Finding That Stride in 2019

Hey Friends ~

I think it’s about time for another update, because somehow it’s 2019 … and not just the beginning, either. We’ve officially entered month three. Hopefully March will bring us better weather, even if my weather app’s extended forecast is looking rather depressing at the moment. It’s been a brutal winter, hasn’t it? I’m beyond ready for warmth and sunshine and open windows.

So what’s been going on in my writing world?

You know, this has been a slow-moving writing year for me. I’m still getting back in the swing of things, trying to find my creative stride. It’s a new normal–having both kids in school full time. A glorious normal, for sure. But after a whole year off, the gears were more than a little rusty. I’m attempting to give myself grace as I get them working efficiently again.

I finished the rough draft for the first book in a potential Young Adult series that would be in the same vein as The Gifting. I actually finished two rough drafts. Y’all, my writing process drives me a little nuts. The first draft is truly horrendous. Like, I only use 20% of it. Maybe. I think 20% is being generous. Usually, though, I’m able to get A LOT closer the second go round. Such was not the case with this particular story. I think the premise is super strong. It has all the potential in the world. I just can’t seem to come through with the execution. After writing a mostly all-new second draft that still felt really bad, I decided to take a break from said Young Adult novel, and dive into a project I am every bit as excited about, one much more similar to my latest release, No One Ever Asked.

I’m currently moving from brainstorming mode–developing characters, figuring out journeys, finding the perfect climactic moment to build toward–to proposal-writing mode. You guys. I haven’t been in this mode in ages and ages and ages. I’m not even sure I know what a synopsis is anymore. But a synopsis I must write.

My plan? Write the synopsis for this new project. A back cover blurb. A few sample chapters. Send the proposal off to my agent, and then jump back into the YA novel while my agent does what agents do. I’m really hoping this extended break will give me the fresh eyes needed to make my young adult story everything I know it has the potential to be.

Some of you have reached out to ask when my next book is being released.

The bummer about taking an entire year off? You have an inevitable gap. Even more honest than that? I’m a woman torn between two genres. I’m equally fond of The Gifting and No One Ever Asked. I’m not entirely sure which direction I want to go with my career. It’s something I’m praying about, thinking hard on. For now, though, my goal is to get this proposal done, and see if I can’t fix all that’s wrong with the young adult. It’d be great if I could end this school year with a strong proposal and a completed young adult novel I wouldn’t be mortified to send to my agent. Then I can start making some business decisions.

We shall see!

Until Next Time,

Cleaning the Cobwebs

Hey Friendly Friends ~

I just received a very legitimate email from a reader, asking if she found the right website … because my last blog post was over a year ago. *Insert sheepish emoji* Y’all. IT’S BEEN OVER A YEAR. Which means two things:

Time flies freakishly fast.

I’m not really that good at keeping up with all the non-book-writing-related-authorly tasks. (If you followed that hyphenation, you deserve a cookie.) My newsletter is hot and cold. And I’m pretty sure blog posts will never be a priority. BUT! I’d like to get better at posting the occasional update for anyone who is perusing my website, and would like to read about the latest Katie Ganshert book news.

So this is me, getting out the broom to bat away all the cobwebs, and give y’all a quick update:


No One Ever Asked is my newest novel. It hit shelves this past April, and it’s my first book to land on the CBA Best-Seller list. Whoop whoop! It’s also the first book I wrote that is inspired by true events. It received starred reviews from Publishers Weekly and Library Journal, it was a RT Magazine TOP PICK, and it’s a story that came from deep, deep down in my heart. I hope you enjoy!


Life After and A Broken Kind of Beautiful are both now available on audio! My publisher also released an audio version of No One Ever Asked.


I didn’t write last year. The whole year. You guys. It was the weirdest thing. I knew I couldn’t handle a deadline. It was the last year before my daughter would start kindergarten. She was home most of the day, and because of her special needs, we spent a lot of time running around to various therapy appointments. I wanted to make sure I was fully present. So I made the decision not to submit anything new to my agent.

And in the process, I learned that I’m an anxious rester. For real. My field lay intentionally fallow and I was not chill about it at all. Being a writer and not writing is a very weird place to be. I also learned that when you take a year off writing, your brain explodes with ideas. I have them all typed out in a note on my phone. Now my youngest is in kindergarten, and I’m back at it once again!


I don’t want to say too much about it, because what if it ends up falling apart and isn’t good at all!? I will say this, though. It should appeal to fans of The Gifting. Meaning, it’s another YA. I’m thinking another trilogy. But we shall see how it turns out, if it turns out at all. I just know that as of right now, I’m having a lot of fun with these new characters, and I think if I can pull it off, readers will have a lot of fun with them, too.

There’s no release date on the calendar. I don’t know if I’m going to try and go the traditional route with this one, or indie publish it like I did with The Gifting. To be honest, I’m not giving that decision too much energy at the moment. I’m just glad to be creating again, and I hope to know more when I reach THE END.

To get more personal & consistent updates, find me on my Author Facebook Page

Why I Speak

If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them. – James 4:17

Dear Readers,

If you’ve followed me for any length of time on social media, Twitter most especially, than you know the journey I have been on. Maybe you are on the same one. Maybe you have appreciated some of the things I have RT’ed or articles I have shared. Or maybe you think I’ve gone off the rails. Maybe you think I’m speaking about things I have no business speaking about, because I’m a Christian novelist and it’s not my place. Maybe you think I’m being divisive. Maybe you think I’m being annoying.

I’m not sure where you fall on that spectrum. All I can tell you is what I know …

Isaiah 58:9 calls us to remove from our midst yokes of oppression wherever we find them.

Friends, God has been opening my eyes to a yoke of oppression in our midst and it would be sin if I did not do something about it.

