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Ghost Canyon

Chris Morton & Ceri Louise Thomas - '2012' Chris Morton & Ceri Louise Thomas - '2012'

'Crystal Clear Thoughts'

Since the ancient Maya of Central America accurately predicted the collapse of their own civilization, doomsayers believe 2012 will mark the end of the world, while others more optimistic hope it will be the chance for a new beginning.

The fact that this date also marks the first winter solstice in 26,000 years when the sun and Earth will align with the center of the Milky Way has people even more concerned that devastating changes in our global make-up may occur.

After experiencing a life-changing encounter while deep in the jungles of Guatemala, two authors dedicated themselves to promoting the Mayan message of 2012.

For accurate and informative answers to the questions that have everyone stirred up, read '2012: The Secret of the Crystal Skull' by Chris Morton and Ceri Louise Thomas (O-Books Publishing).

Indeed, the release date of this riveting book coincided with the release of Roland Emmerich’s epic blockbuster movie '2012' starring John Cusack, Amanda Peet and Thandie Newton.

I recently had the opportunity to speak with Chris Morton about his book, '2012: The Secret of the Crystal Skull,' and first wondered if the book was specifically/solely written and published to tie-in with the recent Roland Emmerich epic blockbuster movie, '2012'? "On the contrary, our new novel '2012 The Secret of the Crystal Skull' actually began life as a screenplay (entitled simply '2012') – the first draft of which we originally finished writing as long ago as 2002."

"This screenplay was submitted to a number of Hollywood’s top producers and agents – including Creative Artists Agency (CAA) who got very excited about it and asked us to send them extra copies."

"Then, all of a sudden, CAA did a strange, unexplained U-turn on us, and said that they no longer wished to represent us."

"However, this same agency also act on behalf of Roland Emmerich, director of the recent Hollywood blockbuster also entitled '2012' - which oddly enough appeared several years AFTER we sent them OUR original screenplay, also entitled '2012'!"

"Strangely enough, their movie is based on the same ancient Mayan prophecy which we outlined in our screenplay, and which we have since adapted into our new novel: '2012: The Secret of the Crystal Skull'.”

As this new book details the end of a 5,000+ year cycle come 2012, when doomsayers believe the end of the world will then follow, have there been other such novels written on the subject – and if so, did you pay them any attention? "The only other novel that we are aware of on this subject is entitled simply ‘The Crystal Skull’ by a woman named Manda Scott (which she apparently just renamed '2012 The Crystal Skull' when the Emmerich movie came out)."

"I understand this book was not particularly well received by the critics. However, we have spoken to the writer of this other novel, and she told us she was very grateful to us, because she was originally inspired to write her book by our original best-selling factual book on the subject: 'The Mystery of the Crystal Skulls'."

"This (our original factual book) was based on the research we did for our highly acclaimed BBC/A & E documentary – also entitled 'The Mystery of the Crystal Skulls,' which I understand has now been shown many times also on the Discovery Channel."

"Indeed, our original factual book on the subject (The Mystery of the Crystal Skulls') has sold over 150,000 copies so far and been translated into fifteen languages."

"It would also appear to have inspired the recent Indiana Jones movie about crystal skulls – which I shall tell you a bit more about in a minute."

What are the key points you discovered about what we are supposedly going to encounter in the year 2012 that you feel this book should, and does, get across to the average Joe? "As we already touched on briefly, the most important thing we discovered during our original research into the mysterious crystal skulls is the ancient Mayan prophecy which predicts that the current world will end on 21st December in the year 2012."

"You see, the ancient Maya, though they were stone-age people, were also in possession of an extremely complex calendar system that is actually far more scientifically accurate than our own. Based on the actual movements of the planets and the stars relative to the Earth, they used this calendar to make the most stunningly accurate predictions. They were able to predict, for example, eclipses. They could predict eclipses they couldn’t even see that were happening on the other side of the planet."

"They even managed to predict eclipses that were to happen over a thousand years after their own civilisation mysteriously collapsed and disappeared, such as an eclipse that happened over Mexico City as recently as 1992. Indeed all of their predictions so far appear to have come true – precisely on the dates that they said they would. So their prediction about “the end of the current world” in 2012 should certainly not be dismissed too lightly."

"The question is of course, precisely how is the current world going to end?"

"And for that, I think you might just have to read the book!"

When creating the lead character, Dr. Laura Shepherd, what creative thoughts went into her persona, and importantly, her actual character name? "Well I don’t mind admitting that there is a touch of the Lara Croft character from Tomb Raider in our central character Laura Shepherd. She is certainly not averse to taking decisive and physical action. But she is more mature than that, far more thoughtful and intelligent. As a doctor of archaeology she also has perhaps a hint of the female Indiana Jones to her, but she is of course a more sensitive, and rounded character than either of these cardboard cut-outs."

"As a “Shepherd” she is also responsible for protecting the weak and leading the innocent to safety."

"She is of course also a “wounded hero” – forever haunted by the loss of her own child, and so motivated perhaps even more than others might be to try to save all the other “children of the future” as the story unfolds."

Finally, being that your previous best-seller was entitled 'The Mystery of the Crystal Skulls' and that this new novel is entitled 'The Secret of the Crystal Skull' it all sounds very Indiana Jones to me! So, was the Harrison Ford cinematic vehicle 'Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull' known at the time of the first book, perhaps? And, if so, did you think of changing yours so as not to clash? "Again, quite the contrary - our first book came out in 1997 - way before there was any whiff of an Indiana Jones movie about crystal skulls. Although as I mentioned, we did submit our original screenplay, together with our original factual book, to a number of Hollywood’s top agents, including CAA. This agency also act on behalf of Steven Spielberg, and in fact the writer who was in the end credited with writing the Spielberg/ Lucasfilm Indiana Jones movie about crystal skulls."

"Somewhat ironically, we even described our original screenplay in our standard cover letter to these agents as “an Indiana-Jones-type adventure based on the facts about the crystal skulls and on the genuine ancient Mayan prophecy which predicts that the current world will end on 21st December in the year 2012”."

"You can imagine our surprise therefore when various clients of this self same agency come out a number of years later with:

1) An Indiana Jones movie on the subject of crystal skulls, and
2) A movie based on the ancient Mayan prophecy which predicts that “the current world will end in “2012"."

"And so it seems that our original screenplay (which has now been adapted into our new novel) certainly would appear to have inspired not just one, but two, major Hollywood movies on the subject of crystal skulls and the Mayan prophecies for 2012."

"So please do feel free to read it and let us know what you think."

Interviewed by: Russell A. Trunk

To read an extract from the book please visit the book’s website at:

US Book Purchase link

UK Book Purchase link

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