Interview with Derek Philip Thompson

Who are your favorite authors?
P G Wodehouse, Alister McGrath, Spike Milligan, Bishop Tom Wright, Monty Python, St John, ...
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I spend most of my time on the computer. Perhaps that is still writing. I am retired now and have time to promote church unity and prayer in the Illawarra region of Australia. I am the public officer for Five Islands Christian Ministries and the Coordinator of the Illawarra Prayer Network.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I research topics on library databases and using Google Scholar.
Do you remember the first book you ever wrote?
Yes, it ended up in the bin. The second attempt, God's Glasses, is a collection of insights from my prayer journal assembled into some systematic order. It wasn't a success, but it helped me get my thoughts in order and learn about writing.
What is your writing process?
I write out a detailed outline before I start writing. In the case of Observers' Guide to God I did not know how it was going to end until I got there. All I knew was the main character would achieve his goal of observing God. With Achieving Atonement I didn't know how it was going to end either, but when developing a new theological model that has to meet many criteria, you have to spend some years over it.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
It was probably an Enid Blyton story when I was quite young. I got engrossed.
How do you approach cover design?
I like to do my own covers. I use MS Publisher and clipart. Possibly I'm too cheap to pay someone else to do it, but I enjoy doing it.
What do you read for pleasure?
Theology is a pleasure to me.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I use a Microsoft Surface tablet.
How did you latest book come about?
Back in 2010 I started a Theology course and on the first day we were introduced to the problem of atonement theology. Telling me that the church had never resolved how the atonement, the central teaching of Christianity, works was a challenge to me to find a solution. It took longer to write the book than anticipated. During my course I found theologians to be wanting in logic. So, I went across to the Philosophy Dept and studied Critical Reasoning. Applying critical thinking to atonement problems provided me with a tool to find solutions that I would not otherwise have found.
What's the angle of your latest book?
The "angle" was discovered after I had already written the criteria for a good atonement model and started on the task. Atonement involves every part of creation since everything has gone wrong. It is not only human who are sinful, the planet is not very caring of its occupants either. So, the new model of atonement can be called a multifaceted model, but it is not a conglomeration of traditional models, but a completely new approach.
Who are you writing for?
My latest book is somewhat academic, but it is intended for any Christian who is interested in theology. I set the readability level at high school graduate level. For students of theology, I have included lots of references to follow up. As for academia, I have challenged them to take my model of the atonement and develop it into a theory of the atonement that will be acceptable to Christians from all denominations.
Published 2018-06-08.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.