Tag Archives: writing

Author or Character Interviews, Anyone?

Microscope

Put yourself under the microscope!

If you write books for a G, PG, or PG-13 audience, you may submit a request for an author interview. Not all interviews will be featured, but I will try to spotlight authors often. Thank you!

Author Interview Questions

Answer whatever questions you wish, and you can modify the first one to fit what you write. Send them back to me at findleymcmj@gmail.com. I will let you know if/when your interview goes live.

1. Many people say that authors can’t or don’t do well with more than one genre. You have contemporary mystery, some romance, and now a western/scifi series. What do you think prepared you or qualifies you to write these different types of books?

2. What do you say to the charge that men can’t write romances that women will like, and how will you tempt guys to read your books?

3. Tell us a little about your “real” (Non-writing) life — family, job, church life. Does it give you inspiration for your writing? Does it get in the way of your writing, or are there times when you get help, from people or circumstances?

4. Tell us about things you enjoy — what you do for fun or personal satisfaction.

5. Tell us about working with any people who help you create your books — Do you use Beta readers? Hire an editor or proofreader? How do you get your covers?

6. Since you have several books out, tell us what you think works for promotion. What are your thoughts on ebooks versus print books and different ways to let people know about you and your books?

7. Have you done anything writing-related, but besides your books, that seemed to get a lot of positive response? Something that encouraged you?

8. Tell us about your newest book. Make us want to read it.

9. What is the “message” of your writing? (For example, is your purpose to encourage old-fashioned values, encourage romance, or do you have different purposes in different books?)

10. Tell us one place you visited or person you met, that made a big impression on you, and why.

11. Tell us one place you want to visit, or person you want to meet, and why.

12. Share something that makes you laugh, with just plain humor, or happiness, or because it’s so stupid.

13. Share something that’s amazing, touching, or that makes you angry.

14. What’s the worst trouble you ever had with getting a book written (plots, finding needed information, getting a cover done)?

15. What’s your next project? Tell us so we can’t wait for it to come out!

Please send images and links, including any good reviews or news you want to share about your books.

OR, perhaps you’d rather do a character interview. If so, follow the example below.

Character Interview Example

Hi, we’re interviewing Leah Masters from Mary C. Findley’s book Send a White Rose. Leah is here to tell us how a lovely young society lady from Boston ended up in territorial New Mexico, in the middle of an assassination plot against the man who sent for you to discuss marriage.

1. What do you do for a living, and how’s business?

I’ve been blessed to be provided for by my father, Senator Masters, but I do keep our household running smoothly, do his accounts, and play hostess at his dinner parties since the death of my mother some years ago.

2. You’ve been seen with some ––––––––––––––– (people, animals, illness, interesting tools, vehicles, weapons, or other things related to your story). What’s your secret to (attracting them, fighting them off, working with them, making them, whichever applies)

Yes, I’m afraid my health is not the best, and I do seem to catch everything that goes around. I can’t believe I was sick right when it was time to visit Judge Durant in New Mexico.

3. When you (took that trip, bought that object, met that person, accepted that job, fired that weapon, whatever applies), that certainly was a life-changing decision, wasn’t it?

It certainly was the most difficult thing I have ever done, but my brother Randall insisted we couldn’t put off the trip until I was over my illness. Of course, neither of us realized how hard the trip was, or how sick I really was. And how humiliating, to faint at Judge Durant’s feet and not even be able to say a word.

4. Did it shock you when you learned (something about another person or an important place or event in the story)?

I had two big shocks one right after the other. First, I learned that my brother had been arrested on suspicion of having tried to assassinate Judge Durant. The second was being told that that Judge Durant had left town, when I came all this way to meet him and discuss the possibility of marriage.

5. Some of us like to exercise the “ask a friend” option at odd times in our lives, but it seems especially odd that you brought ––––––– in to help you solve the problem of ______. What’s special about him/her?

It didn’t seem strange at all to me that Alethia and I would become friends. I didn’t learn until later that many people thought of her as the natural choice to be Judge Durant’s wife. She was the only one who could really tell me the truth about what had happened to Judge Durant.

6. What did you think when _________ (complicating event in the story) happened, and how did you handle it?

Governor Markham insisted he could persuade Judge Durant to see me and help work out this terribly confusing and embarrassing situation between us. I went with him to the hospital, but the judge got angry at all his friends and banished everyone. It was only by pretending to be lost looking for another patient that I found the courage to actually talk to him again. He didn’t even recognize me, for which I was grateful.

7. What was one thing another person did that surprised/angered/delighted/saddened/frightened you, and turned out to be extremely important to how things turned out?

I couldn’t believe, after all the changes for the better that my brother had gone through, that he would revert to his old ways and accuse Alethia of such a terrible thing. But there were so many things I still didn’t understand about my own brother, and what he was capable of.

8. Did you do anything you really regretted/enjoyed/ struggled to accomplish That made a big difference?

It certainly was foolish of me to just run off in the pouring rain trying to find the judge when I had so little information. I just knew that he was in danger, and I couldn’t find anyone else in time. I suppose I didn’t think about how dangerous for me, too.

9. Was there a time when you were certain things just were not going to turn out right?

More than once, certainly. There were so many complications. Even when everything else seemed to be working out, that only made it harder to try to believe that things would work out between the judge and myself.

10. Why would you refuse the marriage proposal you’d crossed the country and gone through so much hardship just to hear?

A combination of anger, humiliation, and honestly, happiness that he’d made a decision, even if it wasn’t for me. I didn’t even understand why he would ask me, when Alethia has loved him all her life.

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“Take Words with You … ” Mary C. Findley

king of glory 25

“Take words with you and return to the Lord.  Say to Him, “Take away all iniquity and receive us graciously, that we may present the fruit of our lips.” Hosea 14:2

Coming soon — a book for Christian writers about Christian writing.

This book is about how to prepare to be a writer, how to write, and lots of my thoughts and opinions on what you should and shouldn’t write about. Although opinions are like noses – everybody has one, and some of them smell – My opinions are based on decades of reading, writing, and studying what makes Christian writing Christian.
The title of this book should make clear my purpose for writing it, and all the others I have written or will write. I used to think I could write cool stuff and not worry about the message, but the message of glorifying God, of honoring His Word, and of communicating truth, even in fiction, is overpowering. The Scripture verse on the cover is a recent discovery. The context is Israel’s need to repent, but my, oh my, isn’t this what we need to do before we write a word? Don’t we need to take our words to God, to ask Him to purify them, to accept what we offer Him, as if it was that sweet savor He loves in the Old Testament sacrifices? Wow. To think that our books can be our fruit. It’s humbling. It’s terrifying. But God asks us to bear fruit, so let’s see what we need to do to get on with it.

