What do publishers look for in devotionals? Length, voice, theology? How do you find out if your "topic" has been covered already? The Christian Writer's Market Guide is a great resource for writers. This book is organized alphabetically by publishers, but also cross-referenced by the type of book they cover. There are many listed under devotional book. Here begins your research project. Just start with one publisher and visit their website to see what they've done. Create a form to fill in the information you learn and go from there.
I'd like to make a written product (cards) about marriage trials but need to know if this product is already out there (they are not in my area's Christian book stores). How do I go about starting a product such as this? Once again, I would suggest you invest in a Christian Writer's Market Guide. There is a section on greeting cards and specialty markets. Once you know which publishers are printing greeting cards, I would do some research on their website. If they don't have samples, find out who is selling them and go on their website or visit their stores.
Is the writer's track focused on fiction or non-fiction? The writer's track at She Speaks does lean towards non-fiction. However, good writing techniques can and should be applied to both fiction and non-fiction.
How do you stay focused on the topic when you have so much to say? In magazine writing, you pick one topic and go deep. If you have more to say, then you can write more than one magazine article.
What is the best advice you would pass along to me for my meeting with an editor regarding my manuscript? Practice presenting your ideas in a succinct way. Actually give your pitch to someone else. Also, this year we are offering a workshop on Friday afternoon before the conference on how to do this very thing called: How to plan a powerful effective 15-minute publisher meeting by Jeannie Burlowski. Read more about it.
If I were to be enabled to attend and meet with a publisher,what should a good proposal package include? You should come prepared with a formal book proposal. We recommend purchasing "For the Write Reason" to learn how to write this important document.
I have a basic idea for the book of my heart and some of it is worked out on paper. What would I need to have developed in order to pitch the book? See answer above.
I write for an online Christian magazine (HeartBeatTheMagazine.com) and know that many of those articles are partial chapters to my book. BUT, I just can't seem to figure out how to pull it all together into a book. I have felt that maybe a conference like this would help me, but the thought of publishers, proposals, etc. is SO overwhelming to me right now. I just want to write my book and then submit it and see if anybody will publish it. But from what I've heard, that is not the right way to go about it. If God tells you to write your book, then you should do just that. We have known women who self-publish a book, sell it successfully themselves, then find a publisher for it. However, all books should be well-organized, there should be a logical flow of thought and information. At this point, I would recommend identifying how many chapters you would need, give each one a title and write a description of each. This will help you see if it makes sense, if it's missing something or has too many ideas and is scattered.
I have been told numerous time "I need to write a book". I am gathering and preparing. How do I begin the writing process in earnest? See answer above.
My heart's desire and a personal goal is to write with my daughter about how the Lord has held us through her seriuos illness and through my divorce and becoming a single mom of four all over the course of one year's time. The two events (divorce/disease) overlapped and I am wondering if it would be possible to write of the events together. Each are demanding topics, but the fact that they occured together made each story more complex. I commend you for wanted to bring honor and glory to the Lord for His faithfulness to you and your family through this very difficult time. One way to go about this would be to identify an overall theme of the book that would have "takeaway" value for the reader. For example, I have a small self-published book a pastor wrote entitled "Standing in the Whirlwind." He write about how to stand firm when challenges come from every direction. Then he weaves spiritual principles he has learned from a variety of difficult experiences. Pray and ask God to identify a general theme for the book and go from there.
I can't say enough great things about the Proverbs 31 Ministries She Speaks conference. It is an amazing conference on many levels. I'll write more about this later in the week, but if you want to read more, click on the button on the left side of my blog.
In His Love,