The Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference
helped me focus on the tools I needed to refine and finish my first book, 40 Days in the Desert – A Devotional Guide for Uniformed Services. The Write to Impact Conference in February showed me the areas I must concentrate on in finishing my next book; thanks to Marlene and her incredible staff.
Paul F. Bauer
1A – Revelation, Inspiration, or Perspiration?
Angie Bass Williams
How do I convey the message of my heart to the printed page? Whether by a God-given “supernatural download” or inspired by an event or experience, it takes discipline and perseverance to produce a book that blesses and encourages others. As Christian authors, we must represent Jesus Christ with excellence.
1B – Shoot a Little Higher ... Writing for the General Market Without Compromising Christian Values
As Christians, writing in a way that crosses over to the general market is encouraged—and it makes a lot of sense. But is there a way to do that so we actually get through—without compromising our convictions? Absolutely. Shoot higher. Writing solely for the Christian market? We’ll look at some ways to shoot higher there as well.
1C – Inside Your Characters’ Psyches
Craft fascinating, believable characters by delving into human emotions, personality traits, quirks, and disorders. Create depth and richness in your characters’ back-stories. Intensify conflict and sweeten resolution by adding psychological dimension and texture to both villains and heroes. Learn to build an accurate, intriguing human psyche from a practicing therapist.
1D – That Reminds Me of a Story
One of the nonfiction writer’s greatest tools is the use of anecdotes and illustrations. This workshop shows you where to find good stories, and gives practical examples of how they can enhance your writing.
1E – Crafting a Submission Email that Sparkles
We often are found sitting at the computer and drawing a blank on how to craft an email that will not simply be ignored by an agent, editor, and publisher. This course takes you through crafting an email that will sparkle with content that needs to be seen to get your work noticed.
1F – Battle of the Brands
This workshop covers how to structure your brand to win in the sea of open market.
1G – America at the Crossroads
Christian writers can prepare believers to advance the kingdom of God as America takes another step toward complete rejection of its Judeo-Christian roots.
2A - Spirit-Led Marketing
This workshop focuses not simply on marketing techniques, which are always changing, but on the mental, emotional, and spiritual mind-set an author should maintain while marketing.
2B – Say What?
Voice is style, plus theme, personal observations, passion, belief, and desire. Voice is bleeding onto the page, and it can be a powerful, frightening, and naked experience. In this workshop, we will address techniques to help you develop your writer's voice.
2C – Using Your Past in Your Fiction
Learn how we can and do use our past experiences, pain, and unresolved emotional issues in our writing to provide healing and hope as well as a cathartic outlet.
2D – Reaching Kids with the Gospel
Only the Holy Spirit can reveal Jesus. We’ll explore our need to tap into the power, person, and presence of the Parakletos Himself in ministering to kids of all ages.
2E – Inside Story
Katara Washington Patton
Learn what goes on in a publishing house, how books are chosen, etc. from a former acquisitions director at a traditional house.
2F – Email Marketing for Authors
Bestselling author Don Miller wrote in 2017 that despite having tons of Facebook fans and thousands of Twitter followers, he would give them all away just to keep his email list. Why? The contacts on your email list monetize far greater than all of your social media outlets combined. Jason will share several low-cost and no-cost methods of building your email list along with software tools and a few hands-on examples. Once the technical foundation is laid, the reach is expanded beyond familly and friends by adding social media ads. Attendees leave with a cheatsheet for building their email list and a blueprint of several successful ad campaigns Jason has run in the past.
2G – The Rocks Cry Out
Are you afraid to engage? In today’s world, traditional principles provoke reactions that can be unfair and personal. But the incredible shrinking Christian writer does the world no good. Let’s learn to write truth.
3A – The Two Charleses: What Writers Can Learn from Dickens and Spurgeon
With the possible exception of Shakespeare (and maybe Jane Austen), no one has ever put the English language to better use than Charles Dickens and Charles Spurgeon. Getting to know these two amazingly gifted and productive wordsmiths better can enhance our own way with words (and the way we live our lives). Dave Swavely is something of an expert on these two men and has written a book in which the reader gets to be a “fly on the wall” at their one and only meeting with one another.
3B – Strategies to Overcome Writer's Block: Give Yourself Permission to Write Garbage
There are three steps to producing writing that communicates: shape your idea, put it on the page, and make sure it's effective. Writer's block occurs when you try to do more than one step at a time. This practical class will separate the parts of the writing process and give you a list of specific actions to take when blocked so you can finish your project—fast and well!
3C – Fiction with a Purpose
The pitfalls and strengths of issue-driven fiction.
