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Archive for the ‘Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference’ Category

I’m in the conference crunch zone! I MUST get the 16-page brochure for the July 26-28 Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference to the printer by the end of this week. Yes, I know it’s Thursday.

I’m also behind on must-do tasks for the May 16-19 Colorado Christian Writers Conference.

Although I’ve been directing the Colorado conference for 22 years and the Philly conference (that I founded) for 35 years, it does NOT get any easier. In fact, each year it gets harder.

I could blame the challenges of ongoing computer issues and the never-ending learning curve. At 73, I’m not getting any younger. Perhaps it’s true that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks? Well, correction! I’m not a dog. (I certainly don’t have the energy of our eight-month-old Labradoodle!) But I am a child of God engaged in a mighty spiritual battle.

Why do I direct TWO Christian writers conferences when I’m old enough to retire?

Because it’s what Father has called and I trust equipped me to do in HIS strength.

ostrich 2

 

It’s all too easy to bury our head in the sand, to ignore the “signs of the time,” and believe the lie that one person cannot make a difference.

 

But God is calling and equipping us – me and you – to

 

Write my answer on a billboard, large and clear,
so that anyone can read it at a glance
and rush to tell the others.
Habakkuk 2:2 TLB

And friends, there is no time to waste. Souls are perishing as the tide is quickly turning against our freedom to proclaim the life-giving message of salvation through Jesus Christ.

April 24 CBN.com reported:

Google Rejects Christian Publisher Ads
that Mention Jesus

For years I have said that we cannot assume that the doors to print and distribute Christian literature will always be open. We also cannot assume that the incredible doors the Internet has opened will always remain open.

And so I direct TWO Christian writers conferences that will challenge you to “Write His Answer” to the critical issues facing our nation. At the May 16-19 Colorado conference keynoters will address

Redemptive Writing in a Hostile Culture
Embracing the Spirit of the Martyr
“Christians Are Hateful” – the Cultural Challenge

Our 58 workshops, 8 continuing sessions, 4 clinics (there’s still time to apply for the Nonfiction Book Proposal Clinic) and more will “encourage and equip you to write about a God who is real, who is reachable, and who changes lives.”

I’ve added a new “Issues” track to the July 26-28 Philly conference. Keynotes will address:

Declaring God’s Truth in a Digital Age of Half Truths
The Arm of Flesh Will Fail

Undaunted

Of course, the Philly conference, the same as the Colorado conference, will give you the practical help you need to sharpen your writing and marketing skills in addition to the opportunity to meet one-on-one with agents, editors, and authors.

Please pray about coming. Partial scholarships are available if needed. Remember, Father is able to make a way when there seems to be no way.

I’ve been to many “Christian” Writers Conferences
around the country.
None have helped build my faith,
provided clear direction,
strengthened my convictions,
and encouraged me to write Jesus’ messages
more than the Colorado Christian Writers Conference.
For the record, I’ve attended CCWC 12 years in a row.
I would not miss it.
Charles Patricoff

 

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berry-strawberry-hands-leaves-65271 pexelsSpring is finally here on the east coast, at least I hope it is. I’ve got loads of daffodils blooming. (I love how they naturalize and spread each year.) Waiting in the garage (and hopefully surviving) are 100 strawberry plants that arrived when there was 14″ of snow on the ground. My peach, pear, and apple trees (well, one of the apple trees) are in bloom.

As I think about the fruit I hope to harvest this summer and fall, I know far more important fruit will result from the May 16-19 Colorado Christian Writers Conference and the July 26-28 Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference. I’ve added a new faculty member to the Colorado conference (info coming soon), and tomorrow morning I trust I’ll finally get started on the 16-page brochure for the Philly conference.

But I know the “fruit” Father wants our lives to bear is not what we do for Him but how we grow closer to Him so that our lives reflect Him. I hope you’ll click here for a Bible study on “Bearing Fruit.”

