Category Archives: Announcements

The Fastest Route to Publication–It’s as Easy as 1-2-3! Plus Let’s Celebrate These Writers!

Photo courtesy of BillLongshaw/FreeDigitalPhoto

Photo courtesy of BillLongshaw/FreeDigitalPhoto

Well, it’s the 2nd Tuesday, so that means we’ll start with some tips for writers!

Some of you have heard my story of writing a poem in first grade. You know that in high school I worked on the newspaper staff and was editor of the literary journal. Some have heard me say that by the time I was in college I knew that one day I would write a book…and the next thing I knew, I was forty.

At that point, I figured my life was half over. If I was going to write a book, I’d better get started!

But do you know the rest of the story?

I sat down and wrote a book. It only took me about three months to dash from start to finish, but I was confident it would be the next great American novel for kids. I remember the day I dropped the first batch of ten envelopes in the mailbox. “Oh my. What am I going to do when five publishers want my book at the same time? Oh, my!” (I’m dead serious. That’s exactly what I thought.)

But instead of a bidding war, the submissions received 10 rejections before the stamps were dry. (Yes, those were the days when you had to actually lick the stamps, too!)

The years came and went and I continued to recycle that book over and over and over, confident that I’d eventually find an editor who had sense enough to see what a gold mine my book would be for his or her publishing house. I did this for at least 5 years, never considering that perhaps, just maybe, I needed to learn something about writing.

In my rush to see my name in print, it took me 7 years, lots of conferences, and lots of rejections to dash across the publication finish line. And it took 10 years to have a published book!

I had a simple 1-2-3- plan for publication: 1)feel the urge, 2)write the book, and 3)collect a big fat advance.

Oh, if only it were that easy! For most of us, successful writing is a tortoise event, not a hare one. A cross-country event, not a sprint.

If you want to write a book and then spend 10 years trying to get it published, that’s fine. After all, it’s your book, you can do whatever you want. But if you really want to cross the finish line as a writer, here are the 1-2-3′s to help you get there faster.

1.  Take the time to learn the craft. If you don’t get anything from this post, I hope you get this: There are no shortcuts. I once heard bestselling author, T. Davis Bunn, say something like, “Would someone decide he wants to be a concert pianist, learn to bang out Chopsticks, and then expect to play Carnegie Hall? Would someone decide to be an artist, slap a little paint on a canvas, and then expect a buyer to pay her for it? Of course not! But that’s exactly what we do when we simply sit down, write a book, and think it’s going to be sold.”

So, instead of jumping straight into a book, start at the beginning. Find a local writer’s group, take a class at the community college, and attend writing conferences. Read instructional books and follow instructional writing blogs like this one. (You could sit and read the archives and have your own writer’s conference right in the comfort of your own home!) Learn the techniques of good writing, apply them to your work, and get valid feedback from others who know what to look for. This doesn’t mean you can’t be working on your book from the beginning, but you need to be learning the craft in the process.

2.  Start with short pieces. Many of us start out with a big dream to write and sell a book. And it could happen. Possibly. But your chances for publication may actually increase if you start out small by submitting articles and stories. And for some editors, agents, and publishing houses, the chances of publishing a book are greater if you’ve already proven you can write publishable short pieces. And the good news is, I post writing opportunities right here on The Christian Writer’s Den every third Tuesday of the month, listing places that are looking for writers.

3.  Write a blog. Yes, writing a blog can help you in your race to the writing finish line. Good blogging requires discipline, writing skills, and promotion. All this will help you build a platform while building your writing paper trail. A blog rarely leads to a book contract, although it could happen. But the better goal is to use that time to make connections while learning to write well. Visit Edie Melson’s blog, The Write Conversation, for great posts about blogging and social media.

So there you have it, the 1-2-3 of writing for publication. The steps are simple, but they certainly aren’t easy. The dash to the finish line not be a sprint, but follow these steps and you’re more likely to win your cross-country goal of publication.

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Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Let’s celebrate your kudos!

Congratulations to these Christian Writer’s Den friends who are working hard and reaching their goals!

1. Nancy Foss (NC): My first book, Lord, Change Him; He’s Such a Jerk: Finding Hope for an Unhappy Marriage, was just published. I’m looking forward to seeing where God will take me this year.

2. Ellen Andersen (SC): I had a devotion, Forgive Them? Why Should I?, published at the end of January by Christian Devotions.

