Bre'anna Emmitt

What Led to SIGNING a Book Deal

BookSigning As I’ve said in a previous post, I never intended to even write a book, much less sign a book deal.  So how did I write The Social Media Guide for Ministry and how did I get a publishing contract from Group Publishing?

Well, in a previous post I shared about how I started by simply creating a working Word document about Social Media in Ministry as a resource for churches.  That document quickly turned into much more and something that I personally got very excited about and invested a great amount of time and energy into.

When I completed what in my mind was a simple PDF document or e-book, I hesitantly shared it with a handful of friends and family members curious to how they might respond.  One of those individuals was our Executive Pastor, Chris Emmitt, who thought enough of the book to share it with his wife, Bre’anna.  After reading it, she sent me an email asking if she could share it with a friend who worked for a Publishing company.

I wasn’t going to argue with Bre’anna regarding her request and honestly it just meant so much to me that she thought enough of the book to share it with anyone.  Bre’anna then emailed Sue Brage of Group Publishing introducing the two of us and attaching the PDF document that had originally been forwarded to her.  I thought this might be the end of the conversation, but a week or so later Sue responded by saying that she and a couple of colleagues read the book and would like to propose it to their Executive Team as a possible book to publish.

Sue then shared with me the process of pitching the book to the Executive Team, which would then be followed by a month or so of market research along with a few other action steps before we could move forward.  I was still pessimistic that this would lead anywhere, but even at that point I was so encouraged that a publisher that I respected so much was even having these conversations around this book.  Sue gave me the date of their meeting and all I could do was wait and pray.

Shortly after their meeting I received an email from Sue saying that the team agreed that they should move forward with the book and that a month of market research was not needed as it was a clear felt need for their customer base.  The email included an official offer and the contract was signed shortly after that.

Getting that email was kind of like getting an acceptance letter for college or your first job offer.  It was so meaningful to call my wife and family to share the good news.  One other moment that was also be very meaningful was sharing the news with Chris Emmitt who immediately called Bre’anna and shared the news with her.  I was able to hear the response on the other end of the phone: “Praise God!”  I couldn’t agree more!

I really don’t get excited about the deal because of the possibility of making more money or my name being on a book.  I’m very much a behind the scenes guy and don’t plan on that changing a whole lot.  I get excited because I believe that there is great opportunity for ministries to maximize Social Media in a powerful way to reach more people with the Gospel of Christ and I want to help them do that.

My prayer for this book is the same as it was when I first started writing that Word document months ago:  to create a valuable resource for the Church to maximize Social Media in Ministry.  I’m praising God that Group Publishing agreed to publish this resource and I feel so blessed to work with such a great company!  I’m incredibly thankful for what God has orchestrated, how He continues to work through this project today, and cannot wait to see what God has ahead for this resource in the life of the Church!  I’m honored and humbled to be a part.


Other Posts in this series:

Signing my First Book Deal

Developing the IDEA for a Book

The Process of WRITING a Book


The Process of WRITING a Book

As I have shared previously, The Social Media Guide for Ministry did not begin as an idea for a book that would possibly be published.  It simply began as a Word Document that I hoped would develop into a resource for as many ministry leaders as possible. I got started by writing out the most frequently asked questions that I have heard regarding Social Media in Ministry as well as the Who, What, When, Where, and Why to Social Media in Ministry.  Leading up to writing this book I had primarily focused much of my efforts on communicating the Why trying to convince people to just use Social Media.  In creating this resource though, I felt that the readers were already convinced of the Why and were much more focused on the How.

Before getting to the How of Social Media in Ministry I knew that I must start by answering the What.  Ministry leaders need to really wrap their minds around the Social aspect of Social Media and begin to understand the various platforms and what makes them unique.

I created a very rough outline that I followed and continued to tweak it as I went.  I really just started typing with a lot of flexibility in my writing instead of a rigid structure.  Once I laid out the What is Social Media and the various networks I began the How of Social Media in Ministry.   In laying out the How I this led to the Where I would encourage the reader to start and What steps to take.  Bre’anna Emmitt described the book as a “Cookbook for using Social Media in Ministry” after reading it and I think she sums it up well with that description.

Growing up I was a Sports and Math kid and really wished I had paid much more attention in English class.  I likely broke so many formal writing rules when putting this together, but at the end of the day I can’t be more excited about the resource that has been created.  I definitely can’t take all of the credit on the writing side though as my sister, Becky Kiser, really helped clean up the flow of the book and my step mother, Robin Smith, cleaned up the grammar/formatting.  They are both far better writers than I am and I can’t be more grateful for their encouragement and support.

I am still in the middle of edits now with the team at Group Publishing and really exciting about working through this process.  It is also my plan to keep this book as a working document as Social Media is constantly changing and this resource will need to be updated regularly.


Other Posts in this series:

Signing my First Book Deal

Developing the IDEA for a Book

The Process of WRITING a Book

What Led to SIGNING a Book Deal

Signing my First Book Deal!

Screen shot 2012-08-10 at 5.21.49 PM Group

I am thrilled to announce that I have just signed my first book deal with Group Publishing!  I will share more details about the book and the process that led to this in future posts.  I am so honored to be working with Group to publish The 2013 Social Media Guide for Ministry that will release in February 2013.

I have been using Group resources for over 10 years and was always a subscriber to Group magazine when I was in full-time Youth Ministry.  Group has been providing resources to the Church since 1974 and has a deep passion to support the Christian Church.  For more information about Group you can visit their About Page.

There are several people I want to thank for making this all possible:

  • My wife, Katie for all of her encouragement as well as allowing me the time flexibility (weekends, late nights, and early mornings) to work on this project.
  • Bre'anna Emmitt who believed in this book enough to share it with her friends at Group.
  • My sister, Becky Kiser, and stepmother, Robin Smith, for editing the manuscript.  You are both far better writers than I am.
  • Chris Emmitt and Robert Emmitt who both believed in me enough to give me the opportunity to become a Social Media Pastor and freedom to experiment and take risks.
  • Sue Brage at Group Publishing for believing in this project and moving it forward bringing us to today.

In the coming weeks I will share the following posts that have led to this moment:

1) Developing the IDEA for a book

2) The Process of WRITING the book

3) What led to SIGNING a book deal

This has been a fun process leading to this moment, but I know that the fun is just beginning and THE BEST IS YET TO COME!!!