When writing Myths of Gods, the delicate nature of the plot and theme created the need for me to work for a balance between respect and boldness as well as didacticism and entertaining prose. One might think that writing a fictitious god might straddle between blasphemous and insane, given the world's current religious climates, but I would argue instead that it is a call to reason, tolerance, and discussion.
Myths of Gods
1. was written by an agnostic,
2. is not an attempt to add to any religion's texts,
3. is an attempt at raising critical thought about religion as a whole,
4. is purposefully disturbing,
5. presents a fallible infant god that merely happens upon creation,
6. blurs the lines between good and evil in religion, mankind, and even in God,
7. does not bash religion,
8. has a point to make,
9. will haunt you, no matter what you personally believe.
I invite the religious, agnostic, and atheist alike to read Myths of Gods as a personal challenge--or perhaps you will offer me a challenge by sharing your thoughts on it. I would love to discuss the themes with you. I'm so eager for the discourse, I'm giving away a signed paperback to one random poster.
Thanks for stopping by!
My inspiration for Myths of Gods came one warm northern California day, when I went out into my yard to admire the year’s first real day of spring. The yard was lush from the recent heavy rains, birds flew overhead, and fragrant pollen filled the air. Like all transcendentalists, I couldn’t help but relate the scene to God finally waking from the slumber of winter. Like any writer, ideas began to spin through my mind about a character that might embody that sentiment.
When I first wrote Myths of Gods, nearly fifteen years ago, it was in screenplay format. The storyline was crude, there were twelve prophets instead of five, and the theme covered vague abuses of religious power. It hadn’t known what it wanted to be back then, so I filed away the manuscript and set it aside for several years. During that time, I worked on my craft, writing numerous screenplays and short stories, taking classes, and exposing myself to books of all genres. I knew there would be a time when I would revisit Myths of Gods, but only when I was genuinely ready to take on the feat.
About seven years ago, I finally decided to adapt my old Myth of Gods screenplay into a novel. I ended up scrapping over half the characters and rebuilding the story from the ground-up with a stronger sense of theme and satire. I condensed the “gods” to five people embodying five condensed properties: Mind, Matter, Time, Life, and Death. I purposefully blurred the lines between good and evil, inviting the reader to redefine the two, as one character determines, “she of all people knew better than to divide the values of gods and devils.”
The good and bad in people can be just as difficult to define. Myths of Gods takes place in a society where religious leaders govern with great wealth and power over the people. They are opposed to the prophecy that states five virgins will give birth collectively to God, mainly because it discredits their longstanding theocracy. This results in religion, in effect, waging war against God.
The aspect I had the most fun with was balancing the mind of God, Jeza Khess, with her fallible human mind:
Jeza thought back to when she was the unbodied consciousness, and how God had not considered the possibility that the manifested beings would be so wholly human and unforeseeably flawed.
Jeza’s struggles between her human mind and the universal consciousness it struggles to process were ideal for speculating her limits and attributes, which allowed me to take a close, critical look at faith, belief, and consciousness.
Myths of Gods has come a long way since its first incarnation, and I can say with great enthusiasm that the years have done it well. My thanks to all who helped to make it what it is today. It’s been a long and treacherous road, but the journey has been well worth it.
Myths of Gods is now available at Amazon in Paperback and eBook.
My thanks to Keepers of the Underworld Magazine for taking the time to review Myths of Gods. From the review:
"From the very opening of the book you find yourself captivated and don't want to put the book down. ... I do highly recommend this book to everyone."
Read the full review here.