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, June 1, 2015

Doing Edits is the best

I've always said that the revising phase of writing a book is the most fun, but I might adjust that to saying the editing phase is the most fun. Why? They are related, of course, but during the editing stage you're working with another person--an editor--and that means you're book is being published. Yeah, I know some writers hire an editor to edit their manuscript before it's been sold. But normally, a writer has his or her manuscript edited after it's been accepted by some publishing house. It was during the editing of my first two books I learned so much about writing a novel. And since then I consider myself a much improved novelist.

I applied what I learned into both of those first two books during the editing phase, and I applied all that I learned in my next two books in the revising phase. And for every book after that I'll be applying what I learned in the first drafts. Like I'm doing now for my fifth book, Second Chance, which is coming along nicely. I'm very near finished. At this time I'm wrapping up the climax of the story, so all that's left is the denouement. That won't take more than a week. Looks like I'll meet my objective, which was to finish the book during the course of the school year. And the school year is over in about a week.

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