Don’t Miss Our Next Mini-Masterclass  –  January 19th!


Cast Your Net

February 25 – 27, 2021 – Online


We offer over fifty workshops covering a wide range of topics, each taught by an expert in the industry. You’ll find workshops in the categories of Nonfiction Craft, Fiction Craft, General Writing Craft, Children’s, Publicity/Marketing, Writing Life, and Specialty workshops.

Workshops will be presented by recorded video that you can watch during the conference (February 26 & 27) and for six weeks afterward (through April 10, 2021).

Nonfiction Craft

Janet McHenry

How to Write Any Nonfiction Form

Because every kind of writing has form, writers who get published are those who understand the form. In this workshop you will learn the basic structure for the following kinds of nonfiction books: Bible studies, Christian living books, devotional books, gift books, and memoir.

Janet McHenry is the author of 24 books, including many forms of nonfiction—Bible studies and Christian living, devotional, compilation, and gift books. Two have been on bestselling lists: PrayerWalk and 50 Life Lessons for Grads. Janet is a certified writing coach and recently launched her online course, Prayer School.

Rachel Dodge

The Art of Devotional Writing: Making Much of God’s Presence in Our Everyday Moments

If you love encouraging others, digging into Scripture, and marveling at God’s fingerprints on the everyday details of life, this workshop is for you. Devotional writing starts with noticing and notetaking; it’s about seeing the world with spiritual eyes. Come learn how to write devotions that touch hearts for Christ.

Rachel Dodge is the author of The Anne of Green Gables Devotional: A Chapter-By-Chapter Companion for Kindred Spirits and Praying with Jane: 31 Days Through the Prayers of Jane Austen. Rachel teaches college English; speaks at libraries, literary groups, and teas; and writes for Jane Austen’s World and Literary Life.

B.J. Taylor

Make Money Selling Personal Experience Stories

This workshop will show you how to write that important opening hook, how to keep the reader engaged throughout the story, and how to wrap up with a satisfying ending. Numerous writers have learned B.J.’s secret formula and are now published authors. Learn how to make money with your writing.

B.J. Taylor has sold forty stories to Chicken Soup, two dozen to Guideposts, Angels on Earth, Mysterious Ways, and All Creatures, articles to Writer’s Digest, Romantic Homes, Victorian Homes, Mars and Venus in Love, among others. She wrote Writing True Stories: Using the Winning Formula P MS to a T.

Shadia Hrichi

Am I Ready to Write a Bible Study?

In this workshop, you will:
• Explore 10 key questions to ask yourself before writing a Bible study
• Learn the types of studies and decide which is right for you
• Be equipped to draft a professional query letter specific for Bible studies
• BONUS materials: sample query letter, full Bible study proposal template

Shadia Hrichi is a passionate Bible teacher, author, and speaker who loves seeing lives transformed by the power of God’s Word. She has received a master’s in biblical and theological studies as well as a master’s in criminal justice. Shadia has written numerous articles and several Bible studies, including Legion, Hagar, and Worthy of Love

Joseph Bentz

Writing the Killer Nonfiction Book First Chapter

The first chapter can make or break a nonfiction book. This chapter invites readers in and lets them know where the journey of this book will take them. This workshop offers specific guidance on how authors can construct a first chapter that will win readers over.

Joseph Bentz is the author of 12 New Testament Passages that Changed the World and six other books on Christian living. He is also the author of A Son Comes Home and three other
novels. He is a professor of English at Azusa Pacific University in California. 

Susy Flory

Different Kinds of Memoir

Did you know there are different kinds of memoir? When they hear the word “memoir,” most people think of books by famous people, such as celebrities or politicians. But there are many other ways to write a memoir, with some of them more interesting to agents, editors, and readers than the classic celebrity-type! Come learn the 7 types of memoir, how to write and market them, and which one fits your story best.

Susy Flory is the author or co-author of 16 books, two of them New York Times bestsellers. She’s begun to specialize in memoir, after writing 12 of them! Susy is the founder of Everything Memoir, an educational community dedicated to help people with their memoirs, she directs West Coast Christian Writers, and she is working on a masters in New Testament at Northern Seminary. To relax, she loves to read animal stories, hike in the mountains, and snow ski (when it’s warm and sunny). Her dream is to open her own bookstore.

