One of the questions I receive most as a book mentor is “Which Christian writers conferences do you recommend?” This is my response to that question. I’ve attended several of these conferences, and I can attest to their practical help. Many have terrific instruction, and several offer editorial help, contacts with agents and editors, and writing contests.
What I love most about Christian writers conferences is the community I experience there. I’ve made some amazing friendships as a result of a conference. Of course I also have forged professional friendship as well, but it’s been the offline relationships that have helped me tremendously as I’ve navigated the waters of Christian publishing.
So here’s a comprehensive and alphabetical list of Christian writers conferences. Simply click the MORE INFO button to learn more about each conference.
ACFW – American Christian Fiction Writers Conference
A terrific conference held in different locales each year (late summer, early fall) for anyone who aspires to write Christian fiction. I’ve taught here (so much fun because FICTION!), and I can heartily encourage anyone who wants to write fiction for the Christian market to not only attend the American Christian Fictions Conference, but also to join the organization.
ACT ONE Hollywood Writing Program
They have two sessions to choose from. Learn how to write screenplays! Since this is something I’ve always wanted to learn, these sessions are on my bucket list!
ACW – American christian writers Mentoring RetreatS
I’ve heard great things about these retreats, all over the US. Affordable along with great teaching. They write, “ACW’s mentoring retreats feature more than twelve hours of small group and private manuscript consultation work; professional editing and critiquing of your manuscript during the retreat; teaching on how to evaluate, copyedit, and proofread manuscripts; plus the rewriting of your manuscript several times.” How great to have so many Christian writers conferences to choose from!
Asheville Christian Writers Conference
This conference happens in February at The Cove in Asheville, North Carolina. Their goal is to hone the “craft of writing so we might effectively spread the Word of God through fiction and non-fiction books, screenplays, scripts, articles and blogs.”
AWSA – Advanced Writers and Speakers Association Conference
This conference is for writers and speakers and is held in conjunction with the International Christian Retail Show. They also host the Golden Scroll Awards. You must be a member of AWSA to attend.
Blue Lake Christian Writers Retreat
This retreat is located in Alabama and is held in March. They write, “Come away with us to a quiet place … where you can learn from award-winning writers and teachers who will show you how to develop your God-given gift of writing.”
Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conferences
They have several opportunities for you to learn, from a novelist intensive in the fall, to the main conference in May of each year, held at Ridgecrest Conference Center in North Carolina. I haven’t had the chance to attend this conference, but have heard GREAT things about it.
Breathe Christian Writers Conference
This conference is held in beautiful Grand Rapids, Michigan in the fall. They have great keynotes! They write, “Breathe Christian Writers Conference is for writers by writers who care about words and relationships.”
C.S. Lewis Foundation SW Writer’s Workshop
This is held every other year in Camp Allen in Navasota, TX (north of Houston). The C.S. Lewis Foundation also has other avenues of ways to study, including a stint in Oxford!
Carolina Christian Writers Conference
This conference is held in March in Spartanburg, South Carolina in March. They write, “This two-day event will offer you the opportunity to learn from professionals in the publishing industry. Those who attend can learn about fiction, nonfiction, article writing, humor, children’s writing, book proposals, social networking and more.”
Christian Communicators Writers Conference
This is a conference primarily for Christian women speakers, held in Nevada. They write, “This unique 5-day, 4-night conference is designed to encourage, refresh and empower women to share their stories and deepen their faith.”
Christian Leaders, Authors, & Speakers Seminars (CLASS) Conference
They have several different Christian writer conferences centering around writing, speaking, and personality assessment. The link below will update you on all they’re doing. CLASS has a great reputation!
Colorado Christian Writer’s Conference
Marlene Bagnull who runs this and the Greater Philly conference has a heart of gold, and she is passionate about launching new writers. The setting at Estes Park is stunning, and she packs her conference full of great information and faculty.
Festival of Faith and Writing
This amazing conference/festival meets every two years (next one is April 2018). It features many voices from around the publishing, speaking and art world. I’ve had the privilege of attending twice, and had significant conversations each time.
Florida Christian Writers Conference
I’ve heard really good things about this conference. I hope to attend someday! It’s held in February at Lake Yale Conference Center.
