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Scott has written a fast paced novel about finding God in the face of adversity. It's a book that many people will find helpful because it encourages us to not lose hope and to keep going. Scott provided some insights about how and why he wrote this book.
about your book Matthew 13:44
13:44 is a novel which is influenced by true events. It is about
strength in the face of adversity and how good can sometimes come
from the bleakest of circumstances, though you wouldn’t know it
until the darkness has lifted. Like many of us making our way through
life, Lucy Sinclair will stumble, fall, get up and walk, all because
there is no other alternative but to carry on; in her case for the
sake of her critically ill daughter. And all the while, like the last
days of Christ, she will be betrayed, tried and publicly humiliated
by those who would do her harm for no other reason than their own
personal gain. Although written as a thriller, Matthew 13:44
is primarily a journey from ‘no faith’ to ‘belief’ and from a
world view as seen through the prism of chance to a heavenly view of
divine intervention and love.
inspired you to write your novel?
firstborn came into this world needing life saving cardiac surgery.
She then suffered a complication. On day ten of life she was given
tracheotomy—an artificial airway cut straight into her
neck—something which even a full grown adult would struggle with.
And so our journey began, though little did I know, a second journey
would be running in tandem.
first, was the pediatric experience which is a vicarious one.
Vicarious, in that as parents, we are not patients and so are lucid.
We have our full faculties to suffer every step of the way as our
children, our small bundles of pure love, suffer in front of us,
while we are powerless to help them. Instead, we put our trust in
strangers, doctors who—like all people—can be brilliant,
appalling and anything else in between. In our case, we had the full
spectrum, as we soon saw that medicine is part science, part art and
part guesswork. We are now two years in to this experience and as a
result, all night, every night, I sit by her bedside, like a ‘break
glass in case of emergency’ dad, as her tracheotomy tube can and
does block, leaving us with thirty seconds to intervene and change
the tube less irreversible brain damage occurs.
wrote this book by her bedside as she slept, in the dark, except for
one dimmed light in the corner. It is in part a catharsis; to
rationalize my experience…the uncertainty, the pain, the ups and
the downs of her condition, the reality of her going from well to
seriously ill at the drop of a hat. But also to touch others who are
living the same solitary, sterile life as me, regardless of their
second journey was less expected. I found faith. Not in an instance.
Not as a sudden realization, and certainly by no revelation or voice.
But by a slow burning, gradual and very personal meeting with Christ.
Matthew 13:44 is thus a testimony. A statement of faith, made
most surprising of all to me, given that until two years ago I’d
have happily described myself as a militant atheist.
describe yourself as ‘once an atheist,’ why?
for me wasn’t sudden. And it wasn’t imposed or taught. Like the
male lead character in the story, religion just wasn’t on our
radar. I was brought up an atheist in the United Kingdom. My
grandfather was a medic during the second world war. He spent his
time policing up the wounded and dead in North Africa as Nazi Germany
and Great Britain engaged in an attrition in the sand. In fact, my
grandfather served at the famous battle of El Alamein. If it was ever
possible back then to have had a ‘bad war,’ given the whole
affair was so turgid, then he certainly had one. God for him, as he
would say, died on that battlefield too; a notion which continues to
run strong in my family to this day. In other words, how can there be
a God in the midst of such carnage? Why would He let it happen? Or
indeed, how could any good possibly come from such a tragedy? These
are well charted dichotomies which I wanted to explore, but through
my own life experiences, which is as the father of a medicalized
child. An innocent who is born to suffer.
influenced the setting?
latter part of the story—and the setting which the various plot
strands work towards—is a children’s hospice. And for me, a
children’s hospice is surely the very apex of all human suffering,
outside of a concentration camp or a disaster zone. It is a place
where bad things happen to the most innocent of people. And more so,
it is a place where the incomprehensible must be explained to those
who can comprehend the least. If angels do walk our earth then they
exist in places such as these. They are the staff. They are the
people who live their lives in that moment between being alive and
not; between the trauma of a young death and the devastation of its
aftermath. Yet every day they do it with an incredible mix of decorum
and joy. And they do so for no other reason than making those days,
hours and minutes just that little bit more tolerable.
you hope readers will take away from this?
no matter how isolated we feel, we’re never alone. I hope readers
will take strength, courage even, to get up and walk regardless of
whatever the setback, obstacle, or hurdle. I hope that readers will
see something of themselves in my lead character Lucy. That she never
knew when she was beaten, even at the bleakest of times.
we get the book?
available on Amazon.com as a paperback or Kindle eBook. It’s also
available through Barnes and Noble.