Marketers on a Mission logo

A dear friend whose life and ministry is bearing much fruit is Patricia Durgin. Tomorrow, April 25, at 3:00 pm I’m delighted to be her guest on “Marketers on a Mission.” I’ve known Patricia for many years and am so impressed by the work she is doing to equip Christians to effectively market their business or ministry. The link for tomorrow’s interview is below. I hope you’ll join us.

https://www.facebook.com/PatriciaADurgin/videos/1686232451459763/

MK book
Missions Moments at the Write His Answer Conferences

Both the May 16-19 Colorado Christian Writers Conference and the July 26-28 Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference have always had a strong emphasis on raising awareness to needs at home and around the world. M.K. Henderson has frequently been with us and has a new book I encourage you to order. Click here. Ebook copies are available to purchase as a pre-release sale for $1.99 through April 30. (After April 30 the ebook will be $4.99.) Your purchase will automatically appear on your device May 1st. Print copies also will be available May 1st on Amazon.

Take care to live in me, and let me live in you. For a branch can’t produce fruit when severed from the vine. Nor can you be fruitful apart from me. Yes, I am the Vine; you are the branches. Whoever lives in me and I in him shall produce a large crop of fruit. For apart from me you can’t do a thing.

John 15:4-5 TLB

 

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Yes, the Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference is happening!  We will celebrate our 35th year of ministry July 26-28 — one day shorter to make it more time and cost affordable for you.

Our format will be similar to what we’ve offered in the past. Our theme, “Write His Answer” from Habakkuk 2:2, has not changed. The GPCWC continues to be committed to encouraging and equipping Christians from diverse backgrounds to write about a God who is real, who is reachable, and who changes lives.

Almost all of the faculty is in place. I’ll be introducing them to you over the next couple of weeks while I work on updating the website and getting the brochure to the printer. I’m excited and trust you will be, too.

KataranPattonMeet our newest
faculty member
Katara Washington Patton

Katara is the author of a series of books on successful living based on Biblical characters. Successful Moms of the Bible, Successful Women of the Bible and Successful Leaders of the Bible (Hatchette/FaithWords, 2016-2017) have received many outstanding reviews and testimonies of how Patton’s down-to-earth and sometimes humorous style has piqued even more interest in the Bible and the lessons within. Patton is also the author of a devotional coloring book for all ages, The Parables of Jesus Coloring Book (Hatchette/FaithWords 2017).

Katara has also created supplemental material for best-selling authors, such as T.D. Jakes and Joyce Meyer. She was general editor of Aspire: The New Women of Color Study Bible (Zondervan), the writer for the teacher’s workbook for Bishop Vashti MacKenzie’s Journey to the Well (UMI), and writer and acquisitions lead for Beth Moore’s So Long, Insecurity Teen Edition (Tyndale).

Katara graduated summa cum laude from Dillard University (New Orleans, LA), with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Mass Communications and English. She then earned a Master of Journalism in magazine publishing from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University (Evanston, IL). She also received a Masters of Divinity from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary (Evanston, IL), where she received the outstanding preaching award.

She has worked in the editorial and acquisitions departments at Weekly Reader Corporation, Jet Magazine, Urban Ministries, Inc. (UMI), McGraw-Hill and Tyndale House Publishers. In 2013 she established Esteem Publishing, which allows her to help others bring their book and media ideas to fruition. In 2014, she was named Nonfiction Editor of the Year by the Advanced Writers and Speakers Association (AWSA).

Katara is a native of Thibodaux, Louisiana. She and her husband, Derrick, reside on the South Side of Chicago. They have one daughter, Kayla. She is a member of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago. As much as possible, she tries to enjoy a Zumba class and a competitive game of Scrabble to keep her life balanced.

~*~*~*~

More News

If you heard the conference is moving, we are! I’m delighted to announce that we’ll be at Dock Mennonite Academy just off the Lansdale exit of the North/South PA Turnpike (476). It’s a beautiful campus.

