You see Terry I agree with Kepler. I don't think he was ever in the cult and I have been out long enough that I can put any vindictiveness aside and just rationally think what would appeal to the most. I am not trying to get even or prove a point. You probably have enough research and experiances for several books. I do like how you said you would break the book up into two general parts though. I would still like to purchase a copy when you get it published.
HELP NEEDED for the book I'm writing!
I think you have two books there, not one. Keep the biographical stuff limited, just the part about you as a conscientious objector and what it has meant for your life, leading you to write this book.
I agree wholeheartedly with the advice to write a book proposal. Writing the proposal helps you to refine your ideas and your point of view. It helps you to focus on your audience, and it helps you understand how to direct the book toward the audience. Including a sample chapter and a detailed outline tells the agent or publisher whether or not you can actually write, so include your best chapter and do your best to make the detailed table of contents sing.
I can send you an outline for a book proposal, if you like. It's from my publishers. If you are interested, let me know.
I think the book about the wtbts teachings on military service, and the effect it has had (Mexico, Malawi and other places) would be very interesting and cover new territory as far as books about JWs go.
I also second the advice to use a professional editor. Of course, if you submit a book proposal that is accepted, you'll work with an editor at the publishing company. It also wouldn't hurt to have one or two writers on this forum read your manuscript and give feedback. Although, you don't know us and might want a NDA before getting anyone to read it.
Sometimes less is more.
For what it's worth, these are the interesting topics that I'm not sure most people know:
1. On the conscientious objector matter, no individual decided for himself that he was a conscientious objector. This "conscience" was injected into them with WT propaganda. I was a young dub (but female) during the Vietnam war. I was told by several young brothers that they could not accept a position in a hospital in lieu of military service because that would be considered "compromise." Again, the brothers did not themselves necessarily see it as "compromise." A young man had to be sentenced to public service work by a judge before that would be considered an acceptable way to avoid military service.
2. "Worldly" people have told me that JW's were harmless crackpots. I remind them of ruined lives of people who forego education or make a misstep which leads to being cut off from their own families.
3. Medical quackery is BIG in the borg. Vaccinations used to be forbidden, dubs were told not to chew gum, not to use aluminum cookware and similar crazy pseudo-scientific claptrap. The biggest tragedy of all is that dubs refuse blood transfusions that could save their lives because of what they are told is meant by scriptures not at all related to medical procedures.
You probably have already included all of these items in your book. Best wishes with publication.
I would stay focused non your main topic. If it is academic, trouncing the society will not help. My only suggestion would be to describe current practice around the world
Some hard core conflicts. It may slso be good to chat w.human rights lawyers and activists to discuss their ta ke. Perhaps compare and contrast other religios.I was minding my own business, attending a.meet and greet with the director of Amnesty Int'l immediate ly after the Nobel prize award when someone asked where they are ineffective, the response was JWs, Albania, and Idi Amin. JWs refused to work with Amnesty. Believe it or not every activist or intellectual in China or the Soviet Union could be tracked even to secret prisons. Amnesty was aware of horrific abuses against Witnesses in the prisons.
Time has cured some of the situations. I wonder about JWs now.
Friends lsugh about Armageddon never arriving, blood, and shunning. Most know the First Amendment cases but so do lawyers, historians, and poli sci majors. They have respect bc of thosr cases. People view them as s joke.
.NYC upper middle class know them as the blight on Bklyn Heights with vinyl flowers. People collapse in laughter that I was raised one.
Ignore above..twitchy finger posting on smart phone.
I remember hearing a story about war prisoners being shown "fake" watchtowers to break their faith but they wouldn't look at them because they believed them to be fake. It would be interesting to find any who really found they were real and the information was non neutral and hypocritical and those showing them were attempting to awaken those prisoners to the fact they were in a cult and under mind control.
Also it would be good to note JW's don't take their firm stance due to personal conviction derived from personal investigating rather they are really forced to comply with all WT directives to avoid DFing and the subsequent shunning and loss of family.
The conscientious objector story is one that needs to be told. I'd stick to that vs. going into unrelated doctrines, so here are my 3.
- Tell your story in detail and use a lot of emotion words. Explain your internal struggles and what it was like in prison. Then explain what it's like being an outcast after your sacrificed so much. Talk about how it affected your life and how it's affecting you now (i.e., missed income in prison, etc.).
- Explain the doctrine itself. It's stupid, so expose that.
- Explain the double standards--i.e., Mexico vs. Malawi or something like that.
If you can name the Top Three facts about this religion every single person on the planet needs to know that isn't obvious.
1. That this religious organization was mostly made up of amateur bible theologians right from its very beginning til today.
2. That many of the established core doctrines were intensionally created to focus upon the proliferation of literature
which the organization authored and published themselves.
3. In spite of those known particulars, the leaders of the organization have self proclaimed themselves god's solemnly
chosen organization and created a semblance of power and authority over all mankind.
1. One thing that strikes me, is really how dishonest their leaders/governing body are. They have no qualms about re-writing their history, distorting the facts
2.If it were possible for them to destroy all their older literature, they would do so, because it is an embarrasment to their current teachings.
3. If they were really genuine about "witnessing" , "spreading the good news" , "Making disciples of People of All the Nations ", then why are they so reluctant to FULLY UTILISE the technology that exists today? not only in christendom ! The technology could be used to flood non christian lands , but they are reluctant to do so.
I for one look forward to the release of your book terry ,as I do your posts on this board.