Which is, if you missed it, that since a year ago March, I have been dreaming-drinking-thinking-breathing the stripling warriors, and when I meet a new author, I am both fascinated and intrigued by what drove them to finish their novel. Knowing how much effort it takes, it is amazing to me how many people do it. That is why I am so interested in Author Interviews here on my blog.
And I have a particularly good one for you today. It is a preamble to the review of The Lost Stones I have planned for next week. (Sidenote-- You can actually use the word preamble to mean a preparatory statement or introduction so long as you aren't so haughty as to call your statement The Preamble). When I first read what this book was about, Book of Mormon archaeology, it went immediately on my must-read list. You don't even know how smug I am that I got to read Paul Rimmasch's The Lost Stones before it came out. It's pretty smug.
So, I would like to introduce you to a new friend of mine, Paul Rimmasch.
Paul has parlayed a life long interest in Book of Mormon Archaeology and LDS Church History into this, his first novel.
Paul, tell us about writing The Lost Stones. Where did you get the idea, how long did it take you to write? (and etc.)
Writing The Lost Stones was more like a series of therapy sessions than a literary exercise. I had the story forming and crystallizing in my mind for several years before I set finger to keyboard. It finally got to the point where my thoughts were so preoccupied by the story that it became clear that the only way to get it out of my head was to write it down. This course of action was a surprise to me, and everyone I told. I will never forget the look on my wife’s face when I told her I was going to write a book.
I can’t tell you where exactly the idea for the book came from. My friends and family always laugh at my ability to remember random facts that I have heard over the years. I guess one could say that The Lost Stones is a collection of these facts concerning Book of Mormon archaeology and dressed up in a fun story.
Music was an important part of my creative process. I would often listen to certain songs or classical works in order to achieve the correct emotional state to write a certain scene. In fact, (a bit of insider information here) the party scene at the end of chapter 14 can only fully be appreciated if read while listening to the song Rhythm Divine by Enrique Iglesias.
Ha! I would have liked to see the look on your wife's face! Okay, summarize your research about the Michigan plates, the mystic symbol, and the largely dismissed archeology of upper Michigan and other North American sites.
Of all of the facts about archaeology that may pertain to the Book of Mormon I find the so-called “Michigan Artifacts” the most compelling. We are told by the mainstream of science that there is absolutely no archaeological evidence showing the plausibility of the Book of Mormon. However, in the mid 1800’s farmers clearing new land in the upper Mid-West began discovering a dizzying array of strange artifacts. Their finds ranged from metal weapons to everyday objects such as lamps and tools. They also discovered thousands of slate tablets covered with a strange hieroglyphic writing that had elements of Hebrew, Egyptian and other ancient old world languages. What shocked the farmers most was the fact that many tablets had pictorial representations of Biblical scenes, including those of Jesus Christ.
The settlers asked the local Native Americans if the artifacts had been left behind by their ancestors. The Native Americans responded that these artifacts had not been made by their progenitors but rather by an ancient race of white skinned people that had been destroyed by their forefathers.
Present on almost all of the artifacts is what researchers call the “Mystic Symbol.” The meaning of this symbol, if properly interpreted, should be of particular interest to students of The Book of Mormon.
What is fascinating to me is the fact that these discoveries are widely ignored by academics. In most cases they are proclaimed to be a hoax despite the fact the thousands were found by hundreds of different people over multiple decades. This has left me wondering why? Are academics simply loath to give up their cherished theories of New World colonization, or is there something more to it?
The factual history of “Michigan Artifacts” is used as a major plot driver in The Lost Stones.
Paul, thank you so much for taking the time to respond and sharing your intriguing research with us. I wish you the best of luck with your new novel.
The Lost Stones appears to be available for purchase on Amazon already. Check it out!
And come back early next week for my full review of Paul's book.