Speaker Spotlight: Tessa Emily Hall’s “Create and Maintain a Blog to Build a Readership”

Headshot of Tessa Emily HallTessa Emily Hall says that aspiring authors should have an online platform before they begin pitching to agents and editors. But how is it possible to build a readership before releasing a book?

In her workshop “Create and Maintain a Blog to Build Readership,” Tessa will help writers of fiction and nonfiction understand the basics of blogging and its multiple benefits. She’ll also share mistakes and lessons she’s learned through 7+ years of writing her award-winning blog, Christ Is Write. By the end of this workshop, you should be ready to create a blog that will establish your brand and target your core readership—both of which will play key roles in building your online platform.

Tessa, an author and literary agent, made her literary debut as a teen novelist and has since built her profile to include numerous articles, school and conference presentations, a blog, and associate agent status with Hartline Literary Agency. At Write2Ignite 2017, she connected with many of our junior writers, and the Team is delighted to bring her back as a keynote speaker and workshop presenter.

You can connect with Tessa on her blogmailing list, social media (@tessaemilyhall), and website: TessaEmilyHall.com.

Speaker Spotlight: Kim Peterson’s Workshop “Is My Manuscript Ready for an Agent?”

Kim PetersonOne of the biggest mistakes beginning writers make is sending a manuscript before the story is ready. In Kim Peterson’s presentation “Is My Manuscript Ready for an Agent?” you can learn criteria from an agent’s first reader to determine whether your manuscript needs work or is ready to submit.

With her many years of experience as an author, long-time writing instructor and writer-in-residence at Bethel College (IN), freelance writer, frequent conference presenter, and writing coach as a graduate of the Jerry Jenkins Christian Writers Guild, Kim Peterson has helped hundreds of writers learn the craft and mentored scores to success as published authors. She has also been with the Write2Ignite Conference from its beginning and has presented at every year’s conference! You can learn more about Kim at https://www.facebook.com/dovecote and at her blog, Nature Walk with God.

Speaker Spotlight: Tony Snipes Applies Corporate Principles to Writing Entrepreneurship

Tony Snipes, originator of Art Lessons from God, combined experience in media, sales, and digital communication with his Christian faith and artistic talent as an illustrator to develop an income-producing model for artists, writers, and others engaged in creating artistic works, media, and events. At W2I 2018, his workshop will help writers (and illustrators) apply what he calls “Corporate America” principles to the necessary business that writers and other creators of art must navigate in publishing and marketing their work.

Tony says, “I believe it’s not a coincidence this year’s Write2Ignite Conference is taking place in September . . . the same time many corporate businesses map out the success of their upcoming year.

“For over a decade I’ve worked within the multimedia Broadcast and News publishing industry, creating, launching and managing roadmaps for the companies’ success.”

He identifies “5 basic strategies” that writers, vocalists, designers, artists, or other creative individuals “can apply to their own project, ministry or business . . . in less than 24 hours.”

Tony Snipes is an illustrator, writer, consultant, and speaker. Drawing on his experiences in media, internet marketing, and sales, he applies his passion for arts to help “Creatives” develop their own business and marketing strategy, nurture their creative inspiration and abilities, and engage the culture.

Connect with Tony at his blog, Art Lessons from God, or on Facebook. You can also find him on Instagram, and you can check out his art at Portsmouth Aeroshipbuilding Co.

Speaker Spotlight: Jean Matthew Hall’s Workshop “Definitions of Children’s Book Genres and Categories”

  Foundational to writing successfully for children is a clear knowledge of children’s literature, including the distinctions among book genres and the different categories of books for children. How is a “picture book” different from an “early reader,” when both include common audience ages and plenty of illustrations? What tips can a writer who has spent her whole professional life introducing children to books bring to an understanding of these definitions?

Jean Matthew Hall, well known to longtime followers of Write2Ignite Conference as the first director of this group, returns to W2I in 2018 as a presenter. Her first workshop (see the “Bonus” early session in the conference schedule) will help writers establish a fuller understanding of how book genres and categories work and why it’s important to get them right for writers creating their stories, describing them, and pitching them to agents or publishers.

Professionally, Jean has taught “almost every grade level kindergarten through high school” and served as a Christian school principal and administrator as well as director of early childhood development. These experiences, which helped her develop connections with “the hearts of teachers, children, and parents,” inform her goal of creating books to” communicate “values and truths about God” and “encourage and edify both children and the caring adults in their lives.”

Jean’s workshop will combine the nuts and bolts facts of definitions with her lifelong experience and development as a writer in this genre she loves so much—plus Q & A time for the audience!

To learn more about Jean, visit her website and blog, https://jeanmatthewhall.com/.

Speaker Spotlight: Vicki Moss Shows Writers How to “Connect the Dots”

Vicki Moss, Contributing Editor for Southern Writers Magazine, has over 18 books in the Moments series (Grace Publishing), and has over 500 articles published nationally and internationally. She is also author of How to Write for Kids’ Magazines and Writing with Voice. Sharing from her own experience, Vicki will challenge writers struggling with writing projects that just aren’t going according to plan.

So you think you want to be a novelist, but God has other plans. He’s opened more doors for you to write nonfiction than fiction, or vice versa. What to do? Connect the dots. What God has in store might be so much better than your own plans. And fiction might be forthcoming to follow behind your nonfiction (or again, vice versa)—the two intertwining to make a beautiful tapestry that allows you to reach more readers. But how to connect the dots?

Join Vicki in this writing workshop to find out how she connected the dots in her personal writing journey. Learn how to connect your own dots to view a bigger picture—perhaps part of God’s road map for your writing destiny.

“A man’s heart plans his way. But the Lord directs his steps.” (Proverbs 16:9)

To learn more about Vicki, visit her website at http://livingwaterfiction.com/

Speaker Spotlight: Carol Federlin Baldwin, Teen Track “Fiction Writing”

Carol Baldwin, author of Teaching the Story: Fiction Writing in Grades 4–8, will lead Teen Track participants at Write2Ignite 2018 through exercises including movement activities and writing practice after helping them gather some basic tools to put into their writing toolbox:

  • Muscle Words
  • Show, Don’t Tell
  • The Red Pencil Is Your Best Friend
  • Using Mentor Texts
  • Details Make the Difference (genre fiction)

Carol will show how these writing tools can be used to craft original characters and sensory settings and how a character’s conflicts drive the plot of a story.

You can see what Carol blogs about at https://bit.ly/2H4MNnc.

Speaker Spotlight: Daniel Blackaby presents “The Journey Begins: Step-by-Step Preparation for Beginning the Writer’s Journey”

Daniel Blackaby

Author and speaker Daniel Blackaby inspired both teen and adult writers at  Write2Ignite 2017. He returns with three new workshops for W2I 2018. Featured today is his session on getting started as a writer.

“You’ve heard that “all is well that ends well,” but if you depart on the adventure without the proper provisions you’re doomed to fail! How you start the writer’s journey will largely determine how you finish it. This session will provide all the tools needed to begin your exciting journey and to ensure that you’re equipped to reach your final destination alive and stronger than ever.”

Daniel published his first novel as a 23-year old college student. Since then, he has published multiple books in both fiction and non-fiction genres. His writing has received several awards and nominations, been featured in major trades such as Publishers Weekly, and at several major retail conventions (ALA, ICRS). When not working on new writing projects, Daniel is completing a PhD in the field of Christianity and the ArtsDaniel has a passion for connecting with aspiring writers and artists and helping them to leverage their creative talents for the glory of God.    

To learn more about Daniel Blackaby, visit his website, http://www.danielblackaby.com/