Life takes us on interesting travels. For Tom Clancy, his professional life started behind an insurance desk. But writing was always in his blood. He worked on his first novel and in 1984, sold it to the Naval Institute Press for just $5,000. That was "The Hunt for Red October," which, in 1990, became an awesome movie staring Sean Connery as a Soviet submarine captain and Alec Baldwin as the first and second-best version of Clancy's most-popular character, Jack Ryan.
Clancy in his insurance office
Clancy went on to sign much better (and bigger) publishing contracts and wrote other classics like Patriot Games and Clear and Present Danger, both of which went on to become successful motion pictures starring Harrison Ford as Jack Ryan (and, let's be honest, a huge upgrade from Baldwin).
The other two Jack Ryan films based off his works are Sum of All Fears, which saw Ben Affleck taking over the Jack Ryan character (groan) and Jack Ryan: Shadow One, which will come out December 25, 2013. Thankfully, Star Trek's Chris Pine takes over for Affleck.
In 1996, Clancy co-founded Red Storm Entertainment, a video game company. The company, later bought by Ubisoft, created many popular military games including "Rainbow Six" and "Ghost Recon."
Clancy had his own underground shooting range. How awesome is that?
Clancy published 28 books, including one, "Command Authority," which will be released in December 2013.
While very successful in his career, Clancy always appreciated the military support he received. He was dedicated to military accuracy in his novels and they gave him unprecedented access. He vowed to never give up military secrets for the sake of commercial success. "There was one thing, I discussed with a friend of mine in the Royal Navy. I told him a story I knew, and he said, well, Tom, you may never repeat that, as long as you live. And I haven't," Clancy said.
Here, he discusses his relationship with the military and his feelings and writing in this interview:
Thanks for the awesome entertainment, sir. You will be missed.