Jennifer Grant

Using Elements of Fiction to Create Engaging Nonfiction

Let’s get creative! We’ll start by reviewing the elements of fiction (character, plot, point of view, setting, style, themes, and more) and then looking at how writers of nonfiction (memoir, devotionals, biography, essays, opinion pieces) can learn from the great novelists and engage our readers’ imaginations.

Jennifer Grant is the author of five books for adults, and her sixth, Dimming the Day, a nighttime book of reflections on nature, launches in Fall 2021. She also is an award-winning picture book writer and works as an editor and editorial consultant. 

Michelle Ule

Research Tips for Writing a Biography—or any Nonfiction Project

Biographer and genealogist Michelle Ule presents research techniques and tools, along with a detailed explanation of how to manage the research in a writing project.

Michelle Ule is the bestselling author of a variety of projects and the biographer of Mrs. Oswald Chambers: The Woman Behind the World’s Bestselling Devotional. She’s just completed a biography of Lettie Cowman, author of Streams in the Desert. Michelle spends an inordinate amount of time researching.

Mary DeMuth

Don’t Let Grandma Scare you away from Writing Honestly

Many writers fear writing the truth because their grandma/mom/cousin/uncle might be angry with them for telling their story. In this practical workshop, you’ll learn how to write tenderly, yet honestly, about your story with less fear and more of a bent toward benefiting your reader. It is possible to be honest, honoring and helpful. Learn how to go to the places you’re asking your reader to delve into. Uncover the power of winsome truth-telling that infuses your writing pieces with empathy and hope.

Mary DeMuth is an international speaker, artist and podcaster, and she’s the novelist and nonfiction author of over forty books, including We Too. She lives in Texas with her family. Be prayed for on her daily prayer podcast at 

Cindi McMenamin

Writing to Heal Broken Hearts

Cindi McMenamin, author of several books (and hundreds of articles) that address the deep hurts of women and couples, will show you how to write in a way that resonates with hearts and transforms lives. Leave this session with ideas of what to write and how to write it.

Cindi McMenamin is an award-winning writer and national speaker who helps women and couples strengthen their relationship with God and others. As a certified writing coach and author of 17 nonfiction books (all from Harvest House Publishers), she has helped writers become authors for 15 years. 

Fiction Craft

Dana Mentink

Love at First Write: Let’s Talk Fiction!

We’ll take a close look at the elements that will make our readers fall in love with our fiction, including dialogue, story setting, plot and some examples from published books. There will be a downloadable plot structure worksheet as well as fun “Minute to win it” giveaways.

Dana Mentink is a two time Carol Award winner, a Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice Award recipient, and a Holt Medallion winner. She is a national and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author of over forty titles in the suspense and lighthearted romance genres. She is pleased to write for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense, Harlequin Heartwarming and Harvest House. Her mystery series with Poisoned Pen Press debuts in July. 

Sarah Sundin

Fiction Boot Camp

Drop and give me ten! Ten basics for fiction writing, that is. We’ll look at common issues seen in first novels from dialogue to point-of-view to setting up a scene. We’ll learn some fiction lingo and we’ll outline the steps to publication. Prepare to sweat—and learn.

Sarah Sundin is a bestselling author of World War II novels. Her novel The Sky Above Us received the 2020 Carol Award, and The Sea Before Us received the 2019 FHL Reader’s Choice Award. A mother of three adult children, Sarah lives in northern California. 

Karen Barnett

When Setting Becomes a Character

Whether it’s Prince Edward Island, Middle Earth, Hogwarts, or the alleyways of Dickensian London, an evocative setting can sweep a reader deeply into a story. I’ll teach you seven secrets to make your setting come alive, drive your plot, and inspire your characters.

Karen Barnett is the award-winning author of the Ever Faithful, Where the Fire Falls, and five other novels. As a former park ranger, she enjoys hiking, photography, and visiting national parks. She lives in Oregon with her husband Steve, two college kids, and three attention-starved dachshunds.

Toni Shiloh

Writing Diverse Characters

Our writing should reflect the diversity around us. In this session we will discuss why representation matters and delve into the transformative power of reading diverse fiction. You’ll learn how to write characters of differing ethnic backgrounds and celebrate your characters’ uniqueness without falling into stereotypes.

Toni Shiloh is a wife, mom, and multi-published Christian contemporary romance author. She writes to bring God glory and to learn more about His goodness. 

