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  • Whale watches a whale boat and harpoon holding man.
    Delayed Success

    Critics and the marketplace aren’t always right.

    Read More
  • Depositphotos_6270554_xs2
    He Is Risen

    Go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead.

    Read More
  • Depositphotos_6270554_xs2
    Crucified for Us

    Truly this man was the Son of God!

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  • Three traffic lights, red green and yellow, isolated on white background
    What If …?

    A moment of carelessness can spoil everything.

    Read More
  • Station clock and a passenger waiting with suitcase.
    Don’t Rush It

    When the words don’t come, there may be a reason.

    Read More

Popular Posts

Crowd Funding Webinar Reset for May 1

The webinar on “Crowd Funding and the Future of Publishing,” originally scheduled for March 6, has been rescheduled for the first Thursday of May.

Jerry B. Jenkins will interview Scott Klososky, founder of CrowdScribed, about this online tool that provides authors a platform to market and fund their books.

April 3 Webinar
Trends in Self-Publishing: the Indie Publishing Revolution
presented by Dave Sheets

What opportunities exist outside traditional publishing, and what does self-publishing really mean?

CWG and BelieversPress president Dave Sheets will explore the opportunities and explain the challenges and pitfalls of this rapidly evolving publishing model.

Apprentice Grad Wins Operation First Novel

The Covered Deep by Brandy Vallance was announced February 13, at the Christian Writers Guild “Writing for the Soul” conference, as winner of the 2013 Operation First Novel. Vallance receives $20,000, plus publication by contest co-sponsor Worthy Publishing.

2013 OFN winner 350Vallance, a mother of two from Colorado Springs, is the first graduate of the Christian Writers Guild’s Apprentice writing course to win the annual contest.

In her novel, an incurably romantic bookworm from Appalachia wins an essay contest and travels to England and the Holy Land in search of the perfect romantic hero.

Jeana Ledbetter, vice president for editorial at Worthy, says, “A strong narrative voice telling a captivating story is more important to us than perceived marketability or a distinctive genre. We are looking for fiction that moves us.”

Vallance says, “Every summer as a child, I visited family in Southern Ohio and Kentucky. The cadence and beauty of that region planted seeds that became Bianca’s backstory. When I merged that with my love of the Victorian era and all things British, I had the beginnings of The Covered Deep.

“Though I had the beginnings of my novel, I still didn’t have the tools I needed to write it. The Apprentice course taught me to write scenes and the importance of meeting deadlines. I developed a thick skin. I began to understand the business side of writing.

“The Apprentice course led to my first staff writing job and 50 published articles. That led to other writing milestones, which lead to Operation First Novel. But none of it would have happened without the confidence and knowledge the Guild gave me. I can truly say that the Christian Writers Guild taught me how to write.”

CWG president Dave Sheets says writers should be inspired by Vallance’s perseverance. “She rewrote her novel 10 times over the course of 14 years. Learning your craft and perfecting a story take time and dedication.”

Since graduating from the Guild’s Apprentice course, Vallance has served on staff with Miss Kitty’s Journal, a magazine focusing on the Victorian era. A member of American Christian Fiction Writers, she won its 2012 Genesis Contest for historical romance.

Christian Writers Guild owner and New York Times bestselling novelist Jerry B. Jenkins began Operation First Novel in 2004. The contest is open to Guild members who have not yet had a book released by a traditional, royalty-paying publisher.

Details of the 2014 Operation First Novel will be released this Spring on the Guild’s website: www.ChristianWritersGuild.com

2013 OFN winner Brandy Vallance with cover 350

Trends in Self-Publishing: the Indie Publishing Revolution


Much to my shock and delight, my fifth and final Firebird series novTyers Kathy 2013 80x120el, Daystar, won the 2013 Carol award for speculative fiction.

Kathy Tyers
Craftsman Mentor

Latta, Barbara 2013 80x120

My article, “War Bride Corporal,” was published in The Upson Beacon in June, and my devotional, “What’s in Your Sponge?” will be published this month at christiandevotions.us.

Barbara Latta
Writing Essentials, Apprentice grad
Meansville, Georgia

Tustan, Peggi 80x120

I have series appearing in two publications. One on God’s design for gender is being published in a church women’s ministry e-newletter. And one on caring for aging parents is appearing in a community newspaper.

Peggi Tustan
Cleveland, Ohio

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Six years ago I signed up for the Apprentice course, never dreaming I’d have a book in print. Moody just released Confessions of a Boy-Crazy Girl: On Her Journey from Neediness to Freedom.

Paula Hendricks
Apprentice grad
Niles, Michigan

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My story, “Grandpa and the Giant Tomato” was published in the August/September Mysterious Ways magazine.

Denise Valuk
Apprentice grad
San Antonio, Texas

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My novel Mirror Images, just released by WestBow Press, was named the Grand Prize winner of the 2012 Women of Faith writing contest.

Laurie Norlander
Craftsman grad
Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin

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My poem, “Why I Write,” was selected as a finalist for the literary publication Imagine This! An ArtPrize Anthology, published in September.

Peter DeHaan
Mattawan, Michigan

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I had four devotions accepted by The Secret Place, a humor article sold to Vista, and a poem to be published in CAP Connection. I just signed up for Fiction that Sells. I’m going to try branching out.

Karen R. Hessen
Apprentice and Journeyman grad
Forest Grove, Oregon

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I recently self-published a tween novel, Go for the Gold. What I gained through CWG webinars help me shape a higher quality book. The knowledge being shared far exceeds the cost of membership. I’ll skip NCIS if Doc Hensley is presenting.

John Nichols
Raleigh, North Carolina

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My poem “Indian Summer” was published in the September/October The Bible Advocate.

Cobey Bartlett
Fiction That Sells and Writing Essentials grad
Elkhart, Indiana

Brittany Valentine 80x120

Pathways to God, a division of Church of God Ministries, will publish two of my devotionals in 2014.

Brittany Valentine
Golconda, Illinois

Michel, Terri 80x120

I recently self-published Tales In A Bottle, a romance about the inhabitants of the island of enchantment, Puerto Rico.

Terri Michel
Elizabeth, Colorado

Debra Butterfield 80x120

I had a devotional accepted for the 2014 Penned from the Heart anthology. And “The Babysitter’s Story” has been accepted for the book Miracles and Moments of Grace: Inspiring Stories of Survival.

Debra L. Butterfield
Apprentice grad
St. Joseph, Missouri

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Thomas Nelson will release my debut novel, Dear Mr. Knightley, on November 5th. I could not be more excited.

Katherine Reay
Apprentice, Journeyman Grad
Austin, Texas

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My 1989 science fiction novel Crystal Witness has been re-released as an e-book by Greenbrier Books for Kindle, Nook, Apple, and Kobo. I gave it a light edit, and I think it has aged well.

Kathy Tyers

I have signed a contract with Rook Publishing for my historical novel, TheGage Joy 6362 80x120 Patriot and the Plough to be released November 6. Rook is a traditional publishing company, somewhat new to the scene and small at this stage, but absolutely perfect for me at this stage of my life and career.

Joy Gage

Lehman, Yvonne 2013 80x120

Harlequin Heartsong just released my novel, Lessons in Love, the second in a series set in Savannah, Georgia. The Caretaker’s Son was released in April, and Seeking Mr. Perfect is due to release in November.

Yvonne Lehman