Lodging is at the Holiday Inn in Kulpsville, just one minute from the turnpike exit and five minutes from Dock. We used the Holiday Inn for our February conference and were impressed.  They’ve offered us a special rate of only $109 a night (plus tax). If you choose to share a room with one, two, or three other conferees (we’ll assist with roommate matching) you will substantially cut the already low cost.

Breakfast and Thursday dinner is on your own at the Holiday Inn or a local restaurant. You’ll have the option of purchasing box lunches Friday and Saturday and a catered Italian Feast Friday night.

Please pray for me as I work to open online registration by May 1 and put July 26-28 on your calendar now.

And the Lord said to me,
“Write my answer on a billboard, large and clear,
so that anyone can read it at a glance
and rush to tell the others.”

Habakkuk 2:2 (TLB)

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Tug of war

As you prepare for the celebration of Jesus’ birth, do you feel like you’re playing tug-of-war with conflicting priorities and all you need to get done?

Sadly, it’s all too easy to be so focused on our to-do lists (yes, I have more than one!) that we miss what’s most important.

Emmy, our four-month-old Labradoodle, is so full of energy and spunk. She is not intimidated by the fact that Lady, our 90-pound Golden, is three times her size. Emmy is focused on getting that toy, and when she does, on playing keep-away.

Of course, our lives are far more complicated. We don’t live to play, but we do need to pray to live – to really live in the center of God’s will.

Father, I pray for myself and my friends. Help us not to be intimidated by our to-do lists. Clearly show us what You want us to do and give us Your strength to do it. Keep us focused on what really matters  and determined not to squeeze You out of our busy lives. Give us Your peace and joy!


My Christmas gift to you . . .

I have just opened registration for the new Write to Impact Lives Conference February 9-10 in Lansdale, PA (just off the Lansdale exit of the east/west PA Turnpike). For published and not-yet-published authors this 1.5 day conference will give you the jumpstart you need to complete the book Father is calling you to write.

Feb banner

For more info go to
http://philadelphia.writehisanswer.com/writetoimpactlivesconference.

If you register by the end of the year, I’ll be glad to gift you with my book, Write His Answser – A Bible Study for Christian Writers, or James Watkins’ book, Communicate to Change Lives in Person and Print. Jim is one of our keynoters. He will also teach the continuing session,  “The Five Rs of Nonfiction.”

New WHA cover

Communicate Change Lives


And your gift to yourself . . .

I want to encourage you to save any monetary gifts you receive this Christmas to invest in the Colorado or Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference.  Or ask your family to gift you with the conference.

There are presently 42 editors, agents, and authors on faculty for the May 16-19 Colorado Christian Writers Conference with more to be added. Held at the YMCA of the Rockies on the edge of Rocky Mountain National Park, why not rent a cabin and bring your family? By the end of the year I hope to begin updating the website. Registration will open February 1.

I’ve not yet begun planning the July 26-28 Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference. YES, the conference is continuing! I am praising God for the new location of Dock Mennonite Academy in Lansdale. Lodging at the Holiday Inn, just five minutes away, is $109 a night (plus tax). Share your room with one, two, or three writing friends and bring the cost down to $27, $36, or $55 a night. (We can help with roommate matching.) The new format of a 2.5 day conference (instead of 3.5 days) will also lower the cost both in time and money!

TCC ad 2018_Page_1.jpg

Have a blessed Christmas because He came and is coming again!

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Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good!
His faithful love endures forever.
Psalm 118:29 TLB

Yes, Father, I am more than thankful. Indeed, words can’t begin to express my gratitude for all You have done, are doing, and will do.

Thank You for my family and friends, for my home and health, for freedom to worship and serve You . . .

Thank You for 34 years of ministry and for providing a new vision and new home for the Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference. And thank You for the added blessing that Dock Mennonite Academy is only ten minutes from my home!

