Thursday, July 11, 2013

Do I only represent Christian Writers? by Terry Burns

Well now, that's a good question?

I'm not sure, because I don't ask people about their faith in the submission process. I suspect since people can clearly see that this is a Christian agency (even though we do work in the secular market as well) that they would probably be comfortable with that if they were going to submit to us.

But I don't ask.

I do know one thing, an atheist or non-Christians might be decidedly uncomfortable in my client group. You see, I require all clients to be in a private online group which gives me the ability to contact them all at once. The group offers three options, priority messages only (I'm the only one that can send a priority message), on digest, and on full access where they can talk directly not only with me but with other clients as well.

I do watch what the group talks about and do participate, maybe more than I should. Once the group was set up another interesting aspect came out. They turned out to be an amazing group of prayer warriors who genuinely care for each other and pray for one another with great effectiveness.

See why I think a non-believer would probably not be comfortable in the group?

Then there is the fact that I am drawn to content that has a good faith message. Yes, that narrows the possible places it can be submitted but that is after all why I decided to start doing this. Will I represent something that does not have faith content in it? Sure, we need good family entertainment as well as Christian books. Saying that you can tell I don't park my beliefs and morals at the door even if I am doing general market books.

My mother has passed on now, but she is still my measuring stick for projects. If it is something that would have offended my mother then it isn't something I want my name associated with. It's a measuring stick that I'm comfortable with and I don't mind if people shake their head and say I'm giving up sales. Of course I am, but they aren't sales I want to make. There are plenty of agents that do those, they don't need me doing it.

But I'm taking the long road around the mountain answering the question. Do I only represent Christian authors? Probably. Is it intentional? No, I just think all of my clients are Christians, and whether I actually ask someone or not, that is who I am likely to end up with.


sally apokedak said...

Terry, I love that you have a group for your clients. My last agent had a retreat for us all at her farm, and we had a wonderful weekend, bonding with one another. I consider those people my friends, I visit their blogs, and I pray for them.

An internet group is less expensive and it works well for praying and supporting one another. And I bet many of your clients meet up at conferences and feel like they've known each other for years.

I love that. We Christian writers should be family to one another and we should be supporting one another.

Good deal.

Dee Yoder said...

As one of the clients in Terry's group, I know I have benefited greatly from the prayers and support of my fellow writers--and from Terry, too! It has been a blessing I am much grateful for.

Author Jennifer Hudson Taylor said...


I don't have as much time to participate in the group as I used to, but I love having your group when I can pop on. And you're right, they are some serious prayer warriors that I'm very thankful to know.

Julia M. Reffner said...

The prayers and encouragement of other writers has certainly kept me going in my journey. Praying for other writers is a ministry, one I think we should all be involved in on some level as Christian writers, published or unpublished.

Andrea Cox said...

Terry, thank you for this passionate article. It's encouraging to see how involved you are in helping your clients, especially offering them a private group where they can get to know each other and pray for each other.


Linda Glaz said...

Maybe we need a few atheists in the group. They wouldn't be able to deny for long the amazing results our prayers see. So who knows? Never can tell who you might touch and where and how? Great post, Terry!

Audrey said...

I love your posts Terry. I always feel that I know a little more about you as a person after I read them. I hope some day to be a part of your online group. I'm going to pray about that...and write!