Cover image for Behind the stories : [Christian novelists reveal the heart in the art of their writing]
Behind the stories : [Christian novelists reveal the heart in the art of their writing]
Eble, Diane.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Minneapolis, Minn. : Bethany House, [2002]

Physical Description:
288 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
General Note:
Subtitle from cover.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PN3377.5.C47 E25 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



You Loved the Novels. Now Read the Story Behind the Stories ...

Today's Christian novelists entertain and inspire millions with their heart-warming and thought-provoking books. Yet few readers really ever get the chance to know these talented writers beyond the brief biographies included in their novels.

Behind the Stories now offers a rare, behind-the-scenes glimpse into the personal lives of dozens of your favorite storytellers, including:

Janette Oke

Jerry Jenkins

Francine Rivers

Beverly Lewis

Lawana Blackwell

Jan Karon

Randy Alcorn and more.

Revealing their hopes and dreams, their successes and failures, and providing fascinating insights about what it means to craft stories from a Christian worldview, these honest discussions of fear and faith, of compromise and calling, include never-before-published thoughts and insights that will enrich your life--and your future fiction-reading experiences.

Author Notes

Diane Eble, freelance writer, veteran interviewer and longtime editor of PageTurner's Journal, lives with her husband, two children, and three cats in Chicago, Illinois

Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

Forty Christian novelists are profiled in this compilation which succeeds in telling some enjoyable stories but dilutes them by adding preachy moral platitudes. Eble, the editor of Tyndale House's online PageTurner's Journal, has assembled a diverse cross-section of author vignettes with the common thread of faith and the usual stories of rejection on the road to publication. There are glimpses of personal hurdles overcome, such as Randy Alcorn's struggle with insulin-dependent diabetes and Bodie Thoene's childhood battle with dyslexia; accolades for mentors and role models (such as the oft-mentioned novelist Francine Rivers); and typical stories of childhood writing aspirations. A few Christian authors are noticeably absent, including Christian thriller pioneer Frank Peretti and historical novelist Stephen Lawhead, and some of those included are a bit obscure. Unfortunately for readers, Eble hammers home a moral message at the end of each chapter, intended for personal application. "We too, will feel God's pleasure in us when we do whatever God has gifted us to do," she exhorts at the end of one essay. In another, on Liz Curtis Higgs, she admonishes, "Not all of us are faced with the work load or stresses Liz confronts daily. But all of us must search for and then embrace those opportunities we are uniquely called and gifted to undertake." Despite such passages, Christian readers who are curious about the lives of their favorite writers will likely appreciate this inside look at how faith and writing are combined together as vocation. (Jan.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Table of Contents

Introductionp. 9
1. Say Yes to God
Bill Myers: Just Say Yesp. 12
Sharon Foster: The Other Side of Fearp. 20
Randy Alcorn: A Matter of Perspectivep. 28
2. Uniquely Gifted
Jim Walker: Obedient to God's Designp. 36
Robin Jones Gunn: Reaching "Teens in the Tent"p. 42
3. Everybody Needs Somebody
Judith Pella: With a Little Help From a Friendp. 50
Melody Carlson: Honor the Giftp. 56
Jamie Langston Turner: Influenced and Influencingp. 62
4. Dream God's Dreams
Karen Kingsbury: Reach for the Starsp. 70
Catherine Palmer: Fairy Tales and Faithp. 76
Jane Peart: Delight Yourself in the Lordp. 82
Alton Gansky: Despite the Obstaclesp. 88
Lawana Blackwell: Never Too Latep. 94
5. Not By My Strength
Janette Oke: Keys to Ministryp. 100
Linda Chaikin: Yieldingp. 106
Lori Copeland: A Willing Heartp. 112
6. Redeeming the Past
Patricia Hickman: Flying Lessonsp. 118
Lynn Marzulli: Redeeming the Darknessp. 128
Robin Lee Hatcher: No Compromisep. 132
Angela Elwell Hunt: Nothing Wasted in God's Economyp. 140
7. Obedient to One Voice
Patricia Sprinkle: Embracing the Joyp. 148
Bodie Thoene: Despite Disabilityp. 154
Terri Blackstock: Waking Upp. 160
Athol Dickson: The Testp. 172
8. God's Stretching Places
Francine Rivers: What God Took Awayp. 182
Jan Karon: Through the Firep. 188
Jane Kirkpatrick: Into the Wilderness and Beyondp. 194
Anne de Graaf: The More Difficult Roadp. 204
Lisa Tawn Bergren: Out of the Comfort Zonep. 210
Beverly Lewis: Choicesp. 216
Peggy Stoks: Juggling an "Embarrassment of Riches"p. 224
9. Perseverance and Hard Work
Dee Henderson: The Plans of the Diligentp. 232
Gilbert Morris: Step by Step in Faithp. 238
Jack Cavanaugh: The Long Waitp. 242
10. Success: True and False
T. Davis Bunn: Two Kinds of Successp. 250
Liz Curtis Higgs: Signposts of Joyp. 256
Jerry B. Jenkins: The Test of Successp. 262
11. God's Gracious Ways
Diane Noble: Led in the Path of Mercyp. 270
Penelope J. Stokes: Connecting with Godp. 276
Deborah Raney: The Gracious Hand of the Lordp. 284