Thank you for registering!

This is the page where you can access all conference sessions – please do not share it with anyone who has not registered for the conference.

To access each session, click on the link showing the time for that session (for instance, 3:00 – 3:45 Eastern). Following each live session, the link will change from Zoom (for the live session) to YouTube (for the recording of that session) once the recording is available

Please note: all times are Eastern; end times are approximate. Most conference sessions are recorded.

All sessions can be viewed at the times indicated below, or at anytime through June 26, 2021.

All times and sessions are subject to change

Book discussions with each author are an opportunity for you to learn more about our speakers’ books and to ask them questions.

If you would like to sign up for 1-on-1 meetings with selected speakers and other publishing industry experts, you can do so by clicking here. (separate registration required; limited availability)

If you would like to sign up for an Open mic reading (Thursday March 25 from 4:30 – 5:30 PM Eastern) you may do so here.

If you would like to submit a pitch to Lisa Kloskin (Broadleaf Books), Becky Nesbitt (Penguin Random House), or Ashley Hong (Penguin Random House), please email it to no later than May 26, 2021 and let me know to whom I should forward it.

Don’t forget to check out the Conference Bookstore! There you can learn about many books from our conference speakers as well as recommended books on writing, marketing, and getting published.

Monday March 22 

  • 9:30 – 10:00 Eastern: Worship with Rev. Adam Thomas
  • 10:00 – 10:45 Eastern: Barbara Brown Taylor keynote presentation – learn more about Barbara here
  • 10:45 – 11:30 Eastern: Barbara Brown Taylor Q&R
  • 11:30 – 12:15 Eastern: Lisa Kloskin (Broadleaf Books) presentation: “How to get the most out of your relationship with your editor” – learn more about Lisa here
    • Whether you’re hiring a freelance editor to help you polish your manuscript before querying or self-publishing, or working with your assigned editor after selling your book to a publishing house, you’ll want to make the most out of that editorial relationship. In this session, we’ll go over some of the common pitfalls and advantages to working with an editor, and give you the tools you need to advocate for yourself and your book.
  • 12:15 – 1:00 Eastern: Lisa Kloskin Q&R and book discussion
  • 1:10 – 1:50 Eastern: Networking Lunch Break – an unmoderated, informal time for you to chat with other conference attendees
  • 2:00 – 2:45 Eastern: Interview and Q&R with Wes Granberg-Michaelson – learn more about Wes here
  • 3:00 – 3:45 Eastern: Frank Thomas presentation “I Write to Stay Sane” – learn more about Frank here
    • Frank A. Thomas author, scholar and renowned preacher will offer insights his motivation for writing. Writing must come from some place of passion for it to be effective. Thomas explores his passion to attempt to resolve some of the chaos of life by writing.Anyone considering writing must ask the deepest question of themselves: What am I really doing? What am I really after? How do I make sense of the outside world and my interior world  through my writing. Thomas will help authors consider the source of their writing and explore “Writing as a Scribal Act,” Writing as an Imaginative Act,” and “Writing as a Spiritual Act.”
  • 3:45 – 4:30 Eastern: Frank Thomas Q&R and book discussion
  • 4:45 – 5:30 Eastern: Barbara Brown Taylor book discussion and Q&R

Tuesday March 23

  • 9:15 – 9:45 AM Eastern: Interview and Q&R with Sophfronia Scott, Director of the MFA in Creative Writing Program at Alma College
  • 10:00 – 10:45 Eastern: Patricia Raybon presentation: ” Writing for God, Not Google” – learn more about Patricia here
    • Chasing author fame and glory, award-winning, best-selling author Patricia Raybon finally found professional peace, productivity and purpose by seeking to write “with for God, not for Google.” But what does that mean? How could this approach light a fire under your so-so writing career? But also upgrade your writing mission and ministry, your speaking and book marketing, your impact and reach, and your professional and personal relationships as you bear fruit for God – with God — by turning from trends and digital pressures to brave creativity. Join Patricia for answers and inspiration. 
  • 10:45 – 11:30 Eastern: Patricia Raybon Q&R and book discussion
  • 11:45 – 12:15 Eastern: an interview with international best-selling author Will Bowen, author of “A Complaint Free World: How to Stop Complaining and Start Enjoying the Life You Always Wanted”
  • 1:00 – 1:45 Eastern: Interview and Q&R with Noel “Paul” Stookey (from Peter, Paul, and Mary) and Jeanne Finley about their new book – learn more about Paul here and Jeanne here
  • 2:00 – 2:45 Eastern: Becky Nesbitt ( Penguin Random House) presentation “How to get a publisher to notice your proposal” – learn more about Becky here
  • 2:45 – 3:30 Eastern: Becky Nesbitt ( Penguin Random House) Q&R and book discussion
  • 3:45 – 4:30 Eastern: Q&R with Amy Newmark, CEO of Chicken Soup for the Soul – learn more about Amy here
  • 4:45 – 5:15 Eastern: Emerging author series: Kathy Izard – learn more about Kathy here
  • 5:30 – 6:00 Eastern: “How to Heal Our Divides” – book introduction
    • If we didn’t recognize it already, 2020 put a spotlight on several serious, deep divides that have had strong negative impacts on our society. Many good books have been written describing these divides and how they came about, or encouraging us to look deeply inside ourselves to discover our own flaws. But there is a lack of illumination on role model organizations demonstrating what to do about it. “How to Heal Our Divides” is a book that lifts up and builds awareness of organizations that are taking real action to heal serious divides – particularly racial and political divides. The book is not an attempt at glossing them over or “making happy” but instead highlights tangible efforts that are actually decreasing divides in practical ways. Learn more about the project here.

