About Us

We publish books that the layman can read.

We plunder the vaults and archives of academia

We share their treasures with Everyman

And bring the average Christian into the discussions of the elite

Greatest Stories Ever Told (GSET) is a small publishing company in Selmer, Tennessee. (Read a discussion of the benefits of small publishers.)

I am Paul Pavao, and I started GSET.

Our Story

The story of GSET begins with the publishing of In the Beginning Was the Logos in 2011 (reprinted in 2014 as Decoding Nicea). After researching various options, I chose to self-publish my book. Here are my reasons:

  • Times have changed. Just a few years ago, the only way to print books affordably was to print them in runs of at least 5,000. Now, a single book can be printed for not much more than the per book cost of a large run. Authors can publish their own books at almost no cost, printing a book only when they receive an order.
  • My book concerned church history, specifically the Council of Nicea. My web site, Christian-history.org, was getting a quarter million visits a year (three-quarters of a million in 2014). I figured this was a bigger audience of people specifically interested in church history than the typical publishing company could produce.
  • Today, even traditionally published authors have to do the lion's share of the marketing of their book. With the audience my web site could produce, why would I want to go through the process of approaching publishing companies or literary agents who would be very unlikely to match my targeted audience?
  • Honestly, the process of pursuing a traditional publisher is not easy. I found the writing of a proposal and query letters more difficult than writing the book, despite the immense amount of research that went into it.

As it turned out, just one month after the book was released, I was diagnosed with a rare and usually fatal form of leukemia. The treatment of it put me out of circulation for almost a year, and recovering made me a part-time worker for another year. Nonetheless, In the Beginning Was the Logos sold about a thousand copies between paperback and electronic sales.

More Books

In 2012 my daughter-in-law, Esther Pavao, came to work for me and wrote many of the pages that are now on Revolutionary-War.net. One set of web pages, on slavery during the American Revolution, was so extensively researched that I had her compile it into a book, Slavery During the Revolutionary War, which I published in 2013.

Then one day I ran across The Promise, a retelling of the Nativity from the perspective of Mary, the mother of Jesus. It was on the blog of a fifteen-year-old girl, published in four installments. I found the book phenomenal; it transported me to the first century and let me feel things I'd never felt in the story of Jesus' birth.

Over the years since the 2011 released of In the Beginning Was the Logos I've learned a lot about marketing books.  The Promise seemed like the perfect project to put that knowledge to the test. I made an offer to Megan Cupit and her family for the rights to Megan's story, and Greatest Stories Ever Told™ was born.

GSET's next book, Forgotten Gospel, which was released on February 2, 2015.

Qualifications

I have been editing newsletters and brochures for businesses and churches for over 20 years. I did the final editing for David Bercot's Common Sense, released in 1992. While I get a lot of help in the editing, from Esther and others, the final result of GSET books is my responsibility. If you have read any of our books, you will see the high quality of the work we produce.

Esther is our graphic designer, and you can judge her work for yourself in the covers of our books.

All of GSET's books are chosen both for the quality of the writing and the power of the message. Our books are not merely informative, they are life-changing. We are Christians who believe in living life on purpose, wholeheartedly pursuing the goal of knowing Jesus our King and doing the will of God our Father.

I learned more in a 5 hour ride on a bumpy road from you ... than I was ever taught in Bible school or the many years I've been involved in traditional 'ministry.' I will never forget that ride from Nakuru to Kissi."

—Lonnie Hatfield, missionary to Kenya

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