Portsmouth’s World War Two Heroes submitted to the publishers

After years of research, and months of frantic writing, I am happy to announce that my debut book, ‘Portsmouth’s World War Two Heroes’, is safely on its way to the publishers. Naturally I cannot say too much about what will be in it, neither will I have a publication date for a while yet. But as soon as I hear anything, you will find it out here first.

Have I learn’t anything throughout the whole process? Well, maybe in hindsight six months to write 50,000 words was a tad ambitious – particularly with other events that cropped up! I would also give more time to picture research, rather than treating it as an afterthought once the writing-up is finished. Also, I’ve learnt a lot about institutions – some are extremely helpful, while some are so off-putting it’s quite unbelievable.

I’m going to take a break from in-depth research for a while, in order to get some rest and let my poor brain cells recover. I have a few ideas for some interesting projects over the summer. But naturally enough, with an eye on the 100th anniversary of the Great War in 2014, my thoughts are bound to turn to a counterpart book on Portsmouth’s WW1 Dead, in time for that important milestone.

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11 Comments

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11 responses to “Portsmouth’s World War Two Heroes submitted to the publishers

  1. x

    Good news. I look forward to the book.

  2. johncerickson

    Congratulations! So let’s see – we make sure your 1st book sells well, we get you started on your second, then X arranges an “accident” while I finish the second and sell both for millions.
    What?
    I actually typed that?
    Oh shoot, where is that backspace key?
    No, wait, that key will post the…….

  3. x

    I bet he will get a ghost writer in for the blog…… 🙂

    I think it is marvellous adventure.

    I am curious. Have any of your classmates from uni’ under taken a similar venture?

  4. johncerickson

    I’ll post this here, even though it’s not relevant. The new trimaran LCS has a wee bit of a design flaw.
    http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2011/06/shipbuilder-blames-navy-as-brand-new-warship-disintegrates/?utm_source=co2hog
    Although I hate Internet abbreviations, this a definite WTF? 😀
    By the by, X, I suppose you and I could co-write the blog while little Jimmy is off playing author…. 😉

  5. x

    No John you have been here the longest that’s your job.

    I will continue on the sidelines with the rhubarb.

    As for LCS well I learned about aluminium corrosion and long time back when I bought my Land Rover. In my naivety I thought “ha! ha! doesn’t rust!” But it does corrode. And it is difficult to manage. The USN should have gone for steel. Even modern commercial grades for ship construction are as good as some of the grades used a decade or so for military purposes. Further I question what the obsession the USN has with speed for LCS, the main driver for selecting aluminium. 30kts is enough.

    • johncerickson

      I pre-date you, X? I could’ve sworn you were already here when I showed up. But hey, I’ll share the fun. What’s the point of a bully pulpit if you can’t share it with everybody? 😀
      I need to look for more information on the LCS problems, because I know both the RN and the USN have combined aluminium (aluminum, whatever) on their ships, at the very least AL superstructure with steel hull. I’m intrigued as to why this is a problem now. And I thought the USN had done work on (I’m not sure what it’s called) using an electric charge and a sacrificial electrode. (I know we have a lot of civilian use of it for bridges like the Golden Gate in San Francisco.) I’d like to know what the peculiarities of the water jets are that prevent something similar being used.
      I may have to renew my presence on an American board that was deep in discussion of the LCS when last I left. Informative, but rather intolerant of less knowledgeable folk – like me, who hadn’t spent half a century in shipyards or the Navy. Got a bit nasty, plus I got sidelined on other things. Now I just have to find my old login!

      • x

        Just because a hull floats doesn’t mean its weightless. So the lighter the hull is the faster it will go so that means aluminium. The next thing that governs speed is the beam to length ratio; hence the trimaran form factor. Why the USN thinks they need speed I don’t know. Last place I would want be doing 50mph plus is in 4000ton ship just off shore. Eek!

        It will be a sacrificial anode not electrode. Here in times past cars used to use a positive earth for their electrical systems which helped to prevent rust. In the 70s(?) they moved over to negative earth and car bodies started to rust.

        I am not sure what you are saying about water jets.

        It is an almighty cock-up isn’t it?

      • johncerickson

        I knew the stuff about the hull weight and beam to length ratio. I learned most of it from that cool Springsharp program. You HAVE to get that and play with it a bit – it is great fun!
        Thanks for the correction on the terminology. I used to know all that anode/electrode type stuff – my father drilled it into me at a young age. Unfortunately, a combination of my medications, age, and other things stuffed into the brainpan has pushed some stuff out. Such is the fun of advancing decrepitude! 😀
        The article from Wired said the worst of the corrosion was in the water jet layout. I don’t know if there is some unique interface of steel and aluminium in the water jet “tubes”, or if it’s just the place where the corrosion is worst (technically deterioration, not corrosion, but so much easier to type!). I’ll have to do some research on that.
        And yes to both points – I would definitely not want to be gadding about at 40-50 knots in the shallows. 25 knots sounds plenty high for that level of nonsense. And this whole LCS thing IS turning into a first class cock-up. Our appropriations is starting to remind me of a kid at a buffet. They want everything on the table, and don’t think through the results of trying to eat it all. Not just LCS, but several other programs have all shown a very high “gee-whiz” factor with no consideration of possible negative consequences or over-complication of relatively simple tasks. Tech is fine, but tech for tech’s sake really hosed us over in Nam. Pity there’s few of the old hands around to explain those consequences to the new generation of “wonder warriors”. C’est la guerre!

        • x

          The Canadians used to be good at “shaking the box” for parts when they built their ships. Considering the US has so many good parts in its box it is a shame it can’t come up with anything better than the 2 LCS ships.

          I love hovercraft and hydrofoils and all other waterborne oddities. But when it comes to navy ships clever hull forms never work. A simple steel hull was all that was needed for LCS. Yes slope the sides of the superstructure a bit to reduce the RCS. Fit it with the 5inch gun, hanger space for 2 SeaHawks, and ESSM. All they had to do was upscale the Hazard class hull or downscale the Spurance.

        • johncerickson

          That describes the “other” LCS, the “Freedom” class by Lockheed Martin. Fits all the criteria that the fancy trimaran does, and does it without all the fancy engineering. Standard steel hull, aluminium superstructure – the only “weird” part, other than the module concept, is the waterjet propulsion. Since that’s the same style of system as “Independence”, it should prove interesting to see if the LM design has the same corrosion problems.
          By the by, to rush the trimaran into service, a few systems were left off the first ship – including an unspecified “electrical corrosion suppression system”. This is admitted by Austral, the builder, yet they blame the Navy for failure to properly maintain systems. (Sigh.) I think I smell an A-12 style lawsuit coming….

  6. x

    The other LCS is a bodge too. And I don’t get mission modules either. I wouldn’t send an escort to see without a sonar, PDMS, and a helicopter. I wouldn’t use an escort to hunt mines. What is there left? Not much.

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