2018 GP Banner

Thank You for the wonderful staff at the YMCA of the Rockies, Estes Park, Colorado. Bless John, Brenda, Lori and their teams for how they go the extra mile, and then some. Thank You for the thousands of  writers You have enabled us to encourage and equip in our 20 years of ministry there. 2018 CO banner.png

Thank You for the opportunity to direct the new “Write to Impact Lives Conference” with The Munce Group in Lancaster, PA, February 9-10. (The Munce Group offers numerous marketing programs and services to help bookstores target their customers and to simplify their job as independent Christian retailers. Conferees have the option of staying for one or more days of the Munce Christian Product Expo February 11-13.)

Munce logo

Thank You for the critique groups that meet in my home and for the joy of editing Becky Toews’, Between the Lamp Posts, 365-day devotional, and Louise Looney’s, The Best of Days for The Rest of Your Days. 

Father, keep us mindful of Your blessings not just at Thanksgiving but throughout the year. And “make us a blessing.”

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I know I am. Do I hear an “Amen”?

I am so hoping I’ll be able to slip in to at least some of Al Janssen’s continuing session at the July 26-29 Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference.

Al JanssenRevive Your Spirit;
Revive Your Message

Al Janssen
Author, Speaker, Pastor
www.aljanssen.com

Al has authored or co-authored more than 30 books that have been published around the world in more than 20 languages. For ten years he served as Director of Book Publishing for Focus on the Family. Since 2002 he has traveled the world ministering to Christians who suffer the most severe persecution because of their faith. Al and his wife Jo teach a marriage course in Muslim countries, based on his best-selling book Your Marriage Masterpiece. He is co-author with Brother Andrew of Secret Believers: What Happens When Muslims Believe in Christ. When not traveling the world, Al enjoys watching the Colorado Rockies play baseball at Coors Field in Denver.

Are you tired? Worn out? Has writing become a burden? Speaking a chore? Jesus invites you to come and rest. He wants us to walk with Him and learn from Him. In our five sessions together, we will explore various spiritual disciplines to help you draw nearer to God and hear what is on His heart for your next writing or speaking project. Al is certified in spiritual formation and leadership. He teaches weary pastors and Christian leaders around the world how to slow down and rekindle their joy of relationship with Jesus. In the process they find their ministry revitalized. This will be an interactive seminar in which we learn and practice several spiritual disciplines in community.

It’s not too late to register! Meals and some lodging is still available but do not delay.  If you bring a copy of this blog with you, I’ll give you book table credit for the $15 “Procrastinator’s Fee.” 🙂

For more info and register securely online go to http://philadelphia.writehisanswer.com. And if you need time payments, just ask.

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2017 GP Banner for FB 2

After 34 years, the last Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference (GPCWC) is July 26-29. The conference format is ending this year (a good reason not to miss coming), but the ministry is NOT ending. I believe the more affordable and focused events throughout the year (with much smaller faculties) that Father is leading me to plan will continue to encourage you to “write His answer.” The bottom line –

I’m NOT quitting or retiring!

I’m praying you will come to be encouraged and equipped to “write about a God who is real, who is reachable, and who changes lives.”

  • You will be inspired to “write His answer” by our 8 keynotes.
  • You will sharpen your writing and marketing skills from your choice of 8 continuing sessions and an exciting line-up of 20 early bird workshops on Wednesday.
  • You will receive practical and valuable information in your choice of  workshops from the 42 offered in these tracks:

Writer’s Life
Craft
Fiction
Nonfiction
Get published
Marketing
Other

  • You will have the opportunity to make appointments with the faculty of your choice (based on their availability) when you arrive.
  • You will form deep friendships with others who share your passion for the Lord and for words.

As I consider the critical days we are living in, I cannot think of a more important assignment than to “write His answer” through screenplays, novels, nonfiction books and articles, poetry, devotionals, and more. I’m praying you will accept His assignment and make plans now to join us July 26-29 at Cairn University in Langhorne, PA, for our 34th and last GPCWC.