Melanie Dobson

Inside Out: Breathing Life into Fictional Characters

Great characters drive a compelling story, but how do you develop characters that are both heroic and flawed? In this practical workshop, we will discuss how to create believable characters from the inside out and launch each character on a page-turning journey that will reflect their unique past and personality.

Writing fiction is Melanie Dobson’s excuse to explore abandoned houses, travel to unique places, and spend hours reading old books. The award-winning author of more than twenty novels and co-author of the writing resource A Split in Time, Melanie enjoys weaving together historical and time-slip fiction including The Curator’s Daughter, Catching the Wind, and Memories of Glass

Tosca Lee

Keep ‘Em Reading Past Bedtime

Readers don’t want to sleep! Okay, they might have to at some point, but what they want in the meantime is a book so engrossing it’s impossible to put down at bedtime. Join me for a pens-out working session all about creating un-put-downable suspense. A great workshop for any author of thrills, chills, or mystery, but also for any fiction author wanting to keep readers glued to the page. (Applicable to any fiction author, most helpful to those with a work in progress.)

Tosca Lee is the award-winning, New York Times bestselling author of eleven novels including A SINGLE LIGHT, THE LINE BETWEEN, THE PROGENY, THE LEGEND OF SHEBA, ISCARIOT, and the Books of Mortals series with New York Times bestseller Ted Dekker. Her work has been translated into seventeen languages and been optioned for TV and film. A notorious night-owl, she loves movies, playing football with her kids, and sending cheesy texts to her husband.

Carla Hoch

What to Consider Before Writing Your Fight Scene

A fight begins long before the first punch is thrown or the first word hits the page. See what every writer should consider before throwing their character in the fray including the reasons behind the skirmish, the site of it, and who is a part of it both on and off the page.

Carla Hoch is the author of the Writer’s Digest book Fight Write: How to Write Believable Fight Scenes. Carla is a trained fighter, writer and educator who regularly teaches on the craft of writing fight scenes as well as the mechanics of fighting for writers. Her blog,, has been named in Writer’s Digest 100 Best Site for Writers two years in a row.

Lindsay Franklin

Weaving Worlds: Crafting Speculative Universes

Fantasy novelist Lindsay Franklin unravels the secrets of crafting spectacular speculative fiction. We’ll examine the nuts and bolts of world-building and explore how to create unique, three-dimensional universes from the ground up—and more importantly, why it matters. We can’t promise we won’t fall down the rabbit hole or stay on this side of the wardrobe.

Lindsay A. Franklin is a Carol Award–winning author, freelance editor, and homeschooling mom of three. She would wear pajama pants all the time if it were socially acceptable. Lindsay lives in her native San Diego with her scruffy-looking nerf-herder husband, their precious geeklings, and three demanding thunder pillows (a.k.a. cats).

General Writing Craft

Lisa Bogart

Bust Out Your Creativity, Using Your Most Valuable Tool to the Fullest!

Jolt your creativity, embrace your passions, write! First showing how passion projects lead to goodness. Then giving you practical steps to cultivate ideas, follow through, and harness your creativity. We want the writing process to be fun while we create. Let me show you a few ways to get there and be your most creative!

“She has an infectious laugh. And she writes lots of letters.” Coloring books to knit devotions, Lisa writes about joy with joy! She has taught at Mount Hermon and West Coast Christian Conferences. She won the Guideposts Writing Contest in 2010 and continues to write for the magazine. She encourages those around her with small acts of kindness. 

Sharon Norris Elliott

Move from Idea to Manuscript to Masterpiece

You have great ideas. You’ve been writing awhile, but you keep hitting walls and locked doors. What your writing needs is to be elevated from manuscript to masterpiece. Learn to think like a best-selling author and create masterpieces that will catch the eye of the publishing house.

“Live significantly!” That’s the inspiring message of multi-published author, popular speaker, astute Bible teacher, editor, agent, and Jesus lover, Sharon Norris Elliott. This founder of AuthorizeMe® enjoys helping writers become authors, talkers become speakers, and visionaries become ministers. Her husband, children, grandchildren, and church fill her life with joy. 

