Charles Prichard: “We all have a story to tell.”

From time to time in this space, WestBow Press publishes articles written by our authors in which they share some aspect of their self-publishing journeys. The following are the words of Charles Prichard, author of “Culture V. Christ: Pursuing the Biblical Truth of Marriage and Children.”

After graduating from the United States Air Force Academy in 2011, I spent the summer in Kenya reaching out to a group of people in a slum village named Huruma. God worked in my life in so many profound ways while I was there and after I returned, I began praying how I could help raise awareness and encourage the American church to take care of orphans and widows in distress (Isaiah 58:6-7).

Charles Prichard teaches orphaned children in the Kenyan village of Haruma how to count in English/broken Swahili.

Charles Prichard teaches orphaned children in the Kenyan village of Haruma how to count in English/broken Swahili.

Fast-forward three years and I’m now a full time husband and father to my three children. I am also an active duty AF officer, a part time student, and spend hours each week in ministry at the base chapel. As I grew in my relationship with the Lord, I began studying and seeking wisdom in God’s Word on how to be a godly husband to my wife and father to my children.

At the same time, my heart continued to burn for the people in Africa. I spoke at a number ofCulturevChrist
churches in Colorado and Georgia and continued to share the stories of God’s amazing work in a small abandoned village. But how was I going to share the stories with more people?

I was encouraged to write a book on marriage and family and how the culture has crept into the Christian church. This became a passion of mine. I wanted to work with and encourage families in the church to obey God in every aspect of their family. So my journey began. I attempted to balance my time and priorities and set aside a few hours a month to write.

I contacted WestBow Press and was instantly encouraged. The entire team was so helpful. Every step of the way was an exciting journey. As a young and new author, WestBow Press was the perfect company to work with. A year later Culture V. Christ: Pursuing the Biblical Truth of Marriage and Children was published.

I did not write the book for any monetary gain. In fact, by God’s grace, I am able to send all
royalties to support non-profit Christian organizations that serve orphans and widows around the world. Saba International is the organization I am supporting the month of September. I wrote the book to share a story and spread the Word of God’s perfect grace. I hope you are encouraged to read my book. And I hope you are encouraged to write your own because we all have a story to tell (Matthew 28:18-20).

In Him,
Charles Prichard

Psalm 71:18

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http://bookstore.westbowpress.com/Products/SKU-000735255/Culture-V-Christ.aspx

http://www.sabainternational.org

WestBow Press authors who’d like to share a 350-6

00 word experience related to the self-publishing of their books, are invited to do so by sending a message through our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/WestBowPress, by tweeting us @westbowpress, or by emailing kgray@ westbowpress.com.  We may not be able to use every story, but we will read and consider them. WestBow Press reserves the right to edit stories for content, grammar and punctuation accuracy; as well as for space.


Rob Carlisle: “You never can know what will happen to you in a day…”

From time to time in this space, WestBow Press publishes articles written by our authors in which they share their self-publishing journeys. The following are the words of Cmdr. Rob Carlisle, (U.S. Navy – Ret.), author of “Defending Freedom” and a survivor of a gunman’s attack against the Washington Navy Yard on September 16, 2013. 

After the attacks of 9/11, September has become a month of remembrance.  Certainly the events of that day have affected most Americans in one way or another.  As for me personally, it would affect me for the next decade.  2001 was an interesting year.  In January, I had decided to leave the Navy and take up a job in corporate America. Later that spring, I also joined the Navy reserves to keep myself involved in an organization I loved while earning some extra money during the weekends while also planning ahead for a retirement with a military pension.

Then September 11 happened.  I didn’t know at the time how it would affect me; I just knew it would.  Then about a year later, because 9/11 impacted an already shaky economy, I lost my job with the technology company I had joined following my time in the Navy. Then just six months into a new job, I was called back up to active duty and found myself in Naples, Italy, at the outbreak of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

For several months, I supported a crisis action team that coordinated military shipping traffic in the Mediterranean.  The operational

Carlisle wrote "Defending Freedom"  for his teenage sons.

Carlisle wrote “Defending Freedom” for his teenage sons.

tempo was intense and in the back of my head was always the thought of my wife and three young sons back in the States in a home we just barely moved into before I got the call. Fast forward several years later when I first got the idea to write my book Defending Freedom.  My main motivation was to leave a legacy for my now teenage sons; a book on life’s lessons if you will in which I could lay out my reasons for why I choose to follow Christ.

My idea centered on the tale of two midshipmen following their graduation from the Naval Academy against the backdrop of the world after 9/11. The Navy makes you grow up quickly because of the amount of responsibility immediately thrust upon the shoulders of young officers.  I wanted to share with my sons some of my own experiences while paying homage to the difficulties associated with military life.  What better setting than the Navy to illustrate how Christ can truly make a difference in your life?  My final manuscript was finished in the summer of 2013 and I began to look into publishing alternatives.

Carlisle with his sons Nathan, Kyle and Joel during a cross country road trip to California to celebrate Rob's dad's 80th birthday.

Rob Carlisle with his sons Nathan, Kyle and Joel during a cross country road trip to California to celebrate Rob’s dad’s 80th birthday.

Then on the morning of September 16, 2013, a young man decided to smuggle a shotgun into Building 197 at the Navy Yard and started firing at people on the fourth floor of that building.  When all was said and done, he and 12 innocent people had lost their lives.  Fortunately, I was not one of them, because I was standing right around the corner from the gunman when he started his rampage.  God’s angels were protecting me that morning as I was able to escape out a fire exit to safety.  Others were not so lucky and couldn’t make it out and were either victims or witnesses to this horror.  One year later, the memory of that day is very much ingrained in everyone present during this act of pure evil.

