Sunday, May 14, 2023

Tap the Power of Hope


By Terry Whalin @terrywhalin

In the world of publishing, its easy to get discouraged. Lets think about the volume of books which are published every day: over 4,500 titles. Recently, a colleague emailed me the link for this article: The 10 Awful Truths about Book Publishing. I encourage you to follow the link and study it, its pretty easy to feel small, discouraged and overwhelmed. Yes, Ive felt all of those emotions in my daily work. In this article, I want to emphasize how you keep going in spite of these truths. What is your method to tap into the power of hope?

Look at the elements at the bottom of this article.
Strategies For Responding to “The 10 Awful Truths”:
1. The game is now pass-along sales and pre-orders.
2. Events/immersion experiences replace traditional publicity in moving the needle.
3. Leverage the authors’ and publishers’ communities.
4. In a crowded market, brands stand out. 
5. Master new digital channels for sales, marketing, and community building.
6. Build books around a compelling, simple message.
7. Front-load the main ideas in books and keep books short.

If you read these articles about The Writing Life, you know I see the glass as half full rather than half empty. When you have something discouraging happen, then you have to say the word “next” and look for the next opportunity.

We live in a world full of opportunities which are everywhere. Recently I recorded a podcast about Faith in Publishing. If you follow the link you can hear the 18 minute interview.

Another way to tap into the power of hope with your writing is to make sure you know why you are writing. Yes, some of your writing is to make money--but heres an important truth: not all of it. For example, Ive written over 1,000 book reviews on Amazon and over 800 reviews on Goodreads. I write these reviews to support other writers. Other times I write devotions and not for the pay which is often minimal. I write these words to encourage others. I encourage you to mix some of this type of writing into your writing life along with the writing which helps you pay your bills.

As Christian writers we have a super power in prayer and Gods promise to lead us with our writing and to open new doors. The right opportunity for your writing is out there. But this opportunity doesnt just fall from the sky or into your email box or on your phone. Every writer has to be actively looking for the opportunity and open to it. As you have magazine ideas, you need to write query letters and pitches. I encourage you to attend writers conferences to meet editors and agents. At these events you can speak with them face to face about ideas and possibilities. Also as you have book ideas, I encourage you to write a book proposal or a business plan--even if you self-publish. Then pitch this book proposal. 

As you pitch your ideas, no matter what happens whether it is accepted or rejected, keep going. I keep going because the journey is all about finding the right opportunity and fit. What practical actions do you take to tap into the power of hope? Let me know in the comments below. 


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