3. Barbara Parentini (NC): It’s been a while since I’ve shared with you about my inspirational greeting cards, Soaring Hearts. In the last six months there have been wonderful developments. First: The desire of my heart was to see the cards perch in a hospital gift shop. There is now a large selection in my hometown, Springfield, Ohio, at The Gardenview Gift Shop in Springfield Regional Medical Center. My nursing school is rooted in the new hospital, so God answered my prayer in such a lovely way! Second: Soaring Hearts and the entire “Sea Glass Collection” is in Yoder’s Gift Shop. Yoder’s is the most well-known Amish restaurant in Sarasota, Florida. My family and I have been frequent customers for decades! They are known for their amazing pies, delicious food, and beautiful gift shop. Yoder’s now stocks a wide assortment of Soaring Hearts. Third: I was approached over a year ago about this, and I’ve been chosen as the card vendor for The Garden Club of North Carolina’s 91st Annual Event. Several vendors and I will have our booths set up at the Sheraton Imperial (Emperor Blvd by RDU Airport) in Durham, NC, for the statewide event, April 17-19, 2016. The ladies of the garden club have been welcoming and enthusiastic about the cards. I will feature my Garden Grace Collection which I intend to grow this year. And to note, I’m in the process of editing my long-awaited book, SEA GLASS, a journal/devotional for those who love the sea, filled with Scripture, devotions, poetry, and inspiring prose. I plan to paint pages with sea glass colors and design. I’ve been compiling this over several years, and am excited this will be finished in 2016. Thank you, Vonda, for always being so supportive about my writing and creative endeavors. Blessings!

4. Tracy Crump (MS): I am honored to announce that Chicken Soup for the Soul chose my story “A Glorious Ride,” previously published in their Inspiration for the Young at Heart, to be included in the upcoming For Mom, with Love, which will benefit the Boys and Girls Clubs of America.

Way to go, writers! And friends, if you didn’t see your name on this list, be sure to check back next week where I’ll have a new list of writing opportunities just for you!

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Who MoGo’d in January?

These friends wrote at least 7000 words on a book project in January and earned an entry in the 2016 drawing for $100 at the end of the year!

#1: Diana Leagh Matthews – 32,765 words
#2: Susan Baganz – 14,703 words
#3: Tim Suddeth – 20,248 words
#4: Amanda Everett – 7,466 words

Woo-hoo! We’re off to a great start, gang! And readers, if you want to join in the fun and have a bunch of chances to win $100 at the end of the year, check out the MoGo7000 Challenge. It’s free!

Well that does it for the 2nd Tuesday of February. Be sure to check back next week when we’ll take a look at writing opportunities and conferences.

I pray God’s blessing on the work of your hands and your hearts,

Vonda

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Writer’s Headlines: Call-Outs for Kudos & MoGo7000 and Who Won Cheri Cowell’s Book?

newspapersIt’s the 1st Tuesday, so it’s time to hear from you: Calling All Kudos!

Okay, friends, it’s time for us to celebrate YOU and celebrate EACH OTHER! After all, that’s the goal of The Christian Writer’s Den–to encourage and instruct writers.

In order to do that, I need to hear from you! It doesn’t matter how small the success may seem to you, every step forward is a step that leads to the next one.

So I want to know what you’ve been up to. Have you had something exciting happen recently in your writing or speaking life? Maybe you’ve had an article published, signed a book contract, released a new book, got an agent, or started a new blog. If so, we want to hear from you. Everybody’s welcome to share.

It’s really simple, but I do ask that you contact me with the info in this format and order ONLY:

**Your name
**Your state in two-letter abbreviation
**Link to your website or blog
**Your good news
**Link to your good news, if online (online bookstore, online article, etc)

I can’t wait for us to celebrate with you!

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Who Worked on Their Book MoGo7000 in January?

If you wrote at least 7000 new words on a book project in January, you can receive an entry in the drawing for the 2016 MoGo7000 $100 cash prize! It’s open to everyone who qualifies.

To report your January results, please leave a comment below with your total new words written on a book project in January. (Please do not send your totals by email or through the Contact page. Totals must be left as a comment here by next Sunday).

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Cheri Cowell cover PeaceAnd Who Won Cheri Cowell’s Book, 365 Devotions for Peace?

According to Random.org, the winner is…

Bonita Bandaries!

Congratulations, Bonita! All you need to do is contact me with your snail mail address and Cheri will get your book right out to you!

And for those who didn’t win…You KNOW you want this book! So here’s a direct Amazon link to 365 Devotions for Peace, by Cheri Cowell. Enjoy!

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Well, friends, that does it for our Writer’s Headlines this week. Be sure to check back next week when you can learn The Fastest Route to Publication–It’s as Easy as 1-2-3! We’ll also be celebrating you, so be sure to send me your good news!

