What a blessing and honor it is to host with all of you at Seekerville, a site I have visited so many times over the years, not only when seeking help with craft and wisdom from published authors, but also for encouragement and a spark of joy and laughter. Go Seekers!
So here I sit, after working on my debut novel for longer than I want to admit, I am finally a published author and just beginning to venture into the turbulent waters of promotion and marketing, but what’s fun about that? Not much, I believe I hear you thinking, and I agree, so let’s talk about something fun. Writing. The next project. The next big idea. But what to write exactly and where to begin? They say everyone has one good book to write inside them and I believe that is true. But will another story call to us, begging to be told?
My debut novel, Ephesus: A Tale of Two Kingdoms, is a supernatural thriller based on Jesus’s message to the church of Ephesus, found in the book of Revelation. It is one of seven unique messages written to seven different churches and I find myself compelled to press on with the series. I have some ideas about the next book but considering how long Ephesus took to write I am thinking about something completely different. Afterall, I could be working on the seven churches series for the rest of my life! And that’s when the thought began to emerge. Maybe I’ll use a pen name and try a new genre—why not? It doesn’t mean I can’t return to the series later and so here’s the exercise. Let’s Brainstorm our next projects together!
Select one of the pictures from this post and respond with a story idea. It can be in the form of a what if question, a premise, or a back-cover blurb. But here’s the catch. You are NOT allowed to muse within your current genre. Instead, pick something completely out of your element and let your brain run free. I’ll go first with a YA Action Adventure:
Jason was not excited about spending his summer with his grandfather. What could be fun about living in the country when all his friends were in the city? The farmhouse was broken down and smelled like musty blankets and nothing seemed to work right. The walls didn’t answer questions and there was no adventure room, not to mention a meal machine or even a Zcube. Indeed, the summer was looking quite boring, that was until Papa showed him the shed and the gleaming machine hidden under the tarp. It was a secret he explained and illegal, but would Jason like to take a ride? Papa explained he would be preaching tonight, whatever that means, and preaching’s illegal too. “That’s why we’ll need to be cloaked without electronics you see, in order to avoid the drones.” Removing a chrome cap, Papa jostled with a metal can from which he carefully poured into an opening. He nodded and then smiled. “It runs on alcohol, my special brew and she’s very fast. Maybe not as quick as your dad’s electric but way more fun to drive. And the sound—like music to my soul—just wait and listen.” Lifting his brows his eyes glinted. “It belonged to my grandfather and it’s called a Ferrari.”
Now it’s Your Turn:
Pick a photo and imagine it’s your next book cover. Now, pitch us a story idea and let’s see what happens. Remember, it can be as simple as a question or premise. (Example: A salvage collector finds a body inside a refrigerator and then realizes the dead man is him. Ha!) Feel free to weigh in with feedback and/or comments to anyone’s response. Let’s have some fun and don’t be shy about harassing me about my blurb! Maybe we will uncover a story to two!
Mark would be honored to give away three paperbacks of his debut novel, Ephesus: A Tale of Two Kingdoms. If you would like to be included in the giveaway let us know in your response. To give people more time to enter, winners will be announced in the Weekend Edition on Feb. 15th.
When Kingdoms Collide History Echoes Through Eternity
Batush had planned to spend his day working in the Library, but that was before he met the unworldly traveler. Accepting a message of challenge, Batush uncovers an ancient scroll buried by those who fear its message. With Bishop Jonness wanting to keep it hidden and Bishop Gallus craving its sacred knowledge—and both willing to kill for it—Batush is in a race to save his family.
In the modern world, Daniel Fairmont has stepped up to serve his struggling church but finds himself at odds with Nick Hamilton and a woman from his past. Soon a mysterious murder triggers a police investigation, revealing threats and hidden scandal. Nick may be zealous for the church, but his passion is for power. And someone is standing in his way. Daniel—at any cost—he must be stopped.
Swept away in a supernatural clash where they will encounter angels of light and darkness, the paths of two men cross in a battle over what they hold most dear. As kingdoms collide and past meets present, Batush and Daniel must make a choice—a choice of courage and consequence that will echo through eternity.
What Critics Are Saying:
Two mesmerizing worlds separated by more than two millennia—so different and yet so very much the same. I laughed, I cried, and my heart raced as I turned pages. Looking at the clock through bleary eyes—I read on. —Richard Parker—
Mark Abel is an architect by trade who has dreamed of becoming an author over most of his life. Ephesus: A Tale of Two Kingdoms, is Mark’s debut novel. Mark’s passion in writing Ephesus, and hopefully more books to follow, is grounded in his mission statement as a writer:
Exploring the Mysteries of God Through Story
Mark lives in Tempe, Arizona with his wife Cheri. They have three grown children and one grandchild. When Mark is not writing he is either designing buildings or tinkering with cars. He starts each day with a strong cup of espresso and on some occasions, ends the day with a dry glass of Cabernet. Cheers!