The novel will be a philosophical “action-thriller”, heavier on thoughts and ideas than on actions and thrills.
I want to be a storyteller that engages the reader on many levels. I’m not a philosopher who wants to tell a story — rather a storyteller who wants the reader to think deeply if they wish.
The novel can be read as a straightforward story with an exciting series of events. It can be read for the enjoyment of Western society’s accomplishments in art and science. If you are in a more philosophical mode it contains elements of Camus’ absurdism, with a peppering of existentialism. In a more global context, the story is about reflecting on three thousand years of Western thought and seeing if it serves as a catalyst for change, perhaps even bloodless revolt and revolution.
I want it to be a novel that is enjoyable to read, that gives satisfaction to the reader on many levels. My writing is inspired by philosophical fiction, by authors like Sartre, de Beauvoir, Camus, Kafka, Hesse, and others concerned with the human condition. However, I also like other genres such as the science fiction of Asimov or the “magic realism” of Gabriel García Márquez — amongst many others.
My friend Rob and my brother were both big fans of Stephen King. I was too “intellectual” (arrogant) for that. My brother finally convinced me to read some of King’s short stories and his non-horror books. I did, and found I actually enjoyed them very much. I admitted that King was a good storyteller. Before this, I was concentrating too much on ideas and concepts; I decided that this would result in very dull writing.
If my book ends up being too intellectual or dry, it’s not from lack of effort on my part to make it an enjoyable read.