T2VC’s Money-Laundering Cartel Revealed In Debut Novel

We are extremely proud that Eliot Peper has just published his first book!  Eliot is a former associate and entrepreneur-in-residence at T2 Venture Creation.  His book is the world’s first “startup thriller,” a novel that combines the excitement of entrepreneurship with nail-biting mystery and action.  You can learn more about the book here.  Today, we feature a guest column from Eliot about the writing process and the inspiration that goes into it.  Needless to say, we were shocked, shocked to learn about the money-laundering activities happening at T2VC that were the inspiration for Mr. Peper’s book…


Sources of inspiration and innovation

By Eliot Peper

There’s always something behind a story. Maybe it’s a glowing light bulb of inspiration as the shampoo is sluicing down the drain. Maybe it’s a dream that left behind a particular flavor of emotional hangover. Maybe it’s the death of a loved one or the passion of a one-night-stand. Whatever it is, it leaves an indelible impression on the story. It sets the tone in terms of look and feel. It’s the well the author can return to whenever plot threads run thin or characters dry up.

No sacred muse hands out such experiences like mana from heaven. We all experience these moments in our everyday lives. They constitute the highlight reel of our living memory. Any of those peaks on our life’s graph has the potential to give shape, texture, and flair to a story.

While working on the first draft of Uncommon Stock, I discovered that those moments are just as relevant for the characters as they are for the author. Writing fiction is often an exercise in choosing what not to say. How do you decide which slices of your protagonists’ experiences deserve inclusion? Your characters are real people living real lives. If James Bond doesn’t brush his teeth, he’ll get cavities. If Frank Underwood doesn’t make his monthly payments, his credit rating will plummet. If Yoda doesn’t sweep out his Dagobah hut, well, he probably never has but may the Force be with him anyway!

At the end of the day you can only afford your readers staccato glimpses into your characters lives. Weaving these moments together into a compelling, cohesive whole is the craft of storytelling.

Uncommon Stock was born out of frustration. I’m a voracious reader and my work with Greg, Victor, and technology entrepreneurs gave me an inside view of the natural drama in the startup world. There are countless invaluable pieces of business nonfiction that detail the rigors of entrepreneurship. Nonfiction is a fantastic instrument for sharing experience and best practice.

Fiction is a different beast altogether. Fiction is a magical medium that gives readers an intimate view of the characters’ emotional journey from inside their own heads. I wanted to read a book that captured something from that ether. I wanted to sit on the shoulder of the protagonists and share their adventure through the startup world. But my frustration grew as I couldn’t find any entrepreneurial fiction to read. So instead, I decided to try my hand at writing it.

That frustration fueled me through countless bouts of writer’s block, frequent doubts, and revision after revision. I have no idea whether anyone will be interested in the result. I just hope there are a few people out there like me who will get a kick out of it. But that’s not the point. The point is that the creative process is an end in itself. It wears out your stamina, exhausts your mind, and drains your soul. But then, suddenly, there’s a story.

We interpret our lives in the form of stories. We link together our memories, that highlight reel, into a narrative that structures our own identity and understanding of self. We are all storytellers. Those moments of inspiration smolder inside every single one of us.


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