Michelle Cushatt

Secrets of Masterful Storytelling

Whether you’re writing memoir, narrative non-fiction, a devotional, or you’re preparing a presentation, there’s no question that a skilled storyteller can take an audience on a powerful journey, often evoking both laughter and tears with expert precision. A story holds the power to transform ordinary content and information into an extraordinary reader and listener experience. Everyone wants to be that kind of storyteller, but few do it well. What’s their trick? Although storytelling itself is an art form worth a lifetime of examination, in this session you’ll learn the three essential secrets of masterful storytelling.

As an experienced communicator, Michele Cushatt speaks to a wide variety of professional and ministry audiences on the complex subjects of faith, suffering, and humanity’s ongoing search for meaning. A three-time head and neck cancer survivor and parent of “children from hard places,” Michele is a (reluctant) expert of trauma, pain and the deep human need for authentic connection. She and her husband, Troy, share a blended family of six children, including biological children, stepchildren, and foster-adopt children. They live in Denver, Colorado.

Shauna Pilgreen

Writing from Life

We’re filling up a Kingdom library and God desires diversity. We share our stories to show others what God is doing in our corner of the world. It’s a record of the faithfulness of God.” Learn how to connect the dots and see the story God is writing through you!

Shauna Pilgreen is a conversation starter, story teller, and city dweller. She is the author of Love Where You Live (Revell, 2019). Shauna and her husband, Ben, started Epic Church in downtown San Francisco in 2010. She is the mother of three boys and an adopted daughter from India.

Cheri Gregory

Inviting Others to Write Beside You — the Who, What, Why, and How of Collaboration

Collaboration. It sounds so simple in theory, doesn’t it? Scripture tells us that “two are better than one” (Ecclesiastes 2:9a) and that “iron sharpens iron” (Proverbs 27:17). But healthy collaboration requires hefty intentionality. In this session, we’ll explore what you need to find out or figure out in order to form productive co-creative partnerships.

Cheri Gregory is a collaborator at heart. She’s the co-author of four non-fiction books, co-host of the Grit ‘n’ Grace podcast, co-leader of the Sensitive and Strong Community Café, and co-facilitator of mastermind groups for HSP* Christian communicators, coaches, and creatives. 

Lynn H. Blackburn

Tips and Tricks of Scrivener

This overview of the popular writing software will highlight the unique and powerful tools that have made Scrivener an indispensable part of the writing process for plotters, pantsers, and everyone in between.

Lynn H. Blackburn writes romantic suspense and her titles have won the Carol Award, the Selah Award, and the Faith, Hope, and Love Reader’s Choice Award. She is a frequent conference speaker and has taught Scrivener to writers all over the country. 

Bob Hostetler

Writing Outside the Box

A one-hour session to open writers’ eyes to the publishing opportunities beyond their memoir or Great American Novel, from various kinds of articles to business writing, greeting cards, etc.

Bob Hostetler is an award-winning author, literary agent, and international speaker. His more than fifty books include Don’t Check Your Brains at the Door (co-authored with Josh McDowell) and The Bard and the Bible: A Shakespeare Devotional. Bob is also an agent with The Steve Laube Agency and the executive director of the Christian Writers Institute (

Sarah Barnum

10 Tips for Working with a Freelance Editor

Whether you’re self-publishing or preparing to pitch to traditional publishers, a professional editor is a valuable partner and educator. In this workshop you’ll learn how to find the right editor, identify what type of editing you need, receive feedback, and more! As a bonus, we’ll also cover self-editing techniques and submission formatting.

Sarah Barnum is a freelance editor with a calling to help others tell their story and make their writing the best it can be. When she’s not writing her own narrative nonfiction or working with words, Sarah enjoys small-town life in Northern California with her husband, son, and Appaloosa horse. 

Jesse Florea

By Hook or By Crook

Studies show you have less than 15 seconds to grab a reader’s attention. A creative lead could also be the difference between publication and rejection. This workshop discusses different ways to begin a story . . . and how to keep a reader’s attention.

Jesse Florea has edited Focus on the Family Clubhouse and Clubhouse Jr. magazines for twenty-five years. He cohosts the “Official Adventures in Odyssey” and “Official Average Boy” podcasts. His more than forty book credits include: the Defend Your Faith apologetics Bible for kids and The Case for Christ Young Readers Edition.


Deb Gruelle

Writing Today’s Children’s Books

Do you want to write a children’s book? Find out the different categories of children’s books currently being published and what publishers expect from a children’s book author. Learn how children’s books are changing. Come and get your questions answered with Deb Gruelle, bestselling and award-winning children’s author.

