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CrossBooks blends publishing options

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)–James T. Draper Jr. published more than 25 books throughout a distinguished career as a pastor, Southern Baptist leader and president of LifeWay Christian Resources.

Now retired, Draper’s latest book puts him in the company of 20 fellow veterans and first-time authors who have one thing in common: They have released books with CrossBooks Publishing, an innovative concept that blends the best attributes of traditional and self-publishing.

Launched this spring by LifeWay, CrossBooks is seeking new and veteran authors to produce Christian books that run the gamut from Bible commentaries to children’s fiction.

“The book publishing business is going through a challenging period in which creative new relationships between authors and publishers are gaining favor,” Thom S. Rainer, president of LifeWay, said.

“CrossBooks gives authors greater influence in the content, design and marketing of their works while at the same time reducing the publisher’s costs and speeding production time.

“We’re finding there are many gifted Christian authors whose stories need to be told but who may not have a traditional publisher or who may not want to self-publish. CrossBooks, as a new genre of publishing, is a groundbreaking solution,” Rainer said.

Here’s how it works:

— An author submits a manuscript at CrossBooks.com and makes a print-on-demand selection, ranging from a basic package to a comprehensive package that includes marketing and other features.

— CrossBooks editors provide theological and editorial reviews and work with the author to complete the manuscript, design a cover, lay out the book’s interior, and propose marketing opportunities — all of which the author approves.

— Within 60 days the book is completed and available for purchase on CrossBooks.com, from other online retailers and at Christian bookstores.

— Because CrossBooks operates under a print-on-demand model, inventories are kept to a minimum, authors receive a significant royalty and the books never go out of print.

— Depending on the package chosen and other variables, authors generally recoup their full investment after sales of 500-1,000 copies.

Among CrossBooks’ first offerings are “Difficult Times, Encouraging Words” by Draper; “I Am,” a study of John 14:6 by Ken Hemphill; “Confessions of a Poor Money Manager” by Ashley Clayton; “The Kingdom According to Jesus” by Rob Phillips; “Who Changed God’s Name?” by Jim Harvey; “Sinful Silence,” an exploration of Christian citizenship by Ken Connor and John Revell; “Living Between the Ditches,” an inspirational book by Betty Hassler; “Amos” (the first in a Minor Prophet Series featuring the Holman Christian Standard Bible) by Fred Wood; and “Safe & Sound,” a children’s book by Carey Drake.

CrossBooks featured these and other books at the annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention in June. In addition, CrossBooks has launched a nationwide ad campaign, “We’re Looking for a Few Good Authors.”
Reported by the communications office of LifeWay Christian Resources.

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