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Filed under Excerpts from our Nonfiction Books, Writing, Reviewing, Publishing, and about Blogging

Why I Write Steampunk … A Part Two of Sorts … Author post by Sophronia Belle Lyon

jeremiah steampunk

We were reading in Jeremiah this morning, and I ran across these verses. It made me think of how we fail the Lord sometimes … Get distracted and fall away from wholehearted service, or become rebellious and stubborn. The Lord invites us to return, and His forgiveness will restore us to “stand before him”, like a servant stands ready to do his master’s bidding.

Then I thought about writing Steampunk, and how man takes good things and twists them, making them evil and vile, or real-life people who corrupt the innocent. Classic themes, characters, and settings become vehicles for sex-peddling, feminist diatribes, exalting the occult, and all the other things Steampunk sometimes does.  But the verses above say God urges us to “take forth the precious from the vile”. He says … *shivers running up and down my spine* … “thou shalt be as my mouth”. I get to speak for God. I get to speak for God!

Listen to what Johannes Keppler says about his studies in Science:

“Now, eighteen months after the first light, three months after the true day, but a very few days after the pure Sun of that most wonderful study began to shine, nothing restrains me; it is my pleasure to taunt mortal men with the candid acknowledgment that I am stealing the golden vessels of the Egyptians to build a tabernacle to my God from them, far, far away from the boundaries of Egypt. If you forgive me, I shall rejoice; if you are enraged with me, I shall bear it. See, I cast the die, and I write the book. Whether it is to be read by the people of the present or of the future makes no difference: let it await its readers for a hundred years, if God Himself has stood ready for six thousand years for one to study Him.”

—Johannes Kepler, Book V, The Harmony of the World

But there’s a strong caution in the Jeremiah passage. I can use Steampunk for His glory, but I have to be careful not to let my hunger to extend my reach — to use this offbeat but popular genre to attract people into the sphere of God’s influence — God says, “let them return unto thee; but return not thou unto them.” It’s the old analogy of the person standing on the chair trying to pull up the person on the floor. I can’t end up on the floor. I can’t get down on the world’s level. I have to bring them up into that “Sun” Keppler talked about. I also have to remember that I’m supposed to be rescuing souls, real, precious lives, not just writing a book about it.

I love that reference to a “fenced brasen wall”, because Steampunk things are often made out of bronze. My characters use bronze tools and weapons for defense and offense against the enemies they face. But in reality it is God who protects and preserves those who “stand before” Him. I need to be clear about that with my characters ,too, that as they face “the hand of the wicked” and “the hand of the terrible”, that they rely on and give glory to God for their deliverance.

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Filed under Bible Teaching, Excerpts from our Fiction Books, Writing, Reviewing, Publishing, and about Blogging

A “Striking” Scripture for Writers by Mary C. Findley

Ecclesiastes 12: 11-12
The words of wise men are like goads, and masters of these collections are like well-driven nails; they are given by one Shepherd. But beyond this, my son, be warned: the writing of many books is endless, and excessive devotion to books is wearying to the body.

I hate writing blog posts, or mostly any kind of non-fiction. It’s hard work. But I love writing fiction books. Still, these verses from Ecclesiastes presented quite “striking” image to me, if you’ll pardon the pun. I want to be wise in what I write, fiction or nonfiction. I want my words to be striking. Like a goad to get the cattle moving, I want them to keep people from standing still, from stagnating. I want my words to move people forward for God.

The verse also says something about being a “master of these collections”. I think it’s talking about the wise words being the collection, and that people who hear them and take them to heart can be used by God for another kind of striking. Those people can be like the nails that hold together something that’s well-constructed, like a ministry of some kind. So my words, if they are wise, can help people help their ministries to be solid and strong.

I know only God can do the actual moving, but I want my words to be the instrument. This is where the “given by one Shepherd” part comes in. God gives wise words to writers, if they let him, and they pass those on to those nails who get driven in, hard and fast, and hold a ministry together. It probably hurts to be a nail, metaphorically speaking, a person whom God has to drive into a work. But won’t it be great when you’re helping hold that building together for God?

The rest of the passage is a warning I need to heed as a writer, too. We have 47 publications now, and I’m going through a correction and updating process that makes that “devotion to books” thing ring very true. It is wearying to the body to be doing maintenance on 47 publications. It does seem endless. So it’s good that God said, “Let the books go for a little while, and write about My Word. Goad some people, if you can, and encourage those well-driven nails. While you’re a it.” So I hope I did.

Image from Morguefile

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The Prayer Networks

“Pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.” (James 5:16)

When we first joined Facebook, it was simply to keep in touch with our children in their far-flung adventures (and ours). Eventually we began to make friends there, usually people we knew in “real” life and in some cases hadn’t seen in many years. It was nice to reconnect. Gradually we made other friends, what I call “digital-only” friends. We haven’t actually met them or had any live communication. We are Facebook (or Goodreads, or blog post, or Twitter) friends only.

I had one Facebook friend who for awhile felt a little like a stalker. It was really just that she knew very little about something we were both interested in, writing and publishing, and I knew more, so she asked a lot of questions. In no way did I feel threatened by her, or worried that she would try to kill me if I didn’t get right back to her when she messaged me.

Yesterday I read an article about a couple murdered in their home. When they arrested two suspects, the Sheriff said that these people were killed because they had “unfriended” the daughter of one of the suspects. The other suspect had an “attraction” for the daughter of the man he assisted in committing murder.

The Sheriff said this was not the first time this woman “could not handle it” when she thought she was being ignored or slighted. She had been accused of stalking and harassing another woman who failed to pay attention to her on social networking. Her father said she “lived” on Facebook. It was all she did.

A previous complaint against the woman, who apparently got her father and a wannabe boyfriend to commit murder for the sake of her bruised ego, was made by a woman she stalked online and by phone. The complaint said that the woman being stalked didn’t even know the stalker personally.

Instead of lashing out in anger or stalking people in my social network when I don’t hear from them, or hear from them a little more often than is comfortable, I pray for them. I pray for those who need jobs, those enduring separation from family because of military service, those struggling to get a book published, those with ongoing medical problems, those struggling with disobedient children or unsaved spouses. We have friends who are missionaries, short term or long-term, around the world. We have others having marital problems. We have met people in countries where it’s difficult to get books, to figure out where to buy them from, even online. I even pray for people who don’t believe prayer does any good.

One of those friends recently seemed to be having a very bad time with family and health problems. She cried out on several sites we both belong to, and the answer was almost universally, from whatever site, whoever responded, “We are praying for you. God comfort and help you. Please know that we care.” Nobody was angry with her for pouring her heart out in near-despair. Everyone has problems, but everyone who knows Christ knows that even though we call it a Social Network, we can make it a Prayer Network, anytime, anywhere.