Deb Gruelle is a best-selling and award-winning author of books for both children and adults. She’s a recovering Silicon Valley technical writer. Her experience as a keynote, workshop, and Bible study speaker flows from her desire to communicate encouraging truth. She serves as Chaplain for Inspire Christian Writers. 

Tracie Heskett

Through the Back Door: Writing for Children

In this workshop, we’ll explore writing for children in the context of work-for-hire. The education market is a great place to write for children in a way that enables your writing to reach your intended audience: young readers. We’ll cover preparation, finding markets, and developing your content for specific ages.

Tracie Heskett is a multi-published, best-selling author of teacher resource books and children’s educational materials, including fiction and nonfiction leveled readers. Tracie holds a Masters
degree in Curriculum and Instruction, and taught in public and private schools for several years. She lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband.

Mona Hodgson

Inventory Your Story Building Blocks

The best stories for children consist of a solid beginning, middle, and ending. Does your story have all of the necessary components to have your reader turning the pages? Let’s take an inventory of the building materials you need to lay the foundation for a compelling story.

Mona Hodgson is the author of 43 books. Her children’s books and inspirational historical romances include Bedtime in the Southwest, six Zonderkidz I Can Read books, Real Girls of the Bible: A 31-Day Devotional, and the Sinclair Sisters of Cripple Creek Series. Mona lives in Arizona and is available to speak to women or students online or in person.

Marilyn Hilton

Writing for Today’s Middle-Grade Readers

The books we read in our youth shape and influence us for life. Writing for middle-grade readers (ages 8-12) is both an important calling and a mighty responsibility. To be successful, our writing needs to touch a reader’s heart with authenticity and universal truth. How do we write for young readers if we’re no longer young? What should we practice and avoid when writing for these age groups? How do we tell important stories that are also entertaining and engaging? This workshop answers these questions, explores various genres and formats, discusses some current popular books, and provides writing exercises and resources.

Marilyn Hilton is the author of the award-winning novels Full Cicada Moon, Found Things, and the nonfiction The Christian Girl’s Guide to Your Mom; and has published several poems, short
stories, devotions, and articles. She holds a MA degree in English/creative writing and worked for years as a technical writer/editor. Now she works on her own projects., grandchildren, and church fill her life with joy. 

Jesse Florea

Do’s and Don’ts of Writing for Children

Kids are taught to follow rules. To write for this audience, you should follow rules too. By learning these do’s and don’ts, you’ll have a better chance of creating stories that will catch an editor’s eye and eventually entertain a child.

Jesse Florea has edited Focus on the Family Clubhouse and Clubhouse Jr. magazines for twenty-five years. He cohosts the “Official Adventures in Odyssey” and “Official Average Boy” podcasts. His more than forty book credits include: the Defend Your Faith apologetics Bible for kids and The Case for Christ Young Readers Edition.


David Hyde

Screenwriting 101: Setting Yourself up for Success in a Visual World

Screenwriting is genre like no other, but all still the same. Come learn how story is still king but told in a different way. From formatting to structure and more. How to tell your story on the big (or the little) screen.

David M. Hyde is staff writer in charge of limited series for the Al Turner Company. His scripts have been honored at numerous Christian film festivals. David’s faith-based comedy, Winging It, starring Jaci Velazquez is in development as well as his drama, The Sound of Everything, staring Cameron Arnett.


Marlo Schalesky

No Platform? No Worries!

What do you do when “Platform” only refers to your shoes? Is your only option to slog around in the slushpile? Or quit and do something else? No! This workshop will outline some practical steps for the platform-less writer and focus on following God’s lead when you aren’t Mr. or Mrs. Famous-Person-With-An-Established-Platform.

Marlo Schalesky is an award-winning author of over 1,000 articles and 12 books, including her latest, Women of the Bible Speak Out (Our Daily Bread Publishers). A mother of 6, she is also the
founder and president of Wonder Wood Ranch, a California charitable organization for at-risk kids and youth.

Anna LeBaron

Sustainable Strategies for Selling Books on Social Media

Redefining the traditional platform, we’ll explore strategies for building a sturdy foundation from which your book can soar. Learn why you need an active email list and social media presence, how to connect with your audience by increasing engagement, playing nicely with algorithms; and what numbers mean for your platform.

