Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Guest Post by Author Brock Eastman

Today's guest post comes from author Brock Eastman, who is an author and also product marketer at Focus on the Family. Some mutual friends introduced me and Brock and I asked him to do a post here at BHR. I was pretty astounded by his story!

Here's his introduction:

My name is Brock Eastman, and I have a beautiful supportive wife and two cute little girls. I’m committed to family first and books second, so some times I find myself writing in the wee hours of the night. But God gives us strength and creativity.

Please find my author page on facebook, Brock D. Eastman and give me a Like if you will. You can find all my books on Amazon, the Focus online store, or to get signed copies visit my website BrockEastman.comThanks for reading and I hope you enjoy my work. The best part of writing is putting smiles on kids faces.

Writing to change lives, that’s what I want to do. I’m a marketer at heart; in fact that’s my day job at Focus on the Family. Product Marketing where I get to work on cool projects like Adventures in Odyssey, the Screwtape Letters, or TrueU: Does God Exist?

I’m not a writer; at least I didn’t set out to be. I’m not even a fast reader; ask my wife how long it takes me to get through a book. I read all of about; oh three books when I was in middle school and high school. I didn’t read anything for entertainment purposes until I was in college. It was sort of a competition between my future wife and me; too be the first to complete a particular book series. I did win, just for the record. I didn’t enjoy reading, so you can see why I never had any plans to write a book.

A discussion with a friend about the serious lack of family friendly and safe entertainment in the secular market spurred me on. Not safe like, ‘hey this story is boring,’ no safe as in you’re not going to find curse words and unnecessarily graphic depictions of death and romance. I wanted to write something Christian and non-Christian kids could enjoy.

I was learning to be open to God and trust whatever it was He had planned for my life. I knew when I started writing The Quest for Truth in 2005 that it was about one in a million chance I’d ever be looked at by a publisher, more or less get a book onto store shelves. I’m not that great with grammar and I don’t really have the patience for writing thousands of words, but this wasn’t about me. So five years later, with a completed 100k word manuscript in hand and some encouragement from my wonderful editor (wife.) I signed a contract for 5 books with P&R Publishing. The Quest for Truth would start with Taken (which released in July 2011) and was to be pulled from the first half of the original manuscript, Evad. The second half, became Risk, and will release February 2012. The two manuscripts now total more than 160k words. Whoa! So with a publishing commitment for 5 books, I was going to be plenty busy. Right?

About a month later I was driving down the road, and God laid another story on my heart. With the excitement over the Twilight series, I knew that dark tales of werewolves and vampires (positioned often as heroes) were beginning to dominate the young adult marketplace. It was time to write a story that put them in their proper place, as nothing short of demons. So I pitched the Sages of Darkness trilogy to Destiny Image and they loved it. HowlSage (about a werewolf demon) just released September 2011. I’m currently working on book 2, BlizzardSage.

Finally with 8 books now due to publishers over the next two and a half years, I had one last contract to sign. At Focus on the Family we’d just launched our new Imagination Station series, and I really wanted to be a part of it. I’d grown up on Adventures in Odyssey and had even come to work at Focus with hopes to someday be involved with the brand. I am now the quasi brand manager for AIO (Thanks God.) So I signed a contract to write Showdown with the Shepherd, the David and Goliath story, told as an Imagination Station adventure. So that made 9 books contracted yikes.

Remember I said I’m not a writer, nor that good at grammar (Just read this blog post.) The point of all this is, God is sovereign and He provides. He has plans for our life and sometimes they aren’t exactly what we might expect. I want to encourage you to be open to whatever might be laid on your heart. If we make ourselves available God will do some really cool things through us.

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