Let Us Endeavor to Speak Until They Silence Our Voices

CHRISTIANS FIRED FOR THEIR BELIEFS

Let Us Endeavor to Speak Until They Silence Our Voices

Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency Fires Agent for Having Parler and Gab Accounts

The Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency fired literary agent Colleen Oefelein after the firm discovered she had accounts on social media sites Parler and Gab. Oefelein had publicly acknowledged starting the accounts two months earlier.

Kate Hartson, Former Editor With Center Street for Supporting Donald Trump

Kate Hartson, former editor with Center Street, was recently fired, “for political reasons,” she says. The New York Times reports that her colleagues considered her a “true believer” in Donald Trump.

In an industry where imagination and words are the tools of the trade, such actions should give all authors pause for concern.

The “Information Establishment” shapes minds with words. When only one voice is heard, that is propaganda.

The “Entertainment Establishment” creates false reality and has the ability to make what is evil appear good and what is pure to appear prudish.

The “Academic Establishment” shapes young minds and is the recruiting field for the expanding army of thought police.

The “Political Establishment” enacts laws and sets public policy to insure its citizens remain in line.

The “Corporate Establishment” decides who works, eats, and lives in comfort or squalor.

All the above establishments exists within the kingdom of man.

Only in the Kingdom of God will you find free will for all, love for all from God, and the freedom to live without sin and hate through the Spirit of Christ. Those in Christ are not called to wage war on the kingdom of man. That is above our pay grade. Instead, we are called to pray that God’s words go forth and proclaim his Good News. Let us endeavor to speak, write, and teach until they silence our voices.

Calling All Christian Romance Authors

Calling All Christian Romance Authors

 

Announcing the opening of the 2021 Faith, Hope and Love Reader’s Choice Award, sponsored by the Faith, Hope and Love Chapter of RWA. Books published in 2020 are eligible.

All authors of Christian fiction are welcome to enter. They do not have to be members of any set group. There are seven categories available: Long Contemporary, Short Contemporary, Long Historical, Short Historical, Women’s Fiction, Romantic Suspense, and Novella.

The FHLRCA is the only contest that is solely for Christian fiction and judged by readers of Christian fiction who are not involved in the writing industry. This is an excellent opportunity to get your author’s work in front of new readers who love to tell fellow readers about books they love.

If you would like more information, the rules and entry form can be found on the FHL website: https://www.faithhopelove-rwa.org/fhlrca-contest/. You can also email me directly for information:  nancy-rca@faithhopelove-rwa.org. Please share this information with your authors and the other editors at your publishing house.

Blessings,
Nancy J. Farrier
FHLRCA Coordinator

acwc.live

Join us for the
Asheville Christian Writers Conference
February 26, 27 and 28, 2021

https://acwc.live/In the years following the formation of Christian Devotions Ministries, our small staff of volunteers would gather at the Ridgecrest Conference Center outside of Black Mountain, North Carolina, and discuss how we could help writers and authors.

Back then ChristianDevotions.us served as our only online presence. After a few years of gathering with thirty or more writers, we decided we should offer those who drove up for the day some instruction. After all, they were giving up part of their weekend simply to help the ministry. That year Yvonne Lehman, Ann Tatlock, and several other award-winning authors offered classes on plotting, character development, and other ways to improve our writing. Thus began our next ministry: a Christian writing bootcamp.

Today we call that ministry The Asheville Christian Writers Conference.

All Christian writing is a battle cry, a call to rally around God’s words and act as a herald for his Kingdom. God calls us to step up and answer with the best work possible using the talents received. We are called together to focus our hearts on the task Christ assigned us . . . to strengthen our ties with one another and hone our craft of writing in order that we might clearly spread God’s message of love for all and to all through fiction and non-fiction books, screenplays, scripts, articles, and blogs.

Past attendees have gone on to write for Inspire A Fire, our online magazine, Christian Devotions, CBN Devotions, the Upper Room, and Inspiration.org. Some attendees have received book contracts from Iron Stream Media, Thomas Nelson, Tyndale, and other book publishers.

This year we will offer both in person and  virtual options for attendees. Whether you join us online at ACWC.live or at The Billy Graham Training Center at the Cove, you will be challenged to improve, encouraged to persevere, and prayed for and pray with fellow believers who take serious the call of Christ to “go and make disciples in” his name.

If you wish to attend in person, we would love to see you! Currently, we have a limited number of rooms available for on-campus housing. Act fast to reserve a room on site at The Cove. Hotel space is available nearby, but staying at The Cove is a treat you will not want to miss.

ACWC from ACWC.live on Vimeo.

Who Is Your Sanballat ?

