(Image: "Prester John Enthroned," from a map of east Africa in Queen Mary's Atlas, by Diogo Homem, 1558)
For the new "Friday Fiction" slot in this blog, I'm going to be composing and serializing a new original novel. It has actually been some time since I've been able to give any consistent time to writing fiction (my most recent work, Whispers of Adventure, although published just last year, was largely completed by 2011). I'd like to get back into writing fiction, and adhering to the regular schedule of this blog will, I hope, give me the motivation to break out of my writer's block. I don't yet know if I'll pursue publication for this story at some point in the future; that may depend on how it turns out. It should be said, however, that even though this story is not yet printed in physical form, it is nonetheless protected under US copyright law as my intellectual property, and is not to be removed from this blog, altered, or re-posted in any format.
This novel will be a work of historical fiction, set around the turn of the 2nd century AD. It's based on an ancient Christian legend of a character known as "Prester John," whose origins may go back to the Apostle John himself (known in the later New Testament as John the Elder/Presbyter), and to old rumors that he would not experience death (see John 21:20-23). Later on, the character of Prester John re-emerged as a mythical Christian king who reigned either in Central Asia or East Africa. This novel (possibly the first in a series) is inspired by a true story, recorded in the works of the early church fathers, about a convert who was brought to the faith by the extraordinary labors of the elderly Apostle John.
Next week I'll post the prologue, and my hope is to proceed at the pace of one chapter per week. Links to all chapters will be posted in a sidebar menu, and the full text will be available for at least a month after the novel's completion, after which time I will take it down from the blog and consider pursuing its formal publication.