Can’t make the entire conference? One and two-day registrations are accepted. Meals and lodging on campus are still available. Time payments can be arranged if needed. To find out more and register online go to:

http://philadelphia.writehisanswer.com


“The Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference
is among the premier writing conferences in the USA.
The conference brings together people from all walks of life
to interact with some of the finest minds in Christian publishing,
and every year bears rich fruit in the education and publication
of articles, poems, drama, books, and more.”
Bob Hostetler, Int’l speaker & author of 48 books

* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *

“Though I was only able to be at the GPCWC for one day,
it was action- and helps-packed. 
Measuring it by that day alone I’d give it an A+!”
Nils Ohman ~ Texas

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The Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference is more than a place to meet editors and learn the craft. It is truly a spiritual retreat for all those called to write as ministry and mission.

Nancy Rue – Best-selling Author of 100+ books

My life is STILL being touched every day by the Philly conference.
I am writing more, and with a greater sense of purpose,
yet with no concern or worries about my writing
as I know God will use me and what I write as He sees fit.

Thom Smith, conferee from New Hampshire

 

As a 25-year publishing veteran who has worked with close to 1,000 writers (including numerous NY Times best-selling authors), I’ve experienced a huge variety of writer conferences. Two that consistently stand out as a force for making good writers better and launching new authors are the Greater Philly and Colorado Christian Writers Conference – both, not coincidentally – led by Marlene Bagnull.

Marlene’s passion and industry knowledge has created a powerful place for Christian creatives to gather and grow. I have personally invested in both conferences as a speaker and teacher. The reason why is I’m a fan of her vision for writers because I see the breakthrough that occurs at these events. 

Allen Arnold
Author, Speaker, Former Christian Industry Executive
Allen is the author of The Story of With, an allegory that reveals a better way to live and create through the doorway of identity, imagination, and intimacy. His mission is to help people actively pursue and transform their talent by discovering how to pursue it with God. As the founding Fiction Publisher for one of the world’s largest Christian publishing houses, Allen oversaw the development of hundreds of novels. He knows first-hand how common it is for creators to become disheartened, overwhelmed or burnt-out–as well as what it takes to help the dreams of writers become reality. In

I’ve served on several conference faculties,
but I’ve never had my call to write
renewed and reaffirmed in the ways I have
at GPCWC. . . . I’ve wept. I’ve prayed.
I’ve been reminded to listen to His voice
about what and how I write.
Marti Pieper
Author, Editor, Collaborator

 

I don’t think it’s possible to count all the books, articles, and devotions that have been published due to this conference. Personally, the conference has helped me go from a few published books to 25 and to speak around the world.
Karen Whiting – Author, Speaker

A multi-ethnic, interdenominational conference
that is a model for what American culture
should be. GPCWC has for years
stood for a simple belief
that by lifting up the name of Jesus
without selfish agenda miracles will occur.
Dr. Harold L. Arnold, Jr.
Author, leadership consultant,

family life blogger

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Don’t miss it!
The July 26-29 GPCWC
is the 34th and last
in the conference format.

I’m not quitting or retiring! Instead, I believe Father is leading me in a new direction. I’m envisioning several events each year with a much smaller faculty and a sharper focus.

Although I am sad to see GPCWC end after 34 years, I am excited to see what Father is going to do next. But meanwhile, I’m praying you won’t miss what He is going to do this year. On campus lodging and meals and time payments (if needed) are still available, but the registration fee increases For more info and to register online go to http://philadelphia.writehisanswer.com.

The May 16-19, 2018, Colorado Christian Writers Conference will continue in its present format.

 

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Snow CO 2017 Terry Whalin

Guest post and photo reprinted with permission of W. Terry Whalin, faculty member at this year’s Colorado and Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference.

Terry shares a wealth of knowledge on “The Writing Life” in his blogs at terrywhalin.blogspot.com. At the July 26-29 Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference he will teach two workshops, “Go Viral: Social Network Marketing” and “Nonfiction Book Creation from the Ground Up.”

