It Takes a Step of Faith

The big break! It is what every author longs for. Whether it is connecting with the right influencer to drive sales, securing a foreign rights or film deal, or landing on that national television show guaranteed to bring big exposure, every author dreams of that deal that will take them to the next level.

Step of Faith

Yet, often these breaks come in unexpected ways. Usually they come only after an author takes a step of faith. God meets us when we move out in faith.

Consider examples from the Bible. The Israelites had to follow God’s instruction to march around Jericho each day for seven days before the walls fell. Gideon had to trust God and reduce his army from 32,000 men to 300 men to have victory over the Midianites. Esther had to believe that God had made her queen for a reason and risk her life by going to the King without a summons to save the Jewish people.

Each took a step of faith. This means that they did something without being assured of the outcome. They risked and God showed up.

The same is true for you as an author. You also may need to step out in faith and take a risk before God opens a new door or shows you the next step.

For most authors and publishers, attending a trade show is a step of faith. Money is spent and time is taken from a busy schedule to travel and attend a trade show without any guarantee of a return on the investment.

Authors and publishers who take this step of faith have no assurance that they will secure additional sales or deals as a result of attending a show. Yet, time and time again, I have seen divine appointments happen at trade shows for attending authors.

Christian Indie Publishing Association (CIPA) recently returned from the National Religious Broadcasters 2019 Proclaim Convention where we represented CIPA Members who attended the show with us. Each one of these authors took a step of faith in attending the show—and God did not disappoint. He showed up and great connections were made.

CIPA Members made the following connections:

  • Radio and television interviews with invitations for more after the show.
  • New platforms to take a podcast or radio show to the next level.
  • An invitation to teach at a Bible school in India.
  • A connection with a film maker who wants to create a documentary.
  • Request for rights to translate a book into a foreign language to be published and distributed in another country.

These connections are not magic. Each author will need to follow up and tend the invitation or idea that was discussed. And more opportunities may still come for these authors from the books that were placed in the hands of influencers at the show.

Where is God calling you to step out in faith with your book? I encourage you to take that step. Pray over your action, commit it to God, and watch with anticipation to see what God will do!

Related Posts:
The Benefits of Showcasing Books at Conventions
What’s Your Next Action?
Follow These Four Steps to Success

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Photo courtesy of Daniel Reche.

Christian Small Publishers Association Gets a New Name

This month, Christian Small Publishers Association (CSPA) celebrates its 15th anniversary and embraces a new name. The organization has changed its name to better reflect the current publishing landscape and the authors and publishers it serves. The association is now known as Christian Indie Publishing Association (CIPA).

Over the past 15 years, the publishing industry has undergone tremendous changes. According to R.R. Bowker, the official U.S. ISBN agency, the number of independently published books has grown by 156% over the past six years. Since CSPA’s membership is comprised of both small publishers and independently published authors, the name change was instituted to better reflect who is being served.

The mission and focus of the organization stays the same: To provide information, tools and resources to strengthen small publishers and independent authors, and to continue to represent this group to the larger Christian book industry.

Christian Indie Publishing Association (CIPA) offers the same great benefits as CSPA, with new benefits being added for 2019. Membership benefits include:

  • A monthly e-newsletter packed with marketing tips and industry updates.
  • Cooperative advertising opportunities including a print catalog, magazine ads, and eblasts.
  • Quick reference guides and on-demand seminars on publishing and marketing.
  • List of radio and podcast media actively interviewing authors.
  • Book Launch Marketing Checklist.
  • Tradeshow representation.
  • A book review program.
  • Free title setup and revisions with IngramSpark.
  • Free title setup with Lightning Source.
  • Discount when ordering ISBN.
  • Discount on Publishers Weekly subscription.

Membership in Christian Indie Publishing Association (CIPA) is just $90 for the calendar year. You can join today at www.christianpublishers.net.

Christian Indie Publishing Association (CIPA) will continue to sponsor the Christian Indie Awards for Christian books by small publishers and independent authors. Voting for the 2019 Awards opens February 1, 2019. Watch for the announcement.

Related Posts:
Five Christian Book Publishing Trends for 2019
New Record: One Million Books Published
Are You Pursuing Radio Exposure?

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Getting What You Paid For?

I recently received the following email:

“I was told about CSPA by another publisher and haven’t really been able to market my book, just what benefits do you provide for helping a self-publisher market a book?”

I believe that there are two kinds of self-published authors. One is the person who wants someone else to market their book for them and is willing to pay large sums of money to have this done. The other is the self-published author who is willing to learn what they need to do and go and do it.

Fannie-Pick-pocket

Christian Small Publishers Association (CSPA) is not for the first type of author. We do not provide marketing for our members. Rather, what we do is provide information and services to help authors and publishers market their books.

I recently came across a self-publishing company that also provided marketing services for their authors. Here is what they charged:

  1. A review in Kirkus Reviews for $849.
  2. An interview on The Author Show for $349.
  3. Five media contacts for $600.
  4. A marketing package that includes a one-page website, press release, and 200 bookmarks for $549.

In contrast, here is what one-year membership in Christian Small Publishers Association (CSPA) for only $90 will buy:

  1. The truth that Kirkus Reviews, if you submit the request yourself, only costs $425.
  2. The truth that a basic interview on The Author Show is free.
  3. Media contacts listed in every issue of the CSPA Circular, our monthly newsletter. This year so far, our members have received over 12 media contacts.
  4. The truth that you can create your own website for free using a site such as wordpress.com or blogger.com, directions on how to find a press release template so you can write your own for free, and the information that VistaPrint will print 250 bookmarks for $60.00.

If you are not a member of CSPA, consider this, I just gave you over $1,600 worth of free information (donations are cheerfully accepted).

The bottom line is that there are plenty of companies out there willing to take your money. Go ahead; give them your money if you want to. However, if you are on a tighter budget and are willing to read and learn, then joining an organization like Christian Small Publishers Association (CSPA) will be a better fit for you.

After all, our members tell us:

  • “I just wanted to write and personally thank you for the invaluable information contained within the CSPA monthly newsletter. It never ceases to amaze me how many tips and general info bits I can glean from this wonderful resource.” —Deb
  • “The newsletter for the Christian Small Publishers Association is worth the price of membership all by itself—we get gems from every issue. Thanks for what you are doing for the industry!” —Melanie
  • “I received $75 worth of information in the first CSPA Circular!” —Sam

So, if you want some additional support in marketing your Christian books, I encourage you to check out the useful benefits Christian Small Publishers Association can provide you in marketing your books, or you can just pay someone else to do it for you.

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