Can You Believe It?

When Brad and I decided to publish The Shack on our own, I had no idea how we’d find an audience for this story. But believing it was what God wanted us to do, we put it out and released it on May 1, 2007 primarily to the audience of this website and The God Journey. Without any paid advertising in magazines, newspapers or websites, we have watched this book find an audience simply through word of mouth—friends and friends of friends.

Those who most defend our religious institutions and denominations always ask the question, “How can we have an impact in the world if we don’t support these kinds of organizations?” While those can be a way we cooperate, I also see the incredible power of interconnected relationships that we may not even be aware of. Look how many people have found out about this book, simply because friends have recommended it to friends, who’ve recommended it to friends. God has limitless options to get his work done. Just when we think we’ve got him in the box that fits him best, he shows that no such box could ever contain him.

Today we reached a bit of a milestone. The Shack appeared for the first time on USA TODAY’s Best-Selling Book List at number 47. We have continued to be amazed at the growing demand for this little story, and the attention it is now catching at the highest echelon’s of the publishing industry. Brad and I will be flying to New York City next week to meet with some of those people about the future of this book. Please pray for us if you think about it. We want Father’s wisdom in continuing to position this book in a way that brings glory to him. And to all of you who have helped pass this book along, we are grateful for your part in this unfolding story.

Now it’s time to get to work on the screen play!

Share this Post!

Related post

20 Comments
  1. Joel March 27, 2008 at 7:59 pm

    How wonderful! So many people are being blessed by this book. I love getting together with people after they finish reading it, you can see a light that has gone on. You can tell when it touches someone deeply, and most of those I know it has touched their hearts in a very cool way. I am really excited and a little nervous about it hitting the big screen, I really hope it does well making that transition. Good luck to you and thank you for continuing to be faithful to your hearts belief that God is passionate about his kids.

  2. Melbourne Sue March 27, 2008 at 8:41 pm

    It never ceases being a fascinating story, Wayne, the way this whole book came about. The Body in action 🙂 Who needs mammoth institutions to get stuff done? Just everyday people. Rock on 🙂

  3. Joel March 27, 2008 at 10:59 pm

    How wonderful! So many people are being blessed by this book. I love getting together with people after they finish reading it, you can see a light that has gone on. You can tell when it touches someone deeply, and most of those I know it has touched their hearts in a very cool way. I am really excited and a little nervous about it hitting the big screen, I really hope it does well making that transition. Good luck to you and thank you for continuing to be faithful to your hearts belief that God is passionate about his kids.

  4. Melbourne Sue March 27, 2008 at 11:41 pm

    It never ceases being a fascinating story, Wayne, the way this whole book came about. The Body in action 🙂 Who needs mammoth institutions to get stuff done? Just everyday people. Rock on 🙂

  5. Andrew March 28, 2008 at 7:30 am

    I praise God for the work that has been done through you by the Father. I have found that The Shack has led to many discussions which typically end up with “if you like the idea that Papa really loves you this much, check out “He Loves Me” and see what happened on the cross”. I have seen people changed and genuinely excited about what He has in store for them. You three are in my prayers. May Father be glorified in all of this.

    Andrew

  6. Kelley March 28, 2008 at 8:54 am

    We read The Shack when it was first published, and we were so excited about its powerful message(s) that we have since bought a case of them (plus a few more) and given the book out to several people.

    We just got to meet WPYoung at a book signing at B&N this week. However, we were completely surprised to see one of our neighbors at the book signing too! Our first reaction of surprise was, “How did SHE hear about The Shack?! WE didn’t give it to her!” I guess it just proves once again what you said – God can spread a message without a marketing machine.
    The Shack has brought about so many wonderful discussions about God for us. I love to hear the many different ways that people’s hearts are touched by this story! We look forward to many more interactions, and being able to share with others about His love. I agree that “He Loves Me!” is the perfect follow-up to The Shack.

  7. Andrew March 28, 2008 at 10:30 am

    I praise God for the work that has been done through you by the Father. I have found that The Shack has led to many discussions which typically end up with “if you like the idea that Papa really loves you this much, check out “He Loves Me” and see what happened on the cross”. I have seen people changed and genuinely excited about what He has in store for them. You three are in my prayers. May Father be glorified in all of this.

    Andrew

  8. Kelley March 28, 2008 at 11:54 am

    We read The Shack when it was first published, and we were so excited about its powerful message(s) that we have since bought a case of them (plus a few more) and given the book out to several people.

    We just got to meet WPYoung at a book signing at B&N this week. However, we were completely surprised to see one of our neighbors at the book signing too! Our first reaction of surprise was, “How did SHE hear about The Shack?! WE didn’t give it to her!” I guess it just proves once again what you said – God can spread a message without a marketing machine.
    The Shack has brought about so many wonderful discussions about God for us. I love to hear the many different ways that people’s hearts are touched by this story! We look forward to many more interactions, and being able to share with others about His love. I agree that “He Loves Me!” is the perfect follow-up to The Shack.

  9. Lindsay March 28, 2008 at 12:23 pm

    What’s even more impressive than #47 at USA Today is #8 on Amazon.com. I’ve been tracking the book for several months and to the best of my knowledge, this is the first time it’s broken into the Top 10 of ALL books available on Amazon.com, not just books in the Religion & Spirituality category. Wow! There’s a real hunger out there to know the Father’s love.

  10. Lindsay March 28, 2008 at 3:23 pm

    What’s even more impressive than #47 at USA Today is #8 on Amazon.com. I’ve been tracking the book for several months and to the best of my knowledge, this is the first time it’s broken into the Top 10 of ALL books available on Amazon.com, not just books in the Religion & Spirituality category. Wow! There’s a real hunger out there to know the Father’s love.

