This is my first novel attempt…I have the plot all blocked out and I think it’s gelling. I’d appreciate any critiques or criticisms. Here’s some of the first paragraphs:
“I call upon the scientific community, who gave us nuclear
weapons, to turn their great talents to the cause of mankind and world peace;
to give us the means of rendering these nuclear weapons impotent and
Ronald Reagan, 1985
Dr. Randy Kim stood at a podium facing into harsh stage lighting. The students seated in the crowded lecture hall could see him, but the glaring lights made it almost impossible for Kim to reciprocate. This didn’t make him particularly comfortable, since he preferred more personal interaction, one on one, perhaps over a cup of coffee. He was known by his students for being a better teacher during office hours than in the lecture hall, but he was well paid to suffer the inconvenience of lecturing. He was slowly improving, learning by doing. The students were focused directly on him, since unlike most instructors at the university he did not use any visual aids. Kim felt that focus was best directed toward what he had to say.
“…Remember, the most important component to persuasion in negotiations is realizing that everybody wants something. Humanizing the players by recognizing their needs in a negotiation situation will help in preventing conflict. If you can define the motivation for each person and ensure that they will have their desires met without conflict, you will then succeed in bringing the aggressor to release his tools for conflict.”
He cleared his throat.
“This removes the possibility of aggression. Aggression multiplies, but humanization and cooperation will breed progress toward peace. In the case of a disarmament roundtable discussion, you can remove the tools for conflict: weapons, by assuring these leaders that their own power will not be threatened by the lack of these tools. Their nation’s money, their power, will persist. Once everyone agrees upon a system to punish any nation that may become an aggressor, a system held as a last resort, the world can operate smoothly, peacefully, and without fear.”
Kim wrapped up his freshman lecture on political negotiations. A twenty year political negotiation veteran, Kim built a renowned career with gifted oratory and negotiation prowess on the world stage. Four years ago, Kim was instrumental in the creation and completion of the worldwide disarmament program spearheaded by the United Nations. As the lead political liaison, he personally handled negotiations with 80% of the nations of the earth - including all nuclear powers. He had, as one observant student put it, “charmed the world out of its weapons.”
After disarmament, there was talk of Kim running for political office - or even being appointed to a high administrative position within the U.N. A bout with cancer brought any such ambitions to a grinding halt. For two and a half years, Kim stayed out of the spotlight to focus on treatment and recovery. Now, cancer free, he plied his trade within the halls of the Bath Political College to devote his time imparting his skills and ideals to the next generation of politicians, orators, and negotiators.
– Thanks, Adam