Tag Archives: Dr. Dennis E. Hensley

To Self-Publish or Not…

2015 has taken off with a bang, and it’s all I can do to keep up.

I’ve received the first 50 pages of my professionally edited manuscript back from Dr. Hensley, I’ve contacted several artists to negotiate cover design for two of my books, and I’ve enrolled in a writing, publishing, and marketing course by the Book Ninja, Kristen Eckstein.

It’s called the Kindle in 30 Challenge, an extensive course detailing how to self-publish a work of quality on Kindle in 30 days.

She teaches all of the steps necessary to getting a professional book uploaded to Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing. (kdp.amazon.com)

The only thing the course doesn’t cover is using CreateSpace (www.createspace.com) or other methods to publish a print version as well. I wish it did!

Let me tell you, this course is amazing.  I have learned so much!

I first heard about it when I took a webinar by the Scrivener (only my favorite writing software ever! www.literatureandlatte.com/scrivener.php Also on Amazon.com) Coach, Joseph Michael, about Kristen and her many services for authors who wish to be published.

She has made a great deal by uploading her books to Kindle only, and she teaches how to have an edge an Amazon’s market.

My favorite part of the course so far is her insistence not to publish low-quality works with bad covers. Thank you! This is so important if someone is considering self-publishing.

She offers step-by-step guidelines to writing consistently, publishing on your own, and creating a smashing marketing plan.

Having made a six-figure income from her Kindle-only books, Kristen knows what she is talking about!

Each of her classes is full of helpful information and offers practical advice on “what to do next.”

I can’t even tell you how much I’m enjoying this course. And I’m only halfway through! She only offers it a few times a year, and I feel so incredibly blessed to have gotten in on her January class.

Below are three of her short books I have found extremely helpful. And the best part? They are only 99 cents!


Click on any of the three book covers above to take advantage of Kristen Eckstein’s 99-cent Quick Guides. She has many more, but these three are my favorite!

I hope you have all enjoyed traipsing with me on my journey to get published–it looks like God really is leading me toward self-publishing!

It’s a scary and fun ride!

God’s blessings to you all!

In Him,


Oh my goodness! Fun news!

This past weekend, I drove to Fort Wayne for my first ever local ACFW meeting.  And to accept the treasurer position.


(For those of you who don’t know what ACFW is, it stands for American Christian Fiction Writers.)

Each state or region has their own chapter, and my chapter is the Indiana one.

I am beyond thrilled.

I met the most precious group of writers–I can’t wait to get to know them all better!

Our speaker was Dr. Dennis E. Hensley, author of over 50 books and director of the professional writing major at Taylor University. (http://www.dochensley.com)

He spoke on how to make dialogue sparkle, and he held us captivated from the moment he started speaking.

It was so good.  I encourage you to take any class of his you possibly can.

If that was a taste of the meetings to come, I cannot wait!

How it works:

  • If you are a writer of fiction–or an aspiring author–join American Christian Fiction Writers at http://www.acfw.com.
  • Yearly membership fees (as of 2014) are $65 (renewals are $45), and that includes writing classes, critique groups, writing contests, and much, much more.
  • Then go to your local chapter’s website (Indiana’s is http://hoosierink.blogspot.com) and fill out and send in an application.
  • Our yearly fee is $12, and that includes local meetings where one can connect and fellowship with other authors, as well as a chance to blog on the Hoosier Ink website, advertise your book, join a private Facebook group, and receive a bi-monthly newsletter.
  • Note: You must be a member of the parent organization in order to join the local chapter.

If this interests you at all, I encourage you to check it out!

If not, thank you so much for taking the time to read my good news.

This journey to publication is full of crazy twists and turns–I cannot wait to see where God is taking me next!

2015 is going to be a good year.  And I think I am going to highly enjoy being a treasurer.

By the way, isn’t that header picture gorgeous?  That happens to be the genius of our chapter president, Rick Barry.  If you follow the link to our chapter website, you will see the same lovely image.

Rick, thank you so much for letting me use your picture for this blog post!

My love and prayers are with you all, dear readers.

Until next time!  :)

In Him,





My Good News

Drum roll please…

At the Indiana Faith and Writing Conference this past weekend, I met with both an editor and an agent and pitched three of my novels to them.

I’ve got good news and bad-ish news.

The editor gave me her contact info and wants to see my work!

Happy DANCE!!!  :)

She had judged part of Zombie Takeover for the IFWC contest, loved the story, and wanted to know where it was going and how it ended.

After a beautiful discussion, she didn’t know if she could sell my zombie story with the current Christian market, so she encouraged me to take it to another publishing house she thought would fit my manuscript much better.

She asked to see Lady Assassin and was intrigued by Wisdom and Folly until I told her I had been posting it chapter-by-chapter on my website.

Unless I pull it, completely rewrite it, and post no further chapters, no publishing house will look at a work that has been posted freely for anyone to read.

I have prayed and searched my intentions, and I’m certain God wanted me to post it.  Free.  For anyone to read.

Reaching one person with the boundlessness of His love is worth never making a dime on Wisdom and Folly.

God gave it to me.  It’s His story, not mine.

But if He wants me to change what I’m doing–focus on publishing it instead of posting it–I want to know.

So I’m waiting on Him.  (And seeking advice!)

I digress.

The agent.

I pretty much bombed that pitch session.  I’ve been trying not to beat myself up over it.  It is what it is.  God knows what I need, and He’ll do what’s best for me, even if it’s not what I want.

She kindly listened to my lame pitch.  The zombie story interested her (the other two did not) but she said the same thing the editor did.

She didn’t know where she could take it that’s accepting zombie stories in today’s market.

She gave me some awesome tips, wrote down a couple of YA novels to read that had made it big in the Christian fantasy genre, and gave me the names of publishing houses that accept “out there” stories, no agent necessary.

She gave me her card–probably cause I was staring longingly at it–and told me to contact her when I write another book.

Not exactly how I pictured that meeting ending, but I am trying so hard to focus on the positive, not the negative of not getting signed.

So, I will let you know what the editor thinks of my work!  And if any of the publishing houses they both suggested are interested in my stories!

Oh yes!  I also handed Zombie Takeover to Dr. Dennis E. Hensley to be professionally edited.

I want the publishing houses to see my best work, polished, refined, plot holes destroyed, and singing “pick me!”  :)

I also have contacted (a while ago now) a magnificent artist on deviantART to design a cover for me if I decide to self-publish.

And oh, the conference was too wonderful for words.

I plan on going next year with another manuscript, pitch perfected, ready to snag an agent (if I don’t already have one by then!)

That’s my story so far on this incredibly long road to being published.

I have submitted my manuscript to Enclave Publishing–formerly Marcher Lord Press–and am trying to stay busy these eight, long weeks of waiting for their response.

I’ve got decisions to make, more queries and proposals to send, and I’m going to wait patiently on the Lord!

He has given me this dream–I will do my part then wait for Him to bring it to pass!

Love and hugs to you all–thank you for sharing this spectacular journey with me.

God bless!

In Him,


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