I bought this DeLorean to drive across the country on my book tour. No kidding.
Of course, that's not the only reason I bought it. I've wanted to own a DeLorean since I was 10 years old. It's always been my dream car, but I never really thought I'd be able to actually own one. That is, not until I sold my first novel, Ready Player One. The protagonist in my novel is obsessed with 1980s pop culture, and that's why he drives a DeLorean. But his DeLorean Time Machine isn't just tricked out with a Flux Capacitor. He's also converted it into a Ghostbusting Ectomobile with a KITT scanner from Knight Rider installed above the grille. And, as if that weren't enough, he also has Buckaroo Banzai's Oscillation Overthruster installed, so that his Ghostbusting Knight Riding time machine can also travel through solid matter. As a finishing touch, his personalized plates read ECTO88. Pretty much the geekiest car every imagined right?
After I sold my novel to Random House, I started to think about getting to do my first book tour, and that was when I had a genius idea: I could finally buy a DeLorean, then use it for my author photo and book tour! That would make it a tax write-off, since I would be using the car to promote my book. I could actually buy my dream car and it would be a business expense!
I moved forward with this devious plan back in March, when I bought a mint 1982 DeLorean DMC-12 from the dealership in Houston. I even reserved the same personalized ECTO88 license plate as the car in my book. Suddenly, the car I'd always dreamed of owning was parked in my driveway.
In the first month I owned the DeLorean, I was asked the same question over a dozen times: "Hey, where's your Flux Capacitor?" I began to realize that I had a responsibility as both a geek and a DeLorean owner to get one as soon as possible. A quick Google search led me to flux-capacitors.com (man, do I love the Internet) and I ordered one right away. About a month later, my Flux Capacitor arrived. It was a thing of beauty, and it looked and sounded just like the one in Back to the Future. Here's a photo of its new home:
Now I could proudly answer the question "Hey, where's your Flux Capacitor?" with a cheerful "It's right there, dude!" Prior to this, the car was already getting crazy reactions from people everywhere I drove it, but now when people saw the Flux Capacitor all lit up in the back of the car, their reactions seemed to border on disbelief and euphoria. Nothing seems to brighten up a person's day like passing Doc Brown's Time Machine on their commute to work.
I realized then that I couldn't stop with just a Flux Capacitor. On my book tour, I wanted to drive the same '80s super vehicle mash-up car that I described in my novel. So I decided to go for it and modify my DeLorean to incorporate features from Doc Brown's Time Machine, KITT from Knight Rider, Buckaroo Banzai's Jet Car, and the Ecto-1 from Ghostbusters. I would create a Knight Riding Ghostbusting Time Traveling Jet Car!
Step #1, install a KITT scanner on the front of the DeLorean. I decided to go with blue instead of red for the scanner, because the external lighting effects on Doc Brown's time machine were blue. You can see the scanner and the Flux Capacitor in action in the video blog below:
I'll be making the last of my upgrades to the DeLorean this week before I leave on my tour next Monday, and I've decided to share all of the geektastic details with you here on this blog. Tomorrow, I'll tell you how I managed to obtain an Oscillation Overthruster just like the one Buckaroo Banzai had in his Jet Car. Then, later this week, I'll share the insanely cool story of how I got my nerdy hands on a screen-accurate Ghostbusters Proton Pack to go in my DeLorean's trunk along with a PKE meter and some ghost traps. (You know, so I can travel back in time and bust some ghosts!)
I also need to map out my book tour route, which is going to involve driving over 2,000 miles in a 30-year-old Irish-made sports car. It looks like I'm also going to have to ferry the DeLorean across Lake Michigan to make it to one of my signings on time. It should make for an interesting trip. Luckily, I've got my stainless steel iPod loaded with '80s music. (Including the Back to the Future, Knight Rider, Buckaroo Banzai, and Ghostbusters soundtracks, of course.)
What I'm saying is, I'll be doing some serious geeking out here on this blog all week. I hope you'll stick around to geek out with me.