Yea! A Book Contract for “Wrestling With God”

Writer Barbara Falconer Newhall in her writing room holding a copy of her book contract with Bondfire Books. Photo by Jon Newhall

FYI: That’s an earlier contract in my negotiations with Patheos. I was happy to sign that one, and even happier to sign the current one. Photo by Jon Newhall

By Barbara Falconer Newhall

Good news. I’ve signed a contract with a publisher for my book Wrestling With God. The publisher is Patheos Press. Patheos Books is affiliated with,  a heavily trafficked, multi-faith website and thus, I think, a very good fit for my book.

You’ll be able to get the book on-line – as an e-book or a print book. And two bookstores have already promised to carry it, A Great Good Place for Books in Oakland, California, and Book Passage in San Francisco and Corte Madera.

As my ever-patient family and friends are all too aware, this book of mine has been in the works for some time. It all began when I was the religion reporter at the Contra Costa Times in Walnut Creek, California.

The entrance to the bookstore A Great Good Place for Books in the Montclair District of Oakland, CA. Photo by BF Newhall

A Great Good Place for Books in Oakland, California. You’ll be able to buy the book here. Photo by BF Newhall

So many interesting people – evangelicals, charismatic Catholics, Unitarians, Hindus, Muslims, Baha’is, a Zoroastrian and even a Witch or two – but so little time to talk in depth. So little time to ask the probing personal questions.

I always got the story I’d been assigned to get – the church budget, the new rabbi, the vacation Bible school, the newly installed stained glass windows.

But I hardly ever had time to ask the deeper questions: Why do you believe in God anyway? What is God like? Is God God – or something else? And how do you know?

I wanted to know how people arrived at the beliefs, the faith, the attitudes, the certainty and doubt at the center of their lives.

And so, when pain in my elbows, wrists and hands brought my newsroom career – sadly – to an end, I decided to go out into the field to interview a cross-section of American believers and doubters and get some answers to the questions that had been on my mind for so long:

What can a thoughtful person believe in this day and age, I wanted to know. Is there a faith somewhere that can withstand the challenges of our globalized, multicultural, skeptical, modern — post-modern? — twenty-first-century world?

I interviewed dozens of people in the process – conservatives and progressives, believers and atheists. It took a while, but all those fascinating people helped me along on my rocky spiritual journey. And in the end I got an — unexpected — answer to my questions.

My deadline to turn in the finished and polished manuscript is February, 2014.

Watch this space.

Meanwhile, I’m cracking out the champagne.

You can read more about me an my book project in the About section of this website. Thanks for your support!

Update: Publication will be early 2015.




  1. Barbara Falconer Newhall says:

    Pub date is January, 2015. Watch this space!

  2. Barbara,
    This is wonderful news! Congratulations! I’m looking forward to reading your book as soon as it comes out.

  3. Wonderful news, Barbara! I’ve been following your journey since we met at the Squaw Writers Conference in 2006. How exciting your book soon will be out in the world. Congratulations!

  4. Dee Myers says:

    Congratulations on your contract. You have another potential buyer right here. Can’t wait to buy it. Dee

  5. Anne Milner says:

    Congratulations, Barbara. Way to go. I look forward to reading your book.

  6. Fabulous news! Congratulations!

  7. Phyllis O'Sullivan says:

    Congratulations! I can’t wait to read it.

  8. Congratulations Barbara!

  9. Linda spencer says:

    This is fantastic news! Way-to-go!!!

  10. Carol L. Park says:

    Barbara, I’m so happy for you! And also thrilled that your words will get into the hands of many. God will use it for good, I’m sure!

  11. What a fascinating back-story for your book, Barbara! I’ve actually thought about writing a similar kind of book, but you dove in and did the work and produced the manuscript, and it sounds as though you unearthed some satisfying answers. Can’t wait to read your book. Keep me informed, please! Congratulations on your contract!

    • Barbara Falconer Newhall says:

      Thank you, Sunny. I’ll be posting regular updates on the book’s progress. It’s pretty much done. Just needs a few finishing touches.

  12. Barb–
    Huge congratulations on this book deal! From another writer, me, to you, the book author, this is a huge accomplishment. Wishing you all good things! Love the title of the book too.

  13. That’s exciting news, Barbara. Can’t wait to read it. As an agnostic, I’ll be totally into everyone you’ve interviewed for your book. Cheers!

    • Barbara Falconer Newhall says:

      Toppy, This book is all about that very thing to be or not to be . . . an agnostic.

  14. congrats, barbara, even though the term god doesn’t mean much to me.

    • Barbara Falconer Newhall says:

      And that, of course, is what the book’s about — what do we mean by “God,” anyway?

  15. Treacy Coates says:

    Barbara – that’s wonderful. Congratulations!



  1. […] very challenge made the writing of Wrestling with God take a lot longer than it would have if I’d been writing about drought-tolerant ground covers for […]

  2. […] about other manuscript milestones at “Yea! A Book Contract for ‘Wrestling with God’” and “Yippee! I Did It. I Finished My […]

  3. […] once gave me some advice to take along on the promotion circuit that’s coming up for my book, Wrestling with God. When I’m being interviewed, he said, listen to the question. Give it my full attention; don’t […]

  4. […] of furious note-taking and, every chance I got, lots of touting my spiritual journey/memoir book, Wrestling With God to RNA friends, colleagues and anyone else who’d […]

  5. […] DON’T MISS! Why Can’t a Dad Be More Like a Mom? . . . Do We Really Want Them To Be? Yea! A Book Contract for “Wrestling With God” A Manners-Challenged Kid Who Became the Apple of His Grandma’s Eye The Mother-of-the-Groom […]

Leave a Comment