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Filed under Current Issues, Politics, Excerpts from our Nonfiction Books, Writing, Reviewing, Publishing, and about Blogging

Curiouser and Curiouser … An Author’s Adventures in Twitterland

I set up a Twitter account awhile back because that was on my promotional “to-do” list. However, I did not really understand what it was for, so I did not use it much. I tweeted our blog posts, and that was pretty much it. My experience with Twitter was somewhat like Alice staring down the rabbit hole. The White Rabbit is marketing, and I want to go where it goes, but I hesitated looking down that small, dark hole. I know that Twitter resembles email, except that you have to be extremely careful what you say. You only have 140 characters in which to say it. Interestingly enough, this ties in with another part of my writer’s journey, inspired decades ago by Strunk and White’s The Elements of Style, my pledge to “Omit needless words!”

I never really understood writers who needed to write long books. Some people love long books with complex descriptions of places, clothing and every little detail. I like the characters and the stories. Excuse me while I skip the travelogue at the beginning of every chapter of Jules Verne’s Michael Strogoff. I am not quite at the point of writing phone-screen-sized chapters or text-messaging novels, but I keep hearing that echo, “omit needless words,” and so I edit, trim, and refine my work. As a matter of fact, I have only recently learned the art of text messaging, another thing that resembles Tweeting. Our daughter is hard of hearing and our communication is almost exclusively by texting. I refuse to use all the abbreviations, symbols and jargon. It makes it difficult, but I have my limits.

Back to Twitter. Recently I timidly took the step of retweeting posts by some authors I have befriended and admire. I don’t just randomly retweet, and I don’t even retweet everything I agree with. I do, however, tend to retweet my author friends. In the meantime, our blog posts go on Twitter automatically, and the other day I was startled to discover that our blog followers had more than tripled in the last month. I was also startled to discover that our books were beginning to sell a little. Our chosen niche market is niched indeed, more like Scout and Jem’s secret space in the hollow tree where they exchanged treasures with Boo Radley. I don’t expect to have bestsellers. In fact, more than one blogger has refused to read our books for review or carry posts we have written because they are “too…” Well, I’ll let you fill in the blank and ponder what an unfair world it is.

I noticed also that strange Tweeters were beginning to say they were following me. I’m not going to tell you how many followers I have because it’s still embarrassing, but people do notice when you retweet a lot. The next step in my Twitterland journey was when I joined a Facebook authors’ group that seemed to fit better with my niche than those I had previously joined. I participated, talked, asked for advice, as I always do when I join a group. Then I noticed they were posting Tweets for their books or interviews or blog posts. I grabbed them and retweeted them, and everybody said “Thank You!”

Then someone said, “Where are your tweets? We will repost them all sorts of ways.” Aaaggh! I had no tweets. So I have been forced to create Tweets. I am still struggling to grasp the hashtag thing, but I think it makes it stand out more, like tagging your book on Amazon. I still hate having to abbreviate, to leave out my beloved exact spelling and punctuation, but I press on. And, though in some respects I am still staring down the rabbithole, I am getting the hang of this Twitter thing. Because of something I am doing, our blog is getting a higher profile and our books are getting some sales. A recent article said that Twitter will cease to exist this year. Perhaps. But in the meantime, it seems to be working for me. Go through your Twitter feed every day, look for the ones you want to retweet, decide if you want to follow people who say they are following you, and don’t forget to Tweet yourself!

How to create a Twitter Post (from an admitted newbie.)

Look at what other similar posts contain in the way of hashtags. For example, I write #Historical and #Fiction and #Adventure, my husband writes #SciFi and #Nonfiction, and there are TONS of other hashtags. Just add the Hash or pound sign in front of a word and you have a hash tag. They are subjects that people search for that can get your post noticed, and retweeted, and possibly get you followed. Punctuation and correct spelling take up extra characters, so grit your teeth and leave them out. Use a URL shortening program like bitly to cut down your links. HootSuite is a free program that can be used to schedule recurring tweets, I am told,. That’s the next step in my journey, I guess.

Some examples of tweets using hashtags

#SciFi #Christian The future of persecution. Lunar colony, gas-collection in the outer planets, forbidden romance http://bit.ly/x5Doq7

#Nonfiction doesn’t have to be dull! 200 illustrations, Nimrod’s worship foundations to founding fathers’ fears http://amzn.to/tUo6Kb

#Mystery Adventure Series, All Things New Doctor tests, Boarding school, secret society, Christmas ball, twin trouble http://amzn.to/vG8jGW

#romance #suspense #historical Occult attacks, child sex slavery, a lost prince, regain a throne, king’s hole peril  http://bit.ly/wnxxpt

#Blog, #Issues, #History, #Education #Science It’s tough but you need it. From a fan, “Need me some elk jerky, I do” http://bit.ly/vfdw8v

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Part Two: Make It Clean, Get It Out

So many people have said writing a book is the easy part. Still, it can’t be repeated often enough. New writers are cropping up all the time, while the traditional publishing contract including a marketing machine to get your word out is fast becoming downright mythological. “Do it yourself” takes on a whole new meaning when it comes to new author/new book self-creation and promotion. Check out our previous post on the hows and whys of e-book production for more on the production end.

First step after you think your book is “finished” is to realize it’s not. You have to make your book technically clean before you can seriously try to publish it. Whatever your financial abilities, get the best vetting you can to get rid of the errors. If your editorial staff consists of you, your mom, your oldest kid, and a co-worker you bribed with lunch for a week, so be it. Many author-oriented sites have sections, often called workshops, devoted to getting help from other authors, editors, or those who will take on the task free or cheap if you help them in some way. Avail yourself of them if you can, but remember that everyone, especially unpaid volunteers or friends, will take time to get through your work. They might give up and never finish. In the end, you must get someone you can depend on. Goodreads, Kindleboards, “Indie Writers Unite” and “Indie Author Group” (the last two are facebook groups) all have editors or at least people willing to exchange a read and comment in their ranks.

Some people depend on an auto-editing program. White Smoke is one I have heard praised. I have not personally used one, but I have read three modern self-published books recently in which I found, consistently, the following types of errors. I will paraphrase to avoid picking on or identifying a particular work. One had, at the end of a piece of conversation, “said Robert quietly said.” The word “shudder” appeared where “shutter” should have been, referring to a window’s protective covering. The word “peak” appeared where “peek” or pique” should have in two different books (“I took a peak in the bag,” “this will peak your interest”) instead of, “I took a peek in the bag” or “this will pique your interest”). This is what an auto-editor will do for you. Not only will it not catch/fix everything, it will introduce new things. In the immortal words of Captain Kirk, “Spock, we’re all human.” An auto-editor is only human. It makes mistakes.

