What were the beginnings of the writing company, Pen of Praise? The founder, Sis. Rachel Windham, said, “When I first became an author, I joined a local writer’s group and began attending writers’ conferences. It seemed every expert touted the importance of a website and blog. I didn’t like that advice, as technology and I were not the best of friends. However, I knew I had to stretch myself if I was going to follow the call to write.
“The title, Pen of Praise, was the only thing clear to me when I finally fumbled my way through setting up a website. I knew for sure I wanted to praise God with my writing and keep my public writing an avenue of worship, just as my private writing had always been for me.” She said she named the company after her daughter, Praise, and her desire to glorify God.
Sis. Windham has served in numerous capacities in her local church ???. “I love being involved in the work of God,” she said. “My writing connection to the church has included everything from writing curriculum for a children’s ministry class, a marriage class and a Christian school class to writing dramas and skits for programs and special events. Along the way, I’ve personalized poems and cards for outreach and taught writing classes to inspire other potential writers.”
What kind of feedback has Pen of Praise received? “I’m always thrilled to hear from readers,” she said. “My favorite interactions, however, are the comments that indicate something I have written has inspired someone to explore a relationship with God. Having a lay person in India send me pictures of a small children’s group who used some of the very American ideas from my book, On Purpose Creative Family Devotions, for their lesson was incredibly humbling.”
Sis. Windham has written 13 books and has at least that many in the works. “I have a novel and a novella that I will likely complete before the others,” she said.
Books she has written include A Kingdom to Call Home; I Pray & I Listen; Tool Tales; Not as It Seems; Fitly Spoken Words; Melody of My Soul; 31 Days of Focused, Family Prayer; Lessons from the Laundry; Pure Devotion; Truth or Lie; and Creative Devotions Journal.
When asked how she would encourage others to prepare and launch into a Christian writing ministry, she said, “I’d encourage anyone interested in writing for the Christian market to go for it! My advice to interested writers is to work out the details of their vision before they begin to write. Instead of focusing only on pumping out that single story, they should think about the long haul. Who are they writing for? How are they going to reach that audience? What message are they hoping to send? What do they want to achieve with their writing? Are they willing to put in the work, willing to be a continual learner, willing to change? Most importantly, what value are they offering their readers?
“After they have considered these things, they can determine the logistics, like time management, educational needs, publishing direction and marketing strategies. Planning ahead of time means the writer is not overwhelmed when his or her manuscript is complete.”
You may find Sis. Windham’s books in most online bookstores.