Frederick Buechner Writer’s Workshop at Princeton Seminary
I haven’t attended this workshop, but WOW, the speakers are amazing. A fan of Buechner, I’m sure this will be an amazing time. Held at Princeton in June. What’s not to like?
Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference
See note on Marlene Bagnull above (Colorado Christian Writers Conferences). Full of really good information, helpful workshops, and one-on-one critique. Great conference for the investment.
Heart of America Christian Writers Network Conference
This conference is held in Kansas in October, featuring workshops, editors and agents. The faculty looks amazing!
Indiana Faith & Writing Conference at Anderson University
This conference is held at Anderson University, and in the past has featured some amazing speakers. They typically hold conferences in October.
Inscribe Christian Writer’s Conference
A Canadian conference held in Edmonton, Alberta in September every year. They write, the conference “gives writers an opportunity to come together for inspiration, motivation and to learn more about the craft of writing.”
Kentucky Christian Writers Conference
Held in Elizabethtown, KY in June. They write, “The purpose of the Kentucky Christian Writers Conference is to provide an annual interdenominational event to equip and encourage writers in their quest for publication.”
Maranatha Christian Writers Conference
Held in September in Michigan, this conference “recognizes the rapidly changing nature of today’s publishing world, and equips you to prosper in it.”
Midsouth Christian Writers Conference
Held in March in Tennessee, this conference’s aim is to “encourage beginning and experienced communicators to develop their writing talents for God’s glory. All who enjoy writing are welcome.”
Midwest Writers Conference
This conference is held in Indiana in July. Their primary goals is “to help writers become published authors.” I’d say that’s a pretty great goal!
Montrose Christian Writers Conference
The Montrose Christian Writers Conference is held in Montrose, PA in July. They write, “New and experienced writers will be spiritually renewed as they sharpen their word-smithing skills and learn about Christian publishing at this annual conference.”
Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference
The granddaddy of Christian writers conferences, Mount Hermon is comprehensive and hosts a slew of agents and editors. (I’m a little biased, as I started my career here, landing my first literary agent and contract). Held in the hills above San Jose, CA, the setting is spectacular. They have major morning tracks, mentoring, editing, and terrific keynotes.
My Book Therapy Deep Thinkers Retreat (Fiction)
My friends Susan May Warren and Rachel Hauck run these amazing intensives, and I know they have helped countless Christian novelists get their books into the world. They write, “5 days. One-on-One mentoring. Feedback. Intense, yes. Focused, for sure. Limited to only those who want to dig into their stories and take them from good to great.”
NE Ohio Christian Writers Conference
The NE Ohio Christian Writers Conference is held in Amherst, OH in March. It’s an affordable one-day event that would be a great entry point for those wanting to learn about publishing for the Christian market.
Northwest Christian Writers Renewal
You’ll get a discount if you are a member of the NCWA. They hold a 2-day conference in Bellevue, WA in May. I know many of the writers and presenters, so I can confidently affirm this conference. (I need to go! I want to go! I love the Northwest!)
Novelist Retreat, Ridgecrest, NC
If you’re a novelist, and you’d love to escape to Ridgecrest in North Carolina, this would be an amazing event! Get mentoring and training as you work on your novel. They have contests too!
Oregon Christian Writers Summer Conference
You will LOVE this conference. I’ve had the privilege of teaching here. The conference runs very smoothly, has great breakout sessions, amazing keynotes, and a terrific setting (on the river!). I can attest to the professionalism and intimacy of the Oregon Christian Writers Conference. They also have events throughout the year.
PEN members receive a discount for this conference held in Atlanta, GA in May. This is a conference specifically for Christian editors.
This is THE conference for those writing Christian speculative fiction. Held in different locales each year, find ways to meet your writing tribe. They write, “If you are a Christian author writing speculative fiction, find your people at Realm Makers. This isn’t your grandmother’s writers conference.”
Typically held every other year in Austin, TX, this is a boutique conference with high-powered speakers and excellent teaching. At the date of this blog post, their website is not live, so the link below is to their Facebook page. I’ve spoken several times at this conference and can attest to its value.
This is a one-day conference held in July in the Dallas Fort Worth area. It’s a very, very helpful and affordable conference. I’ve spoken at it several times, and am always impressed by the takeaway.
San Diego Christian Writers Guild Annual Conference
Held in San Diego in the fall, this conference typically features a some very strong keynotes (Lynn Vincent, Bodie Thoene).
