Ready to take your writing to the next level? On the day before the main workshop we will also offer an Advanced Writer’s Retreat, taught by Robert Benson and Brian Allain. It will take place at the beautiful Janet Ayers Academic Center on the campus of Belmont University on Monday, July 17, 2017 – the day before the main conference.

Sneak peek at the schedule:

9:00 AM: Introductions and Session 1 (Robert Benson) –  Dark Marks on the Page: Making Writing That Matters

  • About learning to dig deeper as an artist
  • About learning to write what matters and not to waste time and ink

10:30 AM: Break

11:00 AM: Session 2 (Robert Benson) –  Hat Tricks: Making Better Writing

  • About knowing where you are as you work
  • About practices that will make your work better

12:30 PM: Lunch and time for writing and reflection

2:00 PM: Session 3 (Brian Allain) – Building Your  Tribe

  • Building your platform through social media – why it matters
  • Strategic positioning – how to become known
  • How marketing is different for spiritual writers
  • Social media marketing recommendations
  • Tactical Facebook marketing guidelines

3:30 PM: Break

4:00 PM: Q&A and Wrap-up

6:00 PM: Group dinner (optional)

The Retreat cost is $299 and includes lunch and breaks (but not dinner).

Registration is available after you have registered for the main conference.  If you have done that and would like to register for the Advanced Writer’s Retreat, please contact Brian Allain at [email protected].

Writing for Your Life is pleased to offer 0.5 Continuing Education Units (CEUs) for pastors for this advanced writer’s retreat. Writing for Your Life is a member of the Association of Leaders in Lifelong Learning for Ministry (formerly the Society for the Advancement of Continuing Education for Ministry).

Return to main conference page.

Leader bios:

Robert Benson is author of twenty books, including Between the Dreaming and the Coming True, Living Prayer, Venite, The Echo Within, The Game and Dancing on the Head of a Pen — books about the search for the Holy in the midst of our ordinary lives. As a retreat leader and workshop teacher, Benson speaks on the life of prayer and contemplation, the disciplines and rituals of Christian spiritual practice, and the art and craft of writing. He is an adjunct faculty member for the Academy for Spiritual Formation, was named a Living Spiritual Teacher by Spirituality and Practice, and a member of The Friends of Silence & of the Poor, an ecumenical prayer community. Benson’s roots are in Nashville, Tennessee, though these days he spends his time traveling and writing and speaking. He does dance on the head of a fountain pen every day no matter where he happens to be.

Brian Allain serves as Director of the Frederick Buechner Center and produces the Writing for Your Life series of in-person and online writers conferences. At the Buechner Center, Brian led the launch of Mr. Buechner’s online presence and grew his social media reach to over 2 million Facebook fans and over 300 thousand Twitter followers. Brian has developed and led writers conferences at Princeton Seminary, Western Theological Seminary, and Belmont University. He led the self-publishing effort for the book Buchner 101: An Introduction to Frederick Buechner. He also provides marketing consulting services to several spiritual authors and institutions. and