After I finished my third military-history book, I swore I’d never write another. Well, I’m currently in the process of finishing a fourth title, Assault Troops of World War I: The Central, Allied, and Neutral Powers. I swear I’ll never write another military-history book when that one is finished!
German Flamethrower Pioneers of World War I has quite a backstory to it. You can read it on pages 179 to 180, 188 to 189, and 228 of Ghosts and Ballyhoo. The story “A Test of Character from God?” on page 228 is the final act in the saga of my first book on military history. In Ghosts and Ballyhoo, the short stories that describe what happened are titled thusly:
“I Know: Flamethrowers!”
“The Chicken-Voiced Fabulist”
“A Test of Character from God?”
All of my military-history books went into some literary-academic-commercial wormhole and disappeared. It made me so angry that I wanted to “take a flamethrower to this place!” But illness and what I believe was help from…somebody allowed me to not only shed the rage I felt at the community of military historians but also choose to write a fourth volume. And I’m really enjoying putting together Assault Troops of World War I. It’s got information in it that nobody’s ever published in English. Mexican rocketeers and gas troops? Dutch stormtroops? Swedish flamethrower troops? You betcha!
In all honesty it probably will be my last book on military history, but only because I want to write other things now. Producing these books takes incredible amounts of time and energy, commodities I’m running short on now. Each book in the tetralogy adds to the information presented in the last. So you’ll have to buy all four of them, along with the Ghosts Trilogy.
Why? Because “Shut up!”
In conclusion, I dare anyone to read “A Test of Character from God?” in Ghosts and Ballyhoo and tell me with complete conviction that it was just a coincidence. Ask yourself: What are the odds?