A couple years ago, I attended a Beth Moore conference with some friends. One of the things she shared was that God was raising up women with a message and that more women would be stepping out as writers and speakers to share His truth.
This past year, I heard another speaker say she believed God was birthing books in people like never before, and that many would step up and write for His Kingdom.
“Let this be written for a future generation, that a people not yet created may praise the LORD” (Psalm 102:18, NIV 84).
In August of 2015 I published my first book–a Bible study entitled Let’s Run! Uncovering Faith and Finding Freedom. The whole journey that led to that book was an amazing testimony of the faithfulness of God.
Is There a Book Inside You?
I wrote the study as I was studying Hebrews 12:1-3 for myself, while also teaching it to my high school class. God then led me through a series of events that brought me to being an writer: teaching the study at my church, speaking at another church, a couple who provided funds for the book to be published, and some internet research.
Knowing nothing about publishing, I googled the term and came up with a company that was an arm of LifeWay.
I sent in the manuscript, and then began the process of self-publishing, which is not the same as traditional publishing. Basically, you pay to self-publish with a company who knows how to do it, then you get a discount when you purchase copies to sell, and you receive royalties for copies that sell online.
Partway into the process, I was led to a writer’s conference to learn more about writing and marketing. There I talked with a traditional publisher who read part of the manuscript and suggested that I begin each lesson with an anecdote to draw my readers in. I contacted the publisher, but it was too late to change anything.
I prayed for God to intervene and make a way for me to make the study better, if that was His will, and then I waited. A few weeks later, the publisher sent an email stating that they were going out of business and would return my manuscript to me, while also giving me a discount with another self-publisher.
See what I mean? The faithfulness of God.
I never really set out to be a writer. God just opened the door and I followed. I was encouraged to start a blog and be active on social media to help promote the book. The more I began to write blog posts, devotions, and social media updates, the more I felt the calling and anointing to write.
I sold around 500 copies of Let’s Run!, mostly to family and friends, making just enough to pay back the expenses of marketing and the website; but the testimonies of people changed by those words was worth it all!
I since have written another Bible study and have been waiting for God to provide the funds to continue publishing. I wanted to publish the second Bible study, but only when I had the funds and the time was right. I was also praying for a way to actually make a living, so that I could be home to write more often and do more ministry in my community.
Then I got an email from a blogger friend about something called Self-Publishing School, a series of courses that teaches you how to publish for yourself. The cost of the school was the amount I had saved up at that time. I prayed about it and was encouraged by my family to pursue it. So I did.
That decision has been one of the best I have ever made.
In order to learn every step of the process, I started at the beginning and wrote a new book altogether. As I worked my way through the videos, pdfs, timetables, and the questions and answers of the weekly hangout and the Facebook group, I learned all the in’s and out’s of not only publishing, but also marketing–all for less than I paid to the other company.
The difference is huge. SPS teaches how to publish with Amazon, which is free and offers much higher royalties on sales. The school also teaches extensive marketing techniques that helped my new book, Seek Him First, to become a bestseller after only ten days.
Do you know what that means? Right now it means that over 2000 people have access to the message God gave me about seeking Him first in our lives. How cool is that?
Don’t get me wrong: This success has nothing to do with me and everything to do with our God. And it has little to do with the income God has provided for me to stay home and write full time (although that was an answer to my prayer).
What it does mean is that God made a way through the Self-Publishing School for His message to get out to more people. That’s what He cares about!
Do you have a book in you? Maybe God has been dealing with you about sharing your story with the world. I want to encourage you to move forward in what God has put on your heart. If you will take the steps of obedience, He will lead and guide you.
And I want to personally invite you to take a look at the Self-Publishing School and see if it is a fit for you. They are offering some discounts right now, so it’s a good time to get in.
Click here for more information, and let me know if you have any questions. I would love to see God raise up more writers, willing to share their story for His glory!
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