Thursday, June 30, 2016

Scholarship Success Story

In February 2016 I began searching writers conferences to attend this year. I had finally finished my Bachelors of Art Degree and was ready to begin anew promoting my writing career. I located the Kentucky Christian Writers Conference in Elizabethtown, Kentucky. It was a drivable distance, and the dates made it a long weekend. The best part of all in my choosing was the Key Note speaker, Sandra Aldrich.

Sandra has been one of my best friends for nearly twenty years, mostly by email. I first met her at a Focus on the Family Single Parent Conference many years ago when my kids were still kids. She was such an encourager and a down to earth woman, not some celebrity ego. I wrote to her later and sent her something I had written, and she told me I should to submit it for publication. She is the first professional to take my writing seriously. I was very anxious to see her in person again.

There was one road block to any conference however, and that was money. I wasn’t sure if I could eek out the money necessary for the conference, hotel accommodations, and miscellaneous expenses. Then I found the link to apply for a scholarship, so I completed it. I provided a little information about myself and simply stated I didn’t believe I could attend without the help of a scholarship. I was very excited a few months later when they notified me that I had been granted a partial scholarship. I quickly went to work on my other finances to make certain I would be able to attend.

My delight began the first night at the meet and greet. Everyone was so very welcoming. I tend to be a bit shy when I meet someone brand new, especially if I am the new one in a crowd of people who know each other. It was also a joy to meet with people who spoke my language. Most people I know tend to either change the subject or get a “deer in the headlights” look when I get beyond the basics of being a writer. “Oh that’s nice. I guess that’s ok if it’s something you like to do,” they tell me.

Over the next two days I had to opportunity to take advantage of various workshops for fiction, non-fiction, marketing, and editor Q & A panels. We also had the wonderful experience of three keynote messages by Sandra Aldrich. Last, but not least, we had the opportunity to sign up for a 15 minute one on one appointment with a faculty member. Since I am a non-fiction author I signed up to meet with Dr. Dennis “Doc” Hensley, a literature professor, conference speaker, and author of more than 60 published books. I was very excited when Doc Hensley told me my writing is good, I have my “one sheet,” and my outline and the beginning of my first chapter are strong. He told me that with this, combined with my full rights to my first book, it is time I sought out an agent. 

He suggested I attend the August conference at Taylor University where he teaches because there will be agents and editors there. I have already registered. It is my time to more proactively pursue my writing career, and attending the Kentucky Christian Writers Conference has given me the confidence to take the next steps.

Thank you, Kentucky Christian Writers, for the opportunity to be a part of this year’s conference. I’ll be certain to tell everyone what a great experience I had and encourage other writers to attend next year. 

--Mina Raulston

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

More Registration Options: One Day Only, Walk-Ins Welcome

What if you're working on Friday, but would love to attend KCWC on Saturday? Or you have plans for Saturday and just want to enjoy your Friday with us? We can accommodate you.  Visit our registration page to take advantage of the Friday only price of $175, or the Saturday only price of $100.

Do you have a friend wanting to go just one day with you? Then add on the Bring a Friend discount! You can still get $25 off your combined registration. 

If you haven't had time to pre-register, we gladly accept walk-ins. Just show up at Grace Heartland Church on Friday or Saturday morning, and we will register you.

May the Lord bless and keep you all! We eagerly await meeting all of you.

The KCWC Staff

Friday, June 17, 2016

Still Time to Register!

Conference time is getting closer, but it's not too late to register for KCWC. We would love to see you there!

Check out our website at for information about registration and about the conference. Our registration fees are some of the lowest around, and you get a lot of "bang for your buck" with all of the professional instruction, networking, and more.

Elizabethtown has a wide range of hotel options, and the Ramada Inn (270-769-9683) has a deal with the conference (subject to reservation deadline).

Walk-up registration is accepted during the conference, but you can reserve your spot today.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Calling All New Attendees

Will the 2016 edition of Kentucky Christian Writers Conference be your first time at such an event? Are you nervous? Are you clueless about how to navigate classes and faculty/editor appointments? We have a class just for you!

So You're a Newbie: A Primer for First-Time Attendees is designed for YOU--the first-timer who doesn't quite know what to do at a writers conference. It will meet at 8:15 a.m. in Conference Room A, taught by yours truly, Carlton Hughes.

We'll address conference jitters; how to approach the classes and schedule; do's and don't's for meeting with editors/faculty members; and, most importantly, the spiritual aspect. We may even eat some chocolate!

