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Here’s a sneak peek at conference presenters with descriptions in their own words. We’ll be posting a teaser page each  Monday. You still have time to take advantage of the Early Bird Discount.


Tony Snipes – 5 MORE Things I Learned in Corporate America


What do you and CBS have in common? You create stories for an audience to consume…and so do they. You try to grow your audience with those stories while staying true to your values…and so do they. You have a need to generate resources that support the creation of those stories…and so do they.

There are practices that corporate content creators have been putting in effect for decades that allow them to distribute their stories and generate a profit while they do it.

This workshop will give you access to an insider’s view of corporate
storytellers. Corporate storytellers such as The Greenville News and local CBS affiliate WSPA have a lot in common with you as a writer: the need to create stories and earn a living in the process.

In my workshop, “Five MORE Things I Learned from Corporate America that Help Your Writing Business Pay for Itself ” we’ll unpack what I learned from corporate America that help your writing business pay for itself.


Edie Melson – Love the World You Build

As fiction writers, we are world builders. It doesn’t matter what genre we pursue, we are still creating an imaginary place for readers to hang out and experience our stories. These worlds are limited only by our imagination. But just like in the physical world, there are rules we must follow—a lot of the time we get to make up the rules—but there are still rules.
In my workshop, “Love the World You Build,” I share how to build a consistent world that makes sense for your reader. We’ll discuss the power of language and invented words, research for places that have actually existed and how to make your setting an important character in the story you tell.




Linda Vigen Phillips – Using Verse to Get to the Heart of Your Story


Writing a verse novel may not be your intention or even your cup of tea, but writing in verse can be good for your writing health.  As writers, we all mine our past, and capturing difficult or sensitive memories in verse is a therapeutic exercise that can lead to strong story elements.  Suffering from writer’s block? Throw rules out the window and jot down whatever comes to mind in a free-verse format. Want to probe deeper into your characters?  Have them write their hearts out in verse. This method is particularly effective in capturing the depth and voice of a protagonist on a spiritual journey.  

In, “Using Verse to Get to the Heart of Your Story,” we will explore a variety of formats that authors have used successfully in their verse novels.  Participants will have the opportunity to turn an emotionally charged memory or idea into free verse, and to use a shape poem to show setting, action, or mood.   


Kenzi Nevins – An ILLUSTRATOR’S Market: Portfolio, Platform, and Proposals


Imagine walking into a bookstore and seeing a line of stuffed animals above the children’s book section…but these aren’t just any animals, they’re yours! The illustrations from your book, brought to life. What does it take to stand out in today’s increasingly freelance illustration market? What tools does an illustrator need once the drawings are finished to have kids, adults, and EDITORS begging for more? Come to “An Illustrator’s Market: Portfolio, Platform, and Proposals” to find out!



Nancy Lohr – The Plot Thickens


An idea, an emotion, a hero or heroine (the protagonist) all are necessary elements to include in a novel for children, but none of these are suitable for a strong and compelling plot. My workshop. “The Plot Thickens” will look at a variety of ways to develop a plot that will hold a reader’s attention and deliver a satisfying forward-moving story.




                                      Attention Teens

Carol Baldwin – Let Your Characters Do the Heavy Work


Try this recipe for story success: Start with a memorable, authentic protagonist. Add a complicated, believable antagonist. Put them into a sensory setting and watch what conflicts ensue.  In this workshop, we’ll complete several writing exercises that will help you deepen your unforgettable, true-to-life characters.




Two Giveaways



Meet New W2I Team Member- Tony Snipes!


Although he’s an illustrator at heart, Tony has always found himself helping creative people reach audiences and engage the public.

For more than 20 years Tony has carried out this calling professionally for newspapers, TV and now Christian radio, helping each traditional industry tell their stories using digital and social media platforms.

Tony’s path is starting to come full circle, as his experience in Marketing and Media are now being applied to ministry, coaching and the creative arts.

One of Tony’s cherished moments as an artist that happens to write, was publishing his book “God’s 7 Keys for Creative People”, an illustrated guide for individual and group study.

When it comes to Write2Ignite, Tony hopes to bring a new look at the proven business practices he’s seen corporate content creators use everyday. He believes Christian creatives can use the same practices to support and sustain their projects. He also foresees Write2Ignite being used as a springboard for young Christian storytellers, pointing them toward possible careers in Journalism and New Media.

Catch a glimpse of Tony in action at, and his latest visual storytelling project “The Portsmouth Aeroshipbuilding Co.”




Sneak Peek: Samantha Bell’s Presentation for W2I 2018

You’ve finished your picture book manuscript. You’ve read it over and over again, and you’ve revised it several times. The children in your life love it. You’ve even had a writing friend or two critique it for you. Finally, it’s ready to submit . . . or is it?

In my workshop “Polishing Your Picture Book,” we’ll read manuscripts and discuss how they can be polished even more. At the start of the class, brave attendees may submit their manuscripts; we’ll go over as many as time allows. We’ll examine things like word count, word choice, dialogue, pacing, story arc, illustration possibilities, and more. We’ll also discuss possible markets for the stories. If you’re not quite feeling up to the challenge, don’t worry—you don’t have to submit anything! Come to this informative discussion, and learn what makes a good picture book manuscript even better.


