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March 29, 2018

Good news and bad news

Let's start with the bad news.


Last week, I had 5 books go out of print. Five. My Rufus and Ryan series counts for four of those. I love these books and the feedback has been great, but they aren't selling. And one of my Little Blessings books, What is Prayer, that has been in print since 2002 - yes, 13 years - is now out of print. Each book that goes out of print is a big loss to me. It's like people telling me, "I don't like your kids" (okay, that's worse, but still, any author knows what I mean). It's harder and harder these days to get visibility for one's books. There are few bookstores that stock children's religious books - and even the local Christian bookstore refused to put up a local author display, or have me come in for a book signing, because, as they said, "We do what corporate tells us. We don't make the decisions." We authors count on our readers to tell others about our books, to pass the word along (pun intended). We need good reviews and word of mouth excitement. Most of us aren't celebrities with a name that gets noticed - we just want to get our work into the hands of readers. Is that asking so much?

 

So that's the bad news.

 

The good news is that I have been added to the faculty for the 2016 Buechner Writer's Workshop, which will be held at Princeton Theological Seminary (my alma mater) June 7-11. I attended the first workshop in 2015 and it was phenomenal! I'll be teaching two workshops on writing for children. I'm ecstatic! Frederick Buechner is my chief writing mentor and it is such an honor to teach at a conference named after him.

 

Like all of life, the life of a writer has its ups and downs. Despite the downs, it's still a great life, and I am blessed beyond words - and that's saying something for someone who loves words!

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