This week’s #writerswednesday feature is young author Jessica Bishop, who recently published her first book with UNITED HOUSE. Her sports devotional, COLLISION, draws on her experiences as an athlete and follower of Jesus to encourage other athletes in how they can impact the sports world through their faith.
We caught up with Jessica to talk about what writing and publishing her first book was like for her.
How did you know you were supposed to write a book?
Surprisingly, this is a question I had never been asked before. I guess I didn’t know that writing a book was something I was supposed to do until I was about halfway through writing it. It was then that I hit a turning point because I was an amateur author, and I had no idea what I was doing. That’s I when I started praying because without divine intervention, this book would have never seen the light of day. I would say it was when I signed my contract with UNITED HOUSE Publishing that I knew this was what God had in store for me.
How long did it take you to completed your manuscript?
I started my manuscript in November 2016, and I finished my rough draft in December 2017. It wasn’t until the end of July 2018 that I finally published.
Everyone has a busy schedule, so when did you find time to write?
This is an excellent question, because honestly, I have no idea. I was a freshman in college when I started writing, and I didn’t finish until I was a sophomore. I would say I wrote in the strangest places in the strangest times, and one day, I had a book. The most writing I would do at one time would be over breaks because school could get insane most of the time. I wrote during soccer practice when I was injured, and I wrote during church when I was struck with a thought. I have written in bed, in cars, in coffee shops, in class, and everywhere I go. I was on the school’s soccer team, a co-leader of an on-campus ministry, I had a part-time job, and I was taking at least 17 credits at a university. If I found time to write in that, I believe anyone can write a book; all it takes is the will to start.
Any advice to someone who is considering writing a book?
START. I don’t care if you don’t know what you are doing, I don’t care if you don’t feel like you have time. Whatever you do, start that book, because one day you can either be sitting wishing you had started that book all that time ago, or you can be looking at your own piece of art that slowly appeared over time. If you want to write a book, start now, because procrastination has never saved someone time in this type of thing. Also, believe in yourself, because God equips us with the skills He needs to do His good work, and sometimes those skills emerge, and sometimes those skills look a whole lot like determination and courage.
What made you decide to publish through UNITED HOUSE?
They were a Godsend to me, and when God nudges you in a direction, it is in one’s direct interest to walk that path. It was after I joined that I realized just how amazing this publishing company is.
What do you wish you had known when you started your book-publishing journey?
Where to begin? I wish I had spent some time on researching how to write as I was writing, because it indeed helps. The biggest thing would be to do my research as well as write.
What advice would you give about releasing your book?
I would say that releasing your book starts months before your actual release date, and I would highly recommend making it around a time that you can devote a lot of time to releasing said book. I have been busy since the day I moved away from college, but sometimes I wonder how much more I could have done if I had the time to put more effort into it and could focus more on it. However, I am very happy with the way things all came together for my release, so I would definitely say pray as well, because you never know what doors God will unexpectedly open.
Jessica Bishop is the author of the sports devotional: COLLISION. She is on the women’s soccer team and is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Dietetics and minoring in Biology and Chemistry at Olivet Nazarene University. Jessica is head over heels in love with Jesus, and she spends her free time investing in her ever-growing list of hobbies which includes: knitting, beading, going on adventures, playing violin, writing, reading, and running.
Jessica has a deep desire to spread God’s word and believes that one day this will take her into the mission field. She would like to use her knowledge in nutrition to help treat nutrition-related diseases and malnutrition in impoverished communities worldwide. To learn more about Jessica, visit her blog Higher Calling.
You can purchase Jessica’s book, COLLISION, here.