Weblog Commenting and Trackback by HaloScan.com The Dark Window: A Look Behind, Part II

Prepare to be horrified...

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

A Look Behind, Part II

Yesterday we looked at the brains behind the Left Behind book series and today we're going to take a look at the brawn: Jerry B. Jenkins. While Dr. Tim LaHaye came up with the idea in the first place, Jerry's the one who's done all the actual writing. And considering that he's written 12 full-length Left Behind novels and 36 Left Behind: The Kids novels in just 9 years, he's been doing quite a lot of it.

Jerry B. Jenkins is the author of the Left Behind novels, the fastest-selling fiction series ever. These books have sold more than 60 million copies since 1995. Jerry has written more than 150 books, including the Left Behind series and his book, SOON. Book 2 in the SOON trilogy, Silenced, will be released July 2004.

Wow! That's a lot of books! I'll be thrilled if I ever complete my 150th blog entry. Of course my 97 blog entries and Jerry's 150 books do share something in common: a distinct lack of quality.

On his website there's a section called FAQ. Here's one of my favorite Q's:

I'm doing a report (or helping a student work on one) for school on Jerry B. Jenkins. Do you have some detailed biographical information that would help?

Ooooh...Sounds like somebody's cheating. I wish my dad had written my reports for me! I'm curious what this biographical information will look like, though.

It shouldn’t surprise you to find out that Mr. Jenkins does a lot of reading to keep current with what works and doesn’t work in top-selling books. He also spends a great deal of time doing research online.

This is where Jerry and I part company. I'm afraid it's painfully obvious that I never bothered to keep current with what works in top-selling blogs. Of course the flip side of this is that it's also painfully obvious that Jerry is writing formulaic fiction and doesn't seem to have a lot of fresh ideas to explore in his very drawn-out books. Even his biggest fans seem to lament this (just read a sampling of the comments on his later books at Amazon for an example).

With the freedom that comes with being a bestselling author comes an enormous responsibility to keep his faith and family first as well as be a careful steward of the financial gifts God has given him. As for hobbies, Mr. Jenkins likes listening to the Beatles, Beach Boys and Bee Gees. He also loves playing racquetball and Scrabble.

Sounds like a fun guy. But I guess if you're the steward of that many financial gifts from God, you can afford not to be very interesting.

Let's take another question from the audience.

Is Glorious Appearing really the last book in the Left Behind series?
No. Absolutely not! Despite any rumors to the contrary, Glorious Appearing was not the end of the series. We're pleased to inform you that the next book, Book #13, Left Behind - The Prequel and Book #14, Final Judgment are expected to come out in 2005 and 2006.

I can kind of understand a prequel but Final Judgment? The Glorious Appearing book ended with all our heroes in heaven and all the liberals dead by the sword emanating from Jesus' mouth. What's left? Unless some of those liberals aren't really dead...

Breaking news here at the Dark Window. The title of the 14th Left Behind novel will be Final Judgment: Delano Returns. The main part of the plot will have a zombie FDR driving around in his demonic wheelchair, shooting laser beams from his glasses and casting spells on unsuspecting Christians trying to enjoy their glorified bodies. And if you suspect this will take the Left Behind series into the horror genre, you would be correct. The scariest part comes when Jerry Falwell struts around in nothing but his glorified body.

Jerry Jenkins also owns the Christian Writers Guild, which aims to train tomorrow's professional Christian writers and has nearly 2,000 members worldwide. The centerpiece of the Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writers Guild is a brand-new, e-mail correspondence course tailored to fit the busiest lifestyle. Students enrolled in the course are personally mentored by a seasoned professional writer or editor throughout the two-year program.

Well, I am pretty busy. And if I do this via e-mail, I won't have to listen to Jerry's Bee Gees collection while we're working. I'd better check an example of Jerry's writing first, though (this is the excerpt from his latest book he chose to put on his own website):

Chaim Rosenzweig had not slept, and after only two light meals of manna, he expected to feel the fatigue. But no. The best he could calculate, this was the day. He felt the swelling anticipation in both his head and his chest. It was as if his mind raced as his heart ached for the greatest event in the history of the cosmos.

Well, I can't say I'm all that impressed with Jerry's writing but he does claim to know what works in top-selling books so maybe I'll just...whoa!...$149 to become a member?

I'm beginning to wish I had God on my side too...I could use some of those financial gifts myself!

Jerry B. Jenkins


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