Thursday, November 30, 2006

YESTERDAY, I SENT OUT A LETTER...

A bit about my "author life:"

Yesterday, I sent out by snail mail a letter, below, to over 70 people, with an accompanying free book (my latest, Kiss the Bride) in a separate package. This is part of marketing when you're an author (or at least one of the many things this author does). Plus, I've already given out over 20 free copies to people face to face. These 90-something people are my family, my extended family, close friends, close minister friends, people who've expressed interest in my writing, people who are praying for me, etc.

It was a time-consuming undertaking. Next time, maybe I can hire a teenage girl to help me. First, I printed the letters, both front and back pages, then folded them, then tucked a bookmark inside, then stuffed envelopes, then printed mailing labels, then labeled the envelopes first with the mailing labels and then with my return labels, then sealed the envelopes with a wet sponge.

Then I put the books in envelopes, ran more mailing labels, then labeled the envelopes first with the mailing labels and then with my return labels, then sealed the flaps with packing tape.

Then, a trip to the post office.

Whew.

And next Monday night, I'll be giving away over 100 copies to ministers' wives at a ministers and wives Christmas banquet. In 2000, when my first Christian fiction was published, I felt the Lord speaking to me, to give ministers' wives free copies of my books. So that's what I've done, faithfully.

Oh, and I signed all these copies--nearly 200 and put an "Autographed Copy" sticker on the front of each book.

Whew again.

Publishers call this an influencer list. But I've been doing this way before I ever even knew what an influencer list was. The Lord just put it in my heart.

###

Greetings from sunny Florida!

In a separate envelope, I'm sending you a free copy of my latest book Kiss the (Cook) Bride. It was recently released and has already hit the bestselling list of romance titles at www.christianbook.com. In January, it will be in 1,700 Wal-Mart stores nationwide. I hope you enjoy reading it. Some of my earlier titles are still available at www.christianbook.com and www.amazon.com.

Some things to be thankful for in my writing career: 1) I continue to receive letters from readers telling me they're enjoying my books. 2) In September, 2006, my novella in Wedded Bliss? won Third Place in the Book of the Year Contest, contemporary novella category. It was awarded by American Christian Fiction Writers. 3) My contemporary novel, Heart of the Matter, will be published April, 2007.

Please check out my web presence: www.christianlovestories.blogspot.com

I strongly believe in the value and ministry of Christian fiction. Charles Colson said, "Stories change us, because as we read, we identify with characters who demonstrate courage and self-sacrifice, and in the process our own character is shaped." More importantly, Matthew 13:34 says, "Jesus used stories when he spoke to the people. In fact, he did not tell them anything without using stories."

Thank you in advance for your prayers for me. Pray this way: that God will direct my steps so I may please Him. May the blessing of the Lord rest upon you and give you peace and joy.

Blessings!
Kristy Dykes
www.christianlovestories.blogspot.com

CHRISTIAN FICTION AUTHOR (9 titles)
SPEAKER
FORMER NEWSPAPER COLUMNIST; FREELANCE WRITER (600 articles)

“Pizzazz! Enthusiasm! High energy! Those are a few of the words that describe Kristy Dykes. From the moment she steps up to the platform, she captivates your attention. As both a writer and a speaker, Kristy is moving and motivating. Without a doubt, she will touch your heart with love and laughter.” --- Florence Littauer

See other side for some reader comments….
###

(Other side of letter)

Readers are saying…

"Your story touched my life."


"Your novella, 'Reunited,' in Wedded Bliss? is absolutely beautiful! I love your use of Hebrews 12:1,3: run the race, and don't give up—a wonderfully clear message that people can apply to many areas of life. Many will linger over these words for their marriages, as well as other issues in their lives. 'Reunited' is a true-to-life story and shows how couples can drift apart if they do not keep their eyes on Jesus. I like the way Felicia and Jake finally realized they needed help and weren't ashamed to seek it, and how they both realized the mistakes they made and were willing and anxious to amend those actions. Congratulations on this great story!"

"I am sharing your book with some women in my neighborhood. One friend has just renewed her faith in the Lord Jesus after reading your novella in Sweet Liberty."

"Are you black or do you have a special gift of empathy?" – reader of Sweet Liberty
"I just finished reading the first 100 pages of The Tender Heart and stopped only to write you. Kristy, or should I say, Grace Livingston Hill! This book is on par with any of her books."

"I never thought I would compare anyone else's writing to Janette Oke but you are just as good, and I mean it sincerely."

"I love your story. You put so much action—and tension—into it. I believe the Lord has something great in store concerning your fiction! I'm proud to say I know you."

"You have a Stephen King flair—you drink me into your story in the first few pages and hook me." -- reader of American Dream

A LETTER FROM NEW YORK STATE:
Dear Kristy,
If I were an author, I would want to know if something I did touched someone's life. So, I wanted to tell you that your novella in Room At the Inn touched my life.

I just broke off a relationship with a man I liked a great deal. I have had a rough week and felt like your lead character, Lois. I'm 27 and single, but living in a small town, well, that makes me a minority. Coupling that with the fact that I go to a small church, the prospects of meeting someone who is a Christian and shares my values and is fun and interesting seems pretty bleak at times.

Your story spoke straight to my heart. Lois's constant faith and yet frank acknowledgement of her fears and frustrations echoed my own heart. I immediately copied Psalm 37:4-6 (the theme of your story) and posted it on my computer.

I don't generally identify so strongly with stories, nor do they usually cause me to change the way I do things or think. Yours did. Your writing, and in turn, you, are a blessing to me, and I wanted you to know that your work did some good.

Thank you for making a difficult time easier for me. May God bless you, your family, and your work. Thanks for brightening up a single, saved, and searching woman's day!

3 Comments:

At 12:18 PM, Blogger Patricia W. said...

And all of the comments on your stories are well deserved. I won a copy of Room at the Inn from your website and enjoyed it immensely. As I decide which books to keep and which to give away, yours will definitely be on my keep list.

Your web posts bless and encourage me in my marriage every day.

 
At 4:24 PM, Blogger Kristy Dykes said...

Thanks so much, Patricia.

And I'm blessed by YOUR words!

 
At 10:30 AM, Blogger TheWhiteSeal said...

I just found your blog, has been a great read! Just thought it may interest you to know, a while back i managed to find a british labels company who printed me some mailing labels for a really low price. If interested then it may be worth taking a look at their website.

 

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