Several times recently I’ve been asked, “What’s going on with The Book?”
The question brings a huge smile to my face (behind my mask, of course) and places the asker in danger of having to listen to me talk far beyond where he or she intended.
Yes, The Book, Something Worth Living For: God, the World, Yourself, and the Shorter Catechism, is still in process. The fact that I keep capitalizing The Book shows what a big deal this is for me. (Don’t know what I’m talking about? Read about it here.)
I was pleased in January to have finished something I had set out a couple of years before to do. To then have a publisher (Christian Focus Publications or CFP) agree to invest its own resources into perfecting, printing, and distributing it was, while deeply desired, surreal.
Since then, I’ve worked through the text two or three times. I first significantly reworked the manuscript for initial submission to CFP. Then an editor went through it with me, bringing better order, and a more personal feel, to the whole. Family references became specific. ‘My daughter,’ for example, became ‘Jerusha’ and ‘my wife’ became ‘Barb.’ Then, after the manuscript passed through two CFP proofreaders, Barb and I read through the whole and submitted to CFP 14 pages of suggested corrections and changes. Through it all Christian Focus has been wonderful to work with.
Meanwhile, both I and CFP sought endorsements. I have been moved simply by the fact that people would be willing to read it with an eye toward lending support. Words like ‘thoughtfully applied’ (Mark Johnston / Bethel Presbyterian Church, Wales), ‘centered in Christ and the gospel of saving and transforming grace’ (Mark Dalbey / Covenant Seminary, St. Louis), and ‘pastoral entryway to Christianity’ (Michael Allen / Reformed Seminary, Orlando) touch upon the heart I sought to bring to this. That others sensed that is gratifying. So are words like ‘highly recommended’ (Craig Carter / Tyndale University, Toronto), ‘important work’ (Ray Cortese / Seven Rivers Presbyterian Church, Florida), and ‘a welcome tool’ (Michael Haykin / Southern Baptist Seminary, Louisville).
Though we are told metaphorically to never judge a book by its cover, we all do. My kids weighed in (heavily!) on CFP’s first proposal. In the end, the publisher has dressed The Book nicely, preparing it to be seen in public
And public it is becoming. Sites like Amazon and other retailers now list the book, albeit with some missing and inaccurate info (soon to be corrected). Some have already pre-ordered it. (Hint, hint . . . .)
Having signed off on the cover (proudly accompanying this post) and the manuscript, I am now mostly a spectator as The Book heads off to the printer to prepare for its November release.
And so I must transition from author to marketeer. I am writing articles for another blog (not this one!) and plotting ways to help the book get noticed. Shortly I’ll loop you readers into how you can help, for your help I will need.
Thanks for your interest and encouragement.
I’m still smiling. Behind my mask.