..where Martin left off. In the opening of my first novel, Bunderlin, Martin Latham, an academic historian and the novel’s finder out of what was going on, was writing a paper. He had been dabbling with it for a long time, too long. But Martin was a ditherer, the kind of guy to whom things happened rather than the sort who was always in control. So it was never clear whether he ever finished that paper.
I cannot criticise Martin for being a ditherer – at least not so far as that paper is concerned. Because when deciding what it was to be about, I hit upon one which I had begun and tucked away again to give me time to write my novel. The Pre-Maccabean Origins of Proto-Daniel. Daniel is a book of the Bible, one which is a happy hunting ground for those who like to find hidden indications of the date of the second coming of Christ. Something to treat very warily, of course, and with utter circumspection. Maybe I should return to it and complete it.
In the meantime, however, Frreddie Whitaker, one of the leading characters of Whitaker’s Basin, principal of a small theological college in Cambridge, has fallen foul of church politics. He asks embarrassing questions but, worse, he supplies embarrassing answers. What questions? What answers? I wonder if perhaps I will let him find Martin Latham’s finished paper and work on a revised gospel to go with it. Something like my own Gospelof Eleazar. If he were to preach a Christmas sermon and an Easter sermon based up that, I don’t think his church career would last very much longer. Just what I need. For Freddie, I mean. I retired a couple of years ago.