Recently, one of the publisher associations for independent publishers released their annual distributor directory. This association is providing their members a much needed service through offering this directory each year. I applaud them.
As I looked over the directory, I realized that this newly updated book distributor directory did not include any of the Christian book distributors. I was reminded afresh why there is still a need for an association for small publishers and independent authors who are producing materials for the Christian marketplace.
Eleven years ago, when I helped found Christian Small Publishers Association (CSPA), the purpose and mission of CSPA was to provide information and services to those producing Christian materials. When I first independently published a Christian book, I discovered that the existing publisher associations for people like me did not provide the tools I needed to reach the Christian marketplace. Hence, CSPA was founded to provide that service.
Looking at the distributor directory reminded me afresh that CSPA still plays a vital role for those small publishers and authors producing Christian materials. Christian Small Publishers Association continues to provide information and services that help our members reach the Christian marketplace.
While Christian books can be found in secular bookstores and in public libraries, many Christians choose to use Christian bookstores (online as well as physical stores) to purchase their books. Many churches host libraries filled with Christian materials. For this reason, it is important to make your Christian books available to these venues. However, the Christian marketplace does not use the same distributors or tradeshows that secular bookstores and libraries use. Knowing these resources and having access to them is necessary for those producing Christian materials.
Belonging to a publishers association is important for anyone producing books. Membership in an association signals that you are serious about your endeavor. It also provides you with the information and the resources you need to be successful.
If you already belong to a publisher’s association, I applaud you for making use of services geared toward helping you be successful. If you produce Christian materials, I encourage you to consider membership in CSPA. You can learn more about the benefits of membership on CPSA’s website.