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Fiction writer looking for yacht info

Discussion in 'General Yachting Discussion' started by debirlfan, Apr 26, 2015.

  1. debirlfan

    debirlfan New Member

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    Hopefully this is permitted here... I'm currently working on a story, part of which is set on a large luxury yacht, circa mid 1980's. Said yacht is owned or leased by a very wealthy drug lord, who currently has two captives he is holding on the yacht.

    My thought is that they are otherwise alone in the tender bay, left handcuffed to something (support beam? shelving unit?) Does this seem reasonable? If so, what else would be in the tender bay? When one of my hostages escapes, might he be able to find a tool box or the like where he could get a good sized wrench to use as a weapon?

    Also, from what I can see, the usual crew on a yacht like this would be about eight crew members. Where would they be located? What would they be doing? Would some be "on duty" while others were sleeping? This would probably be in an around 10 pm to midnight time frame. Specifically, while the yacht was out to sea (and under power) who would be on the bridge? Would there be more than one person there? Would there be anyone in the engine room?

    Thanks so much!
  2. Kafue

    Kafue Senior Member

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    Do your own research, that makes for a real story from a true story teller. We are not a resource for impostors!
    If you are true to your trade, as a writer, do not ask for short cuts from us.
    Live it, then write something worthwhile.
  3. debirlfan

    debirlfan New Member

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    Kafue, believe me, I'd love to - but renting a yacht isn't exactly in the budget. Further, the photos and blueprints I can find online are all current (even the boats built in the 80's have been heavily refurbished, so that's no help.) If you can suggest a better source of information, I'd be happy to take my research there.
  4. leeky

    leeky Senior Member

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    Kafue, I consider you to be one of the more level-headed people on YF, but I think your response to the OP is just silly. There are people continually coming to YF doing research. You've even helped some without telling them to find their answer by trial and error, i.e., "Living it."

    My favorite fictional genre is science fiction, and my favorite authors are Isaac Asimov and Robert Heinlein. I assure you they did not "Live it," because the science was fictional. Yet, both are considered top notch science fiction writers. Do murder mystery writers have to actually kill someone to write a good novel?


    debirlfan, I would be glad to help you if I was qualified to answer your questions. There are others here that are qualified, and I hope that they will help you. (Maybe Kafue just got up on the wrong side of Australia today.;))

  5. SFS

    SFS Senior Member

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    Deb - Similar questions have been asked here, within the past 15 months or so. Same situation, fiction writer verifying the legitimacy of plot points. I did some quick searches, and didn't immediately find the thread, but it is here somewhere. Try some searching while you are waiting for additional replies.
  6. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    I think it was removed as I suspect this one will be.
  7. debirlfan

    debirlfan New Member

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    I think I found it - sadly, not really the type of information I was looking for. If someone can point me towards a better source, I'd be happy to go there and do my research, but Google has been less than helpful.
  8. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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    Probably not such a fanciful thought as you might imagine

    Do you really think any readers will give a toss if the hookers are handcuffed to the bookcase or bondage rings?

    There could be a lot of stuff in a tender bay not that many 80's vintage yachts that ran with 8 crew had them but the chances of finding tools will vary. Tenders are normally the deck depts domain and these types should not be allowed access to tools unsupervised so any tools will be locked up good and proper to protect the aforementioned from damage to themselves and the vessel.

    Onboard hopefully

    Eating , drinking, smoking , watching porno videos and working on production of the next generation

    That will depend if the evenings Roman Orgy has concluded or still in full swing or if the beta max machines heads needed cleaning mid movie.

    Only the poor miserable sob who drew the short straw for the evenings activities


    That will depend if after a previous evenings activities another of the crew had taken a shine to the wheelhouse occupant and is helping to fulfil the BNWAS requirements.

    Not if its running UMS.

    Thanks so much![/QUOTE]
  9. Kafue

    Kafue Senior Member

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    leeky, you make a good point regarding “living it”, had to have a laugh at the murder story comment, keep in mind that many great writers were journalists. As for getting out the wrong side of the bed in Australia, you are dead right mate, I am all upside down because I am in Tuscany, Italy for a few weeks, then moving on through Europe. Everything is the wrong way up, even the water goes down the drain opposite way!


    However I stand by my statement. Perhaps I should have said the key word in most genres of fiction: IMAGINE it!
    Tolkien invented an entire language and writing, Donaldson the same. Even old L. Ron Hubbard!
    I suppose I seemed harsh, but truly, if you are an aspiring writer, why go with the shortcuts?

