Six days later as Merton prepared to announce his discovery at a religious conference, he suffered a horrific death under mysterious circumstances. But the secret did not die with him. Merton left behind a journal…
Years later, beautiful psychologist Angela Weber and her troubled fiancé, Ian Baringer, are on the hunt for Merton’s long-lost journal and its door to the Afterlife. Angela, an agnostic, wants to help Ian heal the wounds of a traumatic childhood plane crash that took the lives of his parents. Ian, a defrocked priest, no longer trusts in religion’s promise of eternal life. He must know for certain if he will ever see his parents again, driven to find out firsthand what lies beyond and what it holds for mankind.
Together, Angela and Ian plunge into a global chase, pursued by a shadowy cult, dead bodies and destruction in their wake. If Ian and Angela succeed, they will defy the gates of heaven and hell to learn a secret hidden from the world since the dawn of time . . .
The Knowledge of Good & Evil.
A warm welcome to Glenn who will share with us why it sometimes takes an author a long, long time to move from idea to published novel! Because, let's face it, fellow writers, sometimes we are awfully slow. And readers will agree, often it takes far too long to satisfy our need of getting our hands onto the next novel of a favorite author.
Why it took me so long to go from idea to published novel:
It’s just fiction, right? I’m making it all up anyway, why take years to push a concept into finished book? Laziness? Procrastination? Writer’s block?
It was seven years from start to finish for my first novel, "The Last Day" (Warner Books, 1998). Twelve for "The Knowledge of Good & Evil" (Macmillan, 2011). Different reasons affected the timeline for each.
When I began Last Day back in 1991 I’d never attempted a novel before, working fulltime running a marketing/advertising firm. A demanding job, and I had a family. But I also had an idea I couldn’t get out of my head. The story had the turn of the millennium as its foundation, so there was a clock ticking.
I carved out time around my more important obligations, doing research and writing early morning, over lunch, late at night, weekends. The internet was in its infancy then, so I leaned heavily on libraries and documentaries to get a feel for the far flung places the story encompassed. A time-consuming process.
I finished in 1996 and was fortunate to find a great agent who put the book to auction, where it was taken by Warner. That enabled me to end my day job and devote myself entirely to writing. Or so I thought. I’d hoped to cut development time by at least two thirds, but the best laid plans . . .
My father, who was in his eighties at the time, had numerous real estate developments. One was a proposed shopping center that needed serious attention. My father no longer felt able, and I was the only one of my siblings with the freedom to take it on. Additionally, my poor mother had developed Alzheimer’s. Unlike my job in marketing where I could set aside my distractions to write, here I could not. I lost my mother in 2006, and completed the development project about the same time. Then I stepped back, aired out my head, and re-wrapped it around The Knowledge of Good & Evil.
The research was more complicated than for Last Day. I needed a comprehensive understanding of humanity’s age-old relationship with the Great Beyond. To that end, I studied all I could find on the subject—the beliefs of the early Egyptians, Samarians, Mesopotamians, and on. Greco-Roman, Judeo-Christian, Buddhist, Hindu, Islamic, et. al. The Church Doctors—Augustine, Jerome, Gregory, Aquinas. And finally, modern theologians.
Time-consuming. And what emerged was a huge, convoluted mosaic that needed boiling down.
Once I had my motifs, I wanted to work them into the story without weighing it down, give historical context to heaven and hell, draw correlations, offer some observations that emerged from all the research. The story deals with rather complex, sometimes controversial and disturbing issues, but I wanted it to feel simple and accessible. Knowledge, like Last Day, is an allegory with a message. But in the end of course, when it comes to the afterlife, who really knows?
I generally don’t procrastinate unless I’m burned out, or brain dead (which some readers think I am, regardless). Fortunately I’ve never suffered from writer’s block. More “idea overload.” With infinite ways to approach each line, the challenge for me is winnowing down to the best. Hindsight often means rewrites.
Not to jinx myself, but so far the next book is going well.
My thanks for the opportunity to meet your readers, Birgit, I’m honored. I hope I’ve given the tortoises in the group some company.
What can I say? My inner tortoise isn't feeling so lonely anymore. Thank you very much for sharing your personal insights, Glenn! It was a pleasure having you here and I wish you all the best with your book and for your future.
Want to find out more about Glenn? Visit his website.
Want to buy the book? The paperback edition will be available April 24th - Amazon - TBD
Glenn has generously offered one of my wonderful readers their very own copy of The Knowledge Of Good & Evil. All you have to do is leave a meaningful comment and your e-mail address with your comment so I may contact you in case you're the winner.
Following my blog is no requirement, but I obviously won't object if you do.
One entry per person.
The giveaway is open from April 22nd through April 28th - one winner will be picked through random.org on February 12th and will then be contacted by e-mail as well as announced here on my blog. The winner will have 48 hours to respond and if he/she fails to do so I will draw a new winner.