Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The "Story behind the story"...


Where to begin?  Let's begin at the beginning.  No, let's begin with the basics and then we'll move on to the beginning:

The basics:  The Kabrini Message is a book, written a quarter of a century ago, about to be published in January 2013.  It was written by a first time author, J.R. Egles (my brother) who passed away in 2010.  The Kabrini Message, therefore, is not only the author's first but only novel and being published posthumously.  It is technically a science fiction book, with an action/adventure crossover.  The "message" is of our universal connection, which was ahead of it's time, when it was written in 1987, but we'll delve into that further in a future post.

I have not read anything like The Kabrini Message before and therefore, it is difficult to compare it to any other stories...however, as purely a point a reference, the closest thing I can associate it with is a sort of Avatar meets Indiana Jones.  

OK, now we can begin at the beginning:  It was late spring 2011 when I found myself feeling very nostalgic.  For some reason, I felt the overwhelming urge to climb up into my attic and reminisce over old family photos.  At the time, I attributed it to the fact that I had been working on a project for my son’s upcoming wedding—assembling pictures of him from birth through adulthood, which would be displayed at the reception.  As I was combing through all of his old pictures, I was suddenly overcome with a desire to look through my own childhood photos. 

A few days went by, and I still had not made the trek up into the attic.  I realized that with the frantic pace of everyday life, if I waited for a day when I finally had some spare time, I may never get around to it.  So late one night, feeling compelled at that moment, I went into my attic in search of old family photographs.  I found the photographs—but I also found something else.

The 1987 hand typed manuscript, as found in my attic in 2011.
I discovered it as I was digging through a box of photos that had come from my mother’s house.  My mother passed away in 1994, and I must have received the box of photographs and mementos shortly after that—but I had not gone through it until this particular late night adventure.  Inside the old box, I came across a large manila envelope, marked in my mother’s handwriting:  “Joe’s Book”.  The manuscript was dated 1987.

I vaguely remembered, many years earlier, hearing my mother talk about a book that my brother Joe had written.  She was typing his hand-written manuscript for him.  I don’t believe I ever heard Joe speak of it himself; and I had never heard any more of the book until now.

I tossed the envelope aside to bring downstairs, thinking it might make for good summer reading and that was the beginning...