Workshops

Thursday, 2:15 – 3:15

1A – The W.R.I.T.E. Prayer
Cherrilynn Bisbano

Prayer is vital for the Christian life. It empowers and gives us focus for the day. The W.R.I.T.E prayer is in an easy to learn acrostic format—a great tool for the writer, editor, or publisher to commune with their Father in Heaven. Learn to intercede for others, get inspired, and defy writers block.  Our relationship with God and others will grow as we pray the W.R.I.T.E. Prayer.  

1B – Being Real in Your Writing
Peter Lundell

Principles and examples of becoming authentic and open in your writing along with probing questions and guided practice.

1C – Backstory Blowout
Rowena Kuo
The eradication and successful reintegration of pesky backstory information. Have you ever been told to remove backstory from your novel, but you think your story needs it to make sense? Discover techniques to remove backstory and reincorporate it into your manuscript where and when it belongs.

1D – Targeting Your Reader
Janis Whipple

Hone in on the needs, both obvious and hidden, of potential readers so that the message of your nonfiction book is targeted to the right people.

1E – Writing an Eye-catching Proposal
Jeanette Windle

You have ten seconds to catch an editor’s attention, two minutes to keep it, so make that proposal count! A practical guide to writing a professional and attention-grabbing proposal. Offers clear explanation and solution to short proposal vs. long proposal issue.

1F – Publish, Promote, Profit: How top-selling self published authors are selling LOTS of books
Steven Spatz

“How can I get people to discover my book”? It’s the most important question of the day in indie publishing. BookBaby’s ground breaking 2017 Self Publishing Survey asked nearly 8,000 published and aspiring authors all of the important questions about book discoverability. BookBaby President Steven Spatz will reveal the surprising answers, and outline the winning strategies of top-selling self published authors. Attendees will come away with actionable marketing tips and book promotional techniques that can work for both new and experienced authors.

1G – Expanding Your Role as a Writer
Les Stobbe

Many writers fixate on article writing, others on books. This workshop will explore the many opportunities to turn writing skills into evangelizing and discipling not only their world but that of the nation. Participants will learn the basic skills foundational to this expanded role as a writer—and then learn how to adapt these skills for a wide variety of publication opportunities. The goal will be to become a writer of influence well beyond one’s home community. 


Thursday, 3:30 – 4:30

2A – From Journal to Blog to Book
Verna Bowman

A journal is the archived landscape of your life drawn with words.  People have been journaling for centuries – God instructed the prophet Habakkuk to “write His answer” - and journaling continues to remain an important part of the daily life of a passionate writer.  The value of preserving your faith is not just for personal benefit, but can also be an encouragement to others when you consider creating a blog or book from pages of your journals.  I am grateful to those who have encouraged me in my faith by having their prayer/devotional journals published, Sarah Young and Corrie ten Boom to name a few. 

2B – Deepening Your Descriptions
Debbie Maxwell Allen

Do your descriptions sound flat? Do you read other authors who seem to do a far better job describing even the mundane? Learn why bestselling authors don’t stop at good description--they take extra steps that breathe life into dull prose. Whether you write fiction or memoir, or non-fiction, take your descriptions to another level with these three key techniques.

2C – Common Pitfalls for Novelists 
John David Kudrick

Even in our fast-paced digital age, readers are still looking for stories that encourage, engage, and entertain them in the midst of a changing world. What makes a good story hasn’t changed, and on the flip side, what ruins a good story hasn’t changed, either. In this session, editor John David Kudrick will talk about the main problems he sees with novel manuscripts in his everyday work and will discuss how you can avoid these pitfalls to make sure your stories are as engaging and powerful as possible.

2D – Are You Really Writing a Memoir?
Jillian Schlossberg

God has given you a story to tell—and we want to help you tell it. But what’s the best format to tell it in—is it a story-based memoir weaving in the truths God’s laid on your heart? Could your story be told in a way that directly teaches and ministers to its audience? Could it be a story that crosses genres and speaks to numerous markets? In this workshop, you’ll discover how to make the distinction—and begin to write the unique story you alone were created to tell.

 2E – A Fly On the Wall in a Publishing House
Dave Fessenden

A “fly’s-eye-view” of how publishing decisions are made, and gives you some tips on what you can do to get your material off the slush pile. 

2F – Go Viral: Social Network Marketing
W. Terry Whalin

You can waste huge amounts of time and energy on social media. How can you do it effectively and without spending a lot of time? Terry Whalin has over 180,000 Twitter followers, over 4,800 Facebook friends and over 5,000 LinkedIn connections. He spends less than 30 minutes a day on his social media yet has an effective growing presence in the social media arena. In this workshop, Terry reveals his inside secrets and tips for Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn so you too can grow your platform and presence without wasting hours of time.

