iUniverse introduces Paul Cozens, who talks about The Graf Zeppelin as well as his other books. The “Graf Zeppelin” refers to Germany’s aircraft carrier during World War II.
Please tell us a little about your book . . .
This is historical, “what if”, fiction! Few people are aware that Nazi Germany even had an aircraft carrier during WWII. Why didn’t she sortie with Bismarck and Prinz Eugen? What might have happened if she had sortied with Bismarck, Tirpitz, Prinz Eugen and then rendezvoused with Gneisenau and Sharnhorst to prey gurerre-de-course on the allied convoys so vital to England?
Günther Schmidt is assigned the task of obtaining intelligence on the U.S. Navy, specifically carrier aviation. He places a young fraulein, Karen Berr, in a girl’s college in Pensacola, Florida where she meets a naval pilot, Lt.j.g. John Parker and falls in love, subsequently marrying him.
Herman Göring hates the kriegsmarine with a passion and Günther embarrasses him in front of Hitler, thus becoming a personal enemy. Göring, who is in charge of aircraft production, refuses to allow any navalized aircraft to be produced. Günther is tasked with training pilots for the German Navy in landing techniques for carriers. Subsequently Günther becomes involved in advising German naval designers in the development of the Graf Zeppelin.
The Spanish Civil war erupts, giving Günther and his newly trained pilots on-the-job training. Günther helps Messerschmitt to develop the Bf-109T in secret as well as the Ju-87G dive bomber.
World War II erupts and Günther, sails into combat on the Graf Zeppelin as her CAG. Dive bombers from the Graf Zeppelin sink two British cruisers in the Denmark Straight and assist in sinking the Hood and Prince of Wales. The German flotilla is attacked by British torpedo planes and the Tirpitz, is forced to retire. The American Coast Guard Cutter, Modoc, is attacked by German dive bombers, thus bringing America into the War.
The German flotilla joins up with Gneisenau and Scharnhörst to begin decimating the convoys.
And a bit about yourself?
I served in both the Navy and Army as an intelligence specialist. The Navy taught me how to fly. I hold a commercial pilot and flight instructors rating with ratings for instrument, multi-engine, conventional (tail dragger) as well as retractable gear. I have a Bachelor’s degree in U.S. Military history and a Master’s degree in Asian History from San Jose State University, 1993. My Master’s thesis, published, is titled: The Role of Radar in the Pacific Theater During World War II: Development, Acceptance and Effect. 170 pages.
I have experience as a computer salesman specializing in source data collection, a headhunter (recruiter) and eventually I ran my own recruitment company. While attending college (with my daughter) I worked full time for a security company contracting to a major micro-chip manufacturing company while simultaneously managing a computer software company (Jagdstaffel Software), and writing the code for an educational software program (Prompter II) and a war game (TSKFRC-58 the battle of the Philippine Sea).
Upon graduating from college, I formed and managed a company (Specialty Floor Matting) that specialized in commercial floor mats. I have a passion for writing historical and military fiction, much of which being drawn from personal experience.
What would be your message to potential readers?
When writing I find it is best to draw upon personal experience. Many of my books, I have 12 titles yet to be published. Some involve flying. Some involve intelligence gathering, head-hunting and personal experience from real life. I’m 83 so I have a lot of experience. This personal experience brings my stories to life.
Are you writing a sequel to the Graf Zeppelin?
No! I have written two sequels to books unpublished as yet. Airship (Modern Dirigible) with G-Drive, (Sci-Fi) and the Privateer with Voyage of the Scorpion.
Are there any events, marketing ideas or promotions planned for your book?
To date, I have no plans other than word of mouth, to distribute the book, and of course any help that the publisher can provide. I do plan on creating a web site for potential buyers and for advanced orders. The main thing was to get the two books out, the Graf Zeppelin and the Red-Tailed Devils.
What advice would you give to aspiring authors?
When writing I find it is best to draw upon personal experience. It makes your work come alive.
Mr. Cozens has also published The Red-Tailed Devils through iUniverse.