Adventures in storytelling by Bob Rector



“Unthinkable Consequences” is a work of entertainment in which the characters do not always behave logically or in their own best interests – much like Scarlet O’Hara and Madame Bovary (to which my lead character, Paula, has been compared by more than one reviewer). Why? Because logical characters in logical story lines are boring.

Paula and Kurt are driven by their passion for each other and their dissatisfaction with their current lives. This is accentuated by the time period the story takes place – 1959 – and the setting – S. Florida from Palm Beach to Key Largo. They both feel trapped and are ready to take desperate measures to escape. That their pasts catch up to them with deadly force is the unthinkable consequences they must not only overcome, but survive.

This is a very sexy story – no punches pulled there – but we’re all big boys and girls and I haven’t heard any complaints yet. “Unthinkable Consequences” has been called a noir thriller and that was my intention from the git-go. Even the cover art, painted by the very talented Richard Harrison, was done in a style popular in the 50s, even to the point of using gouache as the medium, popular with the illustrators of the time.

I have been gratified by how the readers, men as well as women, have fallen in love with Paula. She is independent, spirited, and determined, but also loving, funny, and giving. All she wants is what was unthinkable for women in 1959 America: to live her own life her own way. This book is about her quest to do just that.


When first approached about Letters From the Front, I was skeptical of the project but became a believer when I first held in my hand a Civil War letter still stained with mud from the battlefield, written by a young war weary soldier pouring his heart out to his bride back home. That letter really was the spark that started the ball rolling. I spent months poring through letters from every major American conflict, fascinated by how they really did peel away the layers of who we are as Americans, while at the same time defining what our priorities should be — not just as a society, but as human beings.

The next step was build a framework in which these letters and their themes could be presented dramatically in a play. The result was the story of Katharine Hartgrove, a WWII mom whose son is fighting in Northern Italy. She is a famous writer of human interest stories and has been commissioned to do a work about war correspondence. Assisting her on the project is her boyfriend and America’s favorite radio comedian Johnny Chastain. To him, anything is fair game for a gag. She’s not so sure. This creates friction between the two and challenges their relationship. By the time the play ends, Johnny is the most unlikely of heros and Katharine is healed from wounds decades old.

Letters from the Front is my first play and I admit I came into the world of theatre kicking and screaming. I had no background in theatre, no training. I was accustomed to the rough and tumble world of filmmaking. Fortunately the people I worked with were very patient with me. Everybody believed in this project from the git-go and I just wanted to live up to their expectations. Its been gratifying to see how well Letters from the Front has been received.”


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s