Joseph Ganci - An Intelligently Plotted, Well-researched, and Expertly Executed Biblical Retelling
Joseph Ganci was born in Beth-Israel Hospital, N.Y. He is the firstborn so dedicated to God by the laws of Israel and is the son of Joseph. A confirmed Levite and Highpriest. Joseph is a Vietnam combat veteran currently residing in Huston, Texas. He has fathered five daughters and five grandchildren. As our Author of the Day, he tells us all about his book, David God's Chosen Crucible.
Please give us a short introduction to what David God's Chosen Crucible is about.
David, the Shepard boy, becomes the king of the Jews and the fighting prince of Israel. This is the first sequel to Gideon The Sound and The Glory novel, done in five parts. The last part is the young David. David God’s Chosen Crucible picks up with David coming of age. He conquered the empire of Israel and his romances with Abigail and his soulmate Bathsheba.
What inspired you to write this story? Was there anything that made you want to tackle this?
A dear friend and an avid reader read Gideon The Sound and The Glory and were enthralled enough to ask what happens next. Gideon’s entire story is in the three books of Judges 6-8 and totals exactly 100 verses. Since David was part 5 of the novel, it inspired me to continue with the rest of the story. Writing to Gideon was like writing a novel from a postcard, while writing to David is like writing to the Encyclopedia Britannica, as you can’t write David in one Book. I am working on that as we speak.
Tell us more about David. What makes him so special?
He demonstrates how God operates. God uses the weak things and makes them strong when showing faith and the desire to do right. Although David is flawed, he never gives up and never gives in and, with the help of divine providence, always finds his way.
What fascinates you about the Biblical stories?
The gaps and puzzle pieces intrigue me the most about the Bible. My writing group used to call me the Bible detective. I can see beyond the common and ask the questions, what, why, where, when, how, and who, of situations long passed over and never questioned or let alone answered. In other words, the impact of human drama and practical applications of events help connect the dots.
Besides writing, what other secret skills do you have?
Oration. The number one fear is speaking in public, and this is because ridicule is death to the ego. And ego will sacrifice the body on the altar of pride in a vain attempt to stay alive. The preacher said vanities of vanities all is vanity. My number one fear is that no one will ask me to speak. I have a modicum of wit and enjoy listening and retelling a good joke. Life is much too important to take seriously.
How much research did this book require from you to make the history part of it feel accurate? What was the most interesting aspect of this research?
Isaiah speaks to revelation as line upon line and precept upon precept, here a little, there a little. Accumulated knowledge over a lifetime and less, I forget a thousand years; hence the anthropologists will conclude that as a society, they all communed with an all-knowing oracle named Google. The right question is sometimes more important than the answer when traveling down an ancient rabbit hole—cultural history and norms for my edification and pass it on to the reader to give the work color and substance.
Readers say the writing felt almost poetic. Why did you take this approach?
It’s more like that approach takes me. I have a natural gift of lyricism. Sometimes I had to back off as it made the work feel contrived. I had to peel back to a more prosaic style. I wrote Gideon as an epic poem. Only one reviewer commented that it had the feel of an epic poem. Sometimes it just flows like a stream gathering speed to the sea.
What do you hope readers take away from this story?
There are many, but one of my favorites is when Saul and the army of Israel hunt David down. He is alone and even tries to find refuge with prince Achish, a Philistine enemy but a private friend, only to be rebuffed and cast out. Overwhelmed and depressed, he goes to the cave of Adullam, where he prays a heartfelt prayer to God for relief. Immediately after the prayer, he turns his mind to someone he can help. He is concerned about his aged parents and brothers being captured by Saul. That made all the difference; as soon as he turned his mind away from his troubles, 400 misfits, malcontents and debtors found David, and they became his army, the army of God.
What was your greatest challenge when writing David, God's Chosen Crucible?
Davis is such a complex character, and his story is vast and challenging. But God remains gracious unto me, and I must take the same insight as when eating a whale, one bite and one day at a time.
When starting on a new book, what is the first thing you do?
I go to the bible and search out the nuances. Since the outline is already there, I must fill in ancient blanks. When writing Gideon and David, the pages in my bible disintegrated from repeated wear. Sometimes my previous readings and learnings help to connect the dots. Sometimes from inexplicable sources, divine in nature, the answers are presented in miraculous ways. Knock, and it shall be opened unto you. Seek, and you shall find.
Please tell us more about the cover art.
Mark at Big Whiskey is the town’s name in Clint Eastwood’s Unforgiven western movie. Mark and I would send back-and-forth dialogue from that movie. It helped to create a collaborative artistic bond. David is complex, and to describe his experience in one sitting is nearly impossible. I wanted something reminiscent of the Gideon cover, which I consider epic in scope. David casts a long shadow and comes at you with a sword, the ultimate man of war. His soulmate Bathsheba carried a torch for him with his lyre in her hand. The Ark of the covenant and the tabernacle of the congregation is in the background. There is even a stele at his feet with the name of David in Hebrew at his feet.
Do you have any interesting writing habits? What is an average writing day like for you?
I’m a seat-of-the-pants writer since my outline is already in plain sight. Sometimes it’s a line, and a page is a great day. I do not change the onset or the conclusion as stated in the bible (the titanic always sinks). I add details and insights through dialogue, personalities, and emotional interactions. Somedays, you get the bear; some days, the bear gets you. So sometimes it’s grin and bear it.
What are you working on right now?
Second David Trials and Tribulations. The last in the series will be Solomon. The empire of Israel series. I have been gifted, and you will see it when you see it. I also have many New Testament understandings and a few New Testament short stories.
Where can our readers discover more of your work or interact with you?
Gideon’s The Sound and The Glory is my premiere novel. I have a website Gideonsglory.com and a Facebook page. I’m on LinkedIn, as well. I’m available for speaking engagements. ([email protected]) Most find my insight insightful, if not challenging. I often go beyond conventional wisdom not to be controversial but because it has been given to me to give to you. I’m nobody special. It’s further proof that God uses the foolish to confound the wise and the weak to confound the mighty, and in this way, there is no doubt where the power comes from. So, that you have no doubts, I’m a Jesus guy. Thank you for being so interested. Regards Joseph.
David is every man’s man, an outlaw prophet, a man of war, and a man of God. He is a ruthless warrior, an ardent lover, a skilled musician, and a poet-philosopher. God sees in him the heart of a lion, the tenacity of a bear, and an ever-faithful man of action. God calls an unlikely and lowly shepherd boy to become the king of the Jews and the fighting prince of Israel.