Where Ideas Come From: The Sixth Day

Fists of IronSometimes lightening just strikes and The Sixth Day was initiated by that lightening strike out of a clear, blue sky.  The very nature and structure of the book – so different from my other manuscripts – says something about it origin.

On July 26, 2012, I woke up around 2AM with a pair of sentences running through my mind over and over:  “John Paul was a boy with two first names.  His brothers called him Flap Jack because he loved pancakes more than anything else.”  I remained in bed another 30 minutes, but I could not escape the words.  Over and over, I heard them, I saw them, I felt them.

I climbed from my bed, sat at my desk and started writing, not really knowing what I would write.  The narrative evolved quickly into parallel story lines, one about creation and the other, a boxing match whose violence counters and ultimately balances the good intentions of creation.

With every other manuscript, I chose, researched and developed the story.  The Sixth Day chose me.  Ebonics was natural to the telling of the tale, and with the first words of dialogue, I decided not to use quotation marks.

From the beginning, the book was different.  I continue to call it ‘quirky,’ and its quirkiness is displayed in the full title and in the Kindle cover that veers Kraaysharply, if not irreverently from the traditional cover of the physical book.

I maintain a list of ‘story ideas’ that is larger than I’d like to admit.  The Sixth Day concept was not on that list, but I tabled everything I was working on to finish it.  From start to finish was less than three months; The Hamsa, for example took nearly two years.

Sometimes an idea will strike a writer like a summer cold; you just can’t escape it.  Frankly, I didn’t try to and I’m glad I didn’t.  Now it’s back to Gaspar…. 

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