I asked the author of one of the books I read about her editing process when I found errors like these. She described shared/workshop readers, her own many years of experience, her training under a professional editor, and the fact that she used an auto-editor. She said she couldn’t afford or justify $5,000 for professional editing services. Another writer said she couldn’t afford such services either, that she had herself, one or two other people, what she could get from the workshop volunteers, and White Smoke. I noticed a pattern even in just these two authors. The auto-editor came last.

I am a former English teacher, editor and proofreader, and these things disturb me. I don’t want to read them in your works, please. So, from my tiny sample and admittedly narrow experience, I am going to dogmatically state, Survey says, the auto-editor should not come last. Reel ayes shield bee lest (Real eyes should be last), lest you put out wrong stuff. That being said, if you do use a “professional editor,” understand that there’s a limit to what you should let other people do to your work. One of the published authors I spoke to went self-published because she had bad experiences with editors. No one is saying editors are always wrong, either, but be careful when the changes become extensive and substantive.

It’s your story. Let them fix the typos, the grammar, the punctuation, maybe, but don’t let them say that they can tell your story better than you can, unless you or someone you trust actually agrees on the “improvement.” Editors can be very intimidating people. Don’t let them change what’s vital to your tale for the sake of marketability, not offending people, or because they disagree with what you’ve said and think they can bully you with their “professionalism.” But you have got to get the book clean, or you will annoy and chase off people even less picky than me, based on what I’ve seen. I read a book in which I am sure I found, conservatively, 5% of the content to be errors. That is oh so very much too much.

I am devoting another full post to covers, (yes, you have to have one, yes, it has to be stunning) but, once you feel your book is as clean as you can make it, refer to the earlier post called “The Hows and whys of E-Books” and get your book up on Smashwords, on Amazon, on whatever other sites you can. There is a program called Calibre, and there are others, that, if you can figure out how to use them, can convert your book to multiple formats. There’s no limit to the number of sites you can upload to if you can do your own conversions. But Smashwords premium distribution does get you on most of the major ones, B&N, iBooks, etc.

Once you are up, the sales do not, alas, automatically begin pouring in. This is when you start running the gamut of promotional possibilities. First some of the free ideas. Join forums and talk to people. I’ll use Goodreads as an example. Set up your author page(s) according to directions. Put up books you have read and review them intelligently and honestly, and keep doing that. Then go join some groups, say hello in the welcome areas, and join some conversations. Talk like you are paying attention to what people are saying. Address them by name. Quote from their posts so they know you actually read them. And read the entire post before speaking.

Meanwhile look around for other forums, appropriate groups, lists and subject areas where you can add your books. Try to engage the readers as well as fellow writers. Try to make the readers like you as a person, a thinker, maybe even a friend, and then they might make friends with your books. Don’t just spam your book or blog links at them. You might mention a blog topic if it fits in with the discussion and post a link, or they might ask you for it. Goodreads has the ability to insert a book cover with a link into a post. Do that with your book when you post. If you want to stick your post onto all the threads that say “Share your book (or blog) here” go ahead, but you’re likely to get lost in pages of the same.

Rarely do I go back and look through those lists. Participation is what gets me friends and followers and response. Don’t stay with groups that are obviously just a bunch of friends chatting and recommending mainline popular books and ignoring the Indie authors who try to interact. Don’t stay with dead groups. Pick small but active groups with opportunities to talk to living, breathing people who talk back. Talk to readers, not just writers. Writers are as broke and desperate as you are, and may be helpful, friendly, supportive and full of information you need to know, but readers are looking for books. Make them want to look for yours.

Kindleboards is a rather strict, well-policed but respected forum. They demand that you participate by posting and that you post in the right places about the right things. They also have beautiful author and book pages and active link signatures and banners for you to set up. I am still intimidated by Kindleboards, but I keep trying.

Amazon, Smashwords, Goodreads, StumbledUpon, Book Junkies Library, Author’s Den, Breakthrough Bookstore, and a host of blogs like Kindle Author give you free space to promote. Absolutely make use of those and any others you can find. Almost all forum sites additionally have opportunities to purchase paid advertising. The costs vary widely. Kindleboards is frequently called the most expensive. Other sites are internet-promotion oriented but not specifically for writers or writing. FeedShark, Pingomatic, Technorati and other blog search engines and other pingbacks can drive free traffic to your blog, where your book(s) better be linked.

Try to get people to write valuable reviews of your books. I have requested and been promised several, but so far only one result. That may be something you will just have to pay for. Not sure on that one. The article from the Wall Street Journal circulating about the Indie author who has sold over 400,000 copies of her e-books says she spent under $2000 advertising and that included one paid review from a company respected in the industry. She also charges only 99 cents for her book. How you price your book is something you have to decide. You might have sales or giveaways but I am still not sure people value something they can get cheap or free. Pricing is a promotional tool, but make sure you aren’t just selling to be selling, unless that’s really all you want to do.

There is a theory going around among Indie authors that if we add likes and tags to each others’ author and sales pages we will be more visible to potential customers. Getting reciprocation on this is difficult, but if you wish to do it or set up to have it done, here’s how.

People can like your Facebook author page. Beware of going around liking a bunch of fb pages if you don’t want their blood and guts horror titles (or smarmy romances) showing up in your feed. Do what you can to support other authors, but be realistic, honest and responsible. People can like most any other author pages you have. How to do that is to find a like or thumbs up sort of button and click it. Tags are a bit trickier. You should have set up tags when you first uploaded your book, but if you didn’t, your Amazon book page is set up as follows: The book’s cover near the top, next down is editorial reviews, next is product details, next is Customer Reviews, next your Shelfari extras if you have that set up, next your author page link, and ‘way down the page, “Tags Customers Associate” with this Product. I have tried hard to have at least 15 tags. I keep a text file saved with them ready for all the sites that ask for tags.

These are picked up by search engines as subjects and matched to customer searches. Just having yours set up is a good idea. Type an appropriate subject in the box and click “add.” Once you have one in place, you will see the word “edit” beside the box. Click on edit and you will be given a larger box into which you can cut and paste or type a list of all the tags you want, separated by commas. When finished click “add” and all the tags will appear at once. If you wish to participate in tagging, other people can click in the box beside the tag word and add to its number of uses. Tell them to make sure they are logged in as an Amazon customer, to be sure that the click actually increases the number beside the word, and that they click all the tags.

It’s difficult, it’s complicated. If you belong to an author group with 700+ members and you try to tag all of them, then get a dozen or so in response, that’s the way it is. I try to tag people when I see them post and put links up, but that means nobody’s even trying to tag mine because We have a round dozen now and I can’t put them up every time I post. And I don’t give likes to things I haven’t read. But if you can, and think it helps, at least try to reciprocate.