Anna LeBaron is an author, book launch expert, and social media coach. Coupled with 17+ years of customer service experience, she intuitively delivers practical tips for maximizing engagement with your audience in authentic and fun ways. Anna is Mom to five grown children, Yaya to her first grandchild, and lives in Dallas, Texas.

Tonya Kubo

Building Engaged Community on Facebook

Want to take your Facebook community from crickets to connected? Let online communities advocate Tonya Kubo show you both the art and science of growing engaged groups. This session will teach you how to leverage Facebook’s free tools to develop deeper connections in groups, your author page, and your personal profile.

Tonya Kubo helps message-driven writers grow highly engaged online communities so they can stop counting followers and start connecting with the followers who count. Her people-first approach to community management has driven the success of book launch teams and interest-based Facebook groups of all sizes. 

Laura Christianson

Plan Your Brand: Winning Strategies for a Memorable Writing Brand

Are you experiencing tepid results from your efforts to connect with readers via social media, email, or your blog? The problem might be related to your brand message. During this crash course, Laura will help you clarify your brand’s unique personality so you can develop a powerful message that gains your readers’ trust and delivers a positive experience.

Laura Christianson helps writers confidently create a polished, professional online presence. She owns Blogging Bistro, a business that builds custom WordPress websites and provides brand, blog, and content development coaching. Laura is the host of The Professional Writer podcast and has authored several books and thousands of articles. She and her husband live in the Seattle area, and are the parents of two young-adult sons.

Toni Shiloh

Social Media the BOOKISH Way

Learn how to connect with potential readers (fiction and non-fiction) using one or more of the social media platforms today. Participants will leave with a better grasp of utilizing Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube and Pinterest. The workshop will help participants choose the best platform as they seek out their bookish tribe. For aspiring, beginner or advanced writers.

Toni Shiloh is a wife, mom, and multi-published Christian contemporary romance author. She writes to bring God glory and to learn more about His goodness. 

Hallee Bridgeman

Growing and Maintaining an Active Newsletter List

Bestselling author Hallee Bridgeman will show you how to grow your newsletter list, how to invest your readers into your newsletter, and how to maintain an active list with a low unsubscribe rate and a good open rate.

With nearly a million sales, Hallee Bridgeman is a best-selling author who writes action-packed romantic suspense focusing on realistic characters who face real-world problems. Her work has been described as everything from refreshing to heart-stopping exciting and edgy. Hallee loves coffee, campy action movies, and regular date nights with her husband.

S.E. Clancy

Memes and Graphics and Posts, oh my!

Need help expanding your platform through graphics and memes? Come join me as I walk you through the basics of Canva and where you can find royalty free pictures (and how important that can be!).

S.E. Clancy is just a sarcastic, Christian author taking the publishing world by storm…one rejection at a time. She likes coffee, chocolate, coffee, cats, and jumping out of airplanes. Mayo is gross and ridiculous.

Karen Barnett

Taking Great Photos for Social Media

Photos create lasting impressions, especially in today’s social media driven world. With a few simple tricks, you can put your smartphone’s camera to work capturing great pictures for Facebook and Instagram. We’ll also trade tips on looking your best in those dreaded selfies and professional headshots.

Karen Barnett is the award-winning author of the Ever Faithful, Where the Fire Falls, and five other novels. As a former park ranger, she enjoys hiking, photography, and visiting national parks. She lives in Oregon with her husband Steve, two college kids, and three attention-starved dachshunds.

Erin Taylor Young

Podcasting to Build Your Platform

Want to engage an audience and build a platform before you publish your book? Or grow the tribe you already have? There’s nothing like podcasting to deepen your audience’s personal connection to you. In this step-by-step workshop you’ll learn how, with surprisingly little equipment, you can create your own podcast.

Erin Taylor Young is an author, editor, and cohost of the Write from the Deep podcast. She co-founded a successful independent publishing company and was the co-managing editor before selling the company. She’s also an award-winning humor writer whose books have been repeatedly accused of making readers laugh until they cry.

Diane Dokko Kim

1st-Time Publishing (What I Wish I Knew Before Launching)

Surprise! When authors release their first book, they automatically become speakers, marketers, and small business owners, too. Diane shares key assets –and lessons learned the hard way!– for pre-publishing, launch, and post-release seasons (“going pro”). Learn how to set up a new writing ministry and entrepreneurship for the long haul.

