How Running a Killer Giveaway Can Grow Your Platform and Build Fruitful Connections

Becky Beresford

(Beg/Int/Adv) Not all giveaways are created equal. Knowing how to collaborate well with other creatives is key when determining the success and strength of a giveaway. After growing her email list by thousands through running fruitful giveaways, Becky is excited to share her “secret sauce” that will benefit all creative collaboration efforts, not just giveaways. We will discuss giveaway must-have’s, as well as how to structure, organize and host a giveaway that exponentially grows your platform and builds lasting network connections. We’ll also talk about the importance of praying over your giveaway and trusting God with the results.

How to Prove to the IRS That You Are a Writer

Barbara M. Britton

(Beg/Int) Are you starting out on your writing journey and wondering what you can take off of your taxes, if anything? Barbara will share the advice she received from her CPA when she was new to writing. She will also share her business plan and how she keeps track of expenses. Have documents ready to prove to anyone that you are a serious writer and business owner. This will be a generalized workshop on how to organize your writing escapades.

Creating a Series Bible

Lisa Carter

(Beg/Int/Adv) When writing a series, it is essential to keep track of world-building and character details. A series bible is a cheat sheet document, a quick and efficient means of locating key elements of previous plots and/or characterizations as you write the sequel or subsequent novels in the series. To avoid mid-book mistakes, it is a tool that writers will find helpful even if they’re writing a standalone book, and also useful in the editing/rewriting process. Major category areas to include will be highlighted. In addition, attendees will learn tips for putting together a story bible that works for their WIP needs, whether physical or digital.

Publishing Paths

Crystal Caudill

(Beg) You’ve finished your manuscript and you’re dying to get it into reader’s hands, but how do you do that? What are the steps required to get your story from your personal computer into the hands of readers? In this session, participants will be given an overview look at the process of pursuing publication through four different venues: Traditional – Big House Publishing, Traditional – Small House Publishing, Indie Publishing, and Hybrid Publisher. Participants will walk away with the information needed to prayerfully consider which path God is calling them to pursue.

Creating Effective Memes

Rhonda Dragomir

(Beg/Int/Adv) Writers are encouraged to build platform on social media, but most authors are proficient with words, not images. Rhonda Dragomir teaches you how to identify effective images, secure proper licensing, and edit photos for online use with a free, online tool that imitates Photoshop. She also offers tips on how to size and schedule photo posts for common applications.

You Need a First Page that Pops and Pops Again!

Linda Glaz

(Beg/Int) It’s important to get the reader’s attention on page one and keep them reading until the end. In this workshop we’ll examine some first pages and learn how to make page one sing so much that readers can’t wait to read page two.

Pulling the Rug Out: How to Create Twists Your Readers
Will Never See Coming 

Steven James

(Int/Adv) A great twist will be unexpected, inevitable, an escalation of what preceded it, and a revelation that adds meaning to what has already occurred. Readers want to predict how a story will end, but they want to be wrong—yet still satisfied. In this seminar you’ll discover how to develop endings that leave your readers stunned, thrilled, and blown away.

Motivated to Write

Joy K. Massenburge

(Beg/Int/Adv) “Give me a lever long enough and a fulcrum on which to place it, and I shall move the world.” Archimedes

Workshop participants will be presented with a fresh way to evaluate their beliefs, values, and discipline so they are motived to accept the call on their life to write, to cultivate the skillset that honors God, and obediently leverage the toolset He provides to help others.

Love the World You Build – Settings with Emotional Impact

Edie Melson

(Beg/Int) World building is a critical skill for every writer who tells a story—whether it’s set in outer space, ancient Rome, a made up contemporary city, or in real-life rural America. This workshops gives writers checklists and ideas empowering them to write settings that come alive the reader’s mind. Master these tips and build the world you’ve always imagined.

Organization for Writers

Edie Melson

(Beg/Int/Adv) Edie has been accused of being an expert multi-tasker. But the secret to getting things done lies in her ability to organize and prioritize her life. She shares all her best tips and tricks from naming files, to using blocks of time to accomplish more writing, to ways to the foundational practice of making sure our priorities line up with God’s.

The Lies Our Characters Believe

DiAnn Mills

(Int) In this workshop, the writer will learn how to identify lies their characters believe, how to dissect and originate the lies, and how to use them to enhance a page-turning novel.

Understanding Michael Hague’s “The Hero’s Two Journeys”

Paula Peckham

(Int) Does your manuscript run out of steam somewhere in the middle? Do you find yourself wondering what your characters should do next? Learn about Michael Hague’s “Screenwriting & Storytelling Blueprint: Hero’s Two Journeys” where he discusses the six-step structure that keeps your story focused and progressing with tension and interest. You’ll learn three key elements needed for a journey of achievement and five different conditions you may choose from to create a connection between your character and your readers. You’ll see four different goals your hero may have. Take all guesswork out of your plot and hook your fans.

