Friday, February 8, 2013

Author Writes to Empower Churches - Guest Post by CrossBooks Publishing

Author Writes to Empower Churches

Dr. Terry W. Dorsett was called to lead a small congregation. Now, he uses his books to help churches make big changes.

Starting Something New

“I have always liked new adventures,” says Dorsett. That sense of adventure, he says, led him to leave larger churches and move to Vermont, the state with the lowest church attendance rates in the nation according to Gallup.

In Vermont, he started a new church and returned to school for his doctorate in mission administration. His experiences resulted in two books: Developing Leadership Teams in the Bivocational Church and Mission Possible.

Terry Dorsett is the author of two books aimed at church leaders.
Dr. Terry W. Dorsett has authored two books; both are currently available in the CrossBooks bookstore.

Writing Through Challenges

As a full-time pastor and church administrator, Dorsett’s biggest obstacle was finding time to write.

It’s easier, he says, if you let the first draft be imperfect. “If you have a burning idea on your heart, just start writing about it and see what emerges.”

Publishing with CrossBooks

Because CrossBooks is an imprint of B&H Publishing Group, the trade publishing division of LifeWay Christian Resources, deciding on a publisher was easy, Dorsett says.

“LifeWay is the publishing house of the denomination I serve, so it just made sense to use their vast media resources in my efforts to get the message out that God had put on my heart.”

Now that his newest book, Mission Possible, is released, he can help small churches reach youth and challenge traditional churches to take risks in connecting with them.

To reach church youth, Dorsett must first make an impression on the church decision-makers.

“If you have a burning idea on your heart, just start writing about it and see what emerges. Don’t try to make it perfect the first time around; just write whatever comes to mind.”
- Dr. Terry W. Dorsett

Marketing to Church Leaders

He brings his books with him to all speaking engagements and conferences, and sells copies either in the bookstores or through his own booth.

Additionally, Dorsett uses online tools to stay in touch with his fan base and reach new readers. He writes blog posts about topics from his books. And he says that when he tweets a link to his e-book, he sees a sales boost in just minutes.

“The key is not to tweet ‘buy my book’ over and over again,” Dorsett says. “Instead, tweet a key sentence or idea from the book and add a link.”

Preparing for the Future

In his next book, Dorsett plans to share a true story of forgiveness: the story of how his family healed after a nearly fatal car accident and befriended the drunk driver who caused it.

For other Christian writers, he has advice: Don’t write to make money.

“If you write to impact the lives of others, then when you hear a story of a life changed from your writings, you will feel successful. If you happen to make a little money along the way, then just accept that as a bonus.”

NOTE: The above article was in the February edition of the CrossBooks newsletter.

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