Author and illustrator Samantha Bell signed her first contract to illustrate a picture book in 2007. Since then, she has illustrated twenty more, including four of her own. She’s also the author of numerous nonfiction books for children and a regular contributor for Clubhouse Jr. and Kid’s Ark. You can find her online at

A Case of Grace at W2I!

In this post, author Kristi M. Butler shares how her new books about Groundhog Day and groundhogs emerged from attendance at Write2Ignite Conference, a vacation cabin, and meeting illustrator Samantha S. Bell.

Write2Ignite is one of my “happy places”! Perusing the website and blog brings back sweet memories and never fails to bring a smile to my face. Ah . . . the scrumptious Italian smorgasbord with the W2I team on the night before the conference . . . chauffeuring well-known authors from the Sleep Inn to NGU . . . belly laughs with friends, old and new . . . hanging out with faculty and attendees over coffee and cookies . . . listening to and learning from some of the best in the business . . . being encouraged and encouraging others . . . growing in my walk with the Lord . . . watching God work in lives to further His kingdom as [participants] write and illustrate for children and young adults!

I was privileged to be at the first Write2Ignite conference! As I had the joy of watching W2I grow and develop over the years, little did I know that God had been at work since that very first meeting to forge a relationship—a friendship and a working partnership—to bring fruition to His plans for our futures.

If you’re a follower of Write2Ignite, you should be familiar with my sweet friend Samantha Schweizer Bell. She’s a part of the W2I planning team. She’s also a fabulous artist and has written and/or illustrated over one hundred books for children!

Now, long before I met Samantha, groundhogs started running amuck in my brain. That craziness began in a mountain cabin named “Amazing Grace.” I’d actually never given much thought to groundhogs until the weekend I spent there, but since that time, my life has been forever changed! A groundhog burrow and its inhabitants just outside the door quickly became fodder for stories that led to adventures I’d never dreamed of . . . traveling not just once, but twice, to Punxsutawney, PA (the home of the famous weather prognosticator Punxsutawney Phil), and cuddling cheek to cheek with North Carolina’s own predictor of winter’s length, Sir Walter Wally! These events gave a new meaning to Habakkuk 1:5, which says, in part, “Be utterly amazed. For I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe, even if you were told.”

The groundhog playground in my mind and in my writing is called Amazing Grace Acres. Samantha has brought that place and its many creatures to life through her beautiful artwork. Guardian Angel Publishing has contracted with us for the series of Amazing Grace Acres books.

This is the beauty of God’s work to me. His grace. As the hymn “Come Thou Fount” says, “Oh to grace, how great a debtor daily I’m constrained to be.” Those words are so piercing. So profound. Yet, in my desperate need for grace, He sees fit to work in and through me to lead others to fundamental truths in His Word and to spiritual life lessons—even in the antics of two little groundhogs. Amazing Grace. The uniting of two women seeking to use His gifts to further His Kingdom, and the joy of working together. Grace upon grace.

I give thanks to the Lord for Write2Ignite and the case of grace He gave me there!


Kristi Butler has been promoted after over 20 years in the elementary classroom to full-time Grandmommy to the cutest groundhog-loving grandbabies you’ve ever seen! In her free time, she continues to pursue “putting pen to paper” and sharing the adventures of Gracie and Grover Groundhog. Two of her books, Groundhog Day in Amazing Grace Acres and Christmas in Amazing Grace Acres, have been illustrated by Samantha S. Bell and published by Guardian Angel Publishing. Samantha’s currently illustrating Kristi’s first nonfiction rhyming alphabet book, G Is for Groundhog! They’re also collaborating on Gracie and Grover Go to the Beach. Please visit Kristi’s site for all things groundhog at Amazing Grace Acres!

Spotlight on Lisa Albinus

My name is Lisa Albinus. I get to live the dream of being an artist and author as I live my life with a Bible tucked under my arm and a paintbrush in my hand. My greatest desire is to breathe hope into the latent, creative dreams of your childhood and the crayons that have been abandoned. We trade in our crayons for deadlines and status, abandoning color for the more mundane daily living that permeates our being.

Remember the easier times, when a fresh box of ninety-six crayons was heaven on earth? The smell as you opened the box and saw all the little soldiers sharpened, pristine, ready to be called out of the ranks and used for great masterpieces? Let’s return to a time of wonder and unlimited potential. When we glorify the Lord through color, there’s a sweet freedom of expression.

Join me at the Write2Ignite Conference, and let your fire of creativity be rediscovered. I’ll take you on a colorful, creative adventure, where we’ll find beauty in the darkness and rescue her from your past. We’ll discover the freedom in mixed media journaling, awakening color within. Let’s clear away the cobwebs and make a stand against the lies that whisper, “You can’t.”

In addition, on Saturday, adults and youth can join me as we explore the sketching of faces and people and enjoy an introduction to watercolor. As an illustrator, author, and speaker, I cherish the opportunity to help you incorporate the visual with the written word.

Don’t be afraid. Be bold, be fearless as you embrace new things and dormant dreams. Allow the child of yesterday, who squealed with delight at a new coloring book, to be your guide. You can—and I’ll help you.

Let’s change the world together through color.

See more from Lisa at the Praise Heart website, and see some of her work below!

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