Q & A 2014

April 2014

To Ken:

Do you mind my asking how l long it should take for a publisher to publish your novel?

I signed a contract for publication over a year ago. When the contract expired, they asked for an extension, without specifics, but promising me edits soon. I wrote them asking how long an extension they wanted and when I could expect my edits and novel’s release date. I heard nothing.

Do you have any insight on how to deal with them?

From Ken:

Publishers are often very, very slow. A recent book of mine took about a year and a half from contract to publication, and along the way were lots of times something was supposed to come to me soon but didn’t. Many publishers, especially smaller ones, are attempting to do more than they can handle with their resources and I imagine they have good intentions but cannot always deliver as they would like to.

I ‘ll suggest something my Tae Kwon Do master preached. Number one is patience, number two is patience, number three is patience (and so on).


To Ken:

I regret asking the publisher, in effect; to spell out when I’d get edits and when I could expect release of book or I would pursue pub elsewhere. I wish I’d never sent that letter. Now I’d like to back track rather than face the real world of pub rejections.

By the way, what conferences do you recommend?


From Ken:

Publishing is a tough business.

Before deciding whether I would publish with someone again, I would wait and see the sales figures on the first.

I have been with a number of publishers and can advise that it’s best to be prudent before letting one go because you feel they have slighted you. Every publisher, I suspect, will make us feel slighted in some way at some time.

If you don’t have an agent, you might want to seek one. They have much more experience with publishers than any of us writers do.

The best Christian conference I know of is Mount Hermon. There’s a list of conferences on the Perelandra College web site.


March, 2014

To Ken:

My friend knows I am a writer and thought you might have some valuable tips for me. I have self published some on Kindle and I am trying to break in to print. I have won a couple of awards for my poetry and short stories. I am working on my fourth novel now, a mystery called Cries Beyond the Walls. I would appreciate any advice you can give me.

From Ken:

A few pieces of advice:

1. Persist, be vigilantly critical of your own work, keep learning, however you can.

2. Don’t get discouraged by agents and/or publishers. Keep submitting.

3. My favorite writing instruction book is Writing for Story, Jon Franklin.

4. My book Writing and the Spirit is a good one.

5. The best source for book promo advice I know is Kimberly Grabas. Sign up for her email if you haven’t already.

6. Subscribe to The Scoop.


Please send questions about the craft or business of writing, to ken@perelandra.edu