Resources for Christians

If you’re a communicator for Christ, as I am, you can find Writing Resources with Christian poets, writers, and pastors in mind on my website.

In addition, I hope you’ll follow these blogs, which I maintain as often as family, church, and book-writing commitments allow:

Bible Prayers
Bible Reviewer
Christian Healing Arts
Mary Sayler (in lieu of this site)
Poetry Editor & Poetry
Praise Poems (many of which have been compiled in the book PRAISE!)
What the Bible Says About Love

May God bless you and your good work in Christ.

Mary Harwell Sayler, (c) 2017

 

Mary Harwell Sayler: 10 Ways a Writer’s Work Has Changed

A writer’s life didn’t use to focus on marketing or building a platform but on writing well and finding the most likely editors.

Source: Mary Harwell Sayler: 10 Ways a Writer’s Work Has Changed

Faith, Fiction, Friends: Mary Harwell Sayler’s “Christian Writer’s Guide”

Review by Glynn Young

Source: Faith, Fiction, Friends: Mary Harwell Sayler’s “Christian Writer’s Guide”

Bible Reviewer: ESV Single Column Journaling Bible

This journaling edition of the English Standard Version of the Bible published by Crossway makes a good choice for carrying on a conversation with God’s Word.

Source: Bible Reviewer: ESV Single Column Journaling Bible

Sending your poems and manuscripts to traditional publishers

Poets and writers often self-publish their work because they do not know how to go about getting published by traditional print journals, books, or e-zines. These tips, first posted here over 3 years ago, bear tweaking and repeating:

• Notice publishers of books and periodicals you like to read.

• Most of these publishers now have a website where you can study the titles in their book lines and read the poems and articles in their archives.

• Make a list of each publisher whose work is similar to yours.

• Study the writers’ guidelines on each company’s website.

• Some editors want a query first to get a quick idea of what you have in mind. Consider this a “sales pitch” meant to give the editor an overview that’s brief, relevant, and to the point.

• If an editor prefers your actual manuscript or batch of poems, great! Just follow the writers’ guidelines, submitting to one editor at a time.

• Keep track of where and when you sent your work. If you do not have a response in 2 to 3 months, follow-up.

• While you wait to hear about one poem or manuscript submission, start another.

• If the editor returns your work, don’t take it personally. The acceptance pile might be too big and space too small. But just in case, your work still needs work: Read it aloud. Listen for rough spots. Revise as needed, then submit the manuscript to the next publisher on your list.

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© 2013, Mary Harwell Sayler, all rights reserved. To give you an idea of the traditional publishing experiences that went into these suggestions, visit my Bio on my website.

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Speaking your peace

When people give a piece of their minds, they often express a partial piece of a bigger picture. Or to consider another caller on this homophone, a pastor or priest might ask at a wedding if anyone has a reason why the couple should not be married, and, if so, “Speak now or forever hold your peace.”

In chaotic times where rants, rumors, and discordant reports resound against God, Christ, and the church, we might be inclined to hold our peace by severely clamping our teeth against our tongues. We might shy away, wishing we were invisible. Or we might rush in to provide our little piece of the truth as we see it instead of asking God how God sees it. But here’s the thing:

Christian poets and writers have God-given intelligence, which can be called on to search out the truth, re-search information, investigate both sides to a story, and present a full, fair-minded view.

Christian poets and writers have powers of speech and communication capable of ringing longer, louder, and truer than self-expression alone.

The Bible assures Christian poets and Christian writers that, as Christians, we have the mind of Christ (I Corinthians 2:16), especially if we read the Bible and pray for the Holy Spirit to guide us.

Becoming attuned to God and in tune with our times can be complex but also simpler than it might sound. For instance, we can pray for discernment, expecting God to answer, and we can examine our minds and motives as we ask ourselves some simple questions:

Does my writing stir up people or stir readers from all cultures to accept the love, healing, forgiveness, redemption, and salvation of our Lord Jesus Christ?

Does speaking peace encourage my Christian brothers and sisters and, indeed, the whole Body of Christ to come together, eager to be at peace with one another?

In what ways can my poems, stories, devotionals, articles, and books bring reconciliation and healing to denominational or other church factions?

Do I willingly, prayerfully, and lovingly speak my piece as part of the ongoing peace of God?

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© 2011, Mary Harwell Sayler, all rights reserved.

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Interview with Sally Stuart — the expert in Christian writing markets

Sally Stuart, a prolific writer in her own right, has been helping other poets and writers for over 30 years with writing workshops, keynote speaking, and information-gathering for the annual Christian Writers’ Market Guide – the primary resource for Christians who want to get their work published. For ongoing info and updates, visit her Christian Writers’ Marketplace blog.

Sally, what do you most want to say to Christians who write?

If you believe God has called you to be a writer, you need to determine what that means for you. It may simply mean you need to write for your own healing or write for your church newsletter or write an inspirational column for your local newspaper. But if He has called you to write for publication, then you need to commit to being the best writer you can be — and BE PERSISTENT in finding a publisher for that writing.

What recent changes have you noticed in Christian publishing?

Because the periodical market continues to shrink, it is harder for writers to get a start there. Book publishers take longer to commit to publishing a book. And publishers are more insistent that writers follow their guidelines exactly.

Do writing conferences and workshops actually help Christian poets and writers? If so, how?

Conferences give the writer a broader understanding of the publishing industry and their particular genre and a chance to meet with agents and editors, as well as building a network of writing colleagues and friends.

How can poets and writers continue to improve their writing?

Read and write! Read A LOT of the poetry or genre you want to write. Read the current Christian bestsellers and the general market bestsellers. And write–write–write! In today’s competitive market, ultimately it is excellent writing that gets published.

Excellent advice, Sally. Thanks! God bless you and your work.

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If you would like Sally’s evaluation of your fiction or nonfiction manuscript, visit her website for her current fees. For feedback on your poems, devotionals, or children’s picture book, contact me through my website.

(c) 2011, Mary Harwell Sayler

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