Merry Christmas from Sarah Sundin in rainy (at last!) California! Today I have the joy of interviewing Carol McAdams Moore, the author of two new devotional books for tween boys and girls. Recently I introduced my fourth- and fifth-grade Sunday school class to the books, and they were a huge hit with kids and teachers alike!
Carol, how did you get into writing? How many books do you have published?
I began as a teacher of the deaf. Many materials I used in the classroom needed to be rewritten, using specific word choice and sentence structure. I also had to keep the interests and age level of my readers/students in mind as I chose things to rewrite. Playing with words to engage with a specific reader became a passion. For a number of years I did work-for-hire assignments. Dare U 2 Open This Book and Just Sayin’ are my first two books with royalty contracts.
Last month, I wrote about Six Tips for Planning a Book Signing. Today, I want to share one of the major benefits of a book signing — the opportunity to interact with readers. For Christian authors, among other things this is a chance to share the testimony of your book.
The words marketing and testimony may not seem to go together at first. Marketing might be defined as promoting and selling something, in this case a book. We need to consider why a potential reader would consider reading any given book. The story of how the book came to be is often something the reader wants to know. It may, in fact, be the deciding factor on whether or not the book is purchased, read, and taken to heart.
When I first considered writing my tween devotionals (Dare U 2 Open This Book and Just Sayin’) it started with noting the interests of a group of ten and eleven year olds. I noticed that my public school students were obsessed with a certain book format, one that prompted them to take a personal quiz, doodle a picture, or write a quick journal entry. Those kinds of books were first to go at the school book fairs. As I watched the students’ enthusiasm for these books, I knew there was a heartfelt need for devotional books in the same format.
I wrote a proposal and contacted a publisher. The editor also had been watching other general market books in the same format. Her prayer was to have tween devotionals that would reach out to tweens by engaging them in applying God’s Word to their lives through quizzes, doodles, and journal entries.
Many fine writers submit proposals everyday. Editors cannot possibly read every proposal that is submitted. However, the testimony of a divine opportunity for my books to reach tweens is one that I want to share with my readers. Is that marketing? In a sense I think it is, but so much more than that is a connection from my heart and from the heart of the publication team to young readers and their parents. It is the story of the path to meeting a heartfelt need of young readers.
Whether you have published many books or you are a yet-to-be-published author, your book has its own testimony. I hope that you will share that story with us.