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"We are the protagonists of our stories called life, and there is no limit to how high we can fly."

PHD. MBA. MHS. Type rated on A350, A330, B777, B747-400, B747-200, B757, B767, B737, B727. International Airline Pilot / Author / Speaker. Dedicated to giving the gift of wings to anyone following their dreams. Supporting Aviation Safety through training, writing, and inspiration. Fighting for Aviation Safety and Airline Employee Advocacy. Safety Culture and SMS change agent.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

The Next Big Thing

Last week I was asked to answer a few questions about my work in progress by a pilot/author Harrison Jones. What an honor to involved in this blog hop. But first... please meet Harrison.

Harrison Jones is not just any pilot/author. Harrison defines the meaning of success—From Mechanic to pilot, he has achieved his dreams.  In 1967 he took flying lessons and obtained his commercial license with multi-engine and instrument ratings. It wasn’t long until he became a flight instructor and taught for over ten years. In 1972 he accepted a position with an airline as a pilot ground school instructor and taught aircraft systems until 1976, when he accepted a pilot position with the company. And now he writes novels. I’ve just order both his books and they are coming soon. I will keep you posted and we will hear more soon.

This amazing man can be found at 

So what is my Next Big Thing? 
Here you go....

What is the working title of your book?

Flight ForSafety.  This is the second of a three book series. Flight For Control is the first. Flight For Survival will be the next.  And one day, we will see ‘Fight’ For Safety the truth behind the fiction of all three novels. That will happen around retirement.

Where did the idea come from for the book?

Imagine being called into the Chief Pilots’ office for the first time in a 27-year airline career because you were writing about safety issues of the most horrendous accident of all times. Imagine sitting at the table, heads talking about social media, face-book, blogging, flight attendants, union contract…and your mind drifts to irony of the meeting. Your eyebrows knit and eyes narrow. Your mind whirls.  Is this for real? And then you think, “What if…”

What genre does your book fall under?

Definitely Aviation Thriller/ Mystery. Some of the ladies who have picked it might want to call it women’s fiction/mystery. And yet with the same book a pilot said, “If Tom Clancy wrote about airliners, this would be it.”  So I’m thinking I have accomplished my goal—writing something for everyone. Being a female pilot, what should we expect?

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

Flight For Control is in motion toward film. I’m writing the screenplay in January. But the same characters will carry through to Flight For Safety. Note: If you’re a member of the airline industry and want to be an extra in the flight for control movie, email and leave me a message.

Back to casting: John Travolta would be Captain Bill Jacobs. Bill’s wife, NTSB investigator Kathryn, would have to be Julianne Moore. The infamous Darby would be played by Amy Adams. Yes, I have given this a great deal of though.

What is the one sentence synopsis of your book?

One sentence? I thought one page was a challenge. Here we go:

Pacific Air Lines’ crash has sent a message to the world—Pilots don’t know how to fly their planes—unfortunately behind this reality hides corruption and greed which has turned each flight into a game of Russian roulette.

If you plan to publish, will your book be self-published or published traditionally?

I am going to maintain my relationship with Jet Star publishing. For those of you who don’t know, this is my publishing company.  We are just getting started, but one day Jet Star will be the producer of thrillers and mysteries, historical fiction, children, motivation and young adult books, too.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

The first draft of Flight For Safety took me 6 months. I’m on edit three. Flight For Control was 4 months, and editing took two years.  I’m writing smarter this time. I hope. 

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

Oh wow—this is a tough one. I’m thinking this book would be a cross between Wallstreet and the Insider—Aviation executives, and the insider speaking the truth.

I have a unique plot, appealing to men and women, pilots and not. While my stories are wrapped around the airline industry, they are powerful stories. A little sex. Flying. Mystery. Truth behind the fiction. I’ve got it all.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?

Flight For Safety was inspired by the AF 447 crash, and the passengers who count on their pilots to know how to fly their planes when the automation breaks. Why did this happen? Read on...


What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

That one day Flight For Safety will come out in the non-fiction realm as ‘Fight’ For Safety. Until then, the reader can only imagine which part(s) of this, and all my novels, are real.

There is a method to my madness. Entertain, and create awareness.
Flight For Control—The essence of the Industry and the impact on mental health.
Flight For Safety—The impact of automation and proficiency.
Flight For Survival—How long has it been since your pilots have flown?

The Next Big Thing:

I have a special surprise. I have two next big things to shout about. 

Syd Blue 
Cap'n Aux

I met Syd Blue at a SFO writer’s conference two years ago. I think we were the only two pilots out of 500 participants, and we found each other by accident. As a child, traveling with her father and brothers in their small plane, Syd was the one who fit in the baggage compartment, where she began writing stories at a very young age. Syd has turned her love of aviation into a business with her Cessna, and is busily writing too. She is supporting children with her passion. Syd believes there is a niche for the positive motiviation for kids and aviation, and I agree. My copy of fly girl is on it’s way. I can hardly wait. Syd will also be joining me at the Western Washington Aviation Fair in February. For now, join Syd’s blog, Big Bear Grizzly Net and watch for her Next Big Thing.

Cap'n Aux, is a captain for a major airline who I met on line. But, our paths almost crossed at one of my previous airlines. We were hired within months of each other back in the 80's. Imagine that. I just received his book in the mail, The Last Bush Pilots, and all I can say is wow… this is a major fun book! 

Spoiler alert: Captain Aux will be my Friday Flyer tomorrow. So I’m going to make you come back and read all about him then. And more on his fabulous book. For now, put Cap'n Aux blog on your to read list and watch for his Next Big Thing. 

XOX Karlene


  1. Wonderful Post,

    I am so happy that Harrison forwarded this to you, because that lead me to your blog. Thank you for blazing the trail, for all of us in the airline world. When I get some time, I will be reading all of the “Safety” books. I hope I find as much success as you have.

    Congratulations on the movie deal…

    1. Rob, I too am happy Harrison forwarded this to me. And thank you so much for the compliment and, for reading all the flight books. There actually is a 4th!
      Happy Holidays. And... the movie deal isn't done, but it is definitely in progress.
      Thank you for the wonderful comment!

  2. Thanks for the preview of the new book, Karlene. I want to be first in line when it's published. "Flight for Control" is one of my favorites and has a special place in my collection.

    1. Harrison, Thank you so much for the support of my novel. I am so glad it's one of your favorites! And... guess what came in the mail today. Can hardly wait to get reading. Happy Holidays!

  3. Hah PERFECT casting, Karlene! I can't think of anyone better than Julianne Moore as Kat! And Johnny T as her creepy pilot hubby is brilliant!

    Thanks also for the shout-out. Shoutin' back atcha on my blog in my next 2 posts (1st this Wednesday!)
    Eric "Cap'n Aux"

    1. Thank you! And what about Darby... I'm thinking a little spitfire redhead. lol. Serious and fun.
      Oh yes... Johnny T will be perfect. I'll go find and invite him personally. :)


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