Wednesday March 24

  • 10:00 – 10:45 Eastern: Barbara Brown Taylor keynote presentation – learn more about Barbara here
  • 10:45 – 11:30 Eastern: Barbara Brown Taylor Q&R
  • 11:30 – 12:15 Eastern: Bishop Karen Oliveto presentation “How Can I Keep From Singing?” – learn more about Karen here
    • Singing requires vocal warm ups, focus, and the ability to follow notes. How does writing follow a similar progression? What is the song that is waiting to be written through your writing? What is the story that you can’t help but write? What are things you can do to create a rhythm and melody line that will enable the story that is within you emerge on the written page?
  • 12:15 – 1:00 Eastern: Bishop Karen Oliveto Q&R and book discussion
  • 1:45 – 2:45 Eastern: What Do You Need As A Writer? – this informal conversation is an opportunity for you to share and discuss the most important kinds of support you need as a writer
  • 3:00 – 3:45 Eastern: Brent Bill presentation: “Writing from the Heart: Soulful Creativity” – learn more about Brent here
    • Do you wish to write in a way that touches readers and yourself? That’s the kind of writing that readers find so appealing. Brent Bill’s own writing has been described by Publishers Weekly as being “Like a neighborly conversation across a kitchen table.” Whether you are writing fiction or nonfiction, you want to write from the heart and not just from the head. In this presentation, Brent will offer tips and techniques for connecting with your writer’s heart and how to put that heart in your writing.
  • 3:45 – 4:30 Eastern: Brent Bill Q&R and book discussion
  • 4:45 – 5:15 Eastern: Emerging writers series: April Stace – learn more about about April here
  • 5:30 – 6:30 Eastern: “Indie-Publishing Your Book” – with Adam Thomas – learn more about Adam here

Thursday March 25

  • 9:55 – 10:45 Eastern: J. Dana Trent presentation: “So What? How to Make Your Writing Shine in a Non-Stop Digital World” – learn more about Dana here
    • How do writers remain relevant amid pithy tweets and awe-inspiring photos? This presentation will help you discover the “so, what” of your niche, voice, content, and craft–helping you shine in an age of distraction. 
  • 10:45 – 11:30 Eastern: J. Dana Trent Q&R and book discussion
  • 11:30 – 12:15 Eastern: Kathryn Helmers (literary agent) presentation: “You & Your Creative Process“ – learn more about Kathryn here
    • A far better end goal than success for writers and authors is sustainabilityBy drilling down into the who, what, when, where, and why of your creative process, we will explore how discerning your unique balance of process and outcome can help you get traction on your path as a creative person. Kathy’s slides are here.
  • 1:30 – 2:15 Eastern: Lyn Cryderman (former leader at both Zonderzan and Christianity Today) presentation: “Becoming a Writer—the Long View” – learn more about Lyn here
    • Stephen King’s first novel, Carrie, was rejected thirty times by various agents and publishers. His perseverance paid off. Carrie has earned King more than $39 million in royalties. King was young, inexperienced, and almost gave up writing several times. This workshop is for the person in the early stages of thinking about writing. You likely do not have much of a social media platform (nonexistent when King started). You have not gained enough experience or writing credits to be accepted by an agent, let alone a publisher. Realistically, you are probably a couple of years away from even considering self-publishing. But you are serious about becoming a writer. Where do you start? What things need to happen before you can experience success as a writer? What, in fact, constitutes success? Attending this workshop will not guarantee that you earn $39 million. But it will show you what to do, what to avoid, and how to move from unsure and unpublished to confident and published.
  • 2:15 – 3:15 Eastern: Lyn Cryderman (former leader at both Zonderzan and Christianity Today)  Q&R
  • 3:30 – 4:15 Eastern: Interview and Q&R with Kathleen Norris – learn more about Kathleen here
  • 4:30 – 5:30 Eastern: Open mic – sign-up required after registration

Friday March 26

  • 9:45 – 10:45 Eastern: Marlena Graves presentation: “Writing For Publication and Soul Care” – learn more about Marlena here
    • How do you write for publication without losing your soul? In the publishing world, we hear all about platform, platform, platform, marketing our own work, and doing all sorts of gymnastics to get followers. How do we do this?  How do we do it without getting depressed, consumed by envy, or instrumentalizing other people? Marlena Graves will reflect on this in her talk.
  • 10:45 – 11:30 Eastern: Marlena Graves Q&R and book discussion
  • 11:30 – 12:15 Eastern: Ashley Hong (Penguin Random House) presentation: “The Nooks and Crannies of Spiritual Writing” – learn more about Ashley here
    • Encouraging writers to delve into the granular, intimate details of the spiritual landscape in their writing—not only because it makes for better writing, but also because we need new narratives in Christian publishing.
  • 12:15 – 1:00 Eastern: Ashley Hong (Penguin Random House) Q&R and book discussion
  • 1:15 – 1:45 Eastern: Emerging author series: Lauren Hunter – learn more about Lauren here
  • 2:00 – 3:00 Eastern: Elevator pitch practice with feedback – no sign-up required