Sacred Compass 9: The End

This is parts 9 and 10 - the end of the “interview” I conducted with J. Brent Bill, author of Sacred Compass: The Way of Spiritual Discernment.

I have listed the questions, as I sent them to him, in italics with an R. Then I have given his answers, marked with a B, and then my reply marked with an R but not in italics. Brent hasn’t seen this third part yet, but I hope to open up the conversation to you, my dear blog reader, to be part of this dialogue too. I can not promise that Brent Bill himself will answer your questions here – or even read them here – but I will try to continue the discussion if you’re interested.

As a final point to this introduction, I want to be clear that I’ve already read the whole book and I really liked it. I’ve already started recommending it to people in San Francisco. I commend it to your attention.

R: How did you know when you were done?

B: When I ran out of things to say. And I mean that seriously. Then it was time to go back and tighten and refine what was said so that it was clear and understandable. So the final book is about 15,000 words shorter than the final "draft."

R: What didn’t you put in the book that you wish you had?

B: Nothing at the minute, although things always come along that I say to myself, I wish I could have put that in. But the reality is, the book that is published is the book that needed to be written. I really believe that. What is in it, is what should be there. What's not, was not needed. Ideas that occur to me now about the topic will find life in the workshops I present, talks I give, and so forth. In the meantime, I'm pleased with Sacred Compass and offer with my blessings -- and hopefully, God's.

R: I decided to put these last two together, especially since they were both short. Thank you so much, Brent, for your gracious answers and insight into the complex process of writing a book about spiritual discernment.

I want to say that I have heard rumors that Brent Bill will be bringing a workshop to Ben Lomond Quaker Center in California sometime next year. So if you like Sacred Compass, or any of his other books, and you’d like to have a chance to talk to Brent in person, but you don’t live in Indiana, there’s hope.

You can read more interviews about Sacred Compass with J. Brent Bill on Wess, Shawna, Liz W. and Liz Opp’s blogs.

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