GOOD SPIRITUAL WRITING
What is spiritual writing?
Spiritual writing isn't like any other genre. You won't likely find too many short, choppy sentences in spiritual books, nor will the text sound academic. Spiritual prose is lyrical, beautiful writing in the sense that—whether through fiction or fact—it conveys a specific message or point of view.
This type of writing is not plot driven. It need not tie up every loose end. Its mission is to bring out the truth and meaning of the author's message and give the reader food for thought.
What then is the role of a spiritual editor?
The role of a spiritual editor is to make sure the author's message is being effectively conveyed. Oftentimes, spiritual writers can be too raw and repetitive to the point of losing the reader's interest. As such, a good editor will focus on tightening "the script" without compromising its message or the writer's voice.
What advice can an editor offer a spiritual writer?
Put all your being into articulating exactly what you wish to say simply and concisely. Keep it interesting. Readers "disengage" when too much nuance or context is provided. Long passages of exhibition, opinion, and repetitive information make readers lose interest and promote negative reviews.
Once all your words are out and down on paper, edit...edit...edit...and put your manuscript away for a couple of weeks, or so. Then—whether you are planning on using a professional editor (or not)—return to edit some more. Also, make sure your publishing platform includes Amazon's "Look Inside" feature and that the content displayed (in the "Look Inside") does your book justice. Even if readers don't purchase your book directly from Amazon, they will still go there (first) to read the material in the "Look Inside."
How difficult is it to get a spiritual book published?
For first-time spiritual authors, self-publishing will likely be the best option. A self-published spiritual book can have a long life online. My first book, The Power of Twin Soul Love, published in 2014, sold thousands of copies and continues to inspire new readers.
Self-publishing, however, is a process. It requires knowing a fair amount of information about how it works.
Affordable self-publishing consulting was not available when I started out; if it was, it would have saved me a lot of grief.
Knowing what to do and what to look for in a self-publishing company—from how your royalties will be calculated and disbursed to how or who is going to market your book—is, needless to say, paramount to your success as a spiritual author.
By Mary Dunlop
For a list of Mary's services, please click here.