A Handgun with a Built-In Silencer?

The Silencerco Maxim doesn't look like other pistols because it isn't. (Gun Digest photo)

The Silencerco Maxim doesn’t look like other pistols because it isn’t. (Gun Digest photo)

Fiction has a hard time with this whole business of silencers (aka suppressors, if you want to look smart), so I’d like to draw your attention to something that’s going to make everything a helluva lot easier. Continue reading

Do Glocks Have Safeties?

Glock 19

Glock semi-automatic pistols are some of the most popular handguns in the world, which makes them easy picks for assigning to all sorts of characters. Pictured is a Glock Model 19, which can hold 15 rounds of 9mm ammunition. The U.S. Marines Special Operations Command adopted it for use in early 2015. Good news for your characters: You don’t have to be in the military to own a Glock 19. (Photo via GunDigest.com)

TLDR: Glock handguns use three safety mechanisms, but none of them require a character to switch anything off. Disregard Glock safeties entirely when writing fiction.

In keeping with the recent theme of things that may or may not have safeties (knives, revolvers, etc.), let’s talk about Glock handguns. I (and probably some regulars of this blog) can remember reading novels and short stories where a character switched the safety off a Glock semi-automatic pistol. This is a boo-boo. Glocks don’t have safeties that switch off.

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What’s the Difference Between a Pistol and a Revolver?

pistols and revolvers

Don’t use “pistol” and “revolver” interchangeably when writing fiction. Pick one and stick to it. (Photo via Gun Digest)

TLDR: Pistols are handguns with one or more stationary chambers. Revolvers are handguns that use multiple rotating chambers. Don’t use them interchangeably.

Aaaaaand I can already hear my inbox filling up after posting the TLDR up top. But before you fire off a sternly worded letter through the contact form, give me a chance to explain.

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Step-by-Step: How to Load and Accurately Shoot a Pistol

Sue Coletta is a crime author and writer bud of mine with a new book out this November worth your time, Marred. I’m interested in how Coletta approaches the weapons in her work, seeing as how she came up with a primer called 60 Ways to Murder Your Fictional Characters. What follows is her guest post on how she chose the firearms for one of her law enforcement characters, along with a terrific example of how to load and shoot a semi-automatic pistol. Enjoy!


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.25 Caliber Handguns: Avoid at All Costs?

This is a Raven Arms P25 MP25, a good example of a .25 caliber handgun. But is it a bad example of a handgun for writing fiction? (Image via Wikimedia, public domain)

This is a Raven Arms P25 MP25, a good example of a .25 caliber handgun. But is it a bad example of a handgun for writing fiction? (Image via Wikimedia, public domain)

TLDR: If you can help it, a character might be better off with a handgun with more bite than a .25 caliber.

Last week’s post about the .25 caliber “lady’s gun” used by James Bond kicked off some interesting feedback from followers of this blog. Some agreed with my take that the ability to be accurate matters more than firepower (a perennial debate in the gun world, too). Others felt .25 caliber handguns are flat out a bad option despite how easy they are to shoot.

Characters in fiction can get away with plenty those in the real world can’t, so neither POV is completely right or wrong. It’s up to writers to make the final call.

Still, I feel like I didn’t give enough time in that post to why it might be a bad idea to go with a .25 caliber, especially since there’s plenty of anecdotal evidence. Continue reading