Rebekah Guzman is a senior editor at NavPress. She’s been editing for over eight years and specializes in student resources, including YA fiction, Bible studies, and curriculum. An Air Force “brat,” Rebekah has traveled the world and lived in Germany, England, Guam, and Hawaii. She has since made her home in Colorado Springs with her husband, Ben, and daughter, Bella.
How do you want to grow spiritually today?
In recent months, NavPress has returned to its roots...
While NavPress may be most well-known for publishing discipleship and spiritual growth materials, it also publishes resources aimed at specific audiences. TH1NK, which publishes relevant, life-changing resources for sixteen- through twenty-three-year-olds, launched in 2003 and has been among the most successful in the young adult genre, including fiction.
NavPress recently surprised the publishing world when it swept the Young Adult Fiction category for the most coveted prize in Christian fiction—the Christy Awards. (NavPress had an astonishing five finalists selected to compete in the Christys, three of which were YA fiction authors). We’re proud to announce that Lisa Samson won the Christy for her young adult novel Hollywood Nobody—the first in a series of four books.
In her Hollywood Nobody series, Samson features a mature-for-her-age teen girl traveling around the country in an RV with her mom, who works on location for the film industry. Samson specializes in holding a magnifying glass over the human condition, studying its shortcomings and glories. Readers describe her as edgy and insightful and praise her for reflecting their own struggles in her characters.
Melody Carlson’s True Colors series was among the first YA fiction books in NavPress’s student line and has sold over 285,000 copies to date. Other TH1NK fiction authors include Erynn Mangum, Adam Palmer, and Christy Award finalists Michelle Buckman and Jenny B. Jones.
This year we’ve also been honored to work with some new YA fiction authors. Two of TH1NK’s debut authors are D. Barkley Briggs and Laura L. Smith.
D. Barkley Briggs’s first YA novel released this summer and has been a huge hit right out of the gate. A recent review on TeenReads.com said Briggs is “in the same vein as such master fantasy writers as J. R. R. Tolkien and C. S. Lewis . . . [and] has
penned a superb fictional tale . . .The Book of Names is fast-paced and compelling, and readers will be clamoring for [the] next installment in this exciting and worthy new series.” Briggs’s second book in the series, Corus the Champion, releases next summer.
Laura L. Smith’s first novel, Skinny, released in September. Her writing depicts true-to-life characters and relevant, hard-hitting topics, including eating disorders, sexuality, depression, and the struggle to fit in. Smith’s second book is due out next fall.
The Power to Change Lives
In recent months, NavPress has returned to its roots to align more closely with the principles of its parent organization, The Navigators. The Navigators is an interdenominational, nonprofit organization dedicated to helping people grow spiritually.
While this means we’ll focus on our strengths, such as Bible studies, Message products, and other spiritual growth materials, we believe that many of the great and lasting truths that change people’s hearts and minds can sometimes best be conveyed through works of fiction. In short, we believe in the power of story to change lives. Our mission is to publish quality fiction that can reach beyond the Christian marketplace to influence the culture. For example, Tosca Lee’s Demon and Don Locke’s The Reluctant Journey of David Connors are NavPress fiction authors whose well-crafted writing rivals the best fiction coming from secular publishers.
In addition to the Christy Awards, NavPress had four ACFW 2008 Book of the Year winners: In Between by Jenny B. Jones (First Place, Young Adult category and Third Place, Debut Author category), The Restorer’s Son by Sharon Hinck (First Place, Speculative category), and Demon by Tosca Lee (Second Place, Speculative category).
We’re thrilled with the success of all our authors and look forward to publishing more life-changing resources in the future.