I want to write a short, not-very-detailed fictional anecdote about a soldier who gets separated from his unit during a (short) firefight and winds up lost for a few minutes in a Middle-Eastern city, before his fellows find him. This will be just a few paragraphs in a larger story. [more inside]
What are some details of military life that authors writing for generic military settings often get wrong? What details, if I got them right, would convince you that I had really done my homework? Note that I'm not looking for punctilio like the particular way somebody carries his hat indoors but rather broader things that would be ring true for servicemen of any tradition (e.g., strict rules about exactly how to carry a hat). [more inside]
This is purely theoretical--it's not about me or anyone I know. It's for a project I'm working on. Let's say you enlist in the military but back out before basic training. I've found some information that says nothing will happen to you. So first, is that true? And second, does anyone have any experience with this they can share?
Military/FictionFilter: I look at my western skyline at dusk and see lines of contrails everywhere. I've been in planes flying all over the world and seen all sorts of sights at dusk, but what's it like to see that from a military jet sending out those trails at whatever speed? Personal details would be nice, but suggestions from established fiction would be fine. Details aren't necessary - I dont want to plagarize anything, I just want an impression for a short piece of fiction.
I'm reading Alastair Reynold's excellent Pushing Ice and I'd love to read more like it - help me Mefi! [more inside]