Diane is a disability ministry consultant, speaker, and author of Unbroken Faith: Spiritual Recovery for the Special-Needs Parent (Hatchette, 2018). As a mother to children with multiple disabilities, her passions include encouraging struggling families and equipping churches into becoming inclusive faith communities. 

Jeanette Hanscome

Building Professional Relationships and Why They Matter

Success as an author only requires stellar writing and a great story, right? Did you know that your response to rejection also matters? And your presence at conferences? And how you behave on social media? This workshop will explain why and equip you to cultivate lasting relationships in the publishing world.

Jeanette Hanscome is the author of five books, including Suddenly Single Mom and Running with Roselle, and has written hundreds of articles, devotions, and stories for magazines and devotional books. She speaks at women’s events and writers’ conferences and loves serving her writing community as part of the WCCW Board.


Barb Roose

Greenlight Your Way to Getting a Literary Agent

Literary agents love partnering with hopeful and established authors who are serious about their publishing journeys. What factors prompt a literary agent to say “yes” to one prospective client and “no” to another? Barb will define the success path for both agents and clients as well as six green lights that speed an author’s goal toward landing a literary agent.

Barb Roose is a literary agent with Books & Such Literary Management representing non-fiction and adult fiction. She loves partnering with authors to achieve their publishing career goals. With experience as an author, award-winning pharmaceutical sales representative and executive leader in the megachurch environment, Barb embraces the challenges and opportunities that agenting in Christian publishing offers. She welcomes queries that meet agency submission guidelines at

Jane Daly

Pitch Perfect

Do you freeze when someone asks you what your book is about? the Pitch Perfect Workshop will help you drill down to the basics of the theme of your fiction or nonfiction manuscript. We’ll work on defining your book in thirty-five words, then talk about how to expand that definition so you can Pitch Perfect to an agent or editor.

Jane Daly is the author of two books, Because of Grace, A Mother’s Journey From Grief to Hope (Hallway 2016) and The Caregiving Season (Focus on the Family 2018). She has written articles for several magazines and devotionals and is included in two anthologies.

Grace Fox

Writing Effective Query Letters

You have a great article idea. Now you need to catch an editor’s attention and convince him to publish this article because it will benefit his readers. This workshop will show you how to craft those all-important query letters so yours will stand apart from others and wow editors.

Grace Fox has written hundreds of magazine articles and ten books. She’s an annual contributor for Mornings With Jesus (Guideposts) and a member of the First 5 writing team (P31 Ministries). Her new devotional, Finding Hope in Crisis: Devotions for Calm in Chaos, will be released in February 2021. 

Jennifer Grant

Write a Book Proposal that Shines!

Jennifer Grant has written about a dozen book proposals for her projects and worked with at least twice that many clients on theirs. She’ll answer FAQ: “What is this elusive ‘platform’…and what if I don’t have one?” “How many sample chapters go in?”…and much more. Attendees will receive a template for crafting a proposal that shines!

Jennifer Grant is the author of five books for adults, and her sixth, Dimming the Day, a nighttime book of reflections on nature, launches in Fall 2021. She also is an award-winning picture book writer and works as an editor and editorial consultant. 

Writing Life

Marlo Schalesky

Failure? Maybe Not!

The writing life is often filled with disappointments, doubts, and rejections. Where does God fit in? Where does faithfulness, calling, hope, and fear fit in? For writers of all levels, this workshop will help you to face discouragement, renew passion, and see God in the midst of what may look like failure and the death of dreams.

Marlo Schalesky is an award-winning author of over 1,000 articles and 12 books, including her latest, Women of the Bible Speak Out (Our Daily Bread Publishers). A mother of 6, she is also the
founder and president of Wonder Wood Ranch, a California charitable organization for at-risk kids and youth.

Grace Fox

Overcoming a Writer’s Fears

Most writers deal with fear. Using stories from her writing journey, Grace Fox identifies three common fears she faces in her career: inadequacy, rejection, and failure. She’ll share biblical truths and practical actions that help her move beyond them. Learn to overcome your fears so you can pursue God’s calling.

Grace Fox has written hundreds of magazine articles and ten books. She’s an annual contributor for Mornings With Jesus (Guideposts) and a member of the First 5 writing team (P31 Ministries). Her new devotional, Finding Hope in Crisis: Devotions for Calm in Chaos, will be released in February 2021. 

