I write because I have stories to tell and promises to keep. Starting with the stories to tell, I began writing about ten years ago. Unsettling events were unfolding around me and I was compelled to find out why. There were too many unanswered questions. Bad things happened, to me and to others. So, in an effort to make sense of it all, I began to write, to chronicle, to research and to speculate. And I wrote the first of my novels, short stories, and screenplays.
What inspired my novel, Underlying Crimes, was an outbreak in Rhode Island of diseases in children: encephalitis, neurological diseases and rampant pneumonia. I had my suspicions, not based on some fanciful ideas but on real science. I don’t write sci-fi. No zombies or walking dead for me, please. So concurrent to writing non-fiction journal articles on Disasters, Mass Casualties, and Weapons of Mass Destruction, I began writing speculative bio-crime fiction. I ruminated, I mused. What if my fears were true? Was it bioerror or bioterror that caused the children to sicken and die?
Underlying Crimes is a medical mystery and crime story set in the tiny New England state known for its culture of corruption. Now I wonder where that might be? It’s a story of corporate bioterror, unscrupulous industry rogues, corrupt politicians and crooked cops.
My “promises to keep”? To find out who was responsible for the disease outbreak and to bring them to justice. Even if it had to be in a fictional court of law, the perpetrators would be prosecuted for their crimes against human health and the murder of children.
My second novel, an international bioterror thriller, spans the globe, from Hong Kong and Shenzhen, China to Copenhagen, Pisa, and the US Northeast. In Tiger Tiger: Underlying Crimes, a sultry scientist and her lover, a nihilist Italian professor, plot a 9-11 style bioterror attack on America using his students as infected human time bombs. The plot is inspired by real science: the lab creation of virulent, contagious super-flus that can kill tens of millions. Even Bill Gates has warned Global Security groups of this ominous possibility.
Our femme fatale scientist manipulates microbes and men. Her “Tiger Flu” lab-created bioweapon is the most contagious and deadly known to humankind. She infects her “test” subjects with her Honey Sweeties, candies laden with lethal “Tiger Flu”. The morale: “Never take candy from a sexy stranger.” I’ve written a screenplay adaptation for a feature film that I hope someday will make it to the big screen.
Other inspiration comes from having lived in London England, Moscow Russia (back in the USSR), and Zimbabwe, Africa. My husband and I have traveled on six continents. I take megabytes of photos and often invent characters, settings, and story details while in situ.
I’m currently writing a third novel in the Underlying Crimes series. Gene-edited designer babies anyone? Oh, what terror that could be!
My books are available on Amazon
Visit my website: UnderlyingCrimes.com
Joann Mead is a writer, teacher, and researcher. Her first biocrime novel, Underlying Crimes, was inspired by her published research on disasters and emerging threats. She brings her unique perspective from teaching science in four countries (United States, England, Russia and Zimbabwe), working in biotechnology and in medical research. Her second novel in the Underlying Crimes series, Tiger Tiger, is a cautionary tale. A sexy lab researcher and her bioterrorist lover plot a 9/11 style attack with their lab manipulated super-lethal ‘Tiger Flu’ targeted at America.
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