I pray God’s blessing on the work of your hands and your hearts,

Vonda

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Writer’s Headlines: Writing Opportunities and Conferences

newspapersHello, Christian Writer’s Den friends. This is our monthly Opportunities issue, so let’s see if we can help you get published! Let’s start with writing opportunities compiled just for you.

1.  Bethany House Miraculous Answers to Prayer Call-out deadline has been extended to January 31, 2016!

2.  Donna Goodrich is working on a caregiver book. While it will include inspiration, devotionals, and humor, she also wants practical information to help caregivers find their way in the labyrinth. You can get guidelines for that project by emailing Donna at: msencourager [@] cox [dot] net

3.  Cat Fancy writer’s guidelines 

4.  Wisconsin Trails writing guidelines

5.  DollarStretcher.com writing guidelines

6.  Blue Ridge Country editorial guidelines

7.  AmericanCatholic.org writing guidelines

8.  Working Mother writers guidelines

9.  Astronomy Magazine article submission guidelines

10. Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine writers’ guidelines

11.  Lots of writing opps and contests listed at Christian Writers Submission Information by Sally Clark

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Image courtesy of StuartMiles/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of StuartMiles/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

If you’re serious about writing and speaking, you’ll be serious about attending

conferences. 

When I first started this writing journey, I didn’t have money for conferences, so I asked my family and friends to contribute to my conference fund rather than giving me gifts for Christmas, birthday, Valentine’s Day, anniversary, and Mother’s Day. That went a long way towards my conferences. You might want to try it, too.

Here’s a list of upcoming writing and/or speaking conferences. Make your plans now to attend at least one conference a year. You wouldn’t expect to get a job without being prepared and qualified, would you? You can be sure your chances of publication increase with your training and experience in writing as well.

1.  Weekend with the Writers: January 29-30, 2016, Greenville, SC

2.  Writers Advance Boot Camp / Asheville Christian Writers Conference: February 19-21, 2016, Asheville, NC (I’ll see you there!)

3.  Florida Christian Writers Conference: February 24-28, 2016, Leesburg, FL

4.  Carolina Christian Writers Conference: March 11-12, 2016, Spartanburg, SC

5.  Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference: March 18-22, 2016, Mount Hermon, CA

6.  Mid-South Christian Writers Conference: March 19, 2016, Colliersville, TN

7.  American Christian Writers Mentoring Retreats begin in April: Various locations and dates

8.  Write2Ignite for Writers of Children’s Literature: April 1-2, 2016, Tigerville, SC

9.  Orange County Christian Writers’ Conference: April 15-16, 2016, Fullerton, CA

brmcwc 201610. Colorado Christian Writers Conference: May 11-14, 2016, Estes Park, CO

11. Northwest Christian Writers Renewal: May 13-14, 2016, Redmond, WA

12. Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference: May 22-26, 2016, Ridgecrest, NC (I’ll see you there!)

13. Write to Publish: June 8-11, 2016, Chicago area

14. West Virginia Writers Conference: June 10-12, 2016, Ripley, WV

15. New England Christian Writers Retreat: June 17-19, 2016, Hamilton, MA

16. St. David’s Christian Writers Conference: June 22-26, 2016, Grove City, PA

17. Christian Communicators Conference: August 24-28, 2016 The Billy Graham Training Center at Theccclogosmall Cove, Asheville, NC. Registration will open in March. (I’ll see you there!) Please note: The 2016 conference isn’t uploaded quite yet, but it will be soon! Please don’t register yet. :-)

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Thanks for Sharing!

 #Writing & #speaking opportunities & conferences to help you get published & speak! @VondaSkelton (Click to Tweet!) 

Happy writing!

Vonda

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Celebration Day: Kudos, MoGo7000 Qualifiers, and Who Won $100?

fireworks PixabayIt’s time to celebrate YOU with our Christian Writer’s Den Kudos!

Congratulations to the following CWD friends who’ve been doing the work and finding success!

1.  Shellie Arnold (OH): My first novel THE SPINDLE CHAIR released in October 2015.

2.  Beth Fortune (SC): I had a Devo published for Christian Devotions in December.

3.  Marilyn Nutter (SC): Thanks to the opportunity posted on Vonda Skelton’s site, Marilyn was a guest blogger in November and December on Jeanne Doyon’s site, Pausing to See God Clearly
Here are the links: http://jeannedoyon.com/grief-isnt-on-the-calendar/
http://jeannedoyon.com/tis-the-season-to-be-overloaded/

4.  Ellen Andersen (SC): I’m going to post monthly on Jennifer Hallmark’s blog Small Acts of Kindness. I’m thrilled she asked me!