You can create video teasers for your books using the free moviemaker programs that come on your computer. Record a soundtrack of a reading excerpt, music, sound effects, whatever you are able to do, but make sure it’s good quality. Ever see a TV commercial where the image was fuzzy, the voices and music were almost inaudible or way out of balance, the text was hard to read? Maybe you haven’t, but they do exist and they are painful to see. Don’t do that.

Do add an author image (a good, clear, and preferably casual-appearing one) and bio. Do add book descriptions. Do add cover images, and in all this image uploading, pay attention to size requirements. They vary a lot. Create banners and whatever else you can, business cards, postcards, bookmarks (this is why you should keep an image file with the elements separate).

Twitter seems to get a response, for reasons I am still unclear about. Set up to automatically tweet your blog updates if nothing else, and update your blog often. I mean several times a week. Really. Consider posting on Google Plus. I complained to another author that we joined Google Plus in the latest wave of Facebook discontent but most of our friends weren’t there. He wisely said, “Facebook is to keep track of your old friends. Google Plus is to find new ones.”

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Secular Humanism: America’s Establishment of Religion

“Secular Humanism: Religious Mythology” is lettered on my computer bag. So “What is Secular Humanism?” The quick, simple answer is that it is the religion of self-indulgence with no possible consequences for the way we live in any kind of life after death. Beginning somewhere around the Kennedy administration, Secular Humanists learned that if they lied and claimed that they weren’t a religion, they could get federal funds. They also got political power to force everyone to practice their religion. The following more complete definition is from our book Antidisestablishmentarianism.

6. What Is Secular Humanism?

“The United States Supreme Court has held that secular humanism is a religion. Belief in evolution is a central tenet of that religion.” Edwards v Aguillard, U. S. Supreme Court, 1987. 

Almost every American colony had some form of establishment of religion. This was because their religion consisted of proven and necessary facts of existence. Religion was reliable, logical and rational to them. The modern established religion of Secular Humanism teaches that it is the only scientifically-based belief system in existence. It claims that all other religions are not scientifically-based, but the opposite is true. The Bible, upon which true religion is based, is a book of Science, and Secular Humanism is a religion of mythology.

“… Scientific history … is that the method that we use is something akin to the scientific method. It is based on at least three characteristics …. The first is to establish that the evidence is reliable. The second is making certain that the analysis being made is logical. And third, the analysis must lead to a generalisation that is based on rational argument.”2

Since time began man has only been able to take one of three positions toward a scientific fact. The first is belief, which means to accept the fact as it is and interpret its significance correctly. The second is unbelief, which means to reject a fact or give it the wrong interpretation. The third position is some degree of compromise between the other two, such as accepting a fact but wrongly interpreting its significance. It is also possible to misinterpret the true nature of the fact and misapply it to come to other wrong conclusions.

Belief does not mean mere opinion, as modern culture has degraded the word. The legal term belief means to accept something as true based on the facts available. Facts are true whether or not you choose to believe them. The Scriptures are the basis of scientific facts. This is the standard the founding fathers began with and also the colonials before them. All scientific facts are based on the Scriptures. “Facts are stubborn things;” said John Adams, “and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.”3

Since the opposite is drilled into everyone through western culture and western education, we need to think the following example through slowly and carefully. The Exodus of the children of Israel from Egypt is told in the Bible as a straightforward, factual, historic event. Charlton Heston, in his narration of the picturesque Bible video series, presents the Bible as part of the “oral tradition in storytelling” as if teachings passed on orally were understood to be less accurate or reliable and therefore merely legends and myths. Socrates, in Plato’s Dialogue “Phaedrus,” addresses the subject of oral versus written history.

“Theuth [Thoth] … was the inventor of many arts, … but his great discovery was the use of letters. … Thammus [the god Ammon] was the king of … Egypt; …To him came Theuth … desiring that the other Egyptians might be allowed to have the benefit of [his inventions]; … when they came to letters, This, said Theuth, will make the Egyptians wiser and give them better memories; … Thamus replied: … you … attribute to them a quality which they cannot have; for this … will create forgetfulness in the learners’ souls, … they will trust to the external written characters … This is an aid not to memory, but to reminiscence, … not truth, but only the semblance of truth; they will be hearers of many things and will have learned nothing; they will appear to be omniscient and will generally know nothing; they will be tiresome company, having the show of wisdom without the reality.”4

Plutarch, in his discourse on the life of Lycurgus and his rule in ancient Greece, expresses the belief that oral tradition is a way of making the law more firmly fixed in the mind.

“None of his laws were put into writing by Lycurgus, indeed, one of the so-called “rhetras” forbids it. For he thought that if the most important and binding principles which conduce to the prosperity and virtue of a city were implanted in the habits and training of its citizens, they would remain unchanged and secure, having a stronger bond than compulsion in the fixed purposes imparted to the young by education, which performs the office of a law-giver for every one of them.”5

There is considerable disagreement about whether the Scriptures were in some part orally communicated before being written down. The point is that even if they were it does not make them less authoritative or reliable. Socrates may not be entirely justified in discounting the value of written records but he reinforces the point that oral communication of history does not make it unreliable or inaccurate. Memorizing and passing on history demands great discipline and does not result in a form of the child’s game “gossip.”

Gossip, sometimes called Telephone or other names, consists of a group made to stand in a line. The first person in line is given a piece of paper on which is written a phrase to whisper into the ear of the second person. Frequently there is only one opportunity to whisper the message. The second person whispers what he heard to the third, and so on down the line. The last person is to write down or speak aloud what he heard the person before him say. When the final form of the “gossip” message is made public, frequently it bears little resemblance to the original phrase. The distortion of the oral message in the game gossip is simply due to the indifference of the people playing the game. In fact, one simple change in the rules of the game of gossip produces correct transmission of the message even by children. Simply offer everyone who is playing a large enough reward, or punishment, if the final message is correct.

Modern prisoners of war, inmates in prison, gang members, spies and others today pass on important information without writing it down and without changing the message. Most American Indian tribes had no written language and saw no need for one, until Europeans demonstrated the ability to talk to people far away. In the popular TV series Mission: Impossible, the leader of the team received his orders on a recording that self-destructed after he had heard it one time. He was forced to memorize the mission immediately or he would be unable to complete it.

In the Scriptures, the Exodus is not recorded as a “story” which only “contains” truth. The Exodus is recorded as an historic event like WWII, Benjamin Franklin hearing George Whitfield preach or the invention of the steam engine.