    Just read K1W1’s reply for an example of what a bit of imagination can accomplish.
    It just seemed an inappropriate post for YF.
    So with due respect debirlfan, IMHO, buy a few nautical books, read up, experience it via a good author. Then use some imagination. A good editor will fix the minor technical errors.
    Cheers.
  10. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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    Its not my imagination, I wrote that from memory of how it was in the business 30 yrs ago:)
  11. Kafue

    Kafue Senior Member

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    Hahahaha, you are something else Mate!
  12. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    Seems to me that
    Seems to me that coming here IS doing his research. There's not too many Ernest Hemmingways around today who live it before they write it.

    Although I agree with K1W1's point of not letting the wrong hands hold tools, there would be plenty of "tools" in the tender bay that could be used as weapons. He'd at least find flares, gasoline, fire extinguishers and line, possibly even a prop wrench, tie-down straps or who knows what else depending on how the boat was organized and how adept the escapee was. After all, McGiver could make a weapon out of a paper clip and not much else. Even a little old sedate New Yorker like me :rolleyes: could cause a bit of grief with just the aforementioned items.
  13. Kafue

    Kafue Senior Member

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    Okay all of you, I need to explain, I am on a long and very happy holiday with my incredible wife, touring special parts of Europe, and I should apologise to the OP for being so harsh.
    BUT...
    Also, give me some slack to start this story for her and, although I admit to having enjoyed some wonderful Tuscany beers today, here is my challenge to all of you...add to this storyline if you are not too shy.


    As usual at this time of night, I was in my tiny crews cabin, below the waterline of “Che Cazzo”, a beautiful Benetti Motor Yacht, built in 1986 or so. My cabin was so small that I had to duck my head, turnabout and close the door before I could sit on the bed. I reached under the bunk and found my “stash”. 3 bottles of Single Malt Royal Lochnagar 12 Year Old that I had stolen from the “supplies” of the owner, some overweight, gold chain covered fool, with a gold watch the size of Big Ben wrapped around his fat oversized wrist. We, the crew, all thought he was some sort of drug dealer type. He was always surrounded by South Americans, probably Columbian or Panamanians.

    I took a deep swig, closely followed by a second and third from the half empty bottle.

    I heard a loud bellowing in an almost indescribable language, sort of a blend of a heavy South African Accent, with its flat enunciations and Australian. I knew this was Kiwi, our Chief below decks. He was from New Zealand and had been on board regularly, seeing as he was familiar with the construction and engineering of the build back in the ’86. Great bloke, had become a friend and he was young at heart. What I mean by that is he chased every stewardess on board, none were safe as long as they could move!

    I took one more large swig, emptying the bottle and felt the wonderful warmth of the whiskey hit my stomach and warm my heart, before I stashed it back under the bed. I didn’t want Kiwi finding me drinking, not only would he kick my ass, but far worse still, he would take my stash for himself as “punishment”. He ran a tight ship.

    I heard the yelling get closer and there were other accents and voices. Still on my bunk, I flattened myself against the bulkhead where the my cabin door would open. I had done this a few times to avoid being found and thanks to the door only opening a small amount against the bunk, if I tucked my legs in, the person looking for me would only see an empty cabin. No sooner was I in position than the cabin door opened violently, smashing against my already crooked nose.

    “Empty” shouted the strange voice. All I could see from my position was the barrel of a gun, I assumed an automatic, probably AK47, as I had seen these many times growing up in Africa.

    Moving on and leaving the door ajar, the men moved on.
    I could hear Kiwi still swearing obscenities at whoever this guy was but obviously there was a serious problem. I stayed put for a long while until all was quiet, just the loud hum of the engines.

    After an hour or so, I stuck my head out the cabin. No one in sight. I made my way aft, checking every space carefully. Working my way up top I heard voices and was careful as I made my way for the tender storage area, hoping to find the lazerrette unguarded so that I could access the tender, a 23 foot centre console with powerful outboards.

    I heard a sound behind me and a dark shadow. He was a well-built character, from his silhouette against the moonlight and I prepared myself to dive for his legs and get him overboard.