5.  Cyn Rogalski (PA): I got to speak at the local Chinese Christian Church in nearby Whitehall, PA on Saturday, Jan 9. A woman I met at church on Wednesday invited me to come with her (she was scheduled to speak) and I also got to speak to the group of young people. A great group!

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Who were the December MoGo7000 qualifers?

These two high-energy writers earned another MoGo7000 entry for the month of December:

#17: Susan Baganz – 23,983 words
#18: Tim Suddeth – 19,749 wordsmogo

Congratulations! You both have had an amazing year of writing by completing (or almost completing) at least one book in 2015. Thanks for letting us follow your journey.

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2016 MoGo7000 Writing Challenge Has Begun–YOU Could Win $100 in Cash!

If you missed out on last year’s money-winning writing challenge, don’t worry, the 2016 challenge is now underway. Here are the MoGo7000 Challenge rules. All you have to do is write at least 7000 NEW words on a book project in any month and you’ll receive an entry into the end-of-the-year drawing for $100. AND IT’S ALL FREE!

Each month you qualify with 7000 new words, your name goes in the “hat” for the drawing. Reach the goal one month in 2016 and you receive one entry. Reach it all 12 months and you receive 12 entries! At the beginning of 2017, a winning entry will be selected at Random.org and the winner will receive $100 in cash to use as he or she desires.

And just think, whether you win the money or not, at the end of the year, you could have a completed book, or at least be well on your way to one…and it doesn’t cost you a cent. Sounds like a win-win situation to me!

So what are you waiting for? Sit down and get to work. Be sure to mark your beginning and ending for the month, so you’ll know how many words your wrote, then report them when I post the call-out each month.

Isn’t this fun?

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Now, the moment you’ve all been waiting for…Who won $100?

Well, before I announce the winner, let me share some exciting statistics with you:OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

  1. Would you believe 401,762 new words were written on book projects and reported by Christian Writer’s Den friends in 2015?
  2. Six writers participated in the 2015 challenge.
  3. I know at least two books came out of these months of writing, but I don’t know for sure how many.
  4. And I know one writer is going to be $100 richer. :-)

Congratulations to all the writers who worked hard and made progress in their book projects this year!

So, are you ready to see who won $100 to spend as desired? Drum roll, please…Random.org says the winner of the 2015 MoGo7000 Challenge is…

Susan Baganz!


Woo-hoo, Susan! Congratulations! Now, I just need you to contact me with your snail mail address and I’ll get that check right out to you!

And friends, if you didn’t win, don’t worry. The 2016 MoGo7000 Challenge is now underway! Write at least 7000 new words on a book project in a month and you’ll receive an entry. Get started now and you could have 12 chances to win at the end of the year!

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Thanks for Tweeting!

Who won $100 in the #MoGo7000 #writing challenge? You could win in 2016! @VondaSkelton #amwriting (Click to Tweet)

Well, that does it for another Tuesday at the Christian Writer’s Den. I hope you’ll join us next week as I share a list of writing opportunities, contests, and conferences collected just for you!

I pray God’s blessing on the work of your hands and your hearts,

Vonda

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Parting Words From The WORD…I Thank God for You

Laughing Jesus by Robert Wilson, Sr.

Laughing Jesus by Robert Wilson, Sr.

As 2016 begins, I’m reminded again how blessed I am that you’ve joined me on this journey. My first Christian Writer’s Den blog post was January 15, 2008 and I had no idea if anyone would even be interested in what I had to say.

But here we are, eight years later, and we’re still gathering week after week. Thank you.

During these years, we’ve shared over 1000 writing opportunities, seen hundreds of readers get published, celebrated our successes together, and prayed for each other. We’ve learned from published authors and won their books. And in the past several years, Christian Writers Den readers have written well over a million words on their own books in the MoGo7000 Challenge…and somebody’s gonna winl $100 next week! In the year 2011, ChristianCommunicators.com was born to help women develop or expand their speaking ministries.

And, of course, we’ve talked about writing. I’m thankful we have each other on this crazy, wonderful, scary, frustrating, satisfying, God-appointed journey.

I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the
day of Christ Jesus.
Philippians 1:3-6 (NIV)

I pray God’s blessing on the work of your hands and your hearts in 2016.

Vonda

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Wise Words, Kudos & MoGo7000 Call-Outs, and Who Won Delores Liesner’s Book?

Owl pixabay

Let’s start 2016 with a few wise words from the wisest and richest man in who ever lived.

Dreaming instead of doing is foolishness, and there is ruin in a flood of empty words . . . .
Ecclesiastes 5:7a (TLB)

Ouch.