Cathy Elliott

Distraction Defense: Write an Author Mission Statement & Stay on Course

“If you don’t know which way you’re going, it doesn’t matter which way you go.” Cheshire Cat, Alice in Wonderland. You’ve begun to write. Yet, it’s difficult to keep eyes-on-the-prize when possibilities beckon from every corner. Create an author mission statement, stay on track, and build the career you want.

Cathy Elliott writes cozy mysteries – most recently A Stitch in Crime – reflecting her personal interests in antiques and quilts. She leads music at church and tries not to brag about her grandgems. Cathy contributes to Guidepost’s popular All God’s Creatures devotionals and Someone Cares cards. 

Sherry Kyle

Creating the Space to Write: Removing the Clutter

Creating a writing space is not only about where we write, but also about moving the clutter from our mind so that we can be productive wherever we are. This workshop will give you ideas and tips for creating a writing space, as well as ways to improve your productivity.

Sherry Kyle is an award-winning author of books for tween girls, including Love, Lexi: Letters to God. She also writes novels for women that have been described as “charming, well-written, romantic, and fun.” She lives on the coast of California with her college sweetheart and their four adult children.

Kathi Lipp

The Author’s Guide to Building a Team to Serve Your Audience and Get Things Done

With all the demands on authors, building a team isn’t a luxury – it’s required. Learn from Kathi’s experience how to:

  • Find the right people
  • Lead well to support your career and your audience
  • Create a caring community
  • Equip your team grow your business – and theirs

Kathi Lipp is the author of 20 books including her Publishers Weekly best-selling book The Husband Project and her keystone books Clutter Free, Overwhelmed and Ready for Anything.

Erin Taylor Young

Did God Really Ask You to Write?

Most of us are writing because we believe God gave us this task. Why, then, do we struggle with doubt? Or struggle to sense God’s leading? Or maybe you’ve asked God about writing and heard…nothing. Is it still okay to write? This workshop will help put your doubts to rest!

Erin Taylor Young is an author, editor, and cohost of the Write from the Deep podcast. She co-founded a successful independent publishing company and was the co-managing editor before selling the company. She’s also an award-winning humor writer whose books have been repeatedly accused of making readers laugh until they cry.


Kelley Way

Lessons in Literary Law

Every author should know their rights in relation to their work. This presentation looks at five areas of law – copyright, trademark, right of privacy and publicity, defamation, and contracts – and talks about how to protect your rights in these areas while avoiding infringing on the rights of others.

Kelley Way graduated from UC Davis with a B.A. in English, followed by a Juris Doctorate. Kelley is a member of the California Bar, and an aspiring writer of young adult fantasy novels. She practices copyright, trademark and estate planning law at The Law Office of Kelley A. Way. 

Chris Morris

Making the Dream Work: How to Successfully Employ Multiple Income Streams and Build Your Ideal Career

It’s tough sledding as an author nowadays. Mostly gone are the six-figure advances, and the competition is steeper than ever before. Many writers find success as full-time independent business owners by creating several avenues for income. This course walks through how to identify new income opportunities, the best way to initiate an expansion of your brand, and when it’s best to close up shop on a new idea.

Chris Morris, an accountant and author, is the founder and managing partner for Chris Morris CPA LLC, an accounting firm focused on meeting the needs of small business owners. He has worked in accounting and finance for nearly two decades, but over the past five years has been focused on building his firm and serving his clients. Developing niche expertise for creative entrepreneurs and specifically authors, which now represent more than 65% of his clients.

Jon Drury

Audiobooks: Touching Ears and Hearts

Is creating an audiobook the next exciting step in reaching your audience? Audiobooks are now earning more than eBooks. Come learn how your book can become an audiobook. Find a studio or a narrator? Do it yourself in your own voice? Get the facts you need to expand your reach.

Jon Drury has published over 500 devotionals, and articles, and for 21 years directed the Christian Writers Seminar. His book BOU Pilot, tells of his flying in Vietnam. Starting in 1992 at Mt. Hermon, he moved from articles to books. In 2012 at Mt. Hermon, Jon received the David Talbott Special Recognition Award.


February 25-27, 2021

“By no means do I count myself an expert in all of this, but I’ve got my eye on the goal, where God is beckoning us onward—to Jesus. I’m off and running, and I’m not turning back.” (Philippians 3:12-14 MSG)