Thursday, October 20, 2011

Conferences, Retreats and Workshops! Oh, My!

Imagine you’re traveling down your own yellow-brick road to publication when suddenly before looms a gleaming building filled with other writers, classes on topics that will help your writing with agents and editors waiting to hear from you! It’s as if you been transported to the wonderful city of Oz!

Attending a writers’ event is one of the best ways to build up your writing life and well worth the expense. Conferences, retreats and workshops not only increase your knowledge and technical skills, it sorta acts as a support group. Imagine being surrounded by others that are just as excited about writing as you! You can’t beat the feeling.

This week, I decided to let you know about some upcoming conferences throughout the country. This is not an exhaustive list. Be sure and check your local writers’ groups to find out about other conferences that may be available.

October 28 – 29, 2011; East Texas Christian Writing Conference; East Texas Baptist University, Marshall, Texas. (Registration until the 21st is only $80!) Presenters include Becca Anderson, freelance writer and published novelist; Terry Burns, award-winning novelist and literary agent; and Mike Farris, literary agent, entertainment attorney and award-winning screenwriter.

November 2 – 6, 2011; CLASS Christian Writers Conference; Ghost Ranch, Abiquiu, New Mexico. Workshops include Fiction A to Z with DiAnn Mills, Writing to Reach the Unbeliever with Terry Burns, Plotting not Plodding with Eddie Jones, and Writing for Children with Sheila Seifert.

February 16 – 19, 2012; Writing for the Soul sponsored by Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writers Guild; Grand Hyatt, Denver Colorado. Keynote speakers include Anne Graham Lotz, T. Davis Bunn and Todd Starnes. Classes include Building Your Platform with Randy Ingermanson, Jesus in the Newsroom with Todd Starnes, and the Thick-Skinned Manuscript Clinic with Jerry B. Jenkins.

March 30 – April 3, 2012; Mount Hermon Writers Conference; Mount Hermon, California. More information will be available on the website after November 1, 2011. There will be major morning tracks, afternoon workshops and specialized morning career tracks available for published authors by application.

May 20 – 24, 2012; Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers Conference; Ridgecrest Conference Center, Black Mountain, North Carolina. Information will be online at a later date. Past conferences have included Alton Gansky, DiAnn Mills, Yvonne Lehman and Caleb Jenning Breakey as faculty.

June 6 – 9, 2012; Write to Publish Conference; Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois. Keynote speaker will be Dr. Dennis Hensley, director of the professional writing department at Taylor University and prolific author.

Conferences and workshops are the best way to jump-start your new career or break-through your writer’s block. Prices range from less than $100 to several hundred dollars, but if you plan far enough in advance, you can squirrel away enough to cover the registration and hotel fees. But don’t forget to take some spending money because most conferences offer book-signings and CD’s of the individual workshops. And don't forget to enjoy the trip!


  1. Thanks for sharing this list, Angie! Very helpful!

  2. Great idea to share this info, Angie. Love the reference to the yellow brick road and Oz! :-D

  3. Glad you liked it, ladies! I completely forgot about the Novel Writers Retreat at Ridgecrest. They're finishing up the 2011 retreat today.


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