Hey! So Glad You're Here.
THE SAINT NICHOLAS SOCIETY came into being on a flight from San Francisco, CA to Clearwater, FL where I would fly a couple times a month to take care of my parents needs as they aged.
On one flight, I pulled out my iPad and simply began to outline the entire story. By the time I landed, the entire novel was on paper! After workshopping, tinkering, and playing with it on that trip, I set out to write in earnest. What came out was the skeleton of THE SAINT NICHOLAS SOCIETY.
I knew what the potential was from day one. But for others to see and realize all that I wanted to say, well... it took a village. I found a base of people from every possible walk of life I could find. Atheists, Agnostics, Latin-Rite Catholics, Protestants, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, politically “left,” politically “right,” politically down the middle, a few committed Pagans… I turned the story over to them all to read. I sent it to teachers, theologians, historians, shop keepers, even several of the local homeless in the heart of San Francisco have read these pages.
The overwhelming comment from everyone -- there's something in THE SAINT NICHOLAS SOCIETY for everyone!
THE SAINT NICHOLAS SOCIETY is two stories in one:
In the first, Fred has climbed the proverbial ladder—and fallen off. He’s rubbed elbows in high society, had a socialite wife, partied hard with all the wrong people, and lost it all in a coked up, drunken rage. Eventually, he’s pointed toward the Pastor of St. Dominic’s Church, who in turn takes pity on him and hires Fred to do odd jobs caring for the church building.
Fred takes it hard when he finds out that he has a rather serious cancer and immediately goes to a bar where he’s about to fall of the wagon. In a stroke of serendipity, he views a news story about a real live Secret Santa who hands out $100 bills at Christmas time. This jarring moment makes him question what he’s done with his life. Along this journey Fred befriends an elder “Tiger Momma” whose 3 very successful children want to have nothing to do with her; and bright young, orphaned woman from Guatemala whose dream of going to collage get washed away with the debts of raising her three cousins.
The parallel story is an autobiography of Saint Nicholas of Myra. We meet Nikki as a young boy on a mercantile voyage with his best friend (Hutma) and his father’s right hand man. Arriving home, Nikki is faced with the ravages of a plague that takes the lives of both his parents. Little Nikki is taken in by his uncle who is a sub-bishop in the outlaws Catholic Church. The story follows Nikki’s life, and we begin to see what makes a good and holy person from the inside through his own thoughts, intents, and actions. We see how he handles not only loss, but torture in the prisons of Rome—all because of his beliefs (sound familiar in today’s society?). And eventually becoming a trusted advisor to Constantine.
The two stories are set up to be read either individually, or in tandem. Together, the reader sees the crossover of universal themes— a deep need for community, of the virtue of “doing,” not just thinking or talking. It’s written to inspire and NOT be preachy. Although it is set in a church-based background, it is not about religion—it’s about being FULLY human. Most of all, it shows that you can change the world in big ways, by doing small things.