The established religion of secular humanism would single out the invention of the steam engine as the only scientific fact included in these historic events. The word science, however, means something has been correctly observed and accurately recorded under controlled circumstances. For an event or experiment to be a scientific fact it must normally be reproducible. There are exceptions to this, however. The explosion of a supernova is a scientific fact, though no one on earth knows of any way to reproduce that explosion. And even though some of the information recorded about WWII is incorrect information, the historic fact of WWII is also a scientific fact. In fact, WWII is probably the most well recorded fact of history. The abundance of evidence allows modern observers to cross reference records to make a true scientific picture of WWII. Benjamin Franklin’s observations are just as scientific.

“He [Whitefield] … preach’d one evening from the top of the Court-house steps, which are in the middle of Market-street, … I had the curiosity to learn how far he could be heard, … I found his voice distinct till I came near Front-street… Imagining then a semi-circle, … fill’d with auditors, to each of whom I allow’d two square feet, I computed that he might well be heard by more than thirty thousand. This reconcil’d me to the newspaper accounts of his having preach’d to twenty-five thousand people … and to the antient histories of generals haranguing whole armies, of which I had sometimes doubted.”6

On the other hand, Benjamin Franklin’s observations of George Whitfield’s preaching were the scientific measurements of a single observer. Though a single observer, even a careful one like Benjamin Franklin, might be more prone to error than a large number of observers, Franklin’s measurements were still scientific. Franklin used a step-by-step process of investigation. He physically walked off the distance to determine the range of Whitfield’s voice. Next he compared his observation with previous witnesses of Whitfield’s audiences and range. Finally he adds similar established historic accounts of commanders addressing troops (adding that he previously doubted their truth).

In the following paragraph the Bible presents step-by step scientific proofs of the accuracy of the historical event of the Exodus. Three hundred years after the event Jephthah confirms its occurrence (Judges 11:26). At the time of the beginning of Solomon’s temple construction the official historical record of the event (I Kings 6:1) confirms that 480 years have passed. If someone falsely claims that the Biblical record of the Exodus is not scientific, that is an issue of his unbelief, not an issue of science.

In the book of Judges, part of Jephthah’s speech to the Ammonites includes an approximate date for the Exodus. …Israel dwelt in Heshbon and her towns, and in Aroer and her towns, and in all the cities that be along by the coasts of Arnon, three hundred years? why therefore did ye not recover them within that time? (Judges 11:26, KJV) By the time of Solomon, the date of the Exodus was the foundational date for the kingdom. And it came to pass in the four hundred and eightieth year after the children of Israel were come out of the land of Egypt, in the fourth year of Solomon’s reign over Israel, in the month Zif, which is the second month, that he began to build the house of the LORD. (I Kings 6:1, KJV) Though the comparison of modern calendars with ancient calendars is very difficult and it is easy to be a few years off, I Kings 6:1 gives a precise date to the Exodus. Anyone who understands that Solomon began to build the house of the LORD in 966 BC of our Gregorian calendar knows that the Exodus took place in 1446 BC according to our Gregorian calendar. If you are interested in understanding these discrepancies, please see the Section Two Appendix on Calendars. Anyone who uses a slightly different date, such as 1444 BC or 1447 BC is not disagreeing about the date of the Exodus. He is simply disagreeing about the proper method of scientifically reconciling ancient calendars to our modern Gregorian calendar. Clearly this documentation of the Exodus is scientific history, actual events recorded and verified by scientific methods.

The believer understands that the Exodus took place in 1446 BC. In this case the word believer does not mean someone who has put his faith and trust in Jesus Christ. It simply means that he has examined the evidence and chosen to accept the facts. For example, Immanuel Velikovsky, author of numerous works on errors in the currently accepted dating methods of mainstream archaeology, believes the Exodus took place at the time recorded in the Bible, even though he rejects everything supernatural.

The unbeliever, however, does not understand that an Exodus ever took place. He simply rejects anything like the Biblical record. In other aspects of his life he may be a Hindu, a Muslim, an atheist or almost anything else. He looks at the work of Egyptologists since James Breasted’s Ancient Records of Egypt and concludes that nothing like the Exodus recorded in the Bible ever happened. Mainstream history has no room for anything like the Exodus. A belief in the Exodus will keep doctoral candidates from receiving their doctorates, PhDs from getting a job, prevent professors from achieving tenure and will blacklist tenured professors. A brief look at a few people who have experienced some of this prejudice is documented in Ben Stein’s movie Expelled.7

The compromiser examines the Exodus recorded in the Bible and the massive works of mainstream historians and attempts to reconcile them. Though it is possible for as many reconciled dates as there are individuals doing the reconciling, the most common date compromisers arrive at is 1295 BC. The 1295 BC date often makes Rameses II the pharaoh of the Exodus, as in the Stephen Spielberg movie, Prince of Egypt and the 1956 classic Cecil DeMille’s The Ten Commandments. The 1295 BC date is a poor fit and is often ridiculed by mainstream historians who completely reject anything like an Exodus. Though it is the best fit these men can come up with, it is still wrong. As Charles Haddon Spurgeon said:

“A chasm is opening between the men who believe their Bibles and the men who are prepared for an advance upon Scripture. Inspiration and speculation cannot long abide in peace. Compromise there can be none. We cannot hold the inspiration of the Word, and yet reject it; we cannot believe in the atonement and deny it; we cannot hold the doctrine of the fall and yet talk of the evolution of spiritual life from human nature; we cannot recognize the punishment of the impenitent and yet indulge the “larger hope.” One way or the other we must go. Decision is the virtue of the hour.”8

Compromisers want to “get along,” to make allowances for other views, to be tolerant. They won’t stand up for the truth because it doesn’t matter enough to them. These are people who believe that “getting along” is more important than honesty. Dorothy Sayer said, “In the world it is called Tolerance, but in hell it is called Despair, the sin that believes in nothing, cares for nothing, seeks to know nothing, interferes with nothing, enjoys nothing, hates nothing, finds purpose in nothing, lives for nothing, and remains alive because there is nothing for which it will die.”9

Though massive tomes have been written on date of the Exodus, that is not the purpose of this work. The Exodus is but one example of the three possible positions of belief, unbelief and compromise. A juror for an automobile accident can be a believer, an unbeliever or a compromiser. A juror who makes a decision based on the evidence of the case alone is a believer. A juror who rejects the evidence and draws conclusions based on some other preconception is an unbeliever. A juror who combines evidence with preconceptions and jumbles it all together into a mess is a compromiser. We are all compromisers on issues where we fail to stand firmly on principle. Compromise is the most destructive thing we can do to our character. Yet as destructive as compromise is, it is an area in each of our lives that we have difficulty seeing clearly.