This is why I speak. This is why I will continue to speak.

My heart burns within me. My heart breaks, too.

It breaks for so many in the black community, who are and have been living under a yoke of oppression.

It breaks for so many in the white community, who are and will roll their eyes at that statement. Especially Christians.

Oh Church, I can’t even explain to you the burden I feel in light of this reality.

The word God pressed upon my heart for 2017 was LISTEN.

And as I listen, there is a dissonance that disturbs me to my very soul.

So many black brothers and sisters in Christ, crying out until their voices are hoarse, while so many white brothers and sisters go about their day as if nothing at all is amiss. The disconnect is so loud and startling, it puts a chill in my bones.

Too many of us are living in ignorance. I fear too much of that ignorance is apathetic and willful. I fear too much of that ignorance is resentful and defensive. I fear too many ears are plugged, too many hearts are hardened. I fear too many identify the “noise” from the black community and willfully tune it out before they ever listen to the message. And I fear the consequences – both earthly and eternal.

With that said, I present to you a mash-up of voices I’ve been listening to, and this is just a small, small portion, with some quotes and links to specific articles and eye-opening threads on Twitter.

I pray you will listen, too. I pray your heart will be softened, and also pierced. I pray that this will be the beginning of an awakening for you and those around you, with ripples of justice that will spread into eternity.

Kyle J Howard, a Christian counselor and theologian currently attending the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

Black Voices: We Are Here, But You Will Not Listen

“One of the greatest lies our country has embraced is the idea that white supremacy is a demon with swastikas as horns. The truth is, white supremacy looks like a pretty southern antebellum woman. It looks like a refined pastor calling a black man a liberal agitator for insisting that his life matters. White supremacy looks like a white washed seminary curriculum, and an American history class taught only from the perspective of those with power. Finally, white supremacy looks like well-meaning white people ignoring or dismissing black voices.”

White Privilege and the Mission of God

I found this article from one of Kyle’s tweets and it absolutely lit a fire under me: “Paul embraced Roman privilege. He embraced it, & used it to serve church, justice, & advance gospel. Same should be done w/White Privilege.”

Kyle defines White Privilege in this article: “White Privilege, for the Christian, is a providential benefit of God that when properly stewarded allows for white Christians to stand uniquely and promote social justice and ethnic reconciliation in a way that others can’t within a prejudicial society.”

“Think of it this way, because I am black; the moment I mention race I am labeled divisive and an agitator. If I speak out against injustice, it is assumed that I have a chip on my shoulder that I need to get over. However, when someone who belongs to the majority culture speaks, one who has the privilege of no preconceived negative assumptions, they are listened to. Yes, they may still be rejected, but they have access to a hearing that I do not due to prejudicial presuppositions.”

This morning, one of Kyle’s tweets pointed me to …

Chanequa Walker-Barnes, theologian, psychologist, and author of Too Heavy a Yoke: Black Women and the Burden of Strength

So Let’s Talk About This “Many Sides” Thing: Please follow the link and scroll down to read the entire thread. It is a VERY important concept for white Christians to understand regarding the white Christian’s role (both individually, and collectively) in racial reconciliation.

Here is an aside from me (Katie), but not an analogy original to me: If a woman was being abused by her husband, and she was crying out about this abuse, we would deal directly with the abusive husband. We would not critique the way in which this woman was crying out. We would not tell her how she should feel. We would not dare suggest any rhetoric of “both sides”. Brothers and sisters, it is no different here, and yet SO MANY white Christians are doing this very thing when it comes to the abuse of ongoing, systemic racism in America. It absolutely is an abuse that needs to be reckoned with. If you don’t understand that, please educate yourself by listening to/reading any of the resources I list at the bottom of this post.

Please listen to Propaganda’s Happy 4th of July performance, where I first heard this analogy. It is on fire.

Equal Justice Initiative, founded by Bryan Stevenson, author of Just Mercy

Facing our Legacy of Lynching from Christianity Today, highlighting Bryan’s work

“More than 4,000 African Americans were lynched between 1877 and the rise of the civil rights movement in the early 1950s. Lynching was a brutal public tactic for maintaining white supremacy, frequently used with the tacit blessing of government authorities. It was a part of my heritage I had never been taught …”

“I was starting to wonder at all the untold history we would rather forget. Of the collective sins we long the most to disregard, America’s tragic history of lynching might top the list. But what struck me on our journey was this: Buried sins cannot be repented of.

Jemar Tisby, president of RAAN, Reformed African American Network

After Charlottesville, Will White Pastors Finally Take Racism Seriously?

“White Christians will inevitably ask, ‘But what do we do?’ This question perpetuates the problem. People of color did not create white supremacy; white people did. To ask a racial minority how to solve a problem they didn’t create and one under which they suffer only adds to their burdens.” (please click and read entire article to see four important principles in battling white supremacy)

“Despite their insistence on justice, black Christians who speak boldly about racism and white supremacy often get muted or silenced. We can only infer that the sensitivities of white listeners matter more than the pain of black brothers and sisters.”

Friends, if this does not break your heart, if this does not show you the urgency of the problem and all that is at stake, perhaps the tweet below will …

Latasha Morrison, a leading voice in the fight against human trafficking and founder of Be The Bridge

“Following the saddening. Reflecting on how many of my friends attended predominantly white churches two years ago… But majority have left because they’ve felt invisible and that comfort was more important for the Pastor.”

If you are hesitant to listen to these voices, may I lovingly but urgently push back with a why? If you are only willing to listen to white leaders in the church, if you are only willing to believe what’s being said by the vast majority of our black brothers and sisters as long as your white pastor gives it the stamp of approval … might this, in and of itself, point to a problem?

Books/Resources for You:

If you have other resources you have read that have helped you, please share them in the comments.

With Love,