Friday, October 22, 2010
Guest post : Maria Zannini and the Nephilim
Maria Zannini's blog first caught my eye because of her Prudent Penny posts - I'm a big fan of creative ways to save money. But she's also a homesteader, a very talented writer and an expert in social networking. Plus, she had the most adorable Rottweiler puppy ever. I say "had" because he has now grown up, but I am certain he is still adorable. Right, Maria?
But anyway, on to the story. Maria's new story, that is, a hot-covered release called True Believers. And she's here today to talk about the fantastic in the fiction, the myth of the Nephilim...
Ever since I was a kid, I've been fascinated with the Nephilim, sometimes called "Giants" or the "Watchers". According to biblical legend, they are the offspring of angels and human women.
The first time I'd heard about them, it was mentioned in passing by an elderly nun who spoke in near whispers. Did I hear her right? The offspring of angels and mortals?
I rolled the name around on my tongue and imprinted it to memory. Since I couldn't get any more information from her, I was determined to research it on my own. With Google not yet invented, I was forced to do it the old fashion way—reading the Bible. (Made me a great hit with the nuns. Little did they know I was doing research for a book I wouldn't write for thirty-six years.)
Who were the Nephilim? And what happened to them?
There were brief references to them in Genesis, the Book Of Numbers, the Book of Enoch and the Book of Jubilees. That's a lot of books and yet they provided very little information. As I dug deeper much of the information even contradicted itself. Why was so little known?
As the centuries rolled past some texts changed so that the Nephilim were no longer the offspring of angels, but the children of nobles. Others stated the Nephilim were the offspring of the righteous men descended of Seth, while the daughters were the descendents from the line of the unrighteous Cain.
Goliath is rumored to have been a Nephilim as was Gilgamesh, king of Ur.
According to the book of Jubilees, God granted ten percent of the Nephilim to remain after the flood and preside as demons. I still haven't quite figured out why God would inflict demons on the world. And why ten percent? I would have happily settled for five percent less demons myself. This is one of those instances when downsizing is a good thing.
Nonetheless, it was fuel to a story that refused to go away. I took these bits and pieces and fashioned the world of the Nephilim. In my world, these weren't the offspring of angels and they weren't demons. They were men and women seeded here (and elsewhere) by a race of beings so evolved an ancient people might very well see them as angels.
Immortal? To a point. They still had human DNA and a third strand from their progenitors that gave them the capability to regenerate at will, extending their lives almost indefinitely. It's enough to give them delusions of grandeur—delusions of godhood.
But what happens when one of their own doesn't want to be a god? And what if she wasn't given a choice?
I adore the Nephilim in my novel. They're pompous and arrogant, absolutely certain they're at the top of the food chain until a little technology brings them to their knees.
Now they're going to need help. And it's not going to come cheap.
I have a fun question for everyone today. If you could live for centuries, what sort of occupation(s) would be on your resume? What would you do with your time if you had dozen lifetimes instead of one?
Maria Zannini's latest release is a science fiction romance called TRUE BELIEVERS.
Mix one cynical immortal and one true believer and throw them into the biggest alien-hunt the world has never known. Rachel Cruz is a Nephilim masquerading as an archeologist and she's stuck with an alien who believes she can lead him to his ancestral gods. Black Ops wants to find these gods too. They want them dead.
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Contest time! Every time you leave a comment, tweet or mention "Maria Zannini" anywhere with a link to my blog, your name goes in the hat for a chance to win a Texas sized prize. Go here for more information.
PS And if you're a real pal, you'll go to RT Reviews and vote for my novel, MISTRESS OF THE STONE. Go on. You know you want to. And if you vote for me, I'll love you forever.
Will do, Maria. :) Thanks again, and all the best for the new book!