Am I–are you–dreaming instead of doing? Would you join me in making 2016 the Year of Doing?

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It’s Time to Share Kudos of YOUR Successes!

Hey there, writing friends. We want to know what you’ve been up to. Have you had something exciting happen recently in your writing or speaking life? Maybe you’ve had an

FreeDigitalPhotos/Iosphere

FreeDigitalPhotos/Iosphere

article published, signed a book contract, released a new book, got an agent, or started a new blog. If so, we want to hear from you!

It’s really simple, but I do ask that you contact me with the info in this format and order ONLY:

**Your name
**Your state in two-letter abbreviation
**Link to your website or blog
**Your good news
**Link to your good news, if online (online bookstore, online article, etc)

I can’t wait for us to celebrate with you!

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mogo7000 logoWho MoGo’d in December?

If you wrote at least 7000 new words on a book project in December, you will receive one last entry for the 2015 MoGo7000 $100 cash prize! It’s open to everyone who qualifies.

To report your December results, please leave a comment below with your total new words written on a book project in December. (Please do not send your totals by email or through the Contact page. Totals must be left as a comment here by next Sunday). 

If you missed out on last year’s money-winning writing challenge, don’t worry, the 2016 challenge has begun! Here are the MoGo7000 Challenge rules. But remember, this week’s reporting is for the month of December 2015.

Be sure to return next week to see if you’re the winner!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Delores Liesner Miracle book cover

Who won a copy of Delores Liesner’s book, Be the Miracle?

And the winner is…

Julie Garmon!

Congratulations, Julie. Simply contact me with your mailing address and Delores will get the book right out to you!

And for those who didn’t win, here’s an Amazon direct link to Be the Miracle.

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Daddy Skelton at 94 with Max & AveryThank you for your prayers for our family.

 

Wow, what a whirlwind few months it’s been. Thanks to each of you who sent your prayers and sympathies in the death of my precious father-in-love on December 22. He would have been 98yo if he had made it to January 30. This is a picture from 3 years ago when he was 94. He’s dancing with two of his GREAT-grandchildren!

It’s been a difficult experience, especially at the holidays, but you comforted us as only God’s people can do. Thank you!

Although I hope to get back in the swing of things very soon, I still ask for patience as I try to catch up. If you have an urgent need that you’re waiting for, please let me know. Otherwise, I’ll get to it as soon as possible.

 

Thanks for sharing!

Start the writing year off w/a chance to win $100 w/MoGo7000! Celebrate your successes! @VondaSkelton

I pray God’s richest blessings in 2016 as you continue to shine His light into this needy world.

Vonda

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Writer’s Headlines: Kudos, MoGo7000 Qualifiers, & Who Won Mary Scro’s Book?

newspapersLet’s start with this month’s kudos!

Congratulations to these Christian Writer’s Den friends who’ve been working hard and making things happen!

1.  Eddie Snipes (GA): It’s been a big month – and year. I was invited to be the keynote speaker in a conference in Washington, and just hit the 20,000 book sales mark this month. I also released my 19th book.

2.  Bonita Bandaries (LA): I recently self-published my newest book, A Promise Kept Inspirational
Guide for Family Caregivers, with CreateSpace and launched it at an event I hosted in November in honor of family caregivers during November, National Family Caregivers Month. 

3.  Cheryl Barker (KS): Blue Mountain Arts purchased my piece “To My Amazing Daughter on Valentine’s Day” for use on an upcoming greeting card. So thankful they are using more of my work.

4.  Tracy Crump (MS): My fifteenth Chicken Soup for the Soul story has just been accepted for My Very Good Very Bad Dog. My friend Andi Lehman has been keeping me busy doing book signings for my last Chicken Soup story in Volunteering and Giving Back. This was Andi’s first CS story about a snake she rehabbed, and we’ve sold books to benefit MS Wildlife Rehabilitation. I also recently co-presented a webinar called “Stirring the Pot: Writing for Chicken Soup for the Soul.” Sounds like a chicken soup kind of month!

5.  Lori Hatcher (SC): I’m so excited to be premiering my latest women’s ministry event, “Stepping Out, How Our Footwear Affects our Faith” in two events in early 2016. Spring boarding off of every woman’s love of shoes, I hope to challenge ladies to strap on the footwear that allows them to run the race of faith with confidence.

