TableThink Podcast
011: At The Table With Andy Rogers

011: At The Table With Andy Rogers

May 24, 2019

Andy Rogers, Acquisitions Editor, Zondervan of HarperCollins Christian Publishing, took a seat at our table, giving us insight about writers and editors.  We had many favorite pieces of the conversation, especially when he shared how he had planned on being a musician; however,  he was led to be a writer and editor.

Here are a few pieces of our conversation with Andy: 

Tell us about your life.

I am a husband and a dad, which is the center of my life.

I am an acquisitions editor in the publishing industry. I have been a part of the book industry for fourteen years now and I’ve worked in different roles.

What do you in your free time? 

I don’t have a lot of free time because I’m in the young kid stage. But. I love to write, which is part of the book, “Jot This Down.”

Writing is part therapy, and it’s part joy and hobby, and part work.  I’m also a musician.   My wife is a musician too.   We play a lot at home, church, and with friends.

We have tried to make writing and creativity a part of their life.  My son and I will write stories together one line at a time.  The part I like is that it’s in his own writing.  We have quite a collection now.

It’s valuable because it’s important to me and it’s teaching him creativity.  It’s good to be creative.  It’s very hard to make time for everything but if, we don’t do things like that we will end up on technology too much.

In your own journey how did you end up where you are now?  

For me, it began with music.  I was in garage bands and writing songs.  I went to college and studied music.   I was married right after college . . .  I had this sense that music was not going to be life.  It wasn’t just the practical realities of being a musician . . . We kinda knew that this was not where God was going to keep us . . . This was supposed to my life, what were we going to do now? . . . I was praying fervently and I was reading a bunch of literature that I did not get a chance to read when I was in college . . . John Steinbeck and Earnst Hemingway.  

I remember praying:  “What am I supposed to do?”  . . .  I looked at the books in my hands and knew this was the plan “B.”  God used that part of my brain and creativity to write and edit books.

Now there’s no looking back.

Which do you consider first to be a writer or editor? 

It’s very easy not to feel like a real writer.  I always encourage people . . . if, you write . . . even if, you write in journal.  Is it for you . . . for other people . . . your family?  There’s not a right answer.

I think most days I think of myself as an editor because I have to get up and go to work.  But.  I do think of myself as a writer.

Writers struggle calling themselves a writer.

How do you determine if, someone has a book in them? 

Do they have a message in them that they have to tell?  I fish around to find out if, it’s an article, a blog posts, or a book.  It’s a judgement call.

TableThink wants to promote reading for every age as well as to know the other side of it.  In the first chapter of your  book, Jot That Down,  Alison Hodges states a writer should have a “ridiculously achievable writing goal.”

Can you explain? 

“We have to have achievable goals in order to do it again.” 

How do you help the writer include certain details in the story? 

What type of story are you telling?

  • Is it a break-through story?
  • Is it a cautionary tale?
  • Is it a tale overcoming something?
  • Why are you telling the story?
  • Are you writing to guide others to arrive at a certain viewpoint?
  • Who is your audience?   This is probably the most important question.
You finally come to the place, your life is about writing.  You do everything you are supposed to do and then, you are rejected. 

It happens to everybody.  It hurts.  Editors don’t enjoy sending rejection memos.  We don’t want to crush anybody’s dreams.

Everyone gets rejected, even well established writers.  You would be surprised . . .  Creative work isn’t easy.

What would your encouragement be to writers today? 

If, you write, you are a writer.

We appreciate all that Andy brings to the table–Joshua & Kerrie

About A. L. Rogers

A.L. Rogers is an award-winning writer who has published short fiction in Splickety Magazine, Catapult Magazine, on and elsewhere. He is a co-founder of the semi-annual event for writers, the Jot Writers Conference ( His nonfiction can be found in various places on the web. He’s a husband and a father. And most people call him Andy.

010: At The Table With Roy Carlisle (Faith Series)
At The Table With Roy Carlisle And Paul Anderson
008:  A Conversation About Holy Week
007: At The Table With Tiffany Carter
006: Home Technology
005:  At The Table With Nancy Carlisle and Linda Hernandez-Munguia

005:  At The Table With Nancy Carlisle and Linda Hernandez-Munguia

March 1, 2019


Nancy Carlisle and Linda Hernandez-Munguia took a seat at our table and shared their story.  Their soul-deep commitment to invest in the lives of others as others have invested in them is a key piece to stepping up and making a difference.

Once again, it's clear that individuals who inspire us to rise above the circumstances change the trajectory of our story, making us want to be and do our best.

While their lives would not intersect until years later, both Nancy and Linda faced challenges of adversity at a young age.

Of course, rising above the hard of life requires grit and determination, a valuable asset to living our best. 

The thing is .  . .  along the way . . . Nancy and Linda each formed the belief that no one needs to manage adversity alone.   This belief led them to a career path in the public school system.  Nancy is a registered nurse serving the North Clackamas School District and Linda serves as the Community Resource Specialist at Hoover Elementary School in the Salem-Keizer School DistrictThey finally met when Nancy set out to bring Backpack Buddies to Salem through her church, St. Mark Lutheran Church to impact children struggling with food insecurity.

