Well, the best-laid plans of mice and men aft gang agleigh, as Burns once said! My planned blogpost for this week was going to be a comparison and contrast between the movie RISEN and my book, THE REDEMPTION OF PONTIUS PILATE. However, events this weekend have conspired to keep me away from the theater, so I don't have the raw material to write that post. (In other words, I haven't seen the movie yet!) So I sat and thought all day about what I might come up with for tonight. I even asked my muse, who offered these topics:
"West German slurs for someone from East Germany?" Nah.
"The depth of Peanuts cartoons?" It's been done.
"The 100th anniversary of Verdun?" Non-historians would say: Who is Verdun, and how did she stay married that long?
"Chap Stick as a medium for adding olfactory content to dreams?" I don't know if that works on other people, muse!
"The decline of the letterman sweater in the 1970's?" Huh??
"The failure of Beanie Babies to be worth the cloth they are made of?" OK, that's not bad, but I never bought into the craze. Plus it's so 90's!
"The joy of cheesecake?" Well, that one is pretty universal! But, an entire blogpost?
"I know, how more kids today should explore the great outdoors, and find dinosaur bones!" OK, this one I really liked, but I think I'm going to save it for a rainy day.
At this point I told my muse to go to sleep so I could get some writing done.
You see, one more reason I am short of blogging ideas this week is that I have been pouring out the pages on my latest Work in Progress, THE GNOSTIC LIBRARY. Since last Thursday, I have written about 25 pages on this latest adventure of the Capri Team. Right now, I am about three quarters of the way through the story arc, and I will tell you, this is going to be the best Capri Team adventure yet!
What makes this remarkable is that my average time to write a book, as I noted in last week's blog, is nine or ten months. But this book I actually started on October 12 of 2015. That means, as of today, I've been hammering away at it for four months and eleven days. My upcoming trip to Israel is going to disrupt the writing schedule a bit, but not too badly. I firmly believe that I will be completely done with this story by the end of April, maybe even the end of March. That's five to six months spent on this story - far and away my quickest time yet!
So why is this story going by so quickly? Well, first of all, it is pretty fast-paced. When I wrote THE TESTIMONIUM, I was introducing characters, giving them back stories, spinning out long conversations between them on everything from romance to New Testament apologetics - and it was all good, but looking back, I could have trimmed it up a bit without hurting the plot. I like to think I've gotten better as I've gone along, and this plot - even with the subplots - is moving along at a much more even clip. Also, this is the third novel I've written about this particular set of characters. Of course, each story introduces some new people, but by now, all my readers know who Josh, Isabella, Luke, Alicia, and Father MacDonald are, so I can spend a lot less time introducing and explaining them.
Then there is the story itself. My goodness, this may be the best thing I have ever written! This time, the archeological discovery that draws the main characters together is really just a vehicle for a very dark adventure, a hostage drama involving Father MacDonald (a Catholic priest who does archeological work for the Vatican) and a strong-willed, beautiful British archeologist named Katherine Feezel. The two of them have been captured by an ISIS-like band of Egyptian jihadists, and they are subjected to some pretty horrific suffering before - well, you know what? I'm not going to give it away. For one thing, I'm not done yet, and the story's ending is still rather fluid. For another, I want you to actually BUY THE BOOK when it comes out! Suffice it to say, this Christian-based thriller will take you to some pretty dark places - but it is in the deepest darkness that light can be the most blinding. I can't wait to finish this thing, honestly!
Now some of you, especially in my vast horde of new followers, may be wondering who "The Capri Team" is. By way of explanation, they are an elite group of Biblical archeologists who have been the main characters in two of my books now. So, by all means, BUY and read their first two adventures, and then you will be ready to enjoy THE GNOSTIC LIBRARY! Here are the Amazon links:
And once more, thanks for reading my weekly scribblings! See you next Tuesday!