6.  Andrea Merrell (SC): I am very excited to announce that my book, Praying for the Prodigal, was a 2015 USA Best Book Awards finalist in the Religion: Christian Inspirational category

Congrats to this month’s kudos-worthy writers! And if you didn’t see your name on the list, be sure to check out next week’s Writing Opportunities and you could be well on your way to a publishing success!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~mogo

Now let’s see who earned entries into the 2015 MoGo7000 Challenge…

#15: Eddie Snipes – 28,670 words
#16: Susan Baganz – 81,131 words

Congratulations, Eddie and Susan! You’re in the running for the $100 cash prize, to be given away in January! And readers, it’s not too late to earn an entry this month. Simply write 7000 new words on a book project in December and you can be in the 2015 drawing in January!

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Mary Scro Intentional Fitness cover

Mary Scro Intentional Warfare coverAnd who won Mary Scro’s book, Intentional Warfare?

I’m so embarrassed that I forgot to announce the winner last week. But all I can say is my brain can only hold so much and these days it’s trying to hold too much. :-(

But today we do have a winner, and that winner is…

Paul Elliott!

Congratulations, Paul. To receive your free copy of Mary’s book, Intentional Warfare, simply contact me with your snail mail address and Mary will get you book right out to you.

And for you who didn’t win the book, here is the direct Amazon links to Intentional Fitness and Intentional Warfare.

Thanks for stopping by today. I hope you’ll be back next week for our monthly writing opportunities collected just for you!

Happy writing!

Vonda

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Writer’s Headlines: Writing Opps, Conferences and Contests

newspapers

(Vonda here: I’m sorry for the delay in today’s post. My internet has been down since yesterday and I’m just now up and running again. Hope like all the opportunities I found for you!)

Hello, Christian Writer’s Den friends! This is our big opportunities issue, so let’s see if we can help you get published! Let’s start with writing opportunities compiled just for you!

1.  Miraculous Answers to Prayer anthology
This new anthology by James Stuart Bell is looking for your stories. Here are the Miraculous Answers to Prayer Guidelines. But you must hurry–Deadline is now December 1, 2015.

2.  Adoptive Families Magazine
Adoptive Families is the leading information resource for families before, during, and after adoption.

3.  Blue Mountain Arts Greeting Cards
Seeks contemporary prose or poetry written from personal experience that reflects the thoughts and feelings people today want to communicate to one another, but don’t always know how to put into words. Does not need rhymed poetry, religious verse, one-liners or humor. Pays $300 for all rights and $50 for one-time rights for a book use.

4.  Colorado Central Magazine
To put our guidelines in a nutshell: We publish material we like to read about the area we live in. We’re not interested in it if it’s routine and boring, or if it’s not about this area. We serve Central Colorado and the San Luis Valley. On a map, that’s a swath from Leadville and Fairplay south to the New Mexico line. It’s the counties of Alamosa, Chaffee, Conejos, Costilla, Custer, Lake, Mineral, Rio Grande, and Saguache, along with the adjacent parts of Fremont, Gunnison, Huerfano and Park counties.

5.  Eating Well Magazine
EatingWell is the only national food magazine that focuses exclusively on eating healthfully (our motto: “Where Good Taste Meets Good Health”). We are the preeminent magazine resource for people who want to enjoy food that is delicious and good for them.

6.  Alaska Magazine Submission Guidelines for Freelance Writers

7.  The Cattleman Magazine – Guidelines for Writing for The Cattleman

8.  Better Homes and Gardens writers guidelines

9.  Backpacker Magazine guidelines

10. Southern Writers Magazine guidelines

Remember to follow the guidelines carefully and then let us celebrate with you when you have a publication!

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If you’re serious about writing and/or speaking, you’ll be serious about attending conferences. Here are some awesome conferences you don’t want to miss!WritersBootcamp2016 logo

1. Weekend with the Writers: January 29-30, 2016, Greenville, SC

2. Writers Advance Boot Camp: February 19-21, 2016, Asheville, NC Scholarship deadline October 31, 2015 (I’ll see you there!)

3. Florida Christian Writers Conference: February 24-28, 2016, Leesburg, FL

4. Carolina Christian Writers Conference: March 11-12, 2016, Spartanburg, SC

5. Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference: March 18-22, 2016, Mount Hermon, CA

6. Mid-South Christian Writers Conference: March 19, 2016, Colliersville, TN

7. American Christian Writers Mentoring Retreats begin in April: Various locations and dates

brmcwc 20168. Write2Ignite for Writers of Children’s Literature: April 1-2, 2016, Tigerville, SC

9. Colorado Christian Writers Conference: May 11-14, 2016, Estes Park, CO

10. Northwest Christian Writers Renewal: May 13-14, 2016, Redmond, WA

11. Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference: May 22-26, 2016, Ridgecrest, NC (I’ll see you there! Watch for details coming soon!)

