Monday, June 10, 2013

Book development is sooo ssslllloooow

It took forever for this book to reach print.
[File this post under: Morgan's mind is that of a lunatic without a real sense of direction.]

A couple of weeks ago, I mentioned that I couldn't wait to talk about this book, Commentaries on the Golden Dawn Flying Rolls by the Golden Dawn Community, until after the official announcement, then I wandered off and talked about gardening and expensive herbs instead...which made sense to some people, but not to others.

Truth of the matter is that I might (not) have adult ADHD, wanted to get as much gardening done before the heat wave started, have a lovely wife who was tired of looking at the weeds (and is unwilling to allow me to figure out how to utilize them for magical purposes because they are not pretty weeds); and most importantly, I had already spent a year NOT talking about this project (outside of the occasional vague comment that all of a sudden makes sense to those people who were not in the loop) and adding to my stock of ebooks seemed more important (because multiple pen-names means lots of work).

[Is that the longest sentence that I have ever wrote on this blog? Probably not...but it is pretty long, isn't it?]

Yeah, I had already spent a year being silent about this upcoming book. And people claim that I can't keep a secret--hehe--and that the Golden Dawn community can't either--hehe.

And I came into the process very late, so this book was in the pipeline for several years.

A few years ago, Person H (who may or may not want to admit to who they are) came up with an idea for a joint Golden Dawn community building book, centered around the Flying Rolls.

(The Flying Rolls, for those who have not spent hours reading them and/or studying the history of the original Golden Dawn Order, were documents passed hand-to-hand among the original actual Adept Minors [as opposed to the nominal "in name only" Adept Minors who existed before the Vault of the Adepts and the 5=6 initiation ritual was developed]. Think of the Flying Rolls as a stop-gap lesson system issued in the form of a circular chain letter. Some of the Flying Rolls are were just a few sentences; others are longer; none of them are well-constructed by literary standards. The Flying Rolls are the "oral tradition" of the original Golden Dawn; some of them originally were given as actual lectures in lodge. The term, Flying Roll, actually comes from the Bible, from the book of Zechariah.)

[Zechariah 5:1-4 Once again I raised my eyes and looked, and behold, a scroll was flying. [[The angel]] said to me, "What do you see?" I answered, "I see a flying scroll: twenty cubits in width and ten cubits in length." He said to me, "This is the curse that is going out over the surface of the whole land. For [heretofore] anyone who steals has been absolved of such a curse; and everyone who swears [falsely] has absolved of such a curse. I have taken it out [the curse]--the word of HASHEM, Master of Legions--and it shall enter the house of the thief and the house of the one who swears falsely in My Name, and it shall lodge within his house and annihilate it, with its wood and stones." *Stone edition of the Tanach*]

(The size of the scroll is the same size as the Sanctuary doorway. This is an interesting section to study considering the amount of oath-breaking allegations that has been placed on the Order's doorstep. Anyways, back to the story at hand...)

Person H went to a few publishers, including the biggest, with their idea, and was soundly rejected by all. So the idea was placed on the back burner (at this stage, the ebook market does not function well at all, so that is not an option either).

(I also abandoned certain projects for the lack of publishing support...)

Now, over the last few years, given the abandonment of the publishing of GD material by the bigger publishers, a set of small publishers have arose to focus on the small Golden Dawn readership (less than a thousand? who knows?). And Person H finally had one of them agree to help them get this project done.

(...but in my case, I chose the self-published route of ebooks instead.)

At this point, the project becomes very interesting. As a book, just a clean version of the Flying Rolls that were double-checked with original copies would be of value to the GD community (because the King version were suspected to be corrupt and incomplete), but the inclusion of commentary by the entire Golden Dawn community would be a welcome insight in how the community actually operated and thought.

When one looks at the range of the people involved in making commentaries in this book, Commentaries on the Golden Dawn Flying Rolls by the Golden Dawn Community, you see all the major groups (and one minor group) were involved.

The contributors to this book include: Frater A.M., Frater AR, Deanna Bonds, Christopher Bradford, Chic Cicero, Sandra Tabatha Cicero, Ian Cowburn, Morgan Drake Eckstein, Nick Farrell, Paola Farrell, Lauren Gardner, Jayne Gibson, Frater Goya, VH Frater IOV, Aaron Leitch, Liza Llewellyn, Joseph Max, Frater Philomancer, VH Soror QQDAM, Samuel Scarborough, Eric V. Sisco, Rachael Walker, Sam Webster, Harry Wendrich, Peregrin Wildoak, Frater Yechidah, Frater YShY.

The author list also provides proof that a large part of the Golden Dawn community are actually in communication with one another, all the major voices (and one minor voice) are involved. This project was a "word-of-mouth" project, people became involved as the chain letter spread. Given there are only thirty-six Flying Rolls (from the original Order), at a certain point all the Rolls had commenters and the chain letter stopped. Pickings were slim by the time I got involved (my group is minor and unimportant located on the outskirts of what is Golden Dawn, and I am a minor voice in the GD community on the very edge of the grapevine), but ironically I ended up able to grab the Flying Roll I most wanted to talk about (some Goddess likes me).

[Some of my statements over the years are all of a sudden going to make sense because what I wrote about is important to how the BIORC thinks about certain matters.]

One of the difficulties involved in a project like this is the bookkeeping nightmare of dividing up royalties among the writers. The solution in this case was for all the writers to donate their royalties to a commonly agreed upon charity--the Golden Dawn Legal Defense Fund. In fact...

(Yes, none of the writers, except the controllers of the Legal Defense Fund receive a dime of profit from this book. And the Legal Defense Fund is only a threat to people who believe that they are going to end up in court arguing over who rightfully should control the entirety of the Golden Dawn tradition. If you do not believe that you are going to end up in court, why not help those who made sure that we can all use the GD name recoup their legal expenses.)

...I am considering a project that would end up with the projects going to a charity (but the charity would involve homeless cats because I am that dude).

And I am positive it was a year ago when I turned in my commentary...

(I remember that it was right around the same time that someone told me that it was perfectly ok for my reputation to be destroyed because I did not belong to a certain Order [by someone high enough in that Order that it has to be official policy to destroy the reputation of outsiders], and people wonder why I do not trust certain people [who make claims that they like everyone, and are not out to destroy us...but one of your lieutenants says otherwise]; I had been busy defending the reputation of another writer, silly me.)

...but I am too lazy to dig though my sent emails.

The book is going to reveal how widely different the approaches to the Golden Dawn system are in the modern Golden Dawn community. While I only read a partial proof (it will be awhile before I can afford a copy...the reason I am taking time off from university is to repair my business and restore its income levels), I did find another commentary on a different Flying Roll that completely disagreed with mine. And that is ok. (I have joked that my commentary was written by a lunatic in crayon on the back of a cereal box while out of the special brownies--hey, I live in Colorado; I can eat the special brownies.) And there are certain Flying Rolls that I would have treated completely differently in a commentary, but it is all good because the book is about making you actually think about the Golden Dawn system.

Anyways, yes, this book has been a long time in coming out. The traditional publishing process is so slow. And the very nature of this project just dragged it out even longer.

But I think that we will all agree that the book was worth the wait.

1 comment:

Nick Farrell said...

Actually we turned it around quite fast...
Started recruiting the authors in July last year...
I was called cruel and heartless because I gave only a couple of months for people to write their bits... There were a couple of delays Everything was in for proofing in February... I think we did the cover then. Given that we we were also writing the content (authors typically take two years) and then the publisher takes a year or so in production this one is probably a record.