Dear readers: As "The Peace and the Passion" moves into its second year, I anticipate it changing somewhat. For those of you who have faithfully followed my scattered and infrequent blogs, know that the coming year will probably be even more so. I think I'll move away from essay-writing for awhile, and use this blog primarily for poetry, an occasional measure of thought, and a few personal updates. I've also toyed with the idea of putting up a short story or two in serial form, so keep your eyes open for that.
Those of you who know me also know that much of my free time is taken up with writing fiction, and at the moment I'm plugging away at the final novel of a trilogy that has been my foremost project for the past three and a half years. (The first novel, Freedom Cry, I wrote in 2004; the second, The Conqueror's Song, from the fall of '05 through the summer of '06; and over the past year my main project was a complete rewrite of Freedom Cry, finished in May). So I'm focusing on closing the trilogy within the next few months, with a target completion date of the third book sometime early next year. It's a fantasy trilogy, meaning that it's set in the context of a wholly fictional world. There are some hints of traditional fantasy themes, but overall these novels represent a series of historical adventures, without dragons, elves, magic, or the like. Their main goal is to provide an entertaining narrative that connects the reader with characters whose lives are shaped by virtue. There are traces of Christian allegory in the first two novels, which become more pronounced in the final book.
Fantasy is a hard genre to sell on the Christian market, and is viewed warily by the secular market if it contains Christian overtones. Nevertheless, I'm currently trying to market a revised draft of my first novel, and I'll let you know if anything turns up there. For the most part, though, I write these for my own pleasure and growth in skill, as well as for the enjoyment of my friends and family. Some people simply don't take well to fantasy, or fiction at all for that matter, but those who have taken the time to join my adventures have come back with rich encouragement for me. So for those of you who have my email and would be interested in reading the novels, just send me a note and I'd be happy to let you read the electronic files of the current drafts. I'm always open to suggestions for improving the stories. (Both complete books are long, over three hundred pages in Microsoft Word).
In any case, I probably won't be putting much time into producing essays for this blog. At best, I'll post a poem or a short thought every two weeks or so. If any of you miss my essays, though (an unlikely state of affairs), know that I'm always open to tangential mental stimulation, so if you have suggestions for topics you would like me to pursue, feel free to send them my way. It's often refreshing to leave off my school studies for awhile to pursue an unrelated topic, and I'd be happy to open up forums for dialogue in the comment boxes.
That's all for now. Thanks for reading.
Note to My Readers: from mid-June to mid-August (6/18 - 8/20), I will be taking a summer break from posting new articles for my Thursday and Friday slots. This will only affect my Thursday series on the global growth of Christianity, and my Friday series, the "Theological Bestiary" of birds, both of which will resume in late August. During the summer, I'll be dusting off some of my best essays from the first few years of this blog (a decade ago), as well as my verse play "Thus Ends the World," and re-posting them in the Thursday and Friday slots. All other weekdays will continue to feature new material throughout the summer.