Scribes over this City: Orlando
An affordable one day event, centering on prophetic writing.
She Speaks Conference
A huge conference covering speaking, writing and ministry for women. Well over 700 attendees, with editor and agent appointments, lots of great speaking, and top-notch instruction. I’ve taught at this conference a few times, and I always came away with great information.
SoCal Christian Writers’ Conference
Since Kathy Ide orchestrates this conference, it’s guaranteed to be great. Held at Biola University in La Mirada, CA in June, expect great weather, a gifted faculty, and a teen track.
SPEAK UP CONFERENCE
Hosted and created by Carol Kent, this conference offers two tracks–one for speaking, one for writing. Held in Grand Rapids, you’ll have access to publishers in that area.
St Davids Christian Writers Conference
St. David’s Christian Writers Conference is held at Grove City College (PA) in June. For first timers, they offer great assistance: “We have established a contact program we call the Timothy Program for first-time conferees, to help make your life during the conference week a little easier.”
Held in Nashville in September, “STORY is a two day conference designed by creatives, for creatives, who tell stories in a variety of industries.”
Taylor University Professional Writing Conference
Taylor University hosts this conference in August in Upland, Indiana. They write, “This is the perfect way to begin your journey as a freelance writer, staff journalist, fiction or nonfiction author, public relations writer, editor, and more. Classes are designed for beginners and professionals alike.”
Wesleyan Writers Conference
This is their 61st year hosting a writers conference! Held at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT in September. They write, “This conference welcomes established writers, new writers, and everyone interested in the writer’s craft. Join us if you would like to finish work in progress, start something new or be inspired by other writers’ work.”
West Coast Christian Writers Conference
Located in Pleasanton, CA at Crosswinds Church in February, this conference has great keynotes, a strong faculty, and a contest!
Write Canada is held in the Toronto area each June. It’s the largest Christian writers conference in Canada, featuring A-list editors, writers, publishers and agents. They write, ” Learn skills you can immediately take home and apply to make your writing better. Pitch your writing to editors and agents, learn new marketing skills, network, and get feedback from published writers.”
This is a terrific conference, so well run, with agents, editors and writers. Held on the Wheaton, College campus in Wheaton, IL in June, you’ll get to experience dorm life AND meet great people. I’ve had the privilege of speaking here, and I can wholeheartedly represent this well-run conference.
Held at the North Greenville University in South Carolina, this affordable conference “is designed specifically for those who write for Children and Young Adult markets from a Christian perspective.”
Writers’ Organizations ‘Round Dallas (WORD)
This association of writers groups in the Dallas, TX area have a gathering in March called WORDFEST. It’s a “one-day all-you-can-meet festival of writers groups from all over the metroplex.”
Writing For Your Life Writers Conference
Sponsored by Western Theological Seminary and Hope College, this event is held in May. They write, “This workshop is for anyone interested in spiritual writing. It will include popular Christian authors and representatives from the Christian publishing industry.”
Writing from the Heart…in the Heart of France
OK this one looks amazing. “How would you like to…Relax in the same beautiful, inspiring village that nourished the creative genius of Pierre Auguste and Jean Renoir, among other artists? Work on your writing (or begin to write for the first time) with others in a nonjudgmental, supportive, small-group workshop? Enjoy fine French cuisine and champagne tastings with local vignerons? Explore a beautiful and relatively undiscovered part of France?” Janet Hulstrand limits this conference to ten attendees.
Writers Mentoring Intensive
This is my four-times-a-year intensive that gives intimate groups of writers everything I know about writing, publishing, editing, marketing and promotion. Here’s what one attendee had to say, “I’ve said it before, but Mary DeMuth is an amazing teacher, encourager, writer, mentor. Knowledgeable on all facets of her craft. Love her willingness to share openly all she’s gleaned over the years.”
YWAM Geneva Mentoring Intensive
Nearly identical to my US writers mentoring intensive, this intensive happens at a YWAM base in Geneva. You’ll receive mentoring and instruction about how to write, publish and promote your book. The YWAM Burtigny base is beautiful, and you can hike all around during your time off (or eat fondue!).
There you have it! A comprehensive alphabetical list of Christian Writers Conferences around the USA and the world. If I’ve missed one, please let me know in the comments.
Q4U: Which of these Christian writers Conferences have you attended?
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