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Brought to Book!

The trials and tribulations of getting published

It is often said that everyone has a book inside them just waiting to burst out. Well, in my case I harbored no such illusions of writing anything; not my autobiography, not a book of poems nor even a novel.

But that all changed in 2012 when my wife Ros and I were driving past an archaeological dig near the shore of the very picturesque Lake Kinneret close to our home. I discovered that I had a long-dormant passion for digging up history, in this case Jewish history in Israel. Readers of ESRAmagazine may recall my article in November 2016 called "The Lost Town", in which I described my experiences as a volunteer archaeologist and guide, and wrote about some of the remarkable discoveries at the ancient Jewish town of Magdala. Now my book, Jewish Magdala The Pompeii of Galilee is finally published.

During the intervening time the Jewish town continued to reveal itself, I continued taking tours around the site and began trying to write it up. More archaeological discoveries led to more historical research and the history brought to light new angles and insights. The research, although fascinating, became addictive. I was so entrenched that I did not know where to draw the line nor how to end the narrative.

Finally, when I thought all the material was complete, the editing began. First, with Ros (ever seen the film The Wife starring Glen Close and Jonathan Pryce?) It seems I had a preponderance of commas – so many had to be removed. Next, with two more edits with son and daughter finished, I thought I was ready. Then started the technical problems. Formats were no longer compatible, configurations definitely were not, and as for uploading photographs………………don't even go there.

The difficulties of finding an interested publisher are legendary. I did finally pick one in person for my treasured manuscript. His swift refusal was polite but nonetheless embarrassing and, yes, hurtful. The 21st Century answer is Self-Publishing where the writer is in total control of all the processes involved. The up-front costs are modest and there is no minimum order required from the printers.

I did not see a final copy of my book until our UK trip in December 2019. I was thrilled with the result, from the color front cover to the quality of the paper.

When I learned that the Kohanim who were residents of Magdala were from the Yehezkel (Ezekiel) clan and the images on the carved Magdala Stone in the synagogue were taken from the prophesies in the book of Ezekiel, I had a lightbulb moment. The book incorporates my theories that the carved stone is the Kohanim's own physical manifestation from the book of Ezekiel, which they actually used to enhance their service in the Second Temple.

I have a strong desire to ensure that all the Jewish historical events that unfolded here are neither challenged nor overlooked by the Church owners of the site. If this comes about, then all the trials and tribulations of getting this into print will have been worthwhile.

For readers who wish to purchase a signed copy of Jewish Magdala The Pompeii of Galilee, the price for ESRA members is NIS 50 (plus P & P if and when necessary), please send an email to Mike at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



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Friday, 19 July 2024

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