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Agency Rules Media Kit

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The media/press kit for Agency Rules - Never an Easy Day at the Office, the debut novel from Khalid Muhammad. …

The media/press kit for Agency Rules - Never an Easy Day at the Office, the debut novel from Khalid Muhammad.

You can buy the book at http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00HUZOED2

Published in: Education

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  • 1. Forget who you are...
  • 2. ...become what you must.
  • 3. When the world hears Pakistan mentioned in the media, the first thought is terrorism, which sadly has become part of our national narrative since 9/11. But Pakistan is so much more than the narrative that is presented around the world — it is home to a wonderful, talented people that want nothing more than peace in their country, with their neighbors and respect in the international community, but are deceived by its own “leaders,” whether political or religious. Agency Rules – Never an Easy Day at the Office takes you behind the headlines into the events that created today’s Pakistan. It is a tough look at a nation in conflict from the eyes of a young man, Kamal Khan, who is looking for his own identity and place in society. Kamal is raised in privilege, but leaves it all behind as a man to serve his nation. Once in that environment, he finds himself embroiled in a complex narrative that shifts with the fiery speeches of their anointed political and religious leaders.
  • 4. Celebrated as a ragtag force that defeated and broke the Soviet Union, no one predicted the Mujahideen would bring with them a plague that would spread like wildfire through Pakistan in the years to follow. When the battle-worn fighters returned with no enemy or war to fight, they turned their sights on the country that had been their creator and benefactor. From the same battlegrounds that birthed the Mujahideen, a young Kamal Khan emerges as a different breed of warrior. Discarding his wealthy family comforts, Kamal becomes a precision sniper, an invincible commando and a clandestine operative bringing intimidation, dominance and death with him to the battlefield. Ending the plague is his prime directive. Shrouded in political expediency, hampered by internal power struggles, international espionage and doublespeak that makes Washington’s spin doctors proud, Kamal’s mission is a nightmare of rampant militant fundamentalism that threatens to choke and take Pakistan hostage. For him, the fight is not just for freedom, but the survival of a nation.
  • 5. By day, Khalid Muhammad is a mild-mannered business executive keeping busy running a marketing and brand management company. By night, his alter ego emerges; one that has a penchant for sadistic retribution towards those who wrong others, and that spends its time devising intricate and detailed plans for a nefarious end. Born in Pakistan’s troubled Swat Valley, educated and raised in the United States, Khalid returned to Pakistan almost 17 years ago and fell in love with his country. His debut novel, Agency Rules - Never an Easy Day at the Office, is a journey behind the headlines about Pakistan, the world’s most dangerous place, to deliver an intense story that will challenge the reader to question everything they have been told about the country. He began writing to let the wickedness escape, as the other option means a great deal of blood, numerous torture implements and… well, infinite ways to dump a body. It’s safer for everyone involved and less dangerous for the guilty… until he writes another book.
  • 6. Why did you first start writing? I don’t think I ever stopped writing. I fell in love with fiction when I was in middle school because it was a way that I could express the dark side of my imagination without getting in legal trouble. I have written a number of short stories over the years since but never seriously thought about publishing until about 5 years ago. There was never an a-ha moment, so to speak that made me decide to be a writer. I went from writing short stories that let me get my imagination and frustrations, to writing a political leaning blog and then progressed into writing a novella and now my first novel. It seemed like a natural progression since my novel is an action-packed spy thriller with political undertones. about Khalid Muhammad I really believe that the inspiration behind starting writing was to find an outlet for my imagination, at least I think that is where it started. Over time, I have grown as a writer – before writing my book, I used to run a political and current affairs blog that focused on issues related to Pakistan. Since then, I have written a number of unpublished short stories and a novella. Agency Rules – Never an Easy Day at the Office is a culmination of all the work, knowledge and information into one fast-paced, action-packed story. It’s a great read for anyone who reads spy/espionage thrillers. What inspired you to write Agency Rules? Honestly, I got tired of hearing everyone, from the average person on the street to the news media, calling Pakistan a terrorist state. That’s not who we are – it never has been. Sure, we have problems, but those problems are rooted in things that the news media either doesn’t understand or doesn’t care to explain. I get tired of sound bite demonization of countries and people. So, this is my way to share the Pakistan that I know with the world. My Pakistan is a country that struggles with inept governments more interested in themselves rather than the people who elected them. It is a country whose people are extremely talented and patriotic but unable to take advantage of any opportunities because the country is run like a fiefdom rather than a nation. It is a country
