic as well as moronic, laying a trap for a fictional heroine who is actually modeled on a completely different woman.

Then I set it on Mars, in 2340, added cybernetic limbs, laser rifles, and a catchy tune to kill people to.

I added a main character designed to look at this situation and consider “How many different ways can I think of for this entire situation to go wrong?” His name is Paul Murphy, and he’s had some experience with this type of situation. There’s a reason one of his arms is cybernetic. It’s been years since he’s been in a good fight, and he misses it. So when his friend Carrie comes to him with her little problem, he comes up with a plan when everything goes to hell.

And then everything goes to hell.

But Paul has a plan in his mind and a song in his heart.

And the song is March of Cambreadth.

So, Planetary: Mars is out. Might want to look into it.



About Declan Finn

Declan Finn is the author of Honor at Stake, an urban fantasy novel, nominated for Best Horror in the first annual Dragon Awards. He has also written The Pius Trilogy, an attempt to take Dan Brown to the woodshed in his own medium -- soon to be republished by Silver Empire Press. Finn has also written "Codename: Winterborn," an SF espionage thriller, and it's follow-up, "Codename: Winterborn." And "It was Only on Stun!" and "Set To Kill" are murder mysteries at a science fiction convention.
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