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R.L. Prendergast

The Impact of a Single Event

I’m often asked where I got the inspiration to write The Impact of a Single Event. My wife having been given the opportunity to continue her studies in New Zealand, she and I left our home in Canada for the southern hemisphere. While my wife was studying, I took a year off of work and spent my time in the library of the University of Otago, reading to my heart’s content.

For years I had studied the great philosophers of the world, from pre-Socratic and ancient eastern sages to modern day thinkers such as Sartre, Camus and Derrida. Having no pressing work obligations, I continued to study the writings of these men and had time to pull together and synthesize their best ideas.

Mid-way through that most enjoyable year, a thought came to me one day: wouldn’t it be interesting to find a diary that had been passed down from one generation to another? Written in the diary would be personal stories to help elucidate 2500 years of philosophical ideas about how to live a good life. Initially, I jotted down my ideas in longhand. Little did I realize those first thoughts would begin the three-and-a-half-year journey that would end with the completion of The Impact of a Single Event.

The Impact of a Single Event (cover)