When Sanballat heard that we were building the wall of Jerusalem, he was very angry and upset. He started making fun of the Jews.  Sanballat talked with his friends and the army at Samaria and said, “What are these weak Jews doing? Do they think we will leave them alone? Maybe they think they can finish building in only one day. They cannot bring stones back to life from these piles of trash and dirt. These are just piles of ashes and dirt!”

This month I’m reading Nehemiah during my devotional time. On February 21, as I studied Nehemiah’s efforts to rebuild the wall around Jerusalem, I felt God prompting me to ask: “Lord, who is my Sanballat?”

We all have some adversary who tries to discourage us — a negative voice that seeks to destroy our work.  Many times our enemies gossip and slander in the shadows, working in stealth-mode.  I rarely pay attention to what others say about me or LPC.  As long as I’m doing God’s work, His opinion is the only one that matters.  But that February morning while I read how Nehemiah sought to rebuild the wall, I felt called to pray for insight into any unseen attacks lodged against our work.

Yesterday, as I prepared to leave the Florida Christian Writers Conference,  an individual sought me out to warn me that someone at the conference had told others: “Signing with LPC will kill your writing career.”  This Sanballat claimed that authors who signed with small publishers would never generate enough book sales to earn the respect and attention of a larger house.  Literary agents and large publishing houses DO look at sales numbers.  Your book’s sales and reviews are two indicators of how well your writing resonates with readers.

But if an author cannot succeed with a small press they probably will not succeed with a large house.  Jesus said as much when he shared the story of the talents.  Every “one talent” book contract is a chance to succeed.  Make the most of that opportunity and more chances will come your way.

A small press is a great place to learn how the publishing process works and what’s expected of the author.  Yes, it’s minor league ball, but you’re in the game.  You are learning what it takes to become a successful author.  If you are humble enough to start with a small press, odds are you will learn sooner rather than later how to control your ego, work with your editors, and treat your writing as a product you create, not an extension of yourself.

If you can afford to wait five years … ten years … longer … to land that three-book contract with one of the Big Five houses, God bless you.  That’s a noble goal and one I applaud.  Just know that the same hard work required to succeed with a small press is necessary with a large house.  In fact, the work and expectations are greater.

One final comment about the Sanballats in our lives: In chapter three of Nehemiah there is a verse that shows the corrosive influence of those who gossip and slander in secret.  “Their nobles did not lift a finger to help their supervisors.” – Nehemiah 3:5.  Notice how the nobles, those who believed themselves too good to get their hands dirty, refused to work.  This, too, is a consequence of listening to the Sanballats around us.  Not only do they seek to discourage those hard at work — they destroy the work ethic of others.

Refuse to listen to the Sanballats in your life.  They come only to steal and kill and destroy.  Work where you are, make the most of every opportunity, and leave the results to God.

 

Book Publishing News – 09/15/17

Book Publishing News - 09/15/17Barnes & Noble Same-Store Sales Slide 4.4%

Overall sales fell 6.6% while same-store sales dropped 4.4%.“Barnes & Noble continues to struggle with the sea change in the book industry as Amazon.com now controls the majority of the market and has even begun challenging B&N in the brick-and-mortar world with its own stores,” The Motley Fool said. Read more …

Former WaterBrook & Multnomah Publisher Alex Field Launches New Literary Agency

Alexander Field, former VP & Publisher at WaterBrook & Multnomah, launched a new literary agency and consulting agency. The Bindery is an ambitious, full-service literary agency working closely with authors to set big goals, shape their book ideas, create robust book proposals, and build a marketing and platform strategy, long before anything hits an editor’s desk. Read more …

 

Baker Publishing and Book House Create e-commerce Site

Baker Publishing Group and independent Christian bookstore Baker Book House launched a new online website www.bakerbookhouse.com that offers the discounts and online shopping. The website features products from all BPG divisions—Baker Academic, Baker Books, Bibles, Brazos Press, Bethany House, Chosen, and Revell.

Authors Question the Novel’s Future in the Face of Declining Attention Spans

During BBC Radio 4’s “Today” program Robert Harris argued that novels have “moved away from the central position in our culture.” Claire Messud suggested that “maybe in 50 years there won’t be novels” due to perceived declining attention spans in readers. Presenter John Humphrys quizzedHarris on whether the novel could compete with other mediums.Humphrys said “You’re slightly anxious – is that the right word – for the future of the novel set against opposing attractions? Read more …

 

Print, Audiobook Sales Up – eBook Sales Slide

publishers reported higher sales of print books and downloadable audio, while e-book sales continued to slump. With a good, if not great, first half of 2017 behind them, publishers are cautiously optimistic about the remainder of the year. In his letter to PRH employees about the first half results, Penguin Random House CEO Markus Dohle cautioned that, “we face a marketplace heavy with unrelenting new-title competition each week and a crowded media landscape with constantly breaking news and attention-grabbing headlines.” Read more ...

