Time to fill you all in on some exciting details! Most of you know that my book Another Ending is finally in my hands—and I am eager to get it into yours. That is what I have been focusing on for the last few weeks. I’ve been busy selling to people who’ve been patiently waiting for its release and scheduling events to get the book straight into the hands of my target audience. But as more and more people have been reading my book I am finding out that my target audience is much bigger than I ever thought. In fact, I’m not really sure I can say I have a target audience anymore! My publishing house would argue with me on that, and to some degree it is a very good idea to have a target audience—it makes marketing that much easier. I am able to seek out specific places that my target audience hangs out and get the book right to them. So, if I had to narrow it down to a group the book would best cater to, I would say young adults, specifically young women.
But many of the people who’ve read my book so far don’t fall into that category. And yet the feedback from those people has blown my mind. This isn’t a story just for teenage girls—it may be about a teenage girl, but think about your own life. You are surrounded by people of different circumstances, just as my main character Molly is. She has younger siblings, parents, friends, and people much older than her in her life, influencing her. So even though this story is mainly about her, it’s also about those other groups, and in that way I am able to reach a much bigger group of people. I hope mothers reading this story realize the power they have over their children. I hope fathers see just how important it is for them to verbalize and demonstrate love to their children. I hope teenagers see just how important their friendships are to their friends, and how words can deeply affect, deeply wound, the people they really love. I hope Christians can see how their good intentions sometimes come off as harsh and hurtful as they struggle to figure out how to love the lost around them. I hope non-Christians can see the mind-blowing, completely amazing love that God has for them. I hope that everyone can see that love!
Originally this project started as a mission to educate people about the side- effects of abortion; about how even in circumstances such as rape it can still haunt and deeply hurt women. And there are still traces of that in this story, but I realized that if I wanted to reach beyond my target audience I couldn’t have the main focus of my story be this sensitive issue. This isn’t about making people feel guilty or changing their stance on abortion. It is about a broken, hurting girl who runs away from the God she has loved for her entire life because she feels he has let her down. It is about asking tough questions and realizing that that’s okay! It’s a story of brokenness, because we are all broken! Ultimately, this is a story about Jesus—about how he can take all us broken people through his refining fire and make us strong and beautiful.
Some of my readers, however, were pretty upset about a certain aspect of my book. (You know who you are!) So while I say it’s a story about Jesus, I know that at the end of this first book many of you will be left a tiny bit unsatisfied, because it’s still a story about Molly. This isn’t a “bubble gum” ending. It might not end the way you want it to. But fear not….because on Thursday I signed the contract for my second book, An Open Window, which is a continuation of Molly’s story. I am so excited to share with you later on the reasoning behind the name of this book. It works out soooooo perfectly, it is almost scary. I get excited just thinking about it. So while I am in the midst of marketing my first book and hosting pre-release parties and book signings, I will begin production on the second one. Makes logical sense to start working on a third one right? Way ahead of you, friends! As of a few days ago I am 88 pages (about 40,000 words) into the third one, Out of the Dust. (I had to stop writing the third one to start formatting my second book’s manuscript, which is killing me because it’s getting to the good part!) There are NOT enough hours in my day to get all this stuff done. J
For those of you who haven’t had a chance to get a book or maybe just aren’t sure if you want to invest your time and money into it, I encourage you to visit my website and check it out for yourself: http://sarawhitley.tateauthor.com/ This book would be a great way to reach out to any hurting family members or friends in your life, as it includes a clear presentation of the gospel. I sincerely hope that it can touch your heart, encourage and inspire you. If it does, pass it on.
And for those of you who are angry that you have to wait six-eight months for the second one….check out my blog on my author website, which is linked here http://sarawhitley.tateauthor.com/blog/ . I might have posted the prologue for my second book J
Dates to put in your calendar:
· March 2nd: pre-release party at University of Sioux Falls, Cleveland Center room 106B, 2:00-5:00 pm.
· March 16th: pre-release party at Rexall Drug in Yankton, SD. Time TBA
· May 28th: My book will be available in national distribution! So you can tell all your friends to go out and get themselves a copy.
What a pre-release party is:
A time for you to meet the author, buy a book if you want (for you and for all your friends!) eat food, and talk to me and other guest about the book. It will be a fun time.
What a book signing is:
Pretty much the same thing, only in a bookstore setting. Pre-release parties are a chance for me to sell the personal copies that I have bought, while a book signing is a partnership with bookstores. But it is more of the same thing: meet the author, buy books, talk to other readers. Eat food J
Please make plans to join me for these fun events, and TELL YOUR FRIENDS! If you read the book and enjoyed it this is a great time to get copies into their hands. Or if you’ve been wanting a copy, come and get a signed one! It is a good deal all around, and I appreciate your support!