Backpack Buddies helps meet the needs of hungry children when other resources are unavailable. 

They emphasized their goal is to give dignity to kids and their families through quietly putting bags filled with food in their backpacks.  The bags, referred to as bags of hope, are filled by a volunteer team and transported to the school.  We sat at the table in awe of how this relative simple service goes beyond giving food.

Essentially, each bag of hope gives the powerful message, "You are not alone."  

Nancy and Linda have inspired us by their story and service. There's no doubt that there will be kids and families who rise from adversity and set out to serve because of these two courageous women who choose to make a difference.


If you would like to serve, donate, or find out how to start BackPack Buddies for your community go to Saint Mark Lutheran's website @

Our daily podcast, "Think On This" can be found on our website under podcast, Think On This, as well as on itunes,  podbean, and on Amazon’s Alexa.

004: Inspire - Innovate - Invest

004: Inspire - Innovate - Invest

February 22, 2019

Joshua and Kerrie meet at the table to discuss the "why" of TableThink.   Listen to this podcast and you will hear how they enjoy working together, despite the differences in their age, gender, and life experience.

They talked about what it means to be inspired, innovative, and invested in our personal life as well as in our organization. 

They agreed these three elements are essential to living our best and it's our hope this encourages others to develop this in their own life.

To be inspired means we are in the Spirit.  It's part of the with-God life.  When we are inspired, we see all the possibilities.  So, Joshua and Kerrie are excited to give more tools to people to live inspired and then to inspire others.

Inspiration leads to innovation.  There's always something more that can be implemented to live our best.   Innovation is Joshua's favorite word.  Kerrie discussed walking into the office and finding Joshua surrounded by gadgets and objects to try to figure out how we can increase in our ability to reach people with new and exciting ways.

They discuss their belief in being invested in our life with God, self, and others.  This investment is what serves individuals to do what we are to do.

We can't wait until you listen and discover more about these three essentials . . . inspire, innovate, and invest . . . a catalyst to live the fullest as you find your best.

You can subscribe to the TableThink podcast on iTunes and Podbean.

003: At the Table With Anne Miller

003: At the Table With Anne Miller

February 8, 2019

We are so glad to introduce you to TableThink's newest author and partner, Anne Miller.   Anne is writing monthly articles, under the column, Your Tribe.  

This month’s article is about hospitality and tacos at the table.

We are excited for you to listen to our interview with Anne on this TableThink podcast.  Anne is  known for inviting everyone and anyone to the table wherever she is at. You will be inspired this month and every month to learn how Anne changes the world by loving people wherever she is with uncommon hospitality.

002: At The Table With Roy Carlisle

002: At The Table With Roy Carlisle

February 1, 2019

The TableThink Podcast show introduces you to amazing people serving others with their gifts and abilities.

TableThink believes in the power of reading.  We think that despite all the binge-worthy shows on Amazon, Hulu, and Netflix nothing can compare with a good book to read.


We invited one of our favorites, Roy Carlisle, to be featured in our TableThink podcast.

Roy Carlisle has been the editor for top authors, changing the way the world thinks by fine-tuning words and crafting the story.  In this episode of TableThink’s podcast,  Roy gives insight to the creative work of writing, explaining key elements of the relationship between author and writer.

We asked, “If, you would put some of your authors together at a table—who may not agree with one another—who would they be and why would you invite them?”

His list is thought-provoking, giving us reason to pause and think about what would happen at a table filled with these kind of unique and powerful individuals.

We loved the question he would ask the authors seated at the table:  What was the book that changed your life?”

As Roy says,  Nothing we have invented replaces the book.”

Thank you, Roy, for working hard to make sure we have plenty of books to read.  There’s no substitute for what the book brings to our world.

Roy Carlisle’s bio:

Roy is Executive Editor for Books for the Independent Institute, working with Independent’s Research Director, Center Directors, Fellows and Scholars to identify academic authors for potential book publishing projects. He is also liaisons with its print and eBook distributor, Independent Publishers Group in Chicago, and with publishing industry associations, including the Independent Book Publishers Association (where he has served on the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors) and the American Association of Publishers.

Roy has been Senior Editor at HarperOne (formerly HarperSanFrancisco), West Coast Senior Editor at The Crossroad Publishing Company, Co-Owner and Editorial Director at Circulus Publishing Group (Wildcat Canyon Press and PageMill Press), and General Manager of the Fuller Theological Seminary Bookstore.

Roy has also been a Founding Board Member and former Chairman of the Board at New College Berkeley, and Founder and former Executive Director of the Academy of Christian Editors. He maintains an active membership in S.H.A.R.P., the Society for the History of Authorship, Reading, and Publishing. He also belongs to the Roxburghe Club and the Book Club of California, both in San Francisco, and the Colophon Club in Berkeley. Currently he also works as a freelance editorial consultant for individual writers and independent publishing houses.

Roy holds a B.A. in philosophy from Whitman College, and M.A. in theology from Fuller Theological Seminary, has studied counseling psychology at Santa Clara University, and studied Library Science at Diablo Valley College, and taught publishing courses at the UC Berkeley and at the IBPA University.

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