Mortal Insight – Why would you write that?
Since the release of ‘Mortal Insight’ I have often been asked the question:
‘Why did you write under a different name?’
My simple answer to that was because ‘Mortal Insight’ as a piece of fiction is NOTHING like any other story that I have written. In my eighteen years of having published fiction in the market, I have meddled with other genres – time travel adventure; murder mystery; religious allegory; contemporary drama – and of course my bread and butter genre, period drama romance. Everything I have put out til now has made reasonable use of the element of romance. ‘Mortal Insight’ has a very vague hint of romance, but could never be classified as a romance. It is a crime drama, political intrigue, some supernatural elements.
The next question:
‘Why would you write something like that?’
Well, I am prepared to confess this might be my ‘Uncle Tom’s Cabin’. I am making a social comment.
‘What?’ I hear you ask.
Let me start at the beginning.
I don’t know who I heard this illustrative story from, but this was what set the cogs in my head turning:
The police department in a certain city kept fishing bodies out of the river at the same place on a frequent basis. But no one ever took the trouble to go up river and find out how the bodies were getting there in the first place.
When I heard this little story (I’m not sure what the speaker was trying to illustrate, but my mind took its own path) I began to think, that is so like our permissive society. We have some shocking statistics on sexual assault, sexual abuse and sexual exploitation, and we speak about it in horrified tones for the truly terrible state of affairs that it is. But then I always ask myself the question has anybody gone up river to see what is causing this state of affairs? In my understanding, there is a correlation between the sexualisation/pornography phenomenon and the rise in sexual addiction, sexual abuse and sexual assault. But it is not ever spoken about, because the use of pornography is an adult’s right. And as for what I would call soft porn (others might call sexualisation), some would say that we have merely cast off the prudish Victorian morals, and that we are not as repressed sexually as we used to be. However, I would suggest it is an introduction to something more destructive. Objectification and exploitation. Why doesn’t anyone make the links?
So ‘Mortal Insight’ was born. I’ve introduced a fictional drug which has similar effects on the body that arousal from pornography might cause, and I’ve followed the story through logically. In the story, when Detective Keller begins to see things that tip him off to the possible links, he meets resistance at every turn from government, media and friends. As he cannot ignore what he suspects might be true, he pushes on with a couple of odd allies. Resistance turns to violence.
I have some very good friends who work with a rescue group called ‘Destiny Rescue’ in one of the Asian countries. When they are bringing young girls between ages 12-17 out of brothel type situations, and working hard to get them educated and employed in a non-exploitive, non-sexualised job, they meet with opposition. Why?
Anyway, there it is – the why behind the what. You might think the metaphor is ill used, and that sexualisation doesn’t have any such horrible effects on society at all. That’s OK. Perhaps you can just pretend the novel is about a drug that is in the water – after all it is a work of fiction.
If you haven’t had a chance to read ‘Mortal Insight’ as yet, it is available as an e-book download from Amazon.com or hard copies can be ordered from your favourite bookstore.