Dr. Andy Wood is an author, professor, church leader, consultant, evangelist, and seminar leader. In every role, he has pursued a philosophy he refers to as M.A.D.I.S.E.L. – Make a Difference in Someone Else’s Life!
Serving alongside his wife, Robin, Andy offers professional counseling, coaching, consulting, and communication services through The LifeVesting Group.
He blogs consistently and has ghostwritten two books. He has published on both academic and professional levels in magazines and journals and is currently marketing his first e-book, The 12 Pathways to Christmas.
Please join me in welcoming Dr. Andy Wood.
Andy: Thank you!
Xochi: Why do you think it’s important for writers to consider blogging?
Andy: For me, it’s about the discipline to continue writing and developing fresh stuff. Blogging is a great way to test drive ideas that may or may not ever make it into a book.
Blogging also gives you a starter platform for building what Seth Godin calls a “tribe.” That is, a group of people who appreciate what you do, keep reading and, hopefully, share your stuff with others.
Xochi: What are your top tips for potential bloggers?
Andy: First – write, write, write.
Second, decide on a realistic schedule and stick to it. If you want regular readers, become a regular writer.
Third, know the purpose of your blog and lean into it.
Xochi: Please tell us a little bit about your e-book, The 12 Pathways to Christmas.
Andy: I’ve looked closely at the lives of the people who were involved in the first Christmas story. I wanted to create a connection between a 21st-century “real world” and the “real world” of the first century and how the coming of Jesus is relevant to all that. This book offers 12 vignettes of real joy, real pain, real healing, real desperation, real hope.
Xochi: How did the idea of The 12 Pathways to Christmas develop into an e-book?
Andy: It started as a series of posts on the “LifeVesting” blog, in 2009. It took me another Christmas season to finish them up, then another year or two to put them into a book form.
Xochi: What was the greatest challenge you faced during the e-book process?
Andy: Learning how to format the book correctly. It’s not super hard, but there was a bit of a learning curve.
Xochi: What did you enjoy most about the e-book process?
Andy: E-book publishing is quick. You can edit or make changes without having to go through the publisher. It also enables you to avoid having to stock piles of book inventory.
I enjoyed the instant awareness of success, or lack thereof. With Amazon, you can always know how sales are going.
Also, it’s fun to be part of a larger community of authors who have discovered this format.
Xochi: What tips do you have for writers who are considering publishing e-books?
Andy: First, get several proofreaders to help clean up your writing.
Second, have a good strategy for marketing your work. Nobody will be more committed to your success than you are. There are lots of tools and resources out there for authors to learn to market their stuff.
Xochi: What words of encouragement would you like to offer aspiring writers?
Andy: Use your writing to serve and love people, and the day will come when your writing will serve you.
There has only been one infallible thing ever written, and that’s the Bible. Anything short of that has room for improvement.
So, never stop improving and working at your craft.
Xochi: Thank you for sharing your insights, Dr. Wood.
Andy: My pleasure.
You can connect with Andy through his blog and check out The 12 Pathways to Christmas, on sale for only .99 cents until December 15, 2013! I’m looking forward to reading Andy’s book before Christmas and am sure it will make a great gift for the book lover on your nice list!
If you’ve published an e-book, tell us about your experience. Would you do it again? What, if anything, would you do differently?
Xochi (so-she) E. Dixon loves Jesus and lives in Northern California with her husband, Alan, their teenage son, Xavier, and their doggy-daughter, Jazzy. She has a passion for teaching God’s Word and writes contemporary fiction, articles and devotions for women and teens. Her work has been published in The Upper Room, ENCOUNTER – The Magazine and Devo ‘Zine. You can connect with Xochi through her blog, Facebook and Twitter.