Thursday, April 27, 2017

Write-to-Publish Faculty Interview: Marilyn Jansen of Worthy Publishing Group

Please describe your publishing house.

Worthy Publishing Group is a privately held, independent voice in inspirational publishing, based in Nashville, Tennessee. Worthy has four imprints: Worthy Books publishes a broad spectrum of genres, including current events, pop culture, biography, fiction, spiritual growth, and specialized Bibles; WorthyKids and its Ideals imprint create colorful, interactive children’s books, including VeggieTales and Berenstain Bears, for ages 2 to 8; Ellie Claire produces beautifully crafted journals, gifts, gift devotionals, and paper expressions; and Worthy Inspired publishes inspirational felt-need, personal growth, and devotional books. I will be representing Ellie Claire and Worthy Inspired.

How can a writer best prepare for an appointment with you?

Have a proposal ready and be prepared to sell it. Identify your audience. Tell me why the audience would need or want this book. Explain the felt need of this concept. Explain how you will help market this book. Know comparable books and be prepared to demonstrate why yours is needed, wanted, or how it will be different from those. Explain your connection to the content and/or expertise concerning the subject of this book. I have to sell your idea to a pub board so I need you to make me a believer.

Do you publish first-time authors?

We do publish first time authors. We love them and their enthusiasm. However, we expect them to do their homework and come to us prepared to do the work needed to launch their book. And it helps if they already have a social platform or are building one. 

Anything else you would like to add or any specific current needs?

We are always looking for devotionals that meet the felt needs of our market: keeping your life together when the world seems to be falling apart; how to live with joy when all you feel is loneliness, anxiety, or regret; how to be real in a fake news world; the adventure of being an empty-nester; etc.

Read more about Worthy Publishing Group.

Write-to-Publish meets June 14-17
in the Chicago area.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Write-to-Publish Faculty Interview: Cynthia Ruchti, WTP Worship & Devotional Leader, Speaker and Author

Give us an overview and the purpose of the worship and devotional times and what are your priorities as you go about your planning?

One of the elements that distinguishes the Write-to-Publish Conference is its commitment to Christ-centered, God-honoring instruction, relationships, and worship. Networking is important. Growing in the writing craft is important. But growing as followers of Jesus Christ--followers who are also writers--is essential. That's why every morning session (with the exception of Wednesday) and evening general session begins with a purposeful time of worship, reflection, and aligning our thoughts, ambitions, writing goals, and our very lives with the Word of God and worship. The conference is intense. All the more reason to make the times of worship "can't miss" priorities.

I'm blessed to be tasked with leading us in worship. It would be easy for a worship leader to choose songs that please the attendees or the leader. But songs chosen for their cuteness, cleverness, or popularity often stop short of what pleases our true Audience. So just as the conference itself is couched in prayer, so are the worship times. The chief question in preparing the worship sets is, "God, what would You like to hear from these voices, these hearts?"

You will be teaching a couple of elective classes. Would you give a short description of what you will cover in each?

Thinking Outside the Book (aka, Writing for Fun and Nonprofit)

The average 1500-word magazine article can reach more readers than the average book. The most wide-reaching writing may not be the best paying. Brilliant ideas rarely serve only one purpose. If you’ve hesitated to call yourself a writer because you haven’t written a book that made the New York Times bestseller list, join this elective workshop and kiss your reticence goodbye. Bring your idea and emerge with dozens of uses for it.

Setting Yourself Up for Success

We are WHOLE people. Writers can’t separate themselves from their roles as spouse, parent, friend, child, sibling, church member, citizen… And we're multi-faceted in our wholeness. How can we set ourselves up for success in our writing careers spiritually, so we're filled and ready? Mentally, so we're trained and teachable? Emotionally, so we're adequately toughened and softened? Relationally, so we're aware and approachable? Tangibly, so we're equipped and optimized? Those are the questions we'll answer together in this elective.

"The Write-to-Publish conference is one of the highlights of my year. I arrive knowing it's an atmosphere in which God is free to move and speak. What could be better?"

Read more about Cynthia Ruchti.

Write-to-Publish meets June 14-17

in the Chicago area.