Have you ever wanted to read a novel about a cameraman? I have, and I’ve even tried writing some short stories myself. But there aren’t many of them. I’d been looking for a while when I finally discovered “Shooter in the Crosshairs” by Rick Portier. Rick is a cameraman working in regional news in the US but he is also an incredibly talented wordsmith. Even his blog is well written and entertaining http://turdpolishertv.wordpress.com/
Before I tell you what I thought of his, here’s the blurb to shooter in the crosshairs, to whet your appetite:
Brock Nicholls screwed up.
When his television career went down in flames on the steps of a Dallas courthouse, it made national news and earned the TV photog a night in lock-up. Now, Brock’s stuck in the place where it all started, Baton Rouge, working for Percy Finch and his “Good News” strategy that has viewers flocking to the competition. If that weren’t bad enough, Finch has Brock locked into shooting pet parades for Katie Couric wannabes like Nancy Patrick.
Against his better judgment, Brock drags Nancy to the scene of a fire where he is plunged into the world that originally ignited his passion for this business – a world before cookie-cutter anchors and Barbie doll reporters. There he finds something that has been sorely missing in his life – the first real person he’s met in years, Ida Mae Christophe.
Brock is sure that, through her eyes, he can tell the story of a neglected corner of the metro wallowing in poverty, crime, and fear. A story so intense, it will catapult him back to the top. In order to do it, he and Nancy will have to find the arsonist hiding in the circle of lighted torches around the burning cross.
When he finally comes face-to-face with the man behind the sheet, Brock discovers he has one more demon to exorcise – one from his youth. In order to do that, he’ll have to decide between telling the story of a lifetime and sending a murderer to jail.
So what did I think of it? I bloody loved it. It really reflected our lives, our needs and our fears. The dialogue is electric and some of the quotes are worth keeping. Below are some of the the dialogue I highlighted on my kindle as I read it:
“It wasn’t her story. It wasn’t even our story. The story belonged to the people in it. We were just helping them tell it. That’s why I’d worked my ass off shooing it.”
“It was an accident. I violated the first rule of news. I got involved. I’m supposed to record the news, not make it.”
“The access. The action. The voyeuristic trips into other people’s lives.”
“Reporters were more interested in what I could do for them than what we could do for the story.”
“I was trained to be a fly on the wall – a silent witness to history – never get involved. I always struggled with when to stop being a journalist and start acting like a human being. When did the story stop being the story and become a real person with real feelings?”
“News is significant. It’s weighty. The first draft of history.”
“It’s a job. Just like bartender or meter maid. You act like it’s some glorious calling – like an art you have to suffer for. It’s what pays the bills, man.”
“Everybody’s got a story worth telling, Slick. Something they did. Sacrifices made. Lessons learned. It’s up to guys like me to tell them.”
“There it was, page one in the propaganda handbook – control the message”
“Behind Icky’s viewfinder, I told myself it was just another story and forced all emotion from my body. It was the only way I was going to get through this without doing something stupid.”
So what do I think? Get out and buy it now. It’s available on amazon – http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B006OFRRZ6/ref=r_soa_w_d priced at £2.99 and is well worth it.