As long time readers know, I’ve been thinking of doing a revision of Jackass for the Hour. As the sub-title says, it’s about “The deadly intrigue of interreligious politics.” This is all seriously dated back to 2005. Many things have changed. But perhaps it is worth putting up this unpublished work – now under my real name, Father George David Byers, instead of a short-lived pseudonym of Renzo di Lorenzo – so as to get some comments and help in updating what needs to reflect the present realities in the Church and the world.
This is also an invite to my Internet Stalker guy, who should probably himself become a character in this ecclesiastical thriller novel. I need the whole spectrum of backgrounds and comments reflecting all sorts of expertise. These comments, perhaps forays into possible sub-plot lines, new characters, etc., might range from child-psychology to PTSD-brain specialties useful at the Veterans Administration, from philosophical, theological, political backgrounds, from interreligious efforts among Jews, Muslims, Catholics, Christians and others, from diplomatic perspectives in countries right around the world, such as China, India, (North) Korea, from seminary formators, from priests young and old and, well, others who are brave enough to provide an anonymous comment or two, indicating the way things really are.
For myself, this now twelve year old 750 page novel written between chapters of my doctoral thesis while waiting for my moderator to catch up to me, could include much more on the workings of various departments of state, American, that of the Holy See, etc., along with sundry intelligence services. I’ve gotten to know quite a bit more about such things in the last number of years.
But this exercise wouldn’t be just an historical extravaganza of the way things were twelve years ago, or a springboard into a revised novel able to be published today, but will be that which will set out to resolve already in its old version the thorniest problems of the Reformation and Counter-Reformation, opening up avenues of unity through the sacrifice of Christ Jesus, through (gasp) the papacy. Aspects of chastity and celibacy for priests will be looked at, I think with profit for the Church.
- There is absolutely no literary porn or hint thereof (though you’ll know that something bad has happened to whatever character), certainly nothing more than one would find in Sacred Scripture. If being reminded that bad things can happen in this world, well, I don’t know what to say. Bad things happen. If you can put up with Chapter 1, you’ll be fine.
- There is very little in the way of bad language. Theological words like “hell” or “damn”, used throughout the Sacred Scriptures are used without apology. Tender snowflakes who want to damn people to hell in their typical bullying fashion may well be offended, but, well… Tough. If other bad words are found on the lips of characters, they will be blanked out, as in “*****ed out.”
- There is plenty in the way of violence. That’s the world we live in. There is no violence for the sake of violence.
- Characters develop. You may have difficulty figuring out who’s who. That’s also reality, is it not? Nothing is at it seems. Some good characters are generally always pretty good, but then you might find out they have some pretty tough backgrounds.