Cub Reporter Debby Giusti’s second book in her Military Investigations series, THE CAPTAIN’S MISSION, will be released in October. The third book, THE COLONEL’S DAUGHTER, will be out in 2012. Visit Debby online and blog with her at Seekerville.
Ten years ago a small group of inspirational authors formed an organization originally called American Christian Romance Writers. To embrace the growing membership and expanding
spectrum of Christian genres, the organization’s name eventually changed to American Christian Fiction Writers. Today, 2500 members strong, ACFW is known as the voice of Christian fiction and attracts writers in all genres whose stories are told from a Christian world view.
Last week, 680 writers gathered in St. Louis, Missouri, for the tenth annual ACFW conference. This year’s theme, “Building a Strong Foundation,” laid the groundwork for a variety of
workshops that targeted five levels of expertise, ranging from beginning writer to multi-published author.
ACFW president and multi-published author Margaret Daley welcomed the writers and explained the organization’s numerous programs that provide a firm foundation on which to build a writing career. She also announced a new ACFW writing magazine, free to members, slated to begin publication in 2012.
Keynote speaker Tracie Peterson, winner of the Romantic Times Career Achievement Award for 2007 Inspirational Fiction and author of 95 books, encouraged attendees to put God first. She talked about the importance of staying connected to the industry through organizations such as ACFW and challenged the audience to determine their own motivation for writing.
Stan Williams, Ph.D., author of The Moral Premise, Harnessing Virtue and Vice for Box Office Success, taught the early bird session, “Secrets of Successful Story Writing,” to a packed house
on Thursday. Stan shared the techniques he employs when working with Hollywood screenwriters and producers to create blockbuster movies. Pulling examples from movie clips, he explained how writers can use the conflict of virtue and vice to develop riveting stories that hook editors and keep readers turning the page.
Eager to find new voices in Christian fiction, 25 editors and 19 agents accepted pitches during scheduled appointment times as well as at specially designated tables they hosted at lunch. In addition, “Spotlight On” programs provided guidelines and writing tips for those interested in submitting.
The gala awards ceremony on Saturday night was a fitting climax to a wonderful weekend and provided a dream-come-true experience for the winners of the Genesis Award in the unpublished category and the Carol Award for published authors. Check out the Genesis Award Winners here and the Carol Award Winners here.
After a Sunday worship service led by author Rachel Hauck, the writers packed their bags and said goodbye, their lives enriched not only by the information shared but by the friendships formed throughout the weekend. The next conference will be held in Dallas, Texas, on Sept 20 – 23, 2012. Plan now to attend.
Bottom Line: I have been invited to the conference next year and am looking forward to meeting these amazing writers…plus I’m excited to go to Dallas.