OLD – A local man has written his first book and plans to write a sequel.
Barry D. Freeman, who lives on land near Eagle Hill, is the author of Sideslip, a story about Ross Coe, an airplane enthusiast who returns to his family’s rural property and finds himself embroiled in a murder. mysterious.
At the same time, Coe faces a few personal tangles, including an ex-girlfriend who returns in his life.
During an interview, Freeman, 78, was asked where he came up with the idea for the 324-page book.
“I always wanted to fly,” Freeman said. “As a child, I always built planes. The idea to write about it did not come until much later in life.
In the meantime, Freeman, who grew up in Medicine Hat, was making a living as a television cameraman, film editor, screenwriter, satellite / internet TV installer, and museum director.
About 45 years ago, a friend invited Freeman to join him as he flew over the mountains to Vancouver Island. Freeman also completed approximately eight hours of flight instruction.
Freeman’s fascination with this flight to Vancouver Island then served as the genesis of Slideslip.
“It was so exciting to fly in a little fabric covered airplane; essentially, a metal tube frame covered with fabric, ”he said.
“It was a very small engine with a twisted piece of metal in the front to pull you through the mountains. It was bumpy, a spectacular sight. It was breathtaking, in fact.
Years later, Freeman used this trip as inspiration for a piece during a writing class.
“There was a good reaction and I thought, ‘Well let’s expand that someday'”
Six years ago he started writing the book.
Freeman worked there intermittently. The past year has been difficult – not only because of COVID, but because his 40-year-old wife, Mara Coote-Freeman passed away in April 2020.
Freeman knew he wanted to write a book about flying, but he knew it had to be more than that.
A great reader of mysteries, the answer seemed obvious to him. Murder – and a little romance.
Sideslip is set in a fictional rural area south of Calgary, where the wealthy lead luxury lives and park their planes on a nearby airstrip created from land previously owned by Ross’s father.
After a varied career in the Air Force and Security, Ross decides to move home to take on a position as Chief Airport Security.
This is when the murder mystery begins.
“He gets this (job) and finds there is a bit more to it than just driving around checking doors,” Freeman said.
Freeman said the title of the book referred to a classic airplane maneuver.
“It’s one way to use the side of the plane as an air brake,” he wrote in an email. “You put the plane in a position where it moves sideways and slows down. You can lose altitude without gaining much speed at this point.
“Would you say the main character Ross is doing? Is he slipping in a way,” Freeman was asked.
“That’s a good way to put it, yeah,” he said. “He also uses this maneuver when chasing bad guys. ”
Overall, Freeman enjoyed writing the book but admitted it was a struggle at times. Usually he would spend about four hours a day writing it down when there were no other chores or interruptions. He also spent a lot of time researching this.
“I knew a lot about planes and flying. It has always been one of my interests. But I did a lot more research, details, ”he said.
Fans can look forward to another book – a sequel to this one.
“There are enough questions left in this book to need to be answered in a sequel,” he said.
“But to make it a cohesive story with a beginning, a middle and an end, that’s where the hard work will come in.”
It won’t take him six years to write the second book. He is sure of it.
“I have nothing else to do during the winter,” Freeman said. “I have to help feed the horses every now and then and that’s about it. ”
“The characters are all there, the place is there. I don’t need to research or invent a lot more things. I have to pick up on what happened in the first book and of course someone will die – it’s that kind of thing.
Sideslip is published by Desktop Communications. It can be ordered online as a book or as an e-book.