A Christian book developed, written and published for a Christian audience is often nonfiction, but Christian novels and books of stories for readers of all ages are also commonly penned by Christian authors. If are curious about how to publish Christian book content, follow our easy steps to self-publish your next devotional, theological missive or children’s storybook.
Writing Your Christian Book Content
Writing a Christian book with Christian themes, from a Christian perspective or to inform or teach other Christians is not wholly different from writing other types of books. But some of the stages of this type of project’s development may take more care and attention than when an author is penning a book from a secular perspective.
1 Determine the purpose and audience for your Christian book. Before you put metaphorical pen to paper, decide who is going to be reading your book and why you are writing it. The more narrowly you can define your book’s audience, the better your writing will be able to reach it. If you know you want to write a children’s Christian book, choosing a specific age group like “early readers” will allow you to choose more specific words and ways to express your ideas than if you targeted an audience of “all children.”
2 Create an outline to guide your writing. You might want to write a formal outline or even a general one that helps you organize your thoughts. An outline can serve as a structure for chapters or concept groupings, or it can simply help you remember to include all important information while you are writing.
3 Give yourself a timeline or schedule to complete the Christian book content creation. Writers often find that a schedule, when not too aggressive, can help them produce more content than working on a book when the writing mood strikes.
4 Enlist a trusted content reviewer at different stages of writing. Those who want to publish Christian book content may want to have another set of eyes on their book’s manuscript to ensure that it is theologically correct, the key concepts are phrased correctly, or so that someone with similar beliefs can chime in on how themes, topics, or ideas are being presented.
Transforming Your Manuscript into a Published Christian Book
After completing the writing stage, to publish Christian book content you will need to put it into the best possible form before you send it off to the printer. Your book’s contents are likely in text-only form, but it will need to be shifted into a book-friendly format. During this transformation, your book’s format will consider the size, shape, binding, text format, overall style, and the extras like graphic and photographic elements that make your Christian book appear professionally crafted.
Decide What You Want Your Christian Book to Look Like
Figuring out what you need for the exterior of your book will help you to finalize the inside of it. The size and how the Christian book will be bound have an impact on how you will format your book, so choose these critical elements first.
Size: A good way to determine what size to make your book is to first try to use the same dimensions as those in the same genre that are already on the market. If the size is variable or there are no other books to guide you, consider who will be using the Christian book so you can create a size that will make the book more convenient and useful for the target readers.
A book for young readers might need to be larger and easier to maneuver with little hands than an adult’s prayer journal that might be tucked into a pocket or purse.
Binding: How a Christian book is bound affects not only the appearance of the book but also how well it will stand up to heavy use. Perfect bound books are excellent choices for books with many pages, that don’t need to lay flat and would benefit from a spine that can indicate a title or other information when on a shelf.
Books that need to lay flat can be bound with Plastic Coil which is perfect for little hands. For adults, Wire-O Binding also works well and both Plastic Coil and Wire-O binding are ideal for heavy use up to hundreds of pages. For smaller projects like pamphlets or ones that may be replaced frequently like daily scripture readings, Saddle Stitch binding can be an excellent choice for these types of books.
Format Your Manuscript
Once you have determined the parameters of your book, the next step is to format it. Authors can use free templates to guide the format of a book, purchase a formal book template, or even hire a professional formatter to do the job for you. Templates are a huge timesaver since they help self-publishing authors match up margins, page numbers, and other details with the book binding’s requirements.
Utilize an Expert
Not all authors have the design skills they need to make their books look as good as they can. When in doubt, hire an expert to help you pull together the details that will make your Christian book stand out from the rest.
Book Cover: The most important visual aspect of your Christian book is the cover, so it is important to bring in a cover design expert to help you craft a cover that will appeal to the right reader. An expert can assist with the right font and design for your title, show you where to put a retail book’s ISBN number, and help you design a cover that blends with your book’s genre while still staying true to your vision for your project.
Graphic Designer: Some books, like children’s storybooks, visual Bibles, or study guides are heavy on graphic elements. But even books that are filled with mostly text may benefit from smaller graphic elements. A professional can help you integrate those into your book as well as help with any artistic design work.
Professional Photographer: For books including photography, a professional can use high-quality equipment to ensure that the images you use look crisp and clear. If you are utilizing your own photographs, make sure that they are at least 300 dpi so the photos won’t look grainy or blurry when they are printed.
Partner with a Printing Company Who Works With Christian Writers
Aligning yourself with a printer who will share your values and regularly will publish Christian book content is important for any faith-based author. Dazzle Printing has worked with many Christian authors and can help you transform your concept into a beautifully bound Christian book too.
Order Your Christian Books
Once you have your book’s contents finalized and have signed off on the perfect cover and interior artwork, it’s always a good idea to double-check your manuscript again to make sure that everything looks perfect. Before you order any copies, you will want to look at the proof from the printer. A proof is a final copy of how the book will look once it has been printed, and you can either request a digital PDF file or a hard copy of your book.
For new authors, holding a version of your upcoming book is the perfect way to judge your artistic choices since you will be able to hold the book and flip its pages, just like future readers will. When you are comfortable with your proof, you can order your books.
And as a self-publishing author, working with digital printers makes it easy for you to order (and reorder) smaller quantities of your book, unlike traditional printers that require relatively huge volumes to run a book through their offset printers.
Begin Your Christian Book Promotional Strategy
If your Christian book will be available for retail sales, begin your marketing campaign as soon as you finish your book. Create social media handles for your book as well as a professional one for yourself, and begin to make connections with potential readers. Your social media marketing opportunities are almost endless, and most types of promotion on social media platforms are free, perfect for a self-published author.
You might consider purchasing advertising on social media platforms to target specific readers as well as market your book directly to churches or other faith-based organizations that would benefit from owning your title. Contact local Christian bookstores or retail outlets to discuss a book launch or signing as well as ask area churches if you can participate in their in-person events to make your book available to their membership or guests.
When copies of your book arrive, your book launch will already be in motion so that you can get your book into the hands of those readers who want or need your book’s content the most.
Becoming a Christian Author
As a Christian author, you may choose to write a non-fiction book that will support or guide believers through their faith walk, make a book with a Christian perspective to reach non-believers, or even write a wholesome novel that Christians can enjoy without reservation.
But no matter what kind of faith-based content you have in mind, self-publishing provides the perfect platform to create the book you need for your faith journey.