I left the Eric Peters post up for a week now in the hopes that it would get a lot of prime face time on my site. If you haven’t read about his project, or taken the opportunity to invest in it, please do so right now.
As a post-Fantasy Fiction Tour followup idea we had–no one wanting the festivities of tour-life to end–we decided to take the next eight Mondays and feature each author on our websites. It is of course a little redundant, thinking that if you don’t know every one’s names by now then you must be a newbie to my site; but then again that’s the reason why I’m doing this. If you haven’t heard of Wayne, then allow me to introduce you.
Short of being an outstanding author with well over 100,000 books in print, Wayne Thomas Batson is also a husband, father, school teacher…and a devoted friend. I really can’t say enough about the guy without risking the error of flattery. But one thing is for sure–something I can say about each and every author on the Tour–that he’s the real deal. That’s important. Because if I could know for sure the quality of individual that pens the pages of the books my children read, that I would be much quicker to invest in them.
Authors, musicians, painters, poets and the like all create out of themselves. We are moved by our own life-experiences and allow them to breathe into our work. In the end, you are getting “life as interpreted by the artist.” So when you read Rise of The Dibor, you are getting a little bit of Christopher Hopper. When you read The Door Within, you are getting a little bit of Wayne Thomas Batson. I think that is one reason why people are so enamored with celebrities, especially actors. As film most dynamically connects an audience to the media (sight and sound), people feel as if they actually know the actors. Of course it’s very limited and superficial in most cases, but I believe their is still an impartation, if even on a spiritual level.
As personal practice, I always tend to consciously keep my guard up whenever I see a movie, aware of scenes and songs that try and compromise my integrity. Granted, I try and get as much foreknowledge as possible, but there are elements that even the sharpest critics won’t pick up because they are incidents that know one else would ever think of; they are proprietary to my life experiences.
So being able to actually know where an artist is coming from, what moves them, and what they think life should be like, is of paramount importance if you want to move beyond the shallowest of compliments, “I think it’s cool.” What are their core beliefs and what are you receiving when you receive their art into your life?
This, of course, is the long way around of telling you by what measure I judge art: not on the art alone, but on the artist as an individual. And Wayne would not be my friend if he did not have full marks. He is one of the most caring and kind souls I have ever met (despite his ferocity with a long sword), and that translates into love for his wife, his children, and the students he pours his life out for everyday. He truly has a tender heart and huge dose of creativity, two things I admire greatly.
Lastly, his devotion to the Lord is humbling. Quick to say he doesn’t “get it all,” and easy with sharing his faults, Wayne is 24 carat in his faith. No pretenses. No guile. He is a broken man in need of a Mighty God, something that the Lord obviously cherishes. For when we are weak, He is strong, and a broken and contrite spirit God will not despise.
If nothing else, you have to at least love his pirate costume!
Thanks for being my friend, Sir Wayne. Never alone…