Friday, February 27, 2009

Two Steps to Writing a Book I Won't Read

This post has very little relevance to anything. It's not going to help you in your spiritual walk. It's not going to give any kind of new insight or understanding. But what I've discovered is that people tend to like the posts where I write about random crap more than when I write about anything meaningful. And I guess if anything, at least this post will give you warning to stay away from a very dangerous trend that is infesting Christendom.

I'm a little bit of a geek. I also go to Bible college. So last night, another Bible college geek (Ryan) and I were doing something very geeky and Bible college-y. Before our floor devos, we were looking through the latest catalog from, discussing what books we had and what books we wish we had and such. Don't act like you haven't done the same thing. Anyways, as we talked, we discussed a couple common elements of many Christian books that cause me to be suspicious of them, and I generally stay away from them. So in case any of you decide to write a book someday, keep these in mind, and remember that your readership may decrease by one person at least if you commit either of these publication blunders.

First, I have a distrust for books that include a number in the title. Not just the number itself, but the ways that it's used. If a book title includes something like "10 Ways to...." or "18 Principles of...," I tend to leave it on the shelf. It just seems so phony to me. So last night in the catalog, we found such gems as "199 Promises of God" and "12 Ways to Be a Blessing to Your Church." Now those might be fantastic books. But I'll never know, because the formulaic title repels me from the start. My favorite one was "100 Ways to Simplify Your Life." Ryan made a good point: if I wanted to simplify my life, I don't think I would want to be told 100 ways to do so. That's too complex. A book that promises "One Way to Simplify Your Life" would be much more appealing.

The second thing that makes me wary of many Christian books is when the front cover is just a big picture of the author. I just want to yell, "Dude, I don't want your face all over the front of my book!" And the pictures are always so cheesy! There's nothing worse than a book with a guy dressed in a blue suit with his greasy hair slicked back with a title that ensures I will gain "Five Steps to Improve Your Relationships." Authors belong in the "About the Author" flap on the back of the book. They need to stop running all over the front cover, parading their sparkling white teeth and crimson neckties. I would rather anything be on the cover. A picture of a monkey playing dominoes. A drawing of James Garfield playing golf. Even just the title of the book. Just get the author's mug off of there.

Chick-fil-A (in Joplin at least) is having free breakfast every Friday in March. Be there.


Jackie said...

Amen to all of the above.
I will say that when I write a book, I do intend to put my picture on the cover...b/c I'm pretty good looking.

Anonymous said...

haha i love this blog and i will admit that i am a geek

Jackie said...

Update, friend.