  • 7. in search of its identity, much like Kamal, that is trapped amidst power plays from internal and external forces. Who is your target audience? I don’t know if I can say there is a target audience for my novel because it crosses genres. While it is written in the spy thriller genre, there is something there for military, political, history and terrorism readers, and people who love or hate Pakistan. Here’s what I can say – if you want to understand how terrorism started in countries like Pakistan, and why the world sees it as the terrorism hub of the world, read my novel. It’s based in the 1990s, post-Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan, so you can see the whole picture develop. Are the characters modeled from people in your daily life? Definitely! Every character in the book is either someone that I know, have met or mixture of people. It’s so much easier to take the people that you interact with each day and write them into the story because they make the story real, which is something that I really focused on with this book. Kamal Khan, the lead character, is heavily influenced by my background and those who have influenced me. He is flawed, damaged and confused, but he is also strong, dedicated and driven – what I like to call the typical Pakistani. He is someone that I want readers to feel, experience and cheer for because he really is the “every man” in the story. How did you come up with your storyline? When you live in a country like Pakistan, the storylines play out each day on the streets, newspapers and dinner tables. We are a country that is at war with itself but not willing to accept it because it means having to make very difficult decisions that will change lifestyles. We have had 70,000 Pakistani souls killed by terrorists, damages to property in the billions and a citizenry that is unsure whether to run, fight or surrender. It makes it easy to write when you live the story each day. Who inspires you? People inspire me. From the fruit seller in the market to the shopkeeper fighting to support his family. From the policeman that has justified his petty theft to the soldier that gives his life in defense of the country he loves and everyone in between. I try not to focus on a single person for inspiration because they disappoint you when you learn more about them and how they got to where they are. But if you focus on the people around you, you find more
  • 8. inspiration in them than you will in any single person. Why will readers enjoy your book? Well, other than the genre and being a book about Pakistan and terrorism, Agency Rules – Never an Easy Day at the Office is a fast-paced, action-packed story that will keep you guessing all the way to the end. It’s a spy story, and it’s heavily researched. I had to be accurate when depicting the ISI and its methods. I guess this was more fun for me than it might be for my readers because I did my research the old-fashioned way – I interviewed former ISI operatives, visited locations where the Taliban had occupied areas of Pakistan, and talked to people on the street about their impressions of Pakistan in the 90s. My story isn’t the gloss from media soundbytes, or political, military and official versions. It’s from the man on the street that lived through it. What other books or authors would you compare this story to within your genre? I think you have to take into account that the whole story is set in Pakistan and the Middle East, written by a Pakistani willing to point out mistakes, you really would be pressed to find something similar. If we are talking about the genre, then Fredrick Forsyth’s The Afghan is a great comparison work. Tom Clancy’s Patriot Games is another that looks at a similar topic, substituting the Taliban for the IRA. If you could live anywhere, where would it be? Right here in Pakistan. This will always be home for me, with all the troubles and challenges, but I don’t want to be one of those Pakistanis that run away from their home country and complain about what’s wrong with it. I’ll stay here and be part of the solution, not another voice in the world condemning my country. What’s next for Khalid Muhammad? Next? We’ll we have the global launch for Agency Rules – Never an Easy Day at the Office on the 16th of January. That’s when Amazon will get the e-book. I’ll probably spend a few months supporting and promoting the book. At the same time, I have already started to craft the characters for the 2nd installment of Agency Rules. I know the story line but I need to create the characters and scenes that will play out on the pages of the next book. You can keep up with Agency Rules and Kamal Khan on the website at http://agencyrules.com.
  • 9. Media Inquiries media@deaddropbooks.com Review Copy Requests pr@deaddropbooks.com Event Inquiries media@deaddropbooks.com http://deaddropbooks.com http://agencyrules.com Facebook Twitter Amazon