Encouragement is so important in Christian writing, and I love to encourage budding authors. When I meet with writers during 15-minute appointments at conferences, I try to find something encouraging to say about their writing or at least their concept. When I edit a manuscript that was sent to me, I always write a note or letter to accompany it. My first sentence always starts on a positive note, no matter how bad the manuscript is.
Often a writer has a good idea, but the manuscript needs a lot of editing. When I do extensive editing, I usually say, “For me to spend this much time on a manuscript, it has to be worthy of publication.” And if they are totally out in left field I say, “Had you thought of taking a different approach to your subject?” Nevertheless, I’m careful to be honest and not offer false hope, but at the same time I encourage them. I’m convinced that with enough practice and training, anyone who is willing can become a published author.