Thursday, January 02, 2014
Millennium Laxative is finally available!
I wrote this novel back in 1998. I was working in Campus Ministry at Gonzaga University, and freelance ad writing to help pay the bills.
The Left Behind series of books was just taking off. I never read any of them, but I read about them. The Religious Right’s usual gang of antiChrist suspects featured prominently in this mega-money-making literary enterprise. It looks like I wrote Millennium Laxative as a response - portraying the Religious Right and their ilk as the villains in the “end times.”. I can’t remember if that was the point.
I must admit that, now, religion matters less than it did to me when I wrote this. It was my job, after all. Today, I find solace that religion (all across the political and faith spectrum) has been pretty much defanged. Alleluia. It does make the premise of this book a little less urgent, and hard to swallow, though.
In 1998, the Internet was pretty basic. I sent a synopsis of the novel and the first three chapters to literary agents all over the United States. I went through a lot of stamps. The first reply I received was very positive. They were very interested and wanted the whole enchilada mailed to them. I then started to receive nothing but rejection notices. But, I wasn’t worried. I had someone interested with my very first mailing. Then, I received their rejection notice, as well. “Sorry, this book is too ‘over the top’ for today’s conservative book market.” Darn those conservatives!
I eventually moved onto other projects and other jobs. About 10 years ago, I found the 3-1/2-inch floppy disks with drafts two and three on them. Sadly, I had written the book using WordPerfect - the king back then, and now just another defunct word processing program. I found some translation software and converted the files into Word. A few months ago, I started cleaning up those files. There were a lot of problems - continuity, story deviations between drafts, etc. I finally resorted to scanning the 210 pages of my bound draft (hopefully that was the final version) and then running an OCR program to convert the PDF images into editable digital text.
Optical Character Recognition is not foolproof by any means. So, there was a lot of cleaning up to do to get to a passable draft. I couldn’t find the original artwork either, so I reconstructed it to the best of my memory, as well.
Now, here it is, published as an e-book, thanks to Amazon. For some reason, italics don’t work, so my apologies to all the literary and motion picture references that go unitalicized. In my heart, your text shall always tilt.
Like I said, I don’t care about religion as much as I did. If you read this and want to argue some point with me or commiserate, I am probably a little too rusty, a lot less passionate and certainly more happy to make it worth your while. I know you can read that last part two ways.