Halfway through the writing of “Long Way Gone,” I discovered I’d written myself into what looked like a dead end. Or a black hole. It’d happened years before so I tried to press in and listen for the story to bubble up. Crickets. I’ve heard it called writer’s block. It’s the second time in my career I’d come to a stand-still with no way around. The first time ended badly. That memory echoed.
In desperation, I got up out of my chair, grabbed my Bible and walked out onto the pool deck where I began circling, reading the Psalms out loud. When I tired of this, I set down my Bible, raised my hands and continued circling. Christy thought I was losing it. “Honey do you have a plan B?”
No, I’ve never had a plan B.
I don’t know how many times I walked around our pool but the words I kept repeating were, “Lord, Your word is true. More true than my circumstances. My circumstances don’t dictate my reality or Yours. Your Word reveals it. Help…Please help.”
Let me back up — Nine years ago, 20th Century Fox “optioned” the cinematic rights to The Mountain Between Us. In layman’s terms, that’s like leasing with an option to buy. For six years, nothing happened. Crickets. Then slowly information started trickling in. A script was written. Then rewritten. And rewritten. A director was added. Then actors. The film was shot, produced, directed, acted, edited and a music score added. A few weeks ago that film released in North America, Mexico, Russia, Europe, the UK and Australia to name a few.
It's Thursday night. Darker than usual. Jesus has just finished the Passover dinner. Washed His disciples feet. Taken the cup. Watched Judas walk out. The end has come.
The unsuspecting eleven follow Him through the quiet city streets. Flying high on the heels of the triumphal entry, they are giddy with what-might-be. The conquering Son of David soon to sit on His rightful throne. Somewhere a candle flickers. Then another. They descend the Hill of the City of David and Jesus approaches the Brook Kidron. Higher on the hill above them, the clear spring bubbles up out of the earth, circulates through the grounds of the temple, and fills the ceremonial cleansing pools. From there it washes out the blood of the morning and evening sacrifices, then it descends the hill.
When it rolls beneath their feet, it smells of death.
Jesus stands on the stone bridge that crosses the brook. Glancing over His shoulder. The smell fills His nostrils. Fitting. He enters the Garden. Gethsemane. This is the place where the olives are crushed. Where the oil is poured out. This too is fitting…
"I just started Wrapped in Rain and I was quite taken by the story particularly the mental health aspect since that has been part of my career. You seem to be a moderately interesting writer but then I began to suspect something else and went back to the cover where you are listed as a "Christian" writer. End of story. Tossed the book in the bin. Problem is, you seem to have a lot of storytelling talent but when you start in with the Xtian crap, you lose most of your more educated, and open minded readers. Why don't you try one novel without such nonsense and I'll bet you'll get more popular among a general crowd rather than the narrow-minded Jesus folk. If you are satisfied with your limited audience, well there you are."
Can't wait for October 4th? Starting today, July 8th, I am auctioning off a signed copy ofLong Way Gone. Auction will run Friday 8th through Sunday the 10th on my Facebook page. Follow this link to bid. Please bid in the comments section. Make sure you check back regularly throughout the weekend. If someone outbids you, just comment again and raise your bid...
Kate Winslet is in talks to play the role of Ashley Knox alongside Idris Elba as Ben Payne. Both will be fantastic. Actually, the choice is brilliant. To think that either might actually be starring in a movie based on my book...are you kidding me? Really? You can read more about them here.This one is pretty good, too.
If you've read 'Water From My Heart,' you know of my story and my adopted family in Nicaragua, of mi Hermano, William 'Moises,' and that Nicaragua and her precious and magnificent people are tender to my heart. Last night's 6.1 earthquake shot directly through William's home and his community (that rich black earth he's sitting on in the pic below).
"When Crickets Cry" is currently ranked #5 out of the Top 100 Books on all of Amazon Kindle. It's the only time I've ever seen one of my books listed above a James Patterson title. If you'd like in on the fun (for $1.99), click the link below and please share with your friends.