2G – Writing for CBN.com
Beth Patch

CBN.com is the official website of the Christian Broadcasting Network and The 700 Club TV show. Each week, over 2 million pages are opened on the site and each month over 3.7 million NEW visitors come to the site. It offers a tremendous opportunity to minister to others on a variety of topics. In this workshop, you will learn what types of content CBN.com accepts for each section of the online magazine, your rights regarding content shared with CBN, and to whom at CBN you should submit your articles and ideas. 


Friday, 2:15 – 3:15

3A – From Writer to Author
Pierre Eade

How to climb the mountian of writing your first book.

3B – Writing His Answer for BOTH Seekers & Believers
Lynn Eib

Do you want your writing to not only encourage believers, but also draw those seeking God closer to true faith? If so, you need to write so those readers will read and can understand your message. Learn to think like those readers think, appropriately choose a title/book cover, avoid Christian terminology and use Scripture powerfully, yet wisely. If you have a heart for your work to be an evangelistic tool, you will want to attend this workshop.

3C – Making Your Fiction Ring True
Jeanette Windle

Writers can only breathe reality into their words if they know intimately of what they are writing.  From an author who has been there and done that, learn how to use the good, bad, and ugly of your life experience to give your fiction the touch that will grab editors’ attention and make your story ring true to readers.

3D – The Tests Your Nonfiction Must Pass to Get Published
Diana Flegal

Do you have a nonfiction idea for a book, article, or blog. Put it through these tests and your chances of publication will improve. Please bring samples of your writing which we can discuss and examine in a safe and creative environment. You will come away with a stronger written piece, as well as a realistic plan for moving forward.

3E – Going Indie with Create Space
Amy Deardon

Please visit again for description.

3F – Branding for People Who Are Not Cows
Peter Lundell

A step-by-step approach to building a marketing identity that focuses on an author’s uniqueness.

3G – Winning at Winning Contests
Cyle Young

Winning your way to a publishing contract and/or agency contract. Embrace contests to initiate your writing career. Create publicity and create market awareness by winning contests. Learn why you need to separate your writing passion from your contest entries, and harness your contests entries to work for you.  


Friday, 3:30 – 4:30

4A – Write to Heal
Andrea Gadson

Everyone’s talking (and praying) about physical healing these days, but what about emotional healing? Emotional healing is just as important as physical healing and you have a God-given right to be emotionally whole. Writing your story is one way to initiate your healing process. In this workshop. we’ll:

Someone is waiting to be healed by what you write today! Don’t miss the opportunity to help yourself and others in this Write to Heal workshop

4B – Giving Purpose & Intent to Your Writing
Terrence Clark

You’ve heard everyone has a story. And, you said, one day I’ll write mine. Before you pick up a pen or start pounding the keys of your laptop, understanding the intent and purpose of your writing and side step frustration and unreal goals. Find out that your story, script, poem, article is more than just a collection of words, ideas or imagery, but perhaps a tool to reach (and minister to) someone in this world of seven billion plus.

4C – Honest Heroes & Valid Villains
Dr. Dale McElhinney

Whether your story is more plot driven or character driven, what makes it believable is the genuineness of your characters. Are your protagonists               people"?  Are your antagonists "authentic"? Even if it never appears in the story, you should understand your characters psychology? What makes them   think the way they think and act the way they act? What are their core issues? What dynamics drive them? In this hands-on workshop you will work with your characters to better understand them and their psychology so that they have depth, dimensionality and authenticity. 

4D – Nonfiction Book Creation from the Ground Up
W. Terry Whalin

How do you determine the big picture for a book project? This workshop details the essence of storyboarding techniques, then the pragmatic step-by-step instruction to write a complete book manuscript. Terry has accomplished these steps many times and can guide you in the process.

4E – The Story(ies) God Designed You to Write
Susan Lyttek

There are a lot of stories and books you could write. You have the talent, the knowhow and probably the experience, too. But does that mean you should write them all? Knowing what you could write and would like to write, how do you decide what God has created for you and only you to act as his work of art?

4F – Creative Marketing
Tamara Clymer

When publishers look at your proposal, they want to know what you plan to do to market your book. They aren’t so much interested in your 500 Facebook friends or the 800 members of your local church. They need to know what you will do to keep your book moving after you work through those lists. Tamara will offer some specific ideas to move you outside of your marketing box and get your book noticed.

4G – Adapt Your Story into a Screenplay
Rowena Kuo

Step by step formula for adapting either a full-length novel into a 2-hour screenplay or a short story into a 15min film. What essential elements a screenwriter should incorporate to interest potential producers.


Saturday, 10:45 – 11:45

5A – Emotional Healing & the Writer
Peter Lundell

Critical insights for identifying and recovering from the effects of a wounded heart and then writing about it or getting past it to write with freedom.

