Founder & CEO
Rick Christian has had a life-long passion for words and great writing. He is the founder and CEO of Alive Literary Agency, with 15 New York Times #1 bestsellers to his credit. He launched Alive Literary Agency (formerly Alive Communications) in Los Angeles in 1989 and moved operations to Colorado Springs in 1991.
Christian’s efforts on behalf of top authors have been widely chronicled in leading newspapers and magazines, from the New York Times and USA Today to Vanity Fair, Entertainment Weekly, Publisher’s Weekly, a cover story for Christianity Today and a feature profile in The Gazette. His biography and record of achievement appear in Who’s Who in America.
Raised in San Diego and a 1977 graduate of Stanford University (communications and creative writing), he also studied at Capernwray Bible School in England and the University of Southern California where he pursued graduate work in professional writing.
Christian launched his publishing career as a newspaper reporter and columnist, followed by a career switch to magazine publishing. He served as associate editor of Campus Life magazine, executive editor of The Saturday Evening Post, and then transitioned to executive leadership in book publishing. Along the way, he wrote several books himself, including Alive, The Woodland Hills Tragedy, A Gift of Life, and Silent Night, which was adapted for the television series “Sue Thomas F.B.Eye.”
It is as a literary agent that Christian became renowned, particularly for his entrepreneurial efforts behind such mega-sellers as the Left Behind series (70 million copies with millions more in 27 languages), Eugene Peterson’s The Message Bible (20 million copies), Karen Kingsbury’s novels (25 million copies), Lisa Beamer’s post 9-11 Let’s Roll (1.5 million copies), and the Life Recovery Bible (3 million copies).
He is also celebrated for his literary efforts on behalf of Billy Graham and his family, Brennan Manning, Henri Nouwen, Emerson Eggerichs, and Rwanda President Paul Kagame, among others. Other Alive phenoms include Don Miller’s Blue Like Jazz (1 million copies), Ron Hall and Denver Moore’s Same Kind of Different as Me (1 million), and Heaven is for Real (13 million). Additionally, he oversees the adaptation of Alive books for film and TV, including Tri-Star’s hit production of Heaven Is for Real, Paramount’s Same Kind of Different as Me, Karen Kingsbury’s Baxter Family TV series with Mark Burnett and Roma Downey, and numerous films for Hallmark Channel and various independent producers.
Christian’s representation of high-profile properties, negotiation for major film and television adaptations, and pioneering work to develop crossover markets and leverage support across all formats and media earned him and his Alive Literary Agency team its second-to-none reputation as Agents of Change.
Christian also served as the longtime Board Chair of Tirzah International, a network of national movements encompassing over 150,000 women leaders worldwide, addressing issues of injustice affecting women and girls. He and his wife Debbie have a blended family of seven children and live on a ranch in Black Forest, outside of Colorado Springs. They are active volunteers with Springs Rescue Mission. His interests include real estate development, winter sports, boating, mountain biking, fishing and hunting. He is an avid reader, travels broadly, and finds special challenge in the Wall Street Journal and New York Times crossword puzzles and hiking mountains over 14,000 feet.
Little Known Facts:
Rick was a paper boy, yo-yo champion, Eagle Scout, and high school student body president. He has hunted cape buffalo in Africa, alligators in South America and bear in Colorado. An avid fly fisherman, he has also landed king salmon in Alaska and marlin in Cabo San Lucas.
Want to learn more from Rick?
Check out the Ask Rick Christian column