So on September 17, 2013 I decided to turn a negative into a positive and submitted my manuscript to WestBow Press.  WestBow Press had interested me because of their relationship with Thomas Nelson, a well-known and respected Christian publisher.  Looking back a year later, I realize now that this was a hasty decision based on a sense of urgency.  You never can know what will happen to you in a day!  But I have never regretted it.

WestBow Press guided me through the process and did a wonderful job with designing the cover and interior of my book.  And I have immensely enjoyed telling others about my book.  It has created many opportunities for me to share the gospel of Christ.  When you write a book, the first question everyone asks is “What is it about?”  And through my blog and my book’s Facebook page, I can routinely interact with hundreds of people I would never have met otherwise.

WestBow Press authors who’d like to share a 350-500 word experience related to the self-publishing of their books, are invited to do so by sending a message through our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/WestBowPress, by tweeting us @westbowpress, or by emailing kgray@ westbowpress.com.  We may not be able to use every story, but we will read and consider them. WestBow Press reserves the right to edit stories for content, grammar and punctuation accuracy; as well as for space.


Wendy Cullum: Her book supports mission to raise youth self esteem

From time to time in this space, WestBow Press publishes articles written by our authors in which they share their tips and strategies that have helped them achieve a successful self-publishing journey. The following are the words of Wendy Cullum, author of “Project Self Esteem: For Kids

Wendy Cullum, author of "Project Self Esteem: For Kids."

Wendy Cullum, author of “Project Self Esteem: For Kids.”

,” which supports her mission of raising self esteem and preventing bullying.

I have always loved children. When I was a teenager, I wrote in my journal that I would have ten kids, and I even wrote their names. I babysat every weekend. When I got married I was fortunate enough to have four beautiful children. My husband and I practiced attachment parenting, including co-sleeping, and I was their first pre-school teacher. Naturally when they started elementary school, I wanted to volunteer in any program available. One such program at the school intrigued me. It was called Project Self-Esteem. Of course I signed up to teach it in my child’s class. It was a program where a parent volunteer taught one lesson once a month in their child’s class. The lesson’s subjects introduced core values to the class.

I taught the program for 12 years. The program was good, but I felt that a few things were lacking. It seemed a little dated, so I started my search for more relevant and entertaining material to add. Three years ago the school decided to drop the program because the content of the lessons were stale. This was a program that I believed in and was having success on my own with more updated materials. I knew that its potential was great and I saw how it made an impact on the lives of the children who participated in it.

PSECoverI asked if I could rewrite the program and I was given the opportunity. It took me three years to perfect it. I would teach a lesson and test the content to see what worked well and kept the kids interested. The lesson subjects are wisdom, individuality, cooperation, compassion, self-discipline, honesty, gratitude, forgiveness, kindness, uniqueness, respect, determination, joy, humility, courage and friendship. Each lesson has a discussion about the topic, story and object lesson.

On my journey collecting content for the object lesson on friendship, I met an interesting woman on an airplane. I told her I was writing a book and what it was about. She then relayed a story that I ended up adding to the book, and it has become one of my favorites. The lesson involves placing a large piece of butcher paper, cut out in the shape of one of your student’s silhouette, on the chalkboard. We call the Silhouette “Our friend Bob”. I tell the students that they are feeling bad about themselves, so they want to put down their friend Bob. Each student comes up to the front with a pencil and writes a mean put down somewhere on the silhouette.

They then tear off the portion where they wrote and take it back to their seat. When everyone has completed this task, there shouldn’t be much of Bob remaining. I ask the students, “How does Bob look now”? They literally tore him apart with their put downs. It is time to make amends, so each student erases their put down and writes a positive complement. They then bring back their piece of Bob to put him back together. In the end, Bob is whole again. But he doesn’t look the same anymore. I teach the students that although he is back in one piece, he has cuts or tears now. This represents how negative put downs can hurt a person deep inside. You can say you are sorry, but your harsh words will always leave a mark. They should always think before they say something unkind. Because it will have a lasting affect.

When kids have low self-esteem, they resort to treating others poorly. Topics like bullying and ways to deal with anger are discussed. 56% of students have personally witnessed some type of bullying at school, and 75% of girls with low self-esteem reported engaging in negative activities like cutting, bullying, smoking, drinking or having eating disorders. Facts like these are and were astonishing to me, and are a major motivation for me in writing my book .

The parent volunteers that participate in teaching the lessons learn just as much as the students that they are teaching. One parent reported saying, “I taught the lesson for PSE on Joy. Thank you so much for a great lesson. I went to teach it to the kids and left the classroom so encouraged and full of joy because I couldn’t help but to understand the topic. The kids enjoyed all of the activities, and he had such a fun time. It just doesn’t impact the children, it was an amazing and timely reminder for me as well”.

The purpose of this journey is to reach the children with the message. Upon completion of one year, students often communicate their feelings back to their instructor. Here are a few examples of what they had to say. “I love PSE because it makes me want to be a better person”. “In PSE you taught me how to respect myself and others”. “The lesson I loved the most is humility. It taught me to be more humble”. “My favorite part of PSE was Spotlight”. My goal is to bring this program, Project Self-Esteem for kids, and it’s important message to all schools in America. If it just reaches one child, I have been successful.

– Wendy Cullum 8/28/14

WestBow Press authors who’d like to share a 350-500 word experience related to the self-publishing of their books, are invited to do so by sending a message through our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/WestBowPress, by tweeting us @westbowpress, or by emailing kgray@ westbowpress.com.  We may not be able to use every story, but we will read and consider them. WestBow Press reserves the right to edit stories for content, grammar and punctuation accuracy; as well as for space.

 


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