Throughout history, unbelief has taken many forms. In the Roman Empire the main form of unbelief was polytheism and Christians were viewed as atheists because they believed in only one God. Christianity was dangerous as a “foreign superstition,” and its followers “notoriously depraved,” said Tacitus, first and second century Roman historian.10Suetonius, a second century Roman historian, called Christianity a “new and mischievous religious belief,”11in his work The Twelve Caesars. In Marcus Aurelius’s Meditations Christians are called a “gang… of ignorant men and credulous women.” He believed they were guilty of lawlessness, or “mere contumacy.”12 Athenagoras, an Athenian who wrote to the Emperor Marcus Aurelius, said that Romans accused Christians of “atheism, Thyestean feasts [cannibalism], [and] Oedipodean intercourse [incest].”13

Justin Martyr, a second century Christian apologist, acknowledged the Roman perspective but made the Christian position clear to those who ignorantly or willfully misinterpreted it. “Hence are we called atheists. And we confess that we are atheists, so far as gods of this sort [the Roman pantheon] are concerned, but not with respect to the most true God…”14 Athenagoras pleaded with Marcus Aurelius to recall that every nation under Roman control was allowed to worship its own gods. Romans believed their vassal states were made better by religious practice, but Athenagoras said that Christians were “harassed, plundered, and persecuted, the multitude making war upon us for our name alone.”13

The Romans founded this empire-wide persecution of Christians upon the charge of Atheism, since Christians were not pantheists like the Romans. But beneath the mask of the worship of many gods, the Romans held the same beliefs Secular Humanists hold today.

Unbelief can take different forms in different cultures. In Japan it was emperor worship; other cultures have even degenerated into cannibalism. But the predominant form of unbelief in the world today is Secular Humanism. We use the term “Secular Humanist” or “Secular Humanism” because that is what they called themselves. The Humanist Manifesto I is a religious document, written by a Unitarian Minister, Raymond B. Bragg, in 1933. Thirty men who believed themselves to be representative of a vast multitude “forging a new philosophy” signed it. “… there is no new thing under the sun.” (Ecclesiastes 1:9, KJV)

The Humanist Manifesto I,II and III can be viewed on the website americanhumanist.org. It cannot be reprinted here because of the following notice on the site:

Copyright renewed 1973 by the American Humanist Association. Permission to reproduce this material, complete and unmodified, in electronic or printout form is hereby granted free of charge by the copyright holder to nonprofit humanist and freethought publications. All other uses, and uses by all others, requires that requests for permission be made through the American Humanist Association.15

These men quickly learned that using the word “religion” actually hampered their cause. If they could deceive people into believing that secular humanism was not a religion and that religion was bad, then they could get state funding (follow the money trail) and political power while putting ungodly restrictions on those who actually dared to call themselves religious. Humanist Manifestos II and III call traditional religions “traditional theism” and describe them as “obstacles to human progress.” Many have also dropped the word “secular” and simply call themselves “humanists.”This is an effective propaganda technique, since they are now denying that they are a religion.

The 1973 Humanist Manifesto II is lengthy and filled with doublespeak. It is exactly what George Orwell in 1984 and Aldous Huxley in Brave New World warned us about. It is important because it was signed by more than one hundred influential people, including doctors, university professors, and others like Isaac Asimov, scientist and writer, B. F. Skinner, Prof. of Psychology, Harvard University, Betty Friedan, Founder of N.O.W, and Sir Julian Huxley, former head, UNESCO, Great Britain. All the manifesto texts can be viewed online. Humanist Manifesto III is the most seductive. True intentions are cleverly obscured and it sounds very good. As commentator Bill O’Reilly points out, the term Secular Humanist is not very accurate. It is, however, the oldest and most accurate of the labels they have chosen for themselves.

It is also the term used in court documents, including the US Supreme Court, so we will continue to use it. “Among religions in this country which do not teach what would generally be considered a belief in the existence of God are Buddhism, Taoism, Ethical Culture, Secular Humanism, and others.”16 Justice Black based his comments on the 1957 case of Fellowship of Humanity v. County of Alameda. In this case an organization of humanists sought a tax exemption on the ground that they used their property “solely and exclusively for religious worship.” The court ruled that the activities of Fellowship of Humanity entitled it to an exemption. These activities included weekly Sunday meetings. The Fellowship of Humanity case used the word humanism, not secular humanism.16

Secular Humanism also made a separate manifesto, first published in 1980 as A Secular Humanist Declaration by CODESH (Council for Democratic Secular Humanism) co-authored by Paul Kurtz and Edwin H. Wilson, both editors of The Humanist magazine. Its principle purpose was to declare its compatibility with democracy and how enlightened man should view traditional religions as inferior to secular humanism.

Still, …there is nothing new under the sun (Ecclesiastes 1:9, NIV). Plato praised many of these same follies in his dialogue The Republic. Since Plato is so verbose, few study him in detail today, which is good. Where Aldous Huxley in Brave New World and George Orwell in 1984 viewed the following principles as deplorable, Plato praised them as necessary. His philosopher king would use thugs he called guardians to enforce the will of the legislators on a hapless society divided into classes. Plato’s philosopher/king together with legislators and guardians would determine what the classes would be and who would belong to which class. The class you belonged to would determine every aspect of your life.

But Secular Humanism is older than Plato. It is older than anything written which is still in existence. “What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun” (Ecclesiastes 1:9, NIV). Contrary to scientific facts, the modern version of the religion of Secular Humanism believes that a simple, chaotic universe evolved into

a complex, ordered universe. To oversimplify, everything came from nothing. Secular Humanists deny that they are a religion for the express purpose of attacking all other religions, collecting tax money and obtaining political power. They also deny that same political power to anyone who disagrees with them. As no two Christians, Jews, Taoists, etc. believe exactly the same way, so no two Secular Humanists believe the same thing. Despite their differences, Secular Humanists hold many beliefs in common.

People who hold beliefs in common can be labeled by those common beliefs. For example, the Niagara Bible Conference is where the term Fundamentalism first began to be used. The term was also used to describe “The Fundamentals,a collection of twelve books funded by Milton and Lyman Stewart. These men collected as many addresses of Christian teachers, preachers and other leaders as they could find. They published the books and sent them to these addresses over a period of time ending around 1910. This group of beliefs became known as Fundamentalism. Fundamentalists defined their beliefs so clearly that anyone willing to be called a Fundamentalist told others something about what they believe.17The term Fundamentalist, however, applies to every aspect of life. A football coach who emphasizes the basics of blocking and tackling as opposed to trick plays or a wide open offence like the West Coast offence is known as a Fundamentalist. An architect who designs simple, inexpensive buildings using the basics of engineering is a Fundamentalist. And a believer in the following list of fundamentals for Secular Humanism makes a person a Fundamentalist in Secular Humanism.

The Fundamentals of Secular Humanism

1.Secular Humanism is a religion based on feelings and emotion, not reason.