12. Write to Publish: June 8-11, 2016, Chicago area

13. West Virginia Writers Conference: June 10-12, 2016, Ripley, WV

14. New England Christian Writers Retreat: June 17-19, 2016, Hamilton, MA

15. Christian Communicators Conference: Hold the date! August 24-28, 2016, The Billy Graham Trainingccclogosmall Center at The Cove, Asheville, NC. Registration will open in early spring. (I’ll see you there!)

16. St. David’s Christian Writers Conference: June 22-26, 2016, Grove City, PA

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And here are some writing contests you’ll want to look into…

1.  The Amy Awards for Christian-related pieces published in secular publications. Deadline January 15, 2016

2.  Fresh Voices Writing Contest is now open for submissions – Deadline December 31, 2015

3.  Writer’s Digest Short Short Story Contest – Deadline December 14, 2015

4.  The Anagram Holiday Short Fiction ContestDeadline December 19, 2015

5.  NeoVerse Short Story Writing CompetitionDeadline December 20, 2015

Red Sale Bag pixabay~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Need some help with your Christmas list? I can help!

Yep, it’s time for my buy-one-get-one-half-price Christmas sale! That’s right, buy any product in my store and you’ll get the second item for half-price!

But here’s the catch: You’ll need to order it directly from me by email, or PayPal will charge you the full price! So, head on over to my store and decide what you’d like and who you’d like to have it personalize it to, and then contact me with your order. I’ll get in touch and you can either pay by check or by credit card. DO NOT ORDER THROUGH REGULAR PAYPAL or you won’t get the discount!

Whether you need downloadable writing workshops or books for kids or women, this sale is for you!

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So that should keep you busy for a while. Don’t forget to let us know when you get that publication. We’ll want to celebrate with you.

Happy writing!

Vonda

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The Non-Fiction Book: Concept to Contract and Kudos & MoGo7000 Results

Welcome to the 2nd Tuesday at the Christian Writer’s Den..Let’s start with a tutorial for your non-fiction book..Books morguefile

 

Although the technique of good writing is a necessary craft that crosses genre lines, there are considerable differences in the planning, writing, and submitting of the fiction vs the non-fiction book. Today we’ll focus on the steps you’ll need to take in order to see your non-fiction book in print.

 

Planning:

  • What do you want to teach?
  • Is there a need?
  • Do your research.
  • What is your focus or slant?
  • Discover your voice.

Writing:Be creative computer Pixabay

  • Create an outline.
  • Write creatively.
  • Write chapter summaries.
  • Write three chapters.
  • Obtain serious critiques of your work and consider hiring an editor.

Before submitting:

Submitting:

  • Use only clean, white paper.
  • Follow correct format.
  • Submit only to those publishers or agents who work with your type of book.
  • Be professional in every way.
  • Don’t give up.

So what are you waiting for? By following these guidelines, you’ll increase your chances of publication and could soon be signing your name on the proverbial dotted line!

Write on!

Thanks for Tweeting!

Non-fiction book tips for #writers – Concept to Contract @VondaSkelton #amwriting #pubtips (Click to Tweet)

Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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Kudos to Nan Jones, a very special writing friend… 

Nan Jones (NC): “I had my first book signing for The Perils of a Pastor’s Wife on Oct.10th at the Cornerstone Christian Bookstore in Boone, NC. This is a lovely, two-story bookstore that serves our mountain region. I was so honored – it was on my dream list and God graced me with this gift. Also, I was in WalMart and a stranger came up to me and said, “You’re that lady that wrote the book for pastors’ wives!” I just about fell over. We met the next day so she could purchase a signed copy for her pastor’s wife. Sometimes when you think marketing efforts aren’t doing any good, the Lord gives a pat on the back.”

That’s so true, Nan. His word tells that if we delight in the Lord, He will give us the desires of our hearts. Your experience is a perfect example of how much He wants to bless us!

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mogoAnd look who MoGo’d last month!

#13: Robin Luftig – 15,000 words
#14: Tim Suddeth – 7300 words

Congratulations, writers! You’re in the running for the $100 cash prize, to be given away in January! And readers, don’t forget you still could get two more entries this year, so it’s not too late to start.

And your NaNoWriMo words can count toward MoGo7000, too, so write away and then remember to report your numbers when I put out the call in December!