I teach this class from my own experiences as a "newbie" at both KCWC and other conferences. Believe me, I've made every error in the book, and I don't want you to repeat those! I managed to overcome those mistakes to become a published writer. I'll tell you everything you need to know about being a first-timer, and, OF COURSE, we'll also have lots of FUN!

So all you newbies: set your alarms early for Friday, June 24! Register at 8:00 a.m. and then join me at 8:15! I'll be looking for you.

--Carlton Hughes
KCWC Blog Administrator
Newbie Class Teacher

Friday, June 10, 2016

The Food! 2016 Menu

As usual, Chef Steve MacDonald at Grace Heartland Church has a first class menu planned for the 2016 conference.  If you have ever attended KCWC before, you know that meals are a highlight.  We gather around the tables, rub elbows with our fine faculty, and swap stories over the most delicious food prepared with love.

Friday dinner of vegetable lasagna has become a staple for us.   Steve knows we always request he make that for us.  It is a crowd favorite!  He obliges in his usual wonderful way.

You can also enjoy Arnold’s coffee brewed just for you each morning along with a coffee cake of Steve’s choice before worship at morning opening.

Since this is our 20th anniversary, we will celebrate with a cake after dinner Friday night.  Open Mic follows dinner and is a great time of fun and sharing excerpts from our writings.  So many talented people attend KCWC, and we look forward to hearing them read a taste of their work.  So bring something to share if you wish, but only two minutes worth or you will be GONGED!!!  Our Emcees keep time, so don’t let the timer run out on you! Open Mic is always great entertainment, so don’t miss the fun.

And, to kick off KCWC, our preconference event Thursday night is Meet and Greet from 7-9.  This is open to anyone interested.  You do not have to be attending the conference to browse the bookstore, meet our faculty, and visit with the planning committee who puts this event together.  Come and share some light refreshments, and meet others who love writing.

We look forward to seeing you.

--Pam Harlow
KCWC Hospitality Chair


Grilled Chicken
Hamburgers and Hot Dogs
Potato Salad
Broccoli Salad
Veggie Tray

Steve’s Famous Veggie Lasagna
20th Anniversary Cake

Chicken Cordon Bleu
Key West Vegetables
Lemon Pie

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Conference Basics: Editor's Panel

This is one session that most people aren’t sure about or are least prepared for (sorry for ending with a preposition). The Editor’s Panel is held in the Chapel. It is basically an informal question and answer session. Some of the presenters (we try to include a variety of editors, publishers, authors, and those who have self-published) will be on stage, available to share information about the trends in the publishing market. They will also be available to answer your questions. So, the better you’re prepared, the better the session will be.
Suggestions:   Write down some questions ahead of time – in a notebook, on a notecard, on your smart phone, whatever works for you.
Some topics you might like to know more about:  Self-publishing vs. traditional publishing? The need for an agent? The need for an editor? Should you seek a major publishing house or a small press?  What have they done that worked well? What didn’t? What would they do differently? Printed books vs. ebooks?  
            Do you get the picture? Start thinking about some of these questions now. We may even have you write them down on note cards before the session begins, to speed the process along. Remember, the better prepared you are, the more you’ll get from the session and from the conference in general.

Trish Nall, KCWC Treasurer

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Conference Basics: One-on-One

One of the most important features of our conference is the opportunity to talk one-on-one with one of our presenters.  Clipboards will be set out in the main lobby sometime after the opening session. Each person doing one-on-one sessions will have their own clipboard with the time slots available.
We are anticipating a fairly large number of attendees this year, so please only sign up for one session. Write down your time, so you don’t forget! Don’t worry that it is during one of your classes. Presenters are well-aware of these consultations and won’t be offended when you slip out of the room quietly.
*The one-on-one sessions will be in the gym, in the end zones. The presenters’ names will be on the tables.
·         The faculty member may be an editor, a publisher, or a published author. S/he has agreed to read one poem, or one page of your story, book, article, etc. Have this typed or neatly written and prepared to share during your session. Please do NOT ask him/her to read more than the one page. If s/he asks for more, then it is perfectly acceptable to share more.
·         Take notes. You don’t want to continuously ask your mentor to repeat the information.
·         You will be allotted 15 minutes. PLEASE be professional and respectful and adhere to that timeline. The presenters have a busy weekend. They need breaks, too.
·         Do NOT jump over to another presenter, just because s/he happens to be free at the moment. Their person could be running late. Besides, it is very unprofessional.

·         When in doubt - - - Use good manners. J