BY ABNER SENIRES

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THE WALL OF FAME
SPONSOR OF THE MONTH: gold star Pete and Karen Smyth

Maps of Bay City

Here's a map of Bay City proper:

It's rough, but I'm sure you get the idea.

And here's one of Bay City and surrounding cities:

Birth of a Duo - continued

Here's more "origins" stuff.

Found the below while cleaing out (very old) files:
It's written on the back of a computer printout dated 1996. As you can see, Mouse had a more "lively" name at the time.

Originally, the duo was supposed to operated as a private security firm: Troubleshooters, Inc. Somewhere in the creation, the private security firm idea got shelved and the duo turned into freelancers.

This next bit of notes were probably written out after the above:

Closer to the pair we now know.

Yes, Kat started off having a name. I originally through that it would be a a shortened form of her full first name (Kat for Katherine). She also choose a new last name (Blackwolfe) after leaving behind her past (O'Connor).

I later ditched that idea and decided "Kat" would be her "handle" and make no further references to her real name. (I know what it is but I'm not going to tell.)

Same with Mouse. Handle, no further references to her real name.

Below, notes on what later becomes "A Family Affair."

Slight changes when compared to the finished story, as is usually the case.

Isabella is no longer a granddaughter but a daughter. And "Antonio Righetti" became "Vincent Righetti."

Commentary: "A Family Affair"

Movies are one of my big influences and two of them played a role in this first tale: Pulp Fiction and the opening of Raiders of the Lost Ark. I wanted a piece that would quickly introduce our duo, their world, and their profession. Drop the reader right into the thick of things.

From Pulp Fiction I borrowed the idea of retrieving the mysterious briefcase belonging to an underworld figure and used that as the story's MacGuffin. From Raiders I used the trick of showing a story already in progress as a way of introducing the main character. In this case, we meet Kat already in the middle of trying to solve her dilemma rather than beginning at what would be the logical place to start--meeting with the Smith and picking up the suitcase.

Prior to posting Part One of "A Family Affair," I added a short prologue to do a bit of world-building, but eventually scrapped the idea. It would've diminished the immediacy of the story's opening.

So out it went.

If you're interested, you can read it here.

This story also sets up the world of Kat and Mouse. Near-future. Cyberpunk. Underworld figures. Folks running below society's radar. Additionally, I wanted to evoke elements of 30s pulp and 40s film noir. (I'll cover more about the world in a future post.)

Although the setting is semi-futuristic and built on the cyberpunk subgenre, I wanted to stay away from gobs of exposition. Refer to the tech. Comment on the tech. But don't read like a manual of the tech. I wanted the reader to more or less infer how the tech worked based on Kat's narration.

Much of the style edits I did in early draft were to keep the narration spare, very minimalistic, very lean prose. Enough to evoke the image but staying clear of too much flowery prose. I found reading screenplays helped in that regard. Also, reading Robert B. Parker's Spenser novels.

"A Family Affair" was originally published in a slight different version at Pulp and Dagger Webzine back in 2000. The version here I'd call the Definitive Version. I've gone back and fixed continuity errors so that it corresponds much more closely to the "series bible."

Pay attention to some of the characters in this one.

They'll be back.

Birth of a Duo

I got the idea for Kat and Mouse while reading a Gunsmith Cats graphic novel one day. I wanted to create something along the same vein. Something that was part buddy movie, part action-adventure, with strong female leads and fun banter between characters.

So my thought process went something like this: "Xena is set in a mythic past. Gunsmith Cats in modern Chicago. Dirty Pair in the far future. What about the near-future? The cyberpunk world?"

Bingo.

Enter Kat and Mouse: Guns for Hire.

BONUS MATERIAL

Behind-the-scenes at KAT AND MOUSE.

"Birth of a Duo, Part Two"
"Welcome to Bay City"
"Our Gang"

KnM NEWS: Updates 2/9/09

Part Six is now live.

KnM NEWS: 2/4/09

The Kat and Mouse Store is now open.

We are currently offering t-shirts and sweatshirts.

More items are coming. Stay tuned!

KnM NEWS: Updates 2/2/09

Part Five is now posted.

More trouble ahead for our duo.

KnM NEWS: Writing Update 1/27/09

Episode 5 now set for final polish and will queue up shortly. I expect in the next week or so.

But no, you won't see it until September-ish.*

Brain is currently percolating with Episode 6, possibly Episode 7.

Right on schedule.



*"What?" you say. "September? Episode 5?"

Yes. September. Ish.

"Easy Money" is slated to run 20+ installments. We're just on Part 4. Still a ways to go, gang.

Then two more episodes follow, clocking in at around 5 to 6 installments apiece.

Do the numbers and we're looking at September-ish.

But it's all good.

KnM NEWS: Updates 1/26/09

Part Four is up.

And the shit hits the fan.

