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Inspiration for THE JUDAS LEGACY

The Judas Legacy Inspiration

Since publishing The Judas Legacy, people have asked me where the idea came from, and because of the title,

…some have even asked if The Judas Legacy was a religious story.
I smirk in response.

That’s like asking George Lucas and Steven Spielberg if Raiders of the Lost Ark or The Last Crusade are religious stories.

I think some background is in order.

When I was younger, I fell in love with books. I much preferred stories over dry textbooks that lectured. That doesn’t mean I didn’t read non-fiction. Hell, I read my grandmother’s dictionary and annual World Almanacs. It wasn’t uncommon to find me in a corner of the house, away from the crowds, reading.

At the library, I would check out as many books as was allowed. I ran to the store parking lot down the street when the bookmobile arrived.

I mostly read scary books – King and Koontz and anything else that looked terrifying. Every other week I went to the local used bookstore, Bob’s Books, to dig through the cheap comic books Bob kept in the back corner.

By the time I was done college, I owned my own bookstore. I was in Heaven, living every day with a plethora of novels. It also meant I had to read more than horror and comics, so I was able to refer a variety of books to my customers. I read every genre and before long, I was enjoying a broad range of authors and types of stories.

I learned a universal truth about books. Regardless of genre, a hero needed to overcome a challenge. Whether it was a man in armor battling in the Crusades, an athlete overcoming great odds to win a championship, or simply someone on Anywhere Street surviving personal tragedy to find love, the ultimate goal was for the protagonist to come out on top.

I also learned that, not only did I have a desire to pen my own novel, but I was also good at weaving words into something believable. So, I started to write a novel of a hero who overcomes great odds. I was in my 20s and determined to become a published author. I went to a local writer for advice, critiquing, and mentoring.

Then I hit a snag.    

Life. Time to write and create became harder to find with new careers and family.

That still doesn’t tell you where the story idea came from. Wanting to write and being drawn to hero stories, I had an idea for a regular guy to get dropped into an adventure.

Not some super spy or soldier. Not someone trained to overcome all odds. Just a guy. But why would that happen?

At the time, I worked in the numismatic industry – coins.

Anyway, I imagined following a coin through its creation to current days. And not just any coin. A cursed coin. What could be more iconic than silver pieces from Roman times. It hit me. What if a set of coins was cursed and they travelled through history bearing that curse and what if there were people willing to do anything to obtain them?

I know, a lot of what ifs. But isn’t that what story creating is all about? What if this happened? Or that?

Just like Lucas and Spielberg (and no I’m not comparing my skills to theirs), I imagined characters involved with relics and coins, trying to stop bad guys from obtaining and using them. I added a sub-arc about saving a child, because as a father, that also resonated with me.

A story was born.

An adventure tale with regular people, becoming heroes.

With bad guys that are deeper and more complex than just being evil.

The Judas Legacy ~ WM Leesman

With real life conspiracy ideas that seem to play out.

And most of all, a fun read, somehow believable, and as most readers have told me, includes an ending that is surprisingly twisted.

Just the way I like them.

The Judas Legacy Inspiration