Bestselling author Bryan Young took a few minutes to talk about how he came to write Operation Montauk, his latest “sci-fi pulp” novel about time travel and World War II, among other things.
The book tells the story of a World War II soldier, Corporal Jack Mallory, who finds himself lost in time after a failed attempt to assassinate Hitler before his rise to power. Stranded nearly 100 million years off course, with his entire team dead, Mallory joins a group of wayward time travelers fighting to survive in a hostile environment teaming with dinosaurs! Desperate to get home, the lost travelers search for any solution that might get them there and solve the mystery that marooned them in another age. Unfortunately, the jungle holds a deadly secret from Mallory’s future-past…
But where does Montauk fit into all of this?
“The lead character in the story [Mallory] is a soldier involved in the Montauk Project during World War II,” Young explains. ”In my research about World War II, I found that the government, via the Montauk Project, was allegedly throwing money into time travel. I’m not sure how true that is, but it certainly sparked my imagination and led to an adventurous pulp sci-fi novel about time travel. In early versions of the book, it opened at a bunker in Montauk, but my editor insisted I cut to the chase a lot faster.”
Also, why Montauk? Does he vacation on The End or does he know the area well?
“I have not yet been to Montauk, but one of the fellows in my writing group is from that area, actually, and has told me nothing but wonderful things about it,” Young said, noting that despite never visiting, the stories of Montauk and Camp Hero captured his imagination.
“The stories about the Montauk Project are endlessly fascinating. Endlessly. Especially the more crazy conspiracy theories about what they were really working on there,” he said. “And even more recently, the Montauk Monster. I know there’s a reasonable explanation for it, but just that one photograph fired thousands of imaginations.
Along with his love of all things Montauk, Young has another East End connection via his love of the late, great author and Hamptons resident Kurt Vonnegut Jr. Published just a few months before Operation Montauk, Young‘s God Bless You, Mr. Vonnegut is a love letter to his favorite writer.
“Few authors have had as much influence on the youth of America than Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. He brought morality and humanism to the forefront of millions of minds, and into the mind of one man in particular,” Young writes, describing his subject. Young is a longtime fan and student of Vonnegut, and God Bless You, Mr. Vonnegut collects a decade’s worth of essays, short stories and other material about, or directly inspired by, Vonnegut.
Bryan Young is an author, documentary filmmaker and Huffington Post and StarWars.com contributor. He is also the founder and editor of “geek” website BigShinyRobot.com and author of several books, including comics with Slave Labor Graphics and Image Comics, and bestselling comedy novel Lost at the Con. You can find his books and movies at Amazon.com or follow his blog at BryanYoungFiction.com.
Later this year, Young will publish two books later this year: Children’s Illustrated History of Presidential Assassination and The Serpent’s Head, a sci-fi western. He is 32 years old and lives in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Follow Bryan Young‘s Twitter feed here: @Swankmotron
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