Terry took this photo on May 19, 2017, in Estes Park, Colorado, during the Colorado Christian Writers Conference.

For many years I’ve been attending conferences. My time at the recent Colorado Christian Writers Conference was unusual because in mid-May, we had over three feet of snow. It snowed for almost two solid days after we arrived at the event. Some faculty members who arrived late were stuck at the Denver airport. The snow made for an unusual and memorable event.

Some people wonder how I’ve published such a range of magazine articles and books. I’m not the best writer in the room but I am one of the most consistent. If I pitch an idea and an editor says, sounds good, send it to me. I make a little note, then go home, write the article or book and send it. Yes you have to write what the editor wants but overall I’ve found such a simple strategy works.

Just attending conferences is a financial investment of money, time and energy. In this article, I want to highlight five ways to profit from a conference.

First, listen for opportunities then take action. For example, one editor I met told me about a forthcoming series of Bible studies that his publisher will be doing. I’ve written Bible studies in the past and enjoy this type of writing. I noticed the opportunity so I made a point to email this editor and affirm in writing my interest in the project. The editor was grateful for my interest and said at the right time he would be in touch. This type of follow-up work leads to additional writing opportunities. You have to be listening for them.

Another editor at the conference has worked on a publication that I’ve never written for. It has a large circulation and I wanted to write for this publication for the exposure as much as a new writing credit. I’ve emailed the editor and we are corresponding about some ideas which I believe will lead to an assignment and eventually publication. You have to listen for the opportunities, then take action.

Advanced preparation before the event is a second way to profit from the conference. Study the faculty and see what they publish and then write pitches and book proposals. Most publications have writer’s guidelines and other information easily available online. Several writers at the recent conference brought flash drives with the electronic copy of their material. I appreciated the effort of these writers and it moved their submission to the top of my stack. I put their material into our internal system and moved it forward through the consideration process. In one case I’ve already turned in a writer’s project to my publication board and I’m hoping to get a contract for this author in a few weeks. The germ of this activity was her arrival at the conference prepared for her meetings. You can learn and mirror such actions when you attend an event.

Most conferences have a freebie table with magazines and writers guidelines. These publications are looking for freelance writers. You have to pick up the publications, read the guidelines then make your pitch or query or follow-through. This consistent action of follow-up is the third way to profit from a conference. When someone mentions an interest in your material, make sure you exchange business cards with them. Then when you get home, send them an email and follow-up.

At the conference, I met many people and came home with a large stack of business cards. I’ve been following up with writers and encouraging them to send me their proposal and/or manuscript. Yet few of them have reached out to me—and this type of situation is typical from my experience. If you reach out to the editor and take action, your actions will receive positive attention and you will get publishing opportunities. This is the fourth way to profit from a conference.

One of the reasons to attend a conference is to learn a new skill or a new area of the writing world. The fifth method to profit from a conference is to take action on these new skills. Are you learning how to write fiction or a magazine article or tap a new social network? A variety of skills are taught at conferences.

It’s easy to put away the notes and never look at them again. The writers who get published take a different course of action. They review the notes and apply it to their writing life. At the Colorado event, I taught an early bird workshop about Jumpstart Your Publishing Dreams (my book). I worked hard on my handout which had many additional resources and links for those who used it. Here’s my handout for your reference: http://terrylinks.com/js I encourage you to download the handout, print it and follow the extra material to profit for your own writing life. I’ll be at the Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference and other events this year. Check my speaking schedule link to connect and I hope our paths cross later this year and I can help you one on one.

As writers we are continually learning and growing in our craft. A conference can be a huge growth area if you take a action and follow-up.
__________________
It’s not too late to register for the July 26-29 Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference. Lodging and meals on campus are still available. But don’t delay! The “procrastinator’s fee” kicks in on July 19.

 

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