Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Star Struck


We have a really cool job, where I've gotten to meet some really cool famous people. But, alas, they are sports people. So, most of my excitement in meeting them is along the lines of, "I can't wait to tell my dad!"

Last night I got to meet my favorite author, and I was more than a little star struck, trying not to sound like a stalker, but asking if I could get a picture with him.

I first came across David Maine when I read a review of his first (published) book, The Preservationist. Since my obsession with Noah's Ark literature started in elementary school with Madeline L'Engle's Many Waters, I got myself over to a library and checked out the book, which was all the review promised it would be: brilliant, fantastic, imaginative, irreverent (is that the smart word for funny?).... I could go on, or you could just read the book and judge for yourself.

Since then, Maine....or do I get to call him David now since I met him.... has written two other books set in the Old Testament: Fallen (about Adam, Eve, Cain and Able) and Samson (the mass-murdering judge). All three are on my bookshelf, and now one is signed - yea!

I've read a lot of reviews of his work, and in hearing his own take on his critics, one thing stood out to me. I might be the only person who loves the Bible and love David Maine's work. I have no idea why. Apparently, most Christians get pretty protective over "their" characters and want them portrayed in a sacred light.

I am of the opinion that if I'm actually going to believe the Bible, I also need to believe the Bible is about real people...you know the kind who lust, lie, nag their husbands, hurt their wives, do their best but often fail.

I am also of the opinion that the imagination is one of God's greatest gifts to us, and that it is one of the most over-looked and under-used gifts of the modern church.

He says he's done writing biblical fiction....doesn't want to get in a rut. Breaks my heart a little, but I'm excited to read about the crazy psychiatrist starring in his next book.

But, David, just in case you ever do want to settle into a rut, here are the stories I'd like to read (and, remember, I am right in the middle of that book-buying demographic):
  • Nebuchadnezzar. He was a king who turned into an animal.
  • Pick a prophet, any prophet. They were very weird.
  • Elisha
  • Deborah
  • Let's skip David and go right to Bathsheba
  • And lastly, can you please write a story giving an entertaining insight into King Solomon, who managed to be married to 700 women and still make himself the expert on love and wisdom?

1 comment:

DAVID MAINE said...

Hi Susie!

You're SO funny and also far kinder to me than I deserve. But thanks--I don't want you to think I'm complaining or anything. And somehow you don't seem like a stalker--I always thought those people wore trench coats or something (but what do I know).

Reading your post, it really seems like you get what I'm trying to do; just talk about people in the Bible like they're people first, and Biblical second. And in so doing, to answer that question, "Hey what would that have been like?" I really appreciate it that you enjoy my efforts so much.

I have to admit that, for the purposes of the talk, I was emphasizing the negative response, because it gave me an angle to work with--and because it was funny and, I hope, a little unexpected. But you know, there are lots of people out there who have nice things too...!

I'll think about your recommendations. I haven't shut the door on Biblical rewrites altogether, and your ideas are intriguing. They're a little off the beaten track, which appeals to me. Also, I think my editor and/or agent would be thrilled if I went back to a Biblical theme at some point, so I may not be done with thay completely.

And please--call me Dave! We're buddies now, right? I hope.

PS I may try to snitch that photo off your page and stick it on mine. Copyright infringement, I know, sorry...