My background before writing the book was working for a large Christian non-profit (I still do actually!), and I was in seminary at the time. I've since graduated with my Master's in Biblical Theology.
It was much easier than you might expect. Hard work, definitely, but not some impossible journey. I had several articles in various Christian magazines, and I had met a Christian author named Gary Thomas (who wrote Sacred Marriage and whose most recent book is Loving Him Well: Practical Advice on Influencing Your Husband) who gave me some advice along the way and also the names of a few agents to talk with.
Well, I think we can definitely talk about Jesus in a way that makes it clear that "Gospel" means "good news." That means learning to interact with people and get to know them enough that when I share the gospel, I say it in a way that is clear and understandable to them. I've shared my faith (often) with people from all different political and faith backgrounds and guess what? Most of them really enjoy the conversation and want to talk more!
One of the most important questions we can ask as we're talking to someone about Jesus is, "What would be good news about Jesus for this person?" Sometimes we get caught up in a "favorite" way to share the gospel, but it might not be as clear for the individual we're with. Jesus talked about the good news differently with the woman at the well than he did with Nicodemus. Let's find the thing that is most exciting and beautiful about Jesus for each person we talk to and share that with them clearly!
Yes! We're in the middle of a YA fantasy trilogy. The first book, The Crescent Stone, came out last year, and the new one, The Heartwood Crown, comes out this August! I'm really excited about it!