re: Gods' man
The book includes references to artists in the pre-monotheistic era, such as the egyptian era, etc. Hence the reference to Gods rather than God's. There are several times when the artist is at the mercy of "the gods" including the storm, mental problems, and of course the black figure; hence the possesive form of "Gods'" While there is much evil represented in the book, it is mostly the avarice, lust, and scheming of other humans. However, the "devil" figure is not so much evil as it is death. Ward basically understood the trade off between using a finite amount of one's mortal existence in exchange for artistic skill, recognition, and reward. He specifically disavowed any religous solace in this work, but did value the naive "purity" of the artist, love, honesty, creativity, and procreation.