Will iconic images recorded in the grooves of an ancient vase unite the Holy Land or rip it further apart?

THE VASE

A novel by Mark M. DeRobertis

Muhsin Muhabi is a Palestinian potter, descended from a long line of potters. His business is run from the same shop owned by his ancestors since the day his forebears moved to Nazareth. The region's conflict saw the death of his oldest son, and rogue terrorists are in the process of recruiting his youngest in their plot to assassinate the Pope and Israeli prime minister.

Professor Hiram Weiss is an art historian at Nazareth’s Bethel University. He is also a Shin Bet operative on special assignment. With the help of fellow agent, Captain Benny Mathias, he plans to destroy the gang responsible for the death of his wife and only child. He puts a bomb in the ancient vase he takes on loan from Muhsin’s Pottery Shop.

Mary Levin, the charming assistant to the director of Shin Bet, has lost a husband and most of her extended family to recurring wars and never-ending terrorism. She dedicates her life to the preservation of Israel, but to whom will she dedicate her heart - the brilliant professor from Bethel University - or the gallant captain who now leads Kidon?

Harvey Holmes, the Sherlock of Haunted Houses, is a Hollywood TV host whose reality show just flopped. When a Lebanese restaurant owner requests his ghost-hunting services, he believes the opportunity will resurrect his career. All he has to do is exorcise the ghosts that are haunting the restaurant. It happens to be located right across the street from Muhsin’s Pottery Shop.



Monday, February 9, 2015

Plan Upheld-Killer Eyes Wrapped and Submitted!

Yes, 'finally' is the word, as in finally Killer Eyes, the long awaited sequel to Killer of Killers has been completed and submitted. Melange is in possession of it now, which means I do no more work on it until I get back the first round of edits. And I really don't expect that much editing to occur. The reason for that is I edited it over and over again over the past year or so. Ever since The Vase was finished and then the second edition of Killer of Killers, I went back to Killer Eyes and made sure everything was correct in terms of POV, verb usage, dialogue tags, and continuity.

So it took me a year, and it was a year well spent. Certainly those issues were in need of correcting. My main weakness when it came to unedited and pre-published work, was POV issues. I had to replace omnipotent with limited, as in third person POV. You don't go with omnipotent anymore. You go with limited. Otherwise editors and/or publishers will not like it. And even though I was slow to board that boat, I'm aboard with it now. Just because it's the style of the times. You have to live in the era you live. Period.  You can't be a dinosaur anymore. You have to have a computer and a cell phone. You have to have a social media presence. You have to live in the twenty-first century.
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So yeah, Killer Eyes is submitted, Melange has it now, and as for me, until I hear back from a Melange editor, I'll be working on John Dunn again. I got about half way through it when I sent KE to a beta reader. So I'll probably get the other half done before I get an edited copy back from Melange. That's all good. John Dunn is in need of POV corrections, and I might add another scene, too.

John Dunn really is a removal from the genre I had been writing. KOK, KE, and The Vase are suspense-thrillers. The Vase is a little different from KOK and KE, but it's still a suspense thriller, at least somewhat. John Dunn is historical fiction. Based on the true story of John Dunn, who lived in Zululand amongst the Zulus. A fascinating story. It's kind of like an African Dances With Wolves, or more accurately it's more like an African Little Big Man. But still totally different. Different because even though John Dunn lived with the Zulus, he had to fight against them in the Anglo Zulu War.

It's a long book, too. Over 120,000 words, whereas my other three books averaged around 90,000 words. I guess historical fiction is supposed to be longer, like fantasy. If I put in that extra scene it might be another five to ten thousand words. We'll see. Back to work.

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