INTERVIEW WITH TIM SINCLAIR
1. How did you become a writer?
While I've always enjoyed writing, I've never thought much about making it a career. Spending the last 14 years in radio however, I have gotten to do a lot of writing. I frequently script copy for our website, email newsletter, on-air newscasts, and produced promos. Several years ago I began blogging as well, mostly as a natural outgrowth of the topics we discussed on my morning show. Within a few months, I realized that I had a potential book idea, and it wasn't long before the search was on for an agent and publisher.
2. What do you enjoy most about writing?
I love communicating an idea creatively and (hopefully) effectively. That's what we try to do every day on the radio, and writing allows me to expand many of these ideas even further. My mom always said that she thought I was going to be a lawyer, and I definitely think there is a part of me that enjoys researching a topic, organizing my thoughts, and then making a clear, concise case for my position.
3. What prompted you to write "Branded: Sharing Jesus with a Consumer Culture?"
A conversation with an old friend (who turned out to be an agnostic) was what really prompted the idea. I learned a lot from him about what our current culture thinks of Christians and why. He challenged me to think through what I believe and why I believe it. But, ultimately, our discussions revealed how poorly Christians (as a whole) have done at truly reflecting who Jesus is. Branded became a challenge to Christians to reflect who Jesus truly is, rather than who many of us have made him out to be.
4. How would you describe your book and your style of writing?
My style is direct and brief, with a slightly humorous edge every now and then. Branded reads more like a series of blog posts than a long-form book, but I wrote it that way intentionally. Personally, I don't have the time or attention span to spend 15 hours poring over a book...so I wrote Branded for people like me.
5. What are the main things you hope to accomplish through your book?
I hope to both challenge and encourage Christians who have found themselves either in a spiritual rut or in a position where they are embarrassed at how Christians are perceived. The way evangelism is and the way evangelism is supposed to be are not the same thing...and I hope Branded gives readers permission to do what God calls them to, not what the American church often tells them to.
6. How does your relationship with God play into your writing?
It's everything. I write based on what God is teaching me at the time. Do I have all the answers? Absolutely not. However, writing helps me think through situations...and hopefully helps others think through them as well. Honestly, the discussion that comes from my blogs and books can be just as helpful as the actual words themselves.
7. How has your job as a radio personality on a popular Christian Radio station prepared you to write this book?
I have the opportunity to talk to (and with) nearly a quarter of a million people every week on our radio show, so that gives me a pretty good handle on our culture (especially the Christian culture). My regular interactions with other radio stations and businesses who want to better market themselves gives me a pretty good handle on marketing. Put those two things together and, voila, you get Branded.