  11. jewlsntexas March 29, 2008 at 8:05 am

    I saw The Shack in Books-a-million the other day – right in front on one of those little displays when you first walk in, and I almost squealed out loud. It is so awesome to know that the book will be so widely available.
    We need to continue to pray for Willie – as the book gets more recognition, he will obviously take more heat.

  12. jewlsntexas March 29, 2008 at 8:06 am

    Are you seriously working on a screenplay?

  13. jewlsntexas March 29, 2008 at 11:05 am

    I saw The Shack in Books-a-million the other day – right in front on one of those little displays when you first walk in, and I almost squealed out loud. It is so awesome to know that the book will be so widely available.
    We need to continue to pray for Willie – as the book gets more recognition, he will obviously take more heat.

  14. jewlsntexas March 29, 2008 at 11:06 am

    Are you seriously working on a screenplay?

  15. Christopher Coulter March 30, 2008 at 12:22 pm

    If doing a screenplay (wow), I can provide some free help slash insights, not that such is worth much.

    Getting started, go Final Draft, best bet, however, Movie Magic is really functional too, having lots of backers, Craig Mazin being one of the most vocal, but it just seems Final Draft is more the studio standard of sorts, though I wish they’d hurry up and kick out version 8. That company rests on its laurels as an art form, holding contests and mindless party-chumming with Hollywood biggies, not grinding down and kicking up a better product, least my perception.

    Before you even get started, you MUST read “How Not to Write a Screenplay”, so you will avoid all the usual pitfalls, that doom scripts. But be wary, as locking things into ‘professional reader’ boxes, wipes away some of the grand poetry of it all, think 18th century run-on’s vs. MLA. Modern use may be correct and clean, easy to read, but the grand-sweeping beauty of language is lost in a commodity package dictated and served by some collective-grouping of egg-heady Prius-driving English-major academia knotheads. And Hollywood has it’s own form of script-Nazi knotheads. 🙂

    But, standards being standards, I try and stick by Christopher Riley’s “Hollywood Standard” which is good enough of a standards bible as any out there. And Alex’s “Crafty Screenwriting” is my ‘bible’ of the trade, as I avoid all the “screenplay as art” book fluff, and Alex approaches things in the developmental real, rather than the writer lucid-dreaming perfect-world fantasy.

    But no discussion on ‘screeplaying’ is ever complete without a good dose of the cynical (cynical is defined as reality on Wilshire), but “Breakfast with Sharks: A Screenwriter’s Guide to Getting the Meeting, Nailing the Pitch, Signing the Deal, and Navigating the Murky Waters of Hollywood” is a good starting point, (can you say that title in one breath, whew). And then Brooke A. Wharton’s “The Writer Got Screwed (but didn’t have to): Guide to the Legal and Business Practices of Writing for the Entertainment Industry” for lunch.

    Good books, never mind the titles. I think I will pen a “Guide to Writing Big Fancy Book Titles that Over-tell You Things that a Simple Descriptive Title Should Make Obvious”. 😉

  16. Christopher Coulter March 30, 2008 at 3:22 pm

    If doing a screenplay (wow), I can provide some free help slash insights, not that such is worth much.

    Getting started, go Final Draft, best bet, however, Movie Magic is really functional too, having lots of backers, Craig Mazin being one of the most vocal, but it just seems Final Draft is more the studio standard of sorts, though I wish they’d hurry up and kick out version 8. That company rests on its laurels as an art form, holding contests and mindless party-chumming with Hollywood biggies, not grinding down and kicking up a better product, least my perception.

    Before you even get started, you MUST read “How Not to Write a Screenplay”, so you will avoid all the usual pitfalls, that doom scripts. But be wary, as locking things into ‘professional reader’ boxes, wipes away some of the grand poetry of it all, think 18th century run-on’s vs. MLA. Modern use may be correct and clean, easy to read, but the grand-sweeping beauty of language is lost in a commodity package dictated and served by some collective-grouping of egg-heady Prius-driving English-major academia knotheads. And Hollywood has it’s own form of script-Nazi knotheads. 🙂

    But, standards being standards, I try and stick by Christopher Riley’s “Hollywood Standard” which is good enough of a standards bible as any out there. And Alex’s “Crafty Screenwriting” is my ‘bible’ of the trade, as I avoid all the “screenplay as art” book fluff, and Alex approaches things in the developmental real, rather than the writer lucid-dreaming perfect-world fantasy.

    But no discussion on ‘screeplaying’ is ever complete without a good dose of the cynical (cynical is defined as reality on Wilshire), but “Breakfast with Sharks: A Screenwriter’s Guide to Getting the Meeting, Nailing the Pitch, Signing the Deal, and Navigating the Murky Waters of Hollywood” is a good starting point, (can you say that title in one breath, whew). And then Brooke A. Wharton’s “The Writer Got Screwed (but didn’t have to): Guide to the Legal and Business Practices of Writing for the Entertainment Industry” for lunch.

    Good books, never mind the titles. I think I will pen a “Guide to Writing Big Fancy Book Titles that Over-tell You Things that a Simple Descriptive Title Should Make Obvious”. 😉

  17. Dave March 30, 2008 at 5:36 pm

    Awesome, Wayne.

  18. Dave March 30, 2008 at 8:36 pm

    Awesome, Wayne.

  19. Melody Johnson April 20, 2008 at 5:32 pm

    Hey Everybody!

    I just checked the USA Today top 150, and the shack isn’t #47 anymore – it’s #14!!!!!!!!!!!

  20. Melody Johnson April 20, 2008 at 8:32 pm

    Hey Everybody!

    I just checked the USA Today top 150, and the shack isn’t #47 anymore – it’s #14!!!!!!!!!!!

Comments are closed.