    “Kaf” that you? I was called Kafue, pronounced kaf-you-ee, because that was the place I once told Kiwi about over a big night out, it was where I had been brought up in Northern Rhodesia, now Zambia. A large river, swamp, now part game park and reserve, the rest built up. I accepted the nickname, because I was an Aussie now, very much so, and we always had nicknames for each other, hence Kiwi, never knew his real name. There was “Bluey” too, a red haired Texan that took a while to accept his name, see in Australia, a red haired guy is usually called Bluey!

    But this wasn’t Bluey, or Kiwi, it was Carlos, the Skipper and boss on board. Even though he didn’t like the owner, if you crossed Carlos, you were a goner. Marooned, overboard, basically off line in the industry.

    “You’ve been drinking!”
    Typical Carlos, never mind there were probably pirates on board, he wanted his crew sober at all times.
    “Where is the rest of the crew” I asked, avoiding the question.
    “I reckon overboard or below decks.”

    “I’m headed for the tender storage, what do you think?” I said.
    “Likewise, follow me” said Carlos, always taking charge.

    We headed to the lazarette, found it open and after a careful check of the area, we entered the so called “tender garage” which was an add on from the original build.

    As we entered the garage area, I noticed the first mate, a guy from New York, very knowledgeable, but hell, give him a chance and he will talk about his life story ‘till you grow a beard. He was strung up onto the davit chain, in handcuffs.

    To his left was a guy bending over a large tool box, with the crack of his arse sticking out so much that you could park a motorbike the size of a Honda Gold Wing front wheel in it.

    I knew this was Kiwi.
    To Be continued.....but not by me.
  14. HTMO9

    HTMO9 Senior Member

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    Good sence of humour "Kaf". But thanks to Mr. Gaspard Gustave de Coriolis, water on the northern (the upper part !) half of the globe is going the right way down the drain. Bad weather systems turn against the clock and the sun is in the dead south at high noon and Christmas Day is in the winter time, when it is cold. You are living upside down or down under :) my friend. And honest people drive on the right side of the road :p.

    Enjoy Your trip across Europe! Wonderful Tuscany is a great place to start.
  15. Kafue

    Kafue Senior Member

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    Danke HTMO9.
    We are in love with Italy!
    Assisi and Tuscany especially.
    Stay safe.
    Kafue
  16. rhinotub

    rhinotub Member

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    I'm a screenwriter, and lurk (mostly) as well. I like boats, and this curious mix of people here somewhat satiates the voyeur.

    The show is cheesy, and very staged, but Below Deck would be a good place to at least see crew in motion and get an idea what they do when owner/clients are aboard or not. However, yours is a different scenario as there is the specter of death and stakes and immediacy aboard---meaning, no security team for a "Drug Lord" would put him at risk by having a random crew that wasn't up to the task of protecting the principal. Even in the 80's.

    You can also watch videos of super yachts for sale and see inside a range of tender bays.

    Luck.
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2015
  17. rhinotub

    rhinotub Member

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    Is this the start of a Bond movie, or Deliverance II, ? :)
  18. rhinotub

    rhinotub Member

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    Tom Clancy did just fine, with exhaustive research. I have written actual movies with actual huge stars on actual big screens---while I have never been a man with a dissociative disorder, an inmate, a Correctional Officer, or an executive with a Private Prison corporation, I did gobs and gobs of research and did it right.

    “Do. Or do not. There is no try.” - some crinkled up warrior

    OP -- go write the sh*t out of your book and have fun doing it.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 28, 2015
  19. rhinotub

    rhinotub Member

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    Great points. Junger (the novelist) is an immersive writer who lived/breathed with the survivors families and the culture in Gloucester before he ever put pen to paper. Couldn't put that book down---read it on a flight, and then stayed at LAX to finish it...

    The movie ending was silly, as was the implied love story.

    Movies are the most restrictive theatrical medium. They choke great underlying IP. And the bigger the budget, the more palatable the movie has to be to the widest possible demographic, which waters poop down even more.

    Yup, yup, yup.

    OP---producer of a movie I wrote (Peacock, on Netflix right now) used to scribble CDB on pages. It meant "Can Do Better"...

    You CDB than drug lord-yacht-hostages-tick-tick-tick...
  20. franzmerenda

    franzmerenda Senior Member

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    Pleased you're having great time spending holidays in Toscana.
    Just wouldn't waste thirst, sipping some weird "Tuscany beers" :confused: while some Rosso di Montalcino or Morellino di Scansano are sitting there ;)