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Would You Like to Read My New Book NOW Instead of When It Gets Published???

As you may know, my next book Heaven and hell: A History of the Afterlife will be published on March 31.  That’s nearly three months off.  Would you like to read it *now*?     I have three copies of the galley proofs that I am willing to auction off — as a fund-raiser for the blog — to be sent directly to the highest bidders.

A “galley proof” is the book as it is sent out to reviewers and journals and editors and book stores well in advance – some months ago now – so they can decide whether to advertise and / or stock the book and at what quantities.  They are never for sale.  They are in paperback with the same kind of cover that will be on the book itself, but at a cheaper production level since they are not for display in bookstores.   The book itself – the content — is as it will be published, *except* for minor stylistic things (typos here and there etc.) that had not yet been cleared up before the final production began.

So it’s the book, beginning to end, with the endnotes.   Are you interested in getting your hands on a copy?  They go to the three highest bidders.

This is how it will work.  The bidding will be *completely* anonymous – only the bidder and I will know the bidder’s name and the amount bid (for HOW TO BID: see below).  I will take bids from now (Thursday, January 9) for four days (until the end of Sunday, January 12).   At that point I will announce the three highest amounts bid (anonymously), for a second round that will last three days.  At the end of that, I will announce that the bidding is ended, and will notify the three winners directly (again, no one else will know the names).

I will then mail out the books, signed over to the winning bidders.

IMPORTANT!  To make your bid please do this:  Simply send an email directly to me at behrman@email.unc.edu.   The email subject line should be: Bid for Your Book.   The email itself is to start with the bid directly and simply:  I BID $XXXXX.  If there’s anything else you’d like to say, that’s fine too: but only after the bidding amount.

(Please note.  According to the IRS: “Donors who purchase items at a charity auction may claim a charitable contribution deduction for the excess of the purchase price paid for an item over its fair market value.”  For market value of the book, see its listing on Amazon).

If you have any further questions about it, please post them here on the blog as a comment, not in your email – that way others with the same question will also see the answer!


Bidding to See My New Book
Blog Year in Review, 2019!



  1. Avatar
    Judith  January 9, 2020

    We never know what’s coming next but it makes the blog fun, Dr. Ehrman!

  2. Avatar
    longdistancerunner  January 9, 2020

    I pre-ordered it a couple months ago!

  3. Avatar
    lmabe10  January 9, 2020

    Hi Bart, I think this is a great idea and I have submitted a bid!

    However, I wonder if there is a way to do this so it is available to those that cannot afford to pay a high price. Would it be possible to do a raffle-style drawing for one of the books. Say a $5 donation gets you entered into the drawing for one of the three, limited to 2 entries per person to keep it fair for those with less expendable income. I realize this may create some legal challenges and it may not be worth all of that, but I feel bad for those who would really love to take part in this but are not financially able to.

    Either way, thanks for this great opportunity! I can’t wait to read the book.

  4. Avatar
    JBarruso  January 9, 2020

    I’m really looking forward to reading this next one! I’ve read Jesus Interuupted, Lost Christianities and I just finished Did Jesus Exist? All of it is a breath of fresh air. I believe in Jesus and his message but I don’t believe in the mythologies and the religion that have sprung from his existence and perverted his message. Reading your work has liberated me from the Bible which has been like an anchor around my neck. I really like what you wrote in the final pages of Did Jesus Exist?, regarding his opponents, you cited verses explaining his “antifamily” traditions. They are some of the hardest verses for people to accept and understand and as a result the most mis-interpreted. Thank you for stating in a straightforward manner exactly what they mean. I agree wholeheartedly with your understanding. Hard as it may be, it is what he said. And I might add the one thing all of his opponents have in common is hypocrisy as something that is in direct opposition to the love of God. Few people want to believe that about the instituion we call family but it is true. Like the Temple it has become a corrupt institution full of superficial and meaningless rituals that have little to nothing to do with the real love of God.

  5. Avatar
    Dnations  January 9, 2020

    Hey Dr. Ehrman,
    Good idea IMHO! Just a suggestion; I think it would be a further inducement, if you agreed to sign each copy.

    • Bart
      Bart  January 11, 2020

      Yup, that’s one of the points. I’ll be signing them.

  6. Avatar
    chixter  January 9, 2020

    Great idea Bart. I will bid what I can afford, but competing with this crowd I sense an Amazon order in my future. But hey, that’s a good thing

  7. Avatar
    fedcarroll77  January 9, 2020

    Good day Bart,

    How does the winner submit the payments? Is it done through the blog donate section? Or will a link be sent to the winners with payment info?

  8. Avatar
    Zuchacha  January 10, 2020

    Hey Bart Ehrman I’m a big fan of yours and can’t wait for the book! After being a Christian my whole life I’ve lost my faith due to various reasons and adopted the belief of perennial philosophy as being true. I think some of the best evidence we have for perennial philosophy being true is found in near death experiences in which people of all faith or no faith at all experience the same loving God even if God appears to them in different forms to make their transition into the afterlife more “smooth“ for lack of a better term. I also hold a strong belief in reincarnation. Will reincarnation being a possible afterlife possibility and/or reincarnation beliefs held among early Christians be discussed in the book?
    Thanks, Zach

    • Bart
      Bart  January 11, 2020

      I talk about it a bit — but only a bit, since it wsa not a dominant view in early Christianity. (But Origen, the great theologian, held it!)

  9. Avatar
    TimKendrick  January 10, 2020

    Do you have to bid in the first round in order to bid in the second round? Or can I just skip the first round and swoop in at the end with a high bid? 🙂

    • Bart
      Bart  January 11, 2020

      Need to be a first rounder. I’ll contact everyone directly to see if they want to up their bid.

  10. epicurus
    epicurus  January 10, 2020

    Don’t know if you’ve seen this, but there is a fairly long story in The Guardian dated Jan 9, about the whole Mark ancient fragment business written by Charlotte Higgins which makes mention of you.

  11. Avatar
    hankgillette  January 11, 2020

    There is an article in Friday’s New York Times by Dr. David Bentley Hart about why people believe in hell. I was just wondering if you saw the article and if you know Dr. Hart.


    • Bart
      Bart  January 11, 2020

      I have it but haven’t read it yet. I know his translation of the NT, but have not read it.

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