Book Publishing News 08/18/17

Carol Award Finalists

Historical: Starving Hearts by Janine Mendenhall, Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas, editors Ann Tatlock and Amberlyn Dwinnell

Debut: You’re the Cream in my Coffee by Jennifer Lamont Leo, Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas, editor Kathryn Davis

Speculative: The Healer’s Rune (Young Adult Fantasy) by Lauricia Matuska, Brimstone Fiction, editors Rowena Kuo and Eddie Jones (Brimstone is now its own house under Ro’s management)

Read more …

 

Silver Scroll Merit Awards

Silver Scroll Merit Awards for Fiction went to Marilyn Turk for The Gilded Curse from Heritage Beacon Fiction. Congrats also to Edie Melson for her novel, Alone, and nonficiton book, While My Child is Away.

 

Good news! B&N met their profit goals. Bad news! Sales fall 6.5 percent. 

The 6 percent drop in book sales is partly due to lower sales of coloring books and juvenile titles. B&N expects the sales decline to continue in 2018.


Marketing Tips

What would happen if you spent $100k on Facebook ads?

One tip?  Create video specifically for Facebook Ads.

Book Publishing News 07/15/17

Exclusive News Excerpt from The Hot Sheet

(enjoy this article from The Hot Sheet)

A Potentially Beneficial New Road Opens in Email Newsletter Advertising

When talking recently with UK-based historical fiction writer Jane Steen, we learned not only that she’s had a good experience with the email newsletter advertising service BookBub (as most indie authors do), but that she’s spotted another venue with some promise.

Before we discuss that new venue, here’s a quick overview of Steen’s experience with BookBub: after she was featured in their newsletter, she says she netted “well over $10,000 … in a month of extra sell-through” for the $410 cost of her advertisement for the first book (which is free) in a series. When we asked BookBub’s Katie Donelan about this kind of response, she said Steen used several particularly savvy approaches, including marketing a series. Donelan says, “94 percent of BookBub authors who discount a book in a series sell more copies of other books in the series during the promotion. And making a first book in series free is one of the most successful strategies they use. First, we see 10 times the downloads on free books that we do on 99-cent books. On top of that, we see five-times-higher sales of other books in a series when the first book is offered—compared to any other book in the series—and we see eight-times-higher sales of other books when the featured book is free.” We’ll write up more insights from Donelan in a future issue.

After the successful BookBub run, Open Road Integrated Media offered to advertise Steen’s books in their newsletters. Open Road is the leading curated backlist house founded by that other Jane Friedman, the former CEO of HarperCollins. Open Road offers ebook editions of more than 10,000 titles from some of the greatest authors and estates in the business.

In the last couple of years, Open Road has found success by creating special-interest, content-driven websites and corresponding newsletters:EarlyBirdBooks.comThe-Line-Up.com, and ThePortalist.com. Open Road just passed the million-subscriber mark on their newsletters, and their sites have more than 1.4 million unique visitors per month.

They now plan to launch three additional websites and email newsletters:

  • Love So True (for romance readers, of course)

  • Murder & Mayhem (for mystery and thriller readers)

  • The Archive (for history and nonfiction consumers)

Open Road is including ads in their newsletters and tells The Hot Sheet that they’re particularly interested in working with self-published material. Here’s a link with information. They do check for a quality level they feel comfortable with, and they write the copy for the ads themselves, ensuring a professional tone consistent with each newsletter’s voice and style.

There are a few restrictions. For example, the free first-in-series book that Steen advertised with BookBub would not have flown with Open Road, which isn’t accepting ads for free books; a book must cost 99 cents or more to be eligible.

Mary McAveney, Open Road’s executive vice president for marketing, says the largest of the newsletters in operation, Early Bird Books (with 750,000 subscribers), typically produces what she describes as “a 1000 percent or more increase over baseline sales” in the days following an ad run. There’s also an increase in sales of an author’s other titles, with associated boosts in sales rankings and reviews on retail sites. Seventy-five percent of Early Bird readers are 45 and older; 80 percent of them are female; they are primarily US-based.

McAveney tells The Hot Sheet, “What it comes down to is that we’re solving our own marketing challenges here. We have to create our own earned media with these newsletters, and it helps our audience even more if we can put more good titles in front of them. Our point is to continue to build this community of readers, who are coming in through their genre preferences and staying with us.”

Bottom line: The price to place an ad in the Early Bird Books newsletter is $180. That sounds like a great rate to us, especially because an ad in an Open Road Integrated Media newsletter puts a title in the company of some of the biggest and best work in the canon. It’s no surprise to us, in fact, that publishers (including Workman and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) are using these newsletters as avenues to reach readers. Contact Open Road at promotion@openroadmedia.com to get more information.