I always had the idea of writing in my head, and as a child I wrote a few short stories, but I also had the impression that I needed years of reading and experience to even consider writing a novel. Having read great authors gave me great respect for the writing process, and I felt that they all set the bar very high.
So I continued to read and learn, from books and from life, unconsciously waiting for the time to write something worthy. In my search for Truth (with capital letters), I found The Urantia Book, which was for me the answer to all the important questions that every human being should ask at some point in his life. I felt that I had reached the end of my search; I could read many other books, but they were hardly going to transform my life in the same way as this one.
But it still took many years before I realized that I had to write about what I believed in. I thank my good friend Eduardo Altuzarra, who suggested that a novel should be written so that it would present the teachings of The Urantia Book in such an enjoyable way that whoever reads it would feel impelled to search for the source. Yes, I know that Benitez’s novels (especially the Trojan Horse saga) have already taken care of that in the Spanish speaking world, but I thought that The Urantia Book teachings needed to be expressed in another way, and I felt that I could take care of that task.
So one day, without even being sure that I was going to finish the novel, and after my fortieth birthday, I felt that the time had come to start writing something seriously. In what I call my “notebook of ideas,” I wrote a synopsis of the story, a brief description of the characters, and a list of topics I wanted to discuss. And this way, little by little, I began to weave the conversations between the main characters, Michael and Sofia.
In this first novel, the fundamental basis was the dialogue between the characters. In my studies of philosophy, I came across the dialogues of Socrates and Plato, which were a great source of inspiration for me, especially in the way they conveyed the ideas of the authors. In fact, the name Sofia is a kind of homage to Greek philosophers, and comes from the Greek Σoφíα, which means “wisdom.” And about Michael… well, you know why this name is so special to us!
As I threaded the dialogues, I realized how difficult it was to link topics, but I really enjoyed the process and did my best to make the conversations flow. Finally, in January 2007, I wrote the last sentence. I remember that moment very vividly. Then I felt the great satisfaction of having achieved one of my goals. But the hardest part was left: that others would read it. I had many doubts: Would others like it? Would they understand it? Had I managed to convey what I wanted? Most of my doubts were dispelled when Paco, my soul mate, read the novel and told me he had liked it very much. But of course, I thought, what is he going to tell me since he is my husband? Although I know that if he had not liked it, he would have found a way to tell me without hurting me, there was still a little corner left for doubt.
So, after correcting some mistakes that Paco had detected, I sent the file by email to some friends (those who appear in the dedication), who gave me very good impressions and advice. I corrected a few more things that had gone unnoticed, and from that moment on I began to take the steps to publish it on paper.
I keep with great affection the e-mails of the people who have contacted me to tell me how much they have liked the novel and the change it has meant for them. Interestingly, I thought the audience for the novel would be people who have not heard of The Urantia Book, but the publicity, restricted by the circumstances, has made the readers of the Big Blue Book very appreciative. I know many of them have given away copies of Dialogues with Sofia to their family and friends in the hope of arousing their curiosity to learn more. For that alone, I am more than satisfied.
With this first book, I realized that once the task of writing is finished, the book is no longer yours. It takes on a life of its own in such an intense way that now, when I re-read it, I feel as if someone else has written it.
Thanks to some reader friends (Fran, Alex, Gabriel, and Jay), “Dialogues with Sofia” is now available in English, German, and Korean. And the translation into Hebrew is on its way!
This novel is free in electronic format. These are the links to download it for free:
- Spanish (Diálogos con Sofía):
- English (Dialogues with Sofia):
- German (Im Dialog mit Sofia):
The Kindle versions are available at Amazon.com. Paperbacks are available through Amazon and Lulu.com. Just look for the title!
I always say that I write the books that I would like to read. There is little left to invent in terms of ways to tell a story, but there is a lot to do in terms of the stories that need to be told.
The world needs to know Sofia and be introduced to The Urantia Book teachings!
In loving service,