Larry Jordan

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Publishing Part V: "How is Your Book Doing?"

Oct 13, 2022 by Larry Jordan, in The Way
When people ask me how my book is doing, the honest answer is "Very well, considering that it's not yet available in bookstores or libraries or online." So far, I printed up some proofs, I sold some at author talks and book clubs, and I sent some to a few influencers. 

At any rate, the book is getting a great response. After I sent the book to a few influencers, mostly spiritual writers, I got a call from a progressive Christian author with 350,000 Facebook followers. He loves the book, he considers it a "magnificent project," and he wants to endorse it. He believes (and I agree) that the book will expose Christian readers to some other traditions and that this exposure will enhance their spiritual lives.

I got another pleasant surprise after I participated in a Zoom call with 3,000 other people that was being led by another Christian author who has my book. When the call ended, my phone blew up, as friends who were on the call wanted to be sure that I noticed that the speaker displayed my book during the call. (Somehow, I looked at the speaker (and my book) for three hours without recognizing my own book cover.) Anyway, influencers are noticing the book.

Over the summer, I led a book study of the book with a Unity book club. The Unity principles are consistent with the content and tone of the book, and the discussion was interesting and insightful. One member (whose journey was just as deep and rich as mine) said that the book revived his spiritual life. For me, every opportunity to talk about the book helps me to pitch it, and every opportunity to hear reactions to the book helps me to improve it.

Last month, I gave an author talk at the Baca Grande Library in Crestone, which is where I wrote the book. Crestone is located 12 miles off the main road from Alamosa to Salida, almost an hour drive from either place, so most author talks attract audiences of five or ten people. We were delighted to host 20 people, including several people who already read the book, so we had a good talk and a great discussion afterward.

Next week, I will be speaking at Chalice Abbey in Amarillo, which is affiliated with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ.) Jill and I attended some great talks by some prominent Christian authors at the Abbey, and we participate in a "deep dialogue" Zoom discussion group every week with some Abbey members.

(When we tell friends that Amarillo is a "hotbed of progressive thought," we always get a chuckle, especially from Amarillans, who suggest that we have been exposed to a very small and very unique part of the population!!)

Every few days, I get unsolicited emails or letters or texts from people who tell me that the book made them think or that it resonated with their experience. Most of these communications come from casual acquaintances or friends of friends, and many of them received the book from mutual friends.

Sometimes, they ask for copies, so they can share the book with their friends. These conversations have connected me with some really insightful people, and I am really grateful for those who take the time to tell me that the book means a lot to them. The whole effort has been really gratifying and humbling.

In the next few months, I will be approaching agents and publishers in earnest, and I am bracing for a lot of rejection.

So far, I only received one rejection letter. I was warned that I might not hear, it might take a long time, and I might not get any feedback. I heard back in a day, the book was not a good fit for this agent, but he steered me to a major publisher and several niche publisher who might be a better fit. Not a bad start.

Anyway, I hope to find the right path for the book in the next few months. Wish me luck!!