Okay, friends, that does it for another Tuesday at The Christian Writer’s Den. Thank you for stopping by and joining in. Without you, CWD would be a very lonely place for me. :-)

I pray God’s blessing on the work of your hands and your hearts,

Vonda

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To NaNo or Not? NaNoWriMo Decoded, Call-Outs & Book Give Away

NaNo-2015-Participant-Badge-Large-SquareVonda here: Writers, are you wondering what all this NaNoWriMo talk is about? Trying to decide if it’s something you should consider? Thanks Edie Melson, here are the answers to your questions! (I’m participating for the first time this year!)

To NaNo or Not? NaNoWriMo Decoded, by Edie Melson

Among those whose heart’s desire is to write a novel, November thoughts turn to the dilemma of NaNoWriMo. For the uneducated, November has long become known as National Novel Writing Month—NaNoWriMo.

NaNoWriMo is an idea that has exploded in popularity. The idea is that you write the first draft (minimum of 50,000 words) of a novel in one month. At first this may sound ridiculous, but many writing instructors advocate writing your first draft quickly, without editing. James Scott Bell encourages this in his book, The Art of War for Writers. I highly recommend this book, by the way and it was the very first book reviewed on this blog. Curious to learn more? Click here to read the review.
So how do you get involved with NaNoWriMo?
  • First, visit the website and set up an account.
  • Second, familiarize yourself with the site and the many things they offer.
  • Third, start brainstorming ideas.

Yep, I’ve found it helps me to have an idea of where I’m going with my novel. I don’t want to get into the whole plotter or pantster debate, but I highly recommend at least a glimmer of an idea before you start.

Still unconvinced it’s for you? Consider this, people participate in NaNo for many reasons—many of them good—here are just a few to consider.

  • For Fun: maybe you’ve been toying with the idea of writing a novel. Here’s your time to give it a try.
  • To Jumpstart Your Next Book: if you write professionally, the work of writing can sometimes get in the way of actual writing. NaNo can help you get back on track.
  • An Accountability Group: Some of us just do better when we have to report on our progress. NaNoWriMo actually requires that.
  • A Deadline and Goal: I don’t know about you, but I can do almost anything for a month—give up chocolate, start an exercise program, get familiar with a new routine. Why not try writing a novel?
  • Company in a Lonely Endeavor: writing is a solitary pursuit and can often be intimidating and discouraging. Aligning with a group that has a shared goal and purpose helps alleviate the loneliness and helps keep us motivated.
  • To Win: yes, I admit it. I’m highly competitive and just thinking about NaNoWriMo gets my adrenaline pumping.

Vonda here: Edie and I would love to see who’s participating in NaNoWriMo, so be sure to leave a comment and let us know your NaNoWriMo name (you choose it when you register). Ours are easy to remember: emelson and vondaskelton.

Also, if you’ve participated in NaNoWriMo previously, please share your suggestions and comments based on your experience. Thanks!

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I want to hear about your successes! celebration - Morguefile

Okay, friends, now it’s time to hear from you! We want to know what you’ve been up to. Have you had something exciting happen recently in your writing or speaking life? Maybe you’ve had an article published, signed a book contract, released a new book, got an agent, or started a new blog. If so, we want to hear from you!

It’s really simple, but I do ask that you contact me with the info in this format and order ONLY:

**Your name
**Your state in two-letter abbreviation
**Link to your website or blog
**Your good news
**Link to your good news, if online (online bookstore, online article, etc)

I can’t wait for us to celebrate with you!

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mogo7000 logoWho Worked on Their MoGo7000 in October?

If you wrote at least 7000 new words on a book project in October, you can receive an entry in the drawing for the 2015 MoGo7000 $100 cash prize! It’s open to everyone who qualifies.

To report your October results, please leave a comment below with your total new words written on a book project in October. (Please do not send your totals by email or through the Contact page. Totals must be left as a comment here by next Sunday). 

If you missed out on last year’s money-winning writing challenge, don’t worry, the 2015 challenge continues! Here are the MoGo7000 Challenge rules.

Each month that you qualify with 7000 new words, your name goes in the “hat” for the drawing. Reach the goal one month and you’ll have one entry. Just starting out? Don’t worry! Meet it the next 2 months and you’ll have 2 entries!

So what are you waiting for? Get started now and you could have and extra $100 next year. Participating in NaNoWriMo? Those words can also count as your Mogo7000 words. And it doesn’t cost you a cent!Broken Butterfly Cover (1)

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Who won Cindy Patterson’s book?

And the winner is…

Tammy Whitehurst!

Congratulations, Tammy! Simply contact me with your snail mail address and Cindy will get your book right out to you! And friends, I know you’re gonna want Cindy’s book, so here’s a direct Amazon link to Broken Butterfly.

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Well, that does it for our first November meeting. Now get to work and write!

Blessings,

Vonda

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