5B – Binge Writing: Write Faster, Smarter & in Less Time
Cyle Young

Discover the Binge Writer in you. For some, writing is a talent, a special gift they were naturally born with. But for most, writing is a craft, improved upon over time by intentional practice and repetition. Every writer has the potential to write thousands of words, but often times our lifestyle, atmosphere, and/or self-esteem holds us back. In this workshop, you will learn how to unlock your subconscious, control your internal censor, harness your ideal writing time, capture ideas, set goals, and most importantly, get a lot of words down on paper.

5C – Plot Skeleton
Terry Brennan

There are basically two different kinds of fiction authors—architects, who are organized, and gardeners, who plant a seed and watch it grow. No matter what kind of fiction author you are, there is basically one universal story structure . . . structure that goes back to mythology. All stories contain the same elements, and this workshop will include a step-by-step analysis of those elements. With their permission, this workshop is based on the work of Christy Award-winner Dr. Angela Hunt and author Nancy Rue. 

5D – Info coming soon
Jillian Schlossberg

5E – Getting the Book Inside You to Come Out
Debbie Hardy

How do you get the book inside of you to come out? And then what? We'll cover the process, from writing to pitching, submitting, publishing, publicity, and marketing. And you'll get a basic knowledge of writing terms, dispelling many myths of the publishing world.

5F – Trending Now – Find Your Audience in a Competitive Publishing Industry
Rowena Kuo

Ever wonder how to get your book into the hands of your intended audience? Let's talk about the trend of today’s best-sellers and ways you can get your book to the top of the charts. Whether you are yet to be published or a multi-published author, we will discuss steps where your book can market itself. From cover to cover, no matter what genre, get your book published and prepared for a successful launch. 

5G – Reaching Today’s Youth
Rob Cook

Make your writing relevant to today’s youth. How to write to  be received. Is your writing worth reading? Are you using the right bait to catch your reader? 


Saturday, 2:45 – 3:45

6A – Sorting The Good from THE GOD
Bob LaCosta

Even after three decades as a Hearing Instrument Specialist, Bob is still learning what it takes to hear God. The author, blogger, and songwriter particularly practices this discipline around knowing THE GOOD from THE GOD. Join him as he helps sort out the background noise of our lives and specifically how the many creative voices within can inadvertently drown out what God has called us to focus on NOW - the only time we truly have. 

6B – Self-Editing Strategies for Fiction Writers
Christy Distler

So you're writing a story. Join us to discuss self-editing strategies that will help get your manuscript ready for submission or self-publication. No matter your writing stage—just starting out or already finished—a little DIY know-how can greatly improve your writing!

6C – Go into ALL the World
John David Kudrick

Can a Christian novelist go too far with their content in trying to reach the world with life-changing stories that can touch hearts and point readers toward God? Jesus said to go into ALL the world and preach the gospel, and the apostle Paul wrote that some plant and some water for the sake of God’s kingdom. And we know that fiction readers make up a wide spectrum of various levels of personal faith / knowledge of God. What if a Christian novelist feels compelled to write a redemptive story that would be judged as “R-rated”—one that might reach some readers right where they’re at and hopefully nudge them toward believing in a personal God they might have never before considered? Is it a good idea? Will it affect a Christian’s witness?

6D – The A to Z of Writing a Saleable Article
Jeanette Windle

Where to find material or choose a topic? What makes an attention-grabbing lead and headline? What to include and how to organize? A great conclusion or just petering out? Taught by a twenty-year-veteran missions journalist and editor, this workshop lays out in practical steps how to turn out consistently exciting, tightly written articles, no matter your theme or subject matter. 

6E – Understanding and Negotiating Book Contracts
Les Stobbe

Contracts from book publishers vary from three to 19 pages. Let a former contract negotiator at three publishers, who now negotiates for clients as literary agent, help you understand the key elements of a book contract, when you have leverage, what areas may be negotiable, at what time in your life as author you no longer have to accept a “rookie” contract, when you can retain certain rights as technology changes.

6F – Publicity and Paid Advertising
Larry Carpenter
There's an old adage in publishing. “No one ever bought a book they had never heard of.” Two of the best ways to get the word out are through publicity and paid advertising. But they can be two of the most expensive arrows in your marketing quiver. Find out how to get the most out of your publicity and advertising without breaking the bank.

6G – Make It Your Business
Michele Chynoweth

Do you love writing enough to do it full-time but aren’t sure how to turn it into a career? Author Michele Chynoweth will share how she built her book writing into a business so she could take that leap of faith and become a full-time author!  Through a variety of practical business, sales, marketing, publicity and even public speaking tips, Michele will lend her past experience as an advertising agency owner, marketing director and award-winning Toastmaster to help you learn how to operate as a corporation, brand your books, start or improve upon your website, social media, public relations, speaking and much more. In this information-packed workshop Michele will teach you how to employ business and marketing strategies to get more sales through networking, email campaigns, book signings and event marketing  and how to set up an innovative “system” so you can see sales and profits result!