Oh friends, I’ve got a powerhouse of a writer here with us today: Katelyn Beaty, author of A Woman’s Place, is the bee’s knees. I’ll let you get to know her below, but if you haven’t yet read Katelyn’s book, it’s a must-read for Christian women (and men!) everywhere. Continue reading for the story behind the story, then leave a comment here or head to Instagram for a chance to win a copy. Enjoy!
Tell us a bit about yourself, will you? Well I will start with the most important information: INFJ, Enneagram 3w4, Ravenclaw, and my Starbucks drink is a grande Americano with whole milk and two pumps of mint syrup.
On lesser things: I am a Midwesterner through and through, was raised in Ohio, went to college in Michigan, and currently live in the Chicago suburbs. I moved to this area 10 years ago for an editorial assistant position at Christianity Today magazine, where I would later start the website Her.meneutics and become the first female managing editor. That experience of working as a woman leader in a traditionally male-dominated environment profoundly shaped my thoughts on work and leadership, and my desire to see more women flourish in the workplace.
Things that make me happy: the Lord of the Rings trilogy, karaoke, a perfectly crisp IPA on a warm summer day, traveling outside the U.S., and the Anglican liturgy.
Let’s talk about your book: what, in a nutshell, is your book about anyway? At its heart, A Woman’s Place is a celebration of women’s work—both outside and inside the home. I believe that as God’s image bearers, we all have an innate desire and call to labor for our and others’ flourishing. In our contemporary American context, many Christian women learn that work is good—up to a point. Or we get caught in debates about “working moms” and “stay-at-home moms,” and sadly the local church can become the frontlines for these divisions. I wrote my book to honor women’s contributions in the workplace and to encourage women who wonder if their work matters.
Do tell, what was the inspiration behind it? At root, I think most book authors start writing in order to figure out something in their own thinking or identity. That’s true for me. After serving as an editor at Christianity Today for several years, I realized: I really love work. It’s core to my identity. I love being productive, managing projects, and sending out this finished product. But in the world of Christian womanhood, it seemed there weren’t many narratives or resources on professional work. That was striking to me, and I wanted to address the dearth.
How do you hope readers will be changed by your words? I hope all readers, female and male—and yes, many men have picked up this book with bright fuschia text on the cover—will see God’s hand of blessing and pleasure whenever they work with excellence, no matter where that work takes place. From running board meetings to washing the dishes, working is core to what we are made to do as God’s image bearers. I want to tear down the divide that says work done outside a church building is less holy than expicitly “spiritual” work. All work can be spiritual if it’s done for the glory of God.
I also hope more women in particular will walk away being able to celebrate other women’s work, even if it’s different from their own. A few folks have assumed that I denigrate stay-at-home moms (before having read the book…), but in fact, I honor the unique work and call of motherhood, even if it’s not my own. In interviews with dozens of moms, I walked away with a deeper appreciation for the work of raising and loving tiny image bearers. I hope women who read the book can walk away honoring the work of other women, even if the work is happening in a different space or on a different timeline.
Lest we forget to ask, how have YOU been changed by writing the book? Well, it’s certainly a cliché, but the process of writing the book was like having a baby. Or running a marathon. Or running a marathon and then giving birth at the finish line. Writing is not for the faint of heart! But through the grueling process, God provided rest and friendship and support in ways that I couldn’t have anticipated. I learned that when we obey God’s call to take on something big or scary, that God will meet us along the way.
How and where can we find you on the internet? KatelynBeaty.com is a great place to start! There I’ve collected some of my articles and essays for places like The Atlantic, The New York Times, and The Washington Post. I’m also on Twitter @KatelynBeaty and on Insta at katelyn_beaty.
Yup. Bee’s knees. Stop whatever you’re doing. Leave a comment below. Head over to Instagram for more entry options, and then snuggle up and get to reading A Woman’s Place. I can’t recommend it more highly. Contest ends on Monday, October 23rd. Good luck!
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