Rachel Neumeier

Fantasy and Young Adult Fantasy Author

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Practical applications for explosives

Here’s an interesting post if you’re into weaponry and technology and most of all stuff that goes boom: Fire in the hole at Kill Zone Blog.

I’m going to continue my quest to help writers understand some of the technical aspects of weaponry so that their action scenes can be more realistic. Today, we’re going to talk about some practical applications for high explosives … Since TKZ is about writing thrillers and suspense fiction, I’m going to limit what follows to explosives used as weapons -– to kill people and break things.

Yep, that’s the fun part for sure. We then have short sections on grenades, claymore mines, and shaped charges like the kind used in missiles. None of this is in my area of expertise (at all), so it’s pretty interesting. Grenades don’t come up much in fantasy novels, but hey, posts like this might give me some ideas…

BEST USE OF EXPLOSIVES IN FANTASY: This makes me think of The Steerswoman. Not exactly fantasy, but it reads like fantasy — and there are definitely explosives. And explosions, big impressive ones. Definitely a fun element in the story, especially when you imagine being self-taught about explosives.

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2 Comments Practical applications for explosives

  1. Pete Mack

    Actually , the big explosive scene was the least believable. Yes, a small amount of explosives (say, 30lbs) could bring down a building. But not if they were placed in an upper floor room. They need to be packed around foundational supports. William could have done it with slow match or the like.

  2. Rachel

    I’m sure you’re right, Pete. My favorite aspect of the explosives in that series is how William himself handles the explosives; how developing them has affected him. The way he walks more smoothly so as not to jar them, for example.

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