Techno-thriller/literary fiction – authors on tour

77 Days in September
by
Ray Gorham

Hurt, stranded, and alone, Kyle Tait sets off on a 2,000 mile journey home in post-EMP America.


On a Friday afternoon before Labor Day, Americans are
getting ready for the holiday weekend, completely unaware of a long-planned
terrorist plot about to be launched against the country. Kyle Tait is settling
in for his flight home to Montana when a single nuclear bomb is detonated 300
miles above the heart of America. The blast, an Electro-Magnetic Pulse (EMP),
destroys every electrical device in the country, and results in the crippling
of the power grid, the shutting down of modern communications, and bringing to
a halt most forms of transportation.
Kyle narrowly escapes when his airplane crashes on
takeoff, only to find himself stranded 2,000 miles from home in a country that
has been forced, from a technological standpoint, back to the 19th Century.
Confused, hurt, scared, and alone, Kyle must make his way across a hostile
continent to a family he’s not even sure has survived the effects of the
attack. As Kyle forges his way home, his frightened family faces their own
struggles for survival in a community trying to halt its slow spiral into chaos
and anarchy.
77 Days in September follows Kyle and his wife,
Jennifer, as they are stretched past their breaking point, but find in their devotion
to each other the strength to persevere.



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77 Days in September
High above the sun-baked prairies of Lawrence,
Kansas, the missile reached its target. 
No one on the ground even noticed the blast.  Perhaps had someone been looking at precisely
the right location, at precisely the right time, they might have noticed a
tiny, momentary spark in the bright afternoon sky.  Had they seen the flash, it likely would have
been attributed to the glint of sunlight reflecting off a passing
airplane.  From every vantage point below
the detonation, there was no sense of the destructive capacity contained in
that tiny speck of light.  More than 300
miles above the earth, a nuclear explosion impacts nothing with the force of
its blast.  It is merely a large bomb
going off in a vacuum, creating no shockwaves, no fireballs, no radiation, not
even any sound. 

Despite the lack of explosive destruction, this
was now the most lethal weapon to be unleashed in the history of the world, but
it was a weapon that would have had absolutely no 
discernible affect on mankind
200 years ago, other than creating a more colorful aurora.  Upon detonation, the bomb expelled an intense
wave of gamma radiation in every direction. 
The gamma rays traveling earthward interacted with the upper levels of
the atmosphere and created a chain reaction of displaced electrons that rushed
towards the surface of the earth at the speed of light.  Most of the these displaced electrons passed
rapidly through the atmosphere and grounded themselves harmlessly in the earth. 

A small percentage, however, encountered
conductive materials:  metal, antennas,
copper wiring, and silicon chips.  As
these conductors absorbed untold billions of free electrons, they experienced
sudden surges in both voltage and current. 
In simple items, like a garden rake, this surge was manifested as a
harmless static electricity-like spark. 
But in larger networks and sensitive objects, the consequences of the
electron overload were devastating. 

Ray Gorham was born in Calgary, Canada in 1966.  Prior to graduating college and settling in the United States in 1991, Ray had the good fortune to live in a variety of locations around the world.  Years in Australia, England, Lebanon, Japan, Canada, and the United States all helped to shape his background, worldview, and appreciation for other people and cultures.

Graduating with a degree in Accounting, he decided he couldn’t spend a future studying tax law and sitting in front of a computer all day, so he took a management position with Wal-Mart and spent the next 10 years in retail management where he had the opportunity to interact with hundreds of employees and thousands of customers on a weekly basis.  Growing tired of large corporations, Ray next tried opening and running a restaurant, but decided after a year that wasn’t for him either.  From there, he found a small log home business for sale in Montana in 2006 and settled in for what he hoped would be a long-term career.
When the construction industry slowed down in 2008, Ray knew he was going to have a lot of time on his hands, so he determined to cross off one of the items on his bucket list—writing a novel.  After thousands of hours of writing and editing he had the final draft of his first novel, a 108,000 word effort telling the story of a husband struggling to return to his family after a major terrorist attack.  While agents and publishers have passed on his efforts to this point, he has found significant success so far in digital format, selling over 10,000 copies of his work.
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