A little inspiration in the wings..

It’s funny just how subtle our influences are in life. 

It’s a little tidbit picked up from hither or thither that really brings out a sea change in our habits.  Where, precisely, did I pick up the term “odds and sods”?  Someone lamented the fact that it was heard so infrequently these days.  Infrequent?  Oh, I’m all over that!  I’ll start using it at once. 

One of my biggest influences in life is actually one particularly noble and wise Canadian that goes by the name of Arthur Black.  He had a radio show on CBC called Basic Black for years.  All my good material?  It all came from Arthur.  I’m truly as unfunny as I appear in all these blogs.

My .sig for years:

”…it can’t be as bad as Shakespeare.  I tried to read Hamlet last night – talk about over rated!  Nothing but a bunch of famous quotations all strung together.”

Yup, from the lips of Arthur Black.

Well, one of the people that I discovered through Basic Black was Jack Whyte.  Jack’s a Scottish ex-pat who had a dream of writing a series around the King Arthur legend that didn’t involve magic, but instead dealt with the harsh realities of the post-Roman Britain and the peoples who lived there and invaded.  He keeps his site at www.camulod.com.

The result was my favourite book ever, The Skystone (shown in my favourite style of cover).  My latest copy was taken by my daughter over our holidays for something to read.  It’s above her comprehension, I’m sure, but she wanted to read my favourite book.

The past week when my Lady-Love and I went up to Jasper, I was going to grab it to re-read it yet again.  But then I thought to grab Knights of the Black and White, Jack’s newest novel that my Lady-love bought me for Christmas and I’ve been saving for fear of damaging it while reading on the bus.  Colour me stupid.

This is a wonderful novel.  Jack’s vision remains as intriguing to me as ever.  These are definitely works of fiction, based in a historical setting.  I’m under no allusion this is actual history, but Jack has really made the stories interesting enough to encourage me to learn more.  It’s fun to find out how much is historical fact and what is Jack’s invention in order to explain the myth or the story of the legend.

In truth, I had no real idea about the Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon before I started picking up Jack’s interests.  Now, I can hardly imagine life without Publius Varrus, Caius Brittanicus, and now Hugh de Payens hanging in the recesses of my mind.

Jack was always a good author with great ideas.  With Knights of the Black and White he has in my mind transcended into the field of great authors with utterly fantasic ideas.

Arthur Black inspired me to look into Jack Whyte, who’s brilliant writing has inspired me to look into the Arthurian legend and now the Knights Templar in entirely new ways.  Perhaps I can inspire my kids to dream and find worth while interests of their own.  Take a moment to share your inspiration.