Archive for August 23rd, 2011

A Short Q&A with Jon Saboe, Author of the New Biblical-Historical Novel; The Days of Laméch

Church of Darwin, Religious, Science, Uncategorized | Posted by Chris Parker
Aug 23 2011

Buy It on Amazon

I still have an email from Jon Saboe dated May, 2007 alerting me that his first novel; The Days of Peleg had been published and was available on Amazon. Around the same time, another friend of mine published his first book of poetry which at least one reviewer called; misogynistic. I decided to read Jon’s book first. I made the right choice as I thoroughly enjoyed it.

The Days of Peleg became more and more successful for Jon and even won the Editor’s Choice Award, from Allbooks Review and got new cover art.

Jon’s new book; “The Days of Lamech” is a prequel to “Days of Peleg”. I’m really impressed that he got that guy from CreationEvolutionHeadlines to read and review it. How does that guy have time to read a novel? A portion of CEV’s review is excerpted below but first; here is a Q&A I did with Jon with respect to life after book 1 leading up to book 2.

Chris Parker: Jon, How did you come to write the first book? What was the process you went through to write it?

Jon Saboe: “The Days of Peleg” actually was initiated by conversations with a friend of mine, Dave Ranck, as we discussed the evolutionary biases in modern archeology. It was actually anger at this subversion of a noble science, combined with my reading about the Buache Map that triggered what was supposed to be a short story. I had envisioned a quick tale about how this amazing map of Antarctica – without ice – could have come to be, all within a Biblical timeframe.

However, this soon blossomed into a large story. My study of the ancient Sumerians, coupled with Jewish Midrashim and a Biblical overview, presented me with too many wonderful possibilities. Soon, I had developed an intellectual, but secular, protagonist who is destined to be confronted with multiple world-views—all of which he instinctively despises because of his own natural chauvinism.

However, he soon encounters events and phenomena which he cannot explain, and when he is exposed to yet another world view (a Biblical one from an unexpected source) he reluctantly gives in, since THIS world-view is able to encompass the totality of his experiences, both external and internal.

My writing process was simply one of creating story targets for myself, and then filling in the details. One section, which is more of a Socratic dialogue, was mapped out by the simple verse “…for he that comes to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” Hebrews 11:6b.

Ultimately, I feel the book is designed to “entice” the unsuspecting reader into adapting a Biblical world-view—while at the same time enjoying a Indian Jones, Michael Crichton, or Odyssey-like (as Kirkus Reviews stated) adventure story. Also, a subtle but clear sub-plot introduces the reader to “The Seed” of Genesis 3, along with an understanding of the need for such a Savior.

Chris Parker: Was the reception for the book what you expected? What has happened as a result of the book that you hadn’t expected?

Jon Saboe: Actually, I had absolutely no expectation regarding Peleg’s reception. I had never written a book before, and I knew that most fiction, especially from a small publisher, never saw the light of day except for a few loyal friends and relatives. To be honest, I have been quite overwhelmed by the amazing response from many diverse quarters. Sales continue, and although I haven’t been able to quit my day job, I am pleased that so many people continue to enjoy it.

What I did NOT expect was the amazing discourses, interactions, and wonderful friends that have resulted from “The Days of Peleg”. I have had the privilege of getting to know many people, from many walks of life, whom I would have never met had it not been for Peleg. Among them are an orthodox rabbi, a Hispanic hip-hop artist, a children’s book author, and an Artificial Intelligence programmer, just to mention a few. I would never have met these individuals otherwise, and I can’t imagine any way, other than the internet, that my book could have ended up on their reading table.

Chris Parker: What came first; the idea for the story of the second book or the demand from readers that you write one?

Jon Saboe: This is an easy one. The demand from readers came first. At the time I finished Peleg, I could not imagine going through that process again, nor could I conceive of any possible story line for a second book.

However, as time went on, I began to envision a story line that utilized unorthodox antediluvian technologies and delved into the Family Wars and the Semyaz, alluded to in “The Days of Peleg.” Eventually I wrote a first chapter, but it wasn’t until about a year later that I began to continue “The Days of Laméch”.

The process for the second book was quite different, though, as I had to rely less on research (there is understandably, very little to study about the pre-flood world) and more on imagination and speculation. There were times I felt like the priests crossing the Jordan—in that the waters only parted once I stepped in. Instead of planning the book mentally before writing (as in Peleg) I was forced to begin the actual work of sitting at the computer before things came to me. It presented a much different walk of faith than the first book.

Of course, there is now a demand for a third book, and my response is invariably the same as the last time: “I don’t see how that will ever happen…”.

Chris Parker: Have you been approached about making a movie from one or both of the books?

Jon Saboe: No I haven’t, and I imagine it will require a much greater circulation before such an offer emerges. However, if anyone knows of a good script-writer—or someone who loves to fund such ventures—I would be very interested. A large number of reviewers about both books have insisted that they would make great movies.

Chris Parker: How does the second book relate to Peleg?

Jon Saboe: “The Days of Laméch” is a prequel that begins with Laméch (the father of Noah) as a twenty year old thrill-seeker who fancies himself an activist and is, initially, a very self-centered and oblivious person. I would say the setting is approximately 700 years before the flood (just as “The Days of Peleg” begins about 100 years after the Tower of Babel).

At this time, the Family Wars are still in the past, but an previously unknown race calling themselves the Semyaz, apparently were greatly involved in stopping these terrible wars, and are now “guiding” the newly rebuilt cities and offering help in improving humanity on many different levels.

Towards the end of “Laméch” we meet a young and “manic” Shem, and see the guiding hand of the Creator as He selects those who will repopulate the Earth

Excerpt from Creation Evolution Headlines Review of; “The Days of Lamech”.

“CEH deals with non-fiction almost all the time, but this fictional tale (based on Biblical history) was a welcome diversion. Little has been written about this period; non-fictional scholarship would necessarily be restrained by limited information available, but the setting is perfect for a novel. Jon Saboe, a man of many talents, has done Bible believers a great service by opening up this era for serious contemplation. Your editor admits he was hooked from Chapter 1. Though cognizant of the outcome in general terms, he was continually surprised by Saboe’s plot lines, woven with picturesque descriptions and lifelike dialogue. The characters are plausible, distinctive, and nuanced. It was very satisfying to see how all the diverse threads came together at the end in the way required by Genesis 6.

If this wasn’t the way things actually happened, maybe it should have been, because The Days of Lamech is a thrill ride for the mind and spirit, equal to – no, exceeding – the drama in The Days of Peleg, which says a lot. The take-home message is that, just as we should never underestimate the potential for evil in fallen beings, we should never underestimate the patience, mercy, and provision the Creator has made for the redemption of the creatures he loves in spite of their sins. And just as in the days of Noah, it is the few – individuals who trust and obey their Maker – who change the world, even when all seems lost. “Even one is worth it,” Lamech said, when the fruits of his sacrificial labors seemed outwardly disappointing. That one might become the mother of a new world, the bearer of a promised Seed. God works through flawed but faithful individuals. We can be, we need to be, the Enochs, Lamechs, and Noahs of our day.”

Read the rest of the review at CEH