Writer’s Conference––Gems of Wisdom from Six Presenters

Have you ever attended a writer’s conference then plodded home tired, brain spinning with information, not knowing what to do with it all?

This past weekend, I attended the Inland Northwest Christian Writer’s Conference in Spokane, WA for the third year in a row.  The conference is in its fourth year.  I had an amazing time.  Jan Cline is an outstanding conference president, CEO, Coordinator.  Tears ran down my face as her son presented her with flowers and words of admiration on the last day.  She no doubt earned those accolades.

What’s whirling inside my head that’s powerful as a tornado?   Information.  On Characters, Young Adult fiction, blogging, crowdfunding, going to the movies and fiction.  God gave me––us–– a dream to write so believe, then put fingers to keys.

I attended some noggin bumpin’ workshops with words to inspire. Heres’s what they touched on.

Gretchen Louise:   Gave us blogging basics and how to write a great blog post.  The most hit titles are: how-to, numbers, or a promise.  Your title needs to say, “Click on me! I am the post to read today.” Or readers will simply go away.

Alex Marestaing:  When writing for the young adults market, remember the Four P’s: Place, Pace, Point of View, and Power.  One must keep up with the young person’s attention span––that of a gnat.

Brandilyn Collins:  The four D’s of story structure include: Desire, Distancing, Denial, Devastation, especially for great seatbelt suspense.  She stressed the importance of emotion in our writing; to study people when they are mad, happy, anger, etc.  Both her workshop materials were taken from her book Getting Into Character.   I have ordered my copy.

Angela Breidenbach:  I had the honor of a thirty minute session with this dear lady.  I finally learned what I need to know about Google+, which was the thorn in my flesh.  Books highly recommended by Angie include: Writing Fiction for Dummies, How to Write a Book Proposal by Michael Larsen, A Writer’s Guide to Fiction by Elizabeth Lyon, Writing the Breakout Novel by Donald Maass.


James L. Rubart:   Convicted me that going to the movies and studying the three act structure are not only okay, but necessary for the fiction writer.  (I’m making my list now.)  I found the compelling villain needs a soft side that cares and loves.  He convicted me that no matter what we do with our written words, I––we–– are called to be writers by God.  There is a purpose.  Seek Him first, then write within the boundaries of our calling.

Thomas Umstattd: Enlightened my inner deer-in-the-headlights numbness concerning crowdfunding.  Never heard of it, have you?  Platforms like Kickstarter and Indiegogo are two ways self-publishers can sell more that the usual 200 copies of their prized creativity, build their tribe, and gauge interest.  Thomas has great insight into this new platform booster.

I can’t wait until next year!

Connect with Carmen

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. I haven’t even looked at my notes yet because of the cranial overload. 😉

    We should watch some of those movies together.


    1. Carmen Peone says:

      I’ve only glanced at my notes, Darlene for the same reason. That and a science fair. Yes, lets watch some movies.