3D – Starting Strong
The first pages of your nonfiction book need to hook, inform, and persuade your reader. How to begin unpacking your Big Idea in the early pages of your book.
3E – From Conference to Contract: Turning Your One Sheet into a Stellar Proposal
You’ve gone to the workshops. You’ve met with publishers. They’ve shown interest in your book. So now what? In this workshop, Michelle shows you the five essential elements to flesh out your book idea and turn it into a proposal that captures a publisher’s attention. At the end of the workshop, each attendee will receive the resources needed to create a proposal worthy of submission to agents and publishers.
3F – Book Launches
How to go beyond inviting friends and relatives to a book signing and into the scalable world offered to authors online. Jason will introduce the three typical formulas that are used most often—virtual launch, free plus shipping campaign, ongoing campaign—and discuss the pros and cons of each method. BONUS: Each participant will receive a webpage template they can use to create their own book launch site! See 31CrossPrayers.com for an example. All you’ll need to do is add your image and then an image of your new book. The site is plug-and-play compatible with the email marketing techniques Jason will teach in this workshop.
3G – The Pursuit of Influence: How Christian Communicators Change the World
Dr. Harold L. Arnold Jr.
As an author, speaker, or artistic influencer, God placed within you a creative spark and testimony that compels others to pursue kingdom living even in the midst of cultural storms. Inspired by a more obscure biblical parable, this interactive session will inspire and instruct you on how to prepare for a land of promise and not just potential.
4A – Live and Write Dangerously
Is your writing life stuck? Do you write in the same-old genre to the same-old audience with the same-old results? By allowing discomfort—and even a little danger—into your life, you’ll start to find the words that God is actually trying to get you to write.
4B – Kid Stuff
How-tos, exercises, and idea busters to get you started on writing for children. Using techniques for teaching children how to write, Pam will help get your creative juices going. She’ll also give you a glimpse of the picture-book-writing process. If you have a picture-book manuscript, please bring it.
4C – Fiction Rules and When to Break Them
Great for beginners and intermediate writers, this workshop examines “The Rules” of modern fiction, why we should learn them, and when we get to chuck them out the window for the sake of our art.
4D – Bring Your Own Story to Life
Louise L. Looney
Learn how nonfiction stories can leap off the page by using metaphors and the five senses to help others relate to your experiences.
4E – Self-Publishing vs. Traditional Publishing
Katara Washington Patton
Reflections from a former acquisitions director at a traditional house, a published author with a traditional house, and a consultant for self-publishing.
4F – Instagram for the #Instaless
Instagram is the second-largest social media app, but it is actually foreign to many writers and those trying to build their platform. This workshop will offer a crash course on how to utilize Instagram in growing your platform; discuss the need for hashtags; provide tips for how to take appealing, attention-grabbing photos; and take “your story” by storm.
4G – Reaching Today’s Youth
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 readers?
5A – The Heart of the Writer
How can we nurture our relationship with God as we write? The importance of accountability for the quality of our writing but especially for our faith walk.
5B – The Dreaded “E” Word
Getting the words on the page is only the first step. Next, time to edit. The ability to self-edit is an important component of polishing your manuscript. Any writer who is serious about publication, needs to work hard to learn how to self-edit. So, how do you learn? The same way you learn to write: practice, read critically, and pay attention to outside critiques. This workshop will introduce you to some basic—and not so basic—self-editing tips to help take your manuscript to the next level.
5C – Resurrect the Past
Join author, teacher, and international speaker JP Robinson for this interactive workshop. Combining scriptural principles with engaging dialogue, JP will explore the art of researching and writing historical fiction, memoirs, or biographies. This workshop also targets tough questions, such as what to include and exclude, when writing about the past.
5D – Ghost Stories: Writing for Other People
Learn what it’s like to be an “invisible author,” why it’s cool to do so, and how you can do it well. Dave Swavely has produced books for well-known Christian leaders and will share his experiences and insights with you, though you might not get all the names out of him.
5E – Ether Dreams and Great Ideas
In publishing, nothing beats the power of a compelling idea. What constitutes a good idea? How do you judge whether an idea is good, or just an ether dream? This workshop investigates these questions and discusses how to evaluate and refine a writing idea.
5F – How to Package Your Book to Sell at First Sight
Everything from choosing the right cover for your genre, to using the right key words for your readers, to how to nail a winning book blurb. Janeen will bring her professional experience as a marketing coach and president of a small press to give you insight into making your book ready to sell itself.
5G – The Cross Is the Main Thing
In our focus on issues, we have become more suited to announcing judgment than preaching redemption. How to keep the main thing the main thing.