Dialogue: Subtext, Syntax & Style

Dani Pettrey

(Int/Adv) Subtext, Syntax & Style focuses on all the elements that go into dialogue to help you take it to the next level. This workshop covers many literary devices (including syntax, subtext, style, diction, cadence, rhythm, and atmopshere) and shows how each is integrated into your dialogue to make it stellar.

Organic Faith

Toni Shiloh

(Beg/Int) Do you struggle to know how much faith to put into your story? Organic Faith will use fictional devices such as theme, setting, characters, etc, to illustrate a natural way to weave in a faith message that is just right for the story, reader, and you.

Will You Marry Me? Creating an Irresistible Proposal

Betsy St. Amant Haddox

(Beg/Int) Segments of this workshop include the title page, hook, back cover copy, competitive analysis, bio, marketing strategy, and identifying one’s primary market while giving examples and discussing the differences between each. Betsy will then walk the attendees through an extended look at “taming the dreaded synopsis”, and encourage new writers in this tricky but necessary “evil” on their road to publication. One analogy of creating a synopsis worth reading is Betsy’s “batter up” method that uses cake baking as a visual encouragement. (Because you can’t have a wedding without cake!)

Fiction Boot Camp

Sarah Sundin

(Beg) 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 outline the steps to publication. Prepare to sweat—and learn.

Effective Platform Building for Novelists

Janyre Tromp

(Beg/Int) Building a platform is essentially finding your audience and talking to them. Nonfiction writers can leverage their expertise, but how does a novelist build a platform . . . especially if they don’t have a book published yet? In this writer’s chat, industry veteran and bestselling novelist Janyre Tromp will talk through some effective strategies you can employ to build a platform at any point in your career (whether you’re a novelist or nonfiction writer). And since Janyre debuted in 2022, her tips are fresh on the market.

Formatting Uncertainty: Some Pros and Cons of Formatting Softwares

Sara Turnquist

(Int/Adv) For many writers, we enjoy software made for writers. But you will need to be able to format and convert to (possibly) Microsoft Word, PDF for paperbacks, and epubs for ebooks. What options are there? And how do you pick one? This class will look at three formatting softwares: Vellum, Atticus, and Scrivener. From a brief overview, then we will discuss some pros and cons of each.

How to Build an Audience for Your Book: Community vs. Self-Promotion

Erica Vetsch, Michelle Griep, & Julie Klassen

(Beg/Int/Adv) Many of us are uncomfortable with self-promotion, but like it or not, marketing is part of the writing life. But it doesn’t have to be a drag. Readers want to engage with authors, and in a more meaningful way than just hearing “Buy my book!” In this workshop, we’ll offer techniques for creating a reading community and providing value-added content that readers love. Whether through newsletters, in-person events, or social media, we’ll help you discover how to make readers come back for more—and draw the attention of agents and editors along the way.

The Art of the Novella: Packing a Big Story Into a Small Space

Erica Vetsch

(Beg/Int/Adv) Novella-length fiction is popular among readers these days, giving them the option of a shorter read when they don’t have time to devote to a full-length book. Though many readers enjoy this format, the most common complaint about novellas is they often feel rushed at the end or lack satisfying depth. In this workshop, we’ll look at ways to distill your plot to the salient points, techniques for trimming your cast of characters to the chosen few, how to condense a timeline, and how to use these tools to create a complex, emotion-tugging read regardless of length. We’ll walk through which of the ‘Sacred Rules of Writing’ it is okay to break when writing a novella. We’ll cover novella collections, who is publishing novellas currently, and how you can break into the novella market.

Who Are You? Developing Your Author Brand

Hope Welborn

(Beg/Int) If you’re not intentionally creating a brand, you are unintentionally creating a brand. Everything connected with our writing creates an image, a promise, and an expectation in our readers’ minds. This is your author brand. But how do you know if you’re branding yourself in the best possible way? This class will cover basic brand concepts, the various components of an author brand, and where and how to use your brand.

More Than An Idea

Roseanna White

(Beg/Int) We all have ideas that might be great books—but the inspiration is only step one. This class takes you through turning that idea into a workable project, through hard work and even some emotional and spiritual growth.

An Introduction to Podcasting

KyLee Woodley

(Beg/Int/Adv) Statistics show that half of U.S. households consider themselves “podcast fans.” And, in the last ten years, religious podcast listeners have grown by 85%. Such a growth rate has opened a whole new way for authors to reach readers. This class is for authors who aren’t familiar with podcasting but want to know more about how they can establish a presence in the podcasting community. We will cover finding podcasts that would be good to guest on, how to get the most out of an interview, and if starting a podcast might be right for you.

Writing YA Fiction

Candice Pedraza Yamnitz

(Beg) Are you writing YA fiction? Learn what’s expected and how to give the reader what they want. We’ll dive into certain distinct markers that will make your work attractive to a teen audience.

Where would you like to go from here?

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I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.
John 15:5