KnM NEWS

We are now listed at Web Fiction Guide.

KnM NEWS: Updates 1/19/09

"Easy Money," Part 3 is now live.

The calm before the storm.

KnM NEWS: Revamped

Due to time and resource issues, I have decided to take down the Red Dog Bar blog and consolidate all KnM news as a separate section here.

I've set it up so there's little to no interference (hopefully) on the main blog page (taken up by the story); news, updates, and such will be accessed via link on the sidebar.

EPISODE LIST


"A Family Affair"
1 2 3

"Easy Money"
1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12
13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24

"Babysitting Blues"
1 2 3 4 5 6

"Life Goes On"

"The Price of Vengeance"
1 2 3 4 5 6 7

"Ghosts Of The Past"

"Rest Stop"
1 2

"Here, Kitty Kitty"
1 2 3

"A Gathering Storm"

"Peek-a-Boo"
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

"Little Boy Lost"


ABOUT THE SERIES

It's 2042 in the California Free State metroplex of Bay City. Kat and Mouse are a pair of ronin--guns for hire--trying to eke out a living.

They have the skill. They have the will.

And they have the bad habit of getting in over their heads.

Which usually means run-ins with rival ronin, punkergangs, the mob, the Yakuza, cyborg assassins, and whatever else Bay City decides to throw at them.

But they always get the job done.

Their way.

Heaven help Bay City...

WALL OF FAME

Many, many thanks to the supporters of KAT AND MOUSE, now immortalized below.


Sean Louis
(Punkergang Member Level Sponsor)
Pak Chan
JohnDeNardo
Dave Tackett
Jessica Senires
Paul Kohlbrenner


SPONSORSHIP LEVELS

KAT AND MOUSE is supported by your generosity.

You--the reader.


For a fixed amount every month, you can sponsor the site and get your name (real or nickname) listed as a specific level of sponsor on the Red Dog Bar Wall of Fame.

Here are the levels:

At $5/month, you will be listed at Punkergang Member Level
At $10/month, you will be listed at Joyboy Level
At $15/month, you will be listed at Corpgeek Level
At $20/month, you will be listed at Console Jockey
At $25/month, you will be listed at Info Broker Level
At $50/month, you will be listed at Ronin Level

If you wish to sponsor at a greater amount, contact me and we'll work out the details.

After your subscription has been processed, I will contact you to find out how you would like to be listed on the Wall of Fame. You are free to give either your real name or a nickname. Or as "Anonymous" if you prefer not to be identified.

TERMS OF SPONSORSHIP
By sponsoring me as an author, you give your financial support to the continuation of my work and this site. This carries no rights to the material I produce and does not guarantee a specific output or story outcome. I update the Wall of Fame by hand, so there may be a delay before your name appears. Sponsorship does not carry with it any rights or privileges not otherwise listed above.

Please note that this is all voluntary. While the sponsorship payments will automatically recur monthly, you are under no obligation to continue and may cancel at any time for any reason.


Subscribe using the appropriate buttons below:

$5.00/month -- Punkergang Member


$10.00/month -- Joyboy


$15.00/month -- Corpgeek


$20.00/month -- Console Jockey


$25.00/month -- Info Broker


$50.00/month -- Ronin

DONATIONS

KAT AND MOUSE is supported by your generosity.

You--the reader.


If you're able to contribute, I thank you. Every little bit helps.

TERMS OF DONATIONS
By donating to support me as an author, you give your financial support to the continuation of my work and this site. This carries no rights to the material I produce and does not guarantee a specific output or story outcome. Donations do not carry with it any rights or privileges not otherwise listed above.

Donate via PayPal using the button below.



Thank you again for your support.


CONTACT THE AUTHOR

CONTACT ABNER AT:
abner.senires (at) gmail (dot) com

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Abner Senires has been published in Anotherealm, Flashshot, Neverary, and millenniumSHIFT, among others.

He confesses to being an avid SF/Fantasy/movie/genre TV/comic book/anime/manga fan.

He lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife and a pair of rambunctious cats.

More info can be found at his website.

PROLOGUE: "One Night in Bay City...

brDEEP brDEEP brDEEP--!

"Ya got me, choom."

"Is this Mr. Specs?"

"One an' only. Who's askin' ?"

"You came well referred. I am an interested party."

"And I'm a broker. What can I do for ya?"

"I require operatives for an assignment. Discreet. Professional. Thorough."

"I got someone. Matter of fact, two someones."

"Two? I'm afraid this requires at least four--"

"Nah. Trust me. Two'll be enough."

"You're sure?"

"Damn sure."

"But will they be discreet?"

"Discretion up the wazoo."

"Professional?"

"Professional as all hell."

"And thorough?"

"Bet your ass."

"You realize I must have the very best."

"And you'll get it, bub. In spades. Kat and Mouse. Best ronin in the biz."

* * *