2.Secular Humanism denies anything non-material. Anything spiritual is redefined as “energy.” Various humanists use terms such as “Life Energy,” “Life-Force,” “Interdimensional Energy,” etc. The source of the energy is always material or natural, not supernatural.

3.Secular Humanism denies the existence of a supreme being including Intelligent Design.

4.While acknowledging the existence of evil it denies the concept of original sin. It believes in the perfectibility of man.

5.Though Secular Humanism is open to things not yet discovered, at this time there is no scientific evidence for life after death.

6.Man’s existence on the Earth, like everything else in the universe, is a result of chance and not a plan. The most likely explanation for this chance is evolution, which is based on uniformitarianism.

7.Secular Humanism demands that science include only what is within the scope of “natural law” but does not allow for any explanation for the origin of natural law, and therefore the origins of matter or energy; nor is there any reliable information on a possible end to the universe.

8.Only secular humanist beliefs are reasonable; all other religions raise false hopes, restrict personal fulfillment, or both.

9.The purpose of life is to make you a better person. This is accomplished by service to others and seeking

fulfillment in this life. Though each person might have a different concept of fulfillment, no one has the right to tell another person that what he is doing is wrong, unless it harms someone else. This is especially true with sexual gratification.

10. The accumulated improvements of many individuals will drive the evolution of the human race.

11. The best way for society to survive and thrive is to allow enlightened leaders complete freedom to guide all institutions and organizations that serve all people from the beginning to the end of life.

12. Man exists only as a member of the world community. The world community is responsible to provide for the protection and guidance of the enlightened society from the earliest age. Children must not be separated from the world community. Any persons of majority age who oppose the ideals of the world community must be forced into conformity through employment sanctions or reeducation. Opposition must be suppressed by any necessary means.

13. Improvement of society is the essential duty of the enlightened guardians and includes guidance to prevent nonproductive, undesirable or inferior types.

14. Enlightened leaders guide others to fulfillment in this life. The community chooses the values of these enlightened leaders. The enlightened leaders help to guide the community in developing their values system.

15. Compulsory education indoctrinates the citizen of the world community. It is the catechism of the new society.

16. Personal property is evil. This includes any type of marriage since marriage is a property arrangement. Since Secular Humanists recognize evil, it is the responsibility of the guardians to supervise the distribution of material possessions, including social contracts. Individuals corrupt material possessions by unnecessarily hoarding them.

17. National sovereignty is the cause of war, poverty, overpopulation, and waste or destruction of resources. A unified world government is essential to stable economics and freedom in the areas of communication, travel, arts, sciences and education.

18. Unity means eradication of opposition. Secular Humanists characterize anyone who differs from them on these fundamentals as opponents. Opponents are characterized as being oppressive, divisive, fearful of change, bigoted or guilty of hatred.

Some of these items may seem extreme, even to those who claim to be humanists. Some will protest, “I don’t believe that!” As was said before, not all humanists believe all these points exactly in these words. The position of the Secular Humanists has been evolving over millennia, not just centuries, and in the next chapters some surprising adherents will come to light. Prepare to hear from people who lived in times when they could see and touch the gods the state demanded they worship, yet their words produced the echoes secularists proclaim today as “new ideas for new times.” Look for parallels of these “modern” beliefs in the words of ancient writers who were required by law to believe in the gods of Sumeria, Babylonia, Egypt, India, Meso-America, Greece and Rome. They still spoke clearly about how they had already forged their own beliefs with man as his own prophet, priest and object of worship. Moving closer to modern times, hundreds of well-known humanists will make it clear that those who are influencing every aspect of our culture have believed these concepts for centuries and do, in fact, believe them and work for their realization today.

1 Edwards v Aguillard, U. S. Supreme Court, 1987. Justice Antonin Scalia’s dissenting opinion Chief Justice William Rehnquist concurring with Scalia.

2 Professor Romila Thapar, Frontline magazine Volume 18 – Issue 19, Sep. 15 – 28, 2001 India’s National Magazine from the publishers of THE HINDU.

3 John Adams, “Argument in defence of the soldiers in the Boston Massacre trial,” December 1770.

4 From Plato’s Dialogue “Phaedrus,” Translated by Benjamin Jowett, 1871.

5 Plutarch, from his Life of Lycurgus, translated by John Dryden and others, 1683.

6 Franklin, Benjamin. Autobiography. First English version published London, 1793. (The Appendix of the Great Awakening includes the publication history of this work.)

7 Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed. Prod. Logan Craft, Walt Ruloff and John Sullivan. Dir. Nathan Frankowski. Writ. Kevin Miller and Ben Stein. Assoc. Prod. Mark Mathis. Ed. Simon Tondeur. © 2008 Premise Media Corporation, Rampart Films Production.

8 Charles Haddon Spurgeon, “Our Reply to Sundry Critics and Enquirers,” The Sword and Trowel, Metropolitan Tabernacle, Elephant and Castle, London, Sept. 1887.

9 Dorothy L. Sayers, “The Other Six Deadly Sins,” Creed or Chaos, Harcourt, Brace and Company, New York: NY, 1994, p. 81.

10 Tacitus, The Annals of Imperial Rome, 109 AD, XIII. 32, Translated by Alfred John Church and William Jackson Brodribb, 1876.

11 Gaius Suetonius Tranquillus, The Twelve Caesars, written c. 117 138 AD, translation J. C. Rolfe, 1913-1914.

12 Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, XI.3, 167 AD, translated by George Long, 1862.

13 Athenagoras of Athens, Legatio pro Christianis [translated “Supplication for the Christians”], a letter to Marcus Aurelius written in 177 A.D. Translated by B. P. Pratten in “Athenagoras.” The Ante-Nicene Fathers, vol. 2, Wm. B. Eerdmans, Grand Rapids: Michigan, 1954.

14 Justin Martyr, First Apology, Chapter 6, “The Charge of Atheism Refuted,” Alexander Roberts and James Donaldson, Translators, 1867.

15 Humanist Manifestos I, II, III, http://www.americanhumanist .org/ Who_We_Are/About_Humanism/Humanist_Manifesto_I (II or III).

16 Torcaso v. Watkins,United States Supreme Court, 1961, Justice Hugo Black in a footnote. Justice Black based his comments on the 1957 case of Fellowship of Humanity v. County of Alameda. Where an organization of humanists sought a tax exemption on the ground that they used their property “solely and exclusively for religious worship.”

17 More detailed information on the Niagara Bible Conference and the Fundamentals can be found in the following sources: Ahlstrom.Sydney F. A Religious History of the American People. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1972; Beale, David O. In Pursuit of Purity. Bob Jones University Press: Greenville, SC, 1986; Dollar, George W. A History of Fundamentalism in America. Greenville, SC: Bob Jones University Press, 1973.

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