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Write 2 Ignite 2019 Wrap Up

We prepare, plan, and pray for a year and then quickly the conference is over! As a team, we are thankful for each attendee and presenter and are already looking forward to the 2020 conference on September 18-19. SAVE THE DATE! More details to follow.

If you weren’t able to attend, here are some snippets and photos.

“I took many notes via pen and paper. I have been looking over the notes and am excited about all the valuable wisdom the presenters shared. What a great conference!” Melissa Henderson

Melissa Henderson with Tony Snipes

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“My first-time experience with Write2Ignite2019 was supportive, inspirational and well worth my time.  Networking and meeting new friends is always a plus at writing conferences, and there is nothing a writer loves more than coming away with new ideas and fresh inspiration. I am thankful for the people I connected with who either shared similar interests or encouraged me to think outside my own box.” Linda Phillips

Linda Phillips, Karen Wallace, Vijaya Bodach

“Everybody was engaged when I spoke about writing a controversial book. It was gratifying to speak with several people privately about their own stories. I am going to develop it some more because it’s an important topic. It was a great conference and I love our shared vision.” Vijaya Bodach (See Vijaya’s blog post about the conference here.)

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“Once again our wonderful God has supplied our needs and multiplied our efforts. Through extra staff and volunteers, an amazing NGU college intern (Charissa Garcia), and His Spirit infusing grace, patience, and love, we saw an outpouring of enthusiasm for learning and practicing the disciplines and craft of writing and publishing. We have a growing list of writers and others asking to present at next year’s conference, from as far away as Australia!” 
Deborah DeCiantis working during the conference. (Did she ever stop working??)

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“Although not a writer by trade, I consider writing much the same as breathing in that I need to do it continuously to stay alive. The W2I conference afforded me the opportunity to confirm again and again how essential it is to show rather than tell stories to build bridges instead of walls within our relationships.

“Daniel Blackaby’s book beautifully illustrated by his wife, Sarah, Two Thankful Turtles, is a refreshing, other-worldly, look at differences among siblings that frames the strengths of each twin without using the more common hook of unfavorable comparisons (building bridges not walls).” Karen Wallace
Karen was excited to find this book for her grown son, Trevor.

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“As a first-time writing conference attendee, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. However, Write2Ignite went above and beyond my expectations from the first session on. The chance to talk and interact with authors and editors who were truly interested in me and who gave me advice or tips on pursuing my own career in writing was awesome. I really can’t say enough good things about Write2Ignite. I’m very thankful that I was able to attend this year and I hope to attend next year as well!” Charissa Garcia

 

Charissa Garcia, an English major at NGU and our college intern enjoyed the beautiful weather along with Olivia Rollins, a fantastic teen writer.

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“This year at Write2Ignite, I really enjoyed getting to listen to and socialize with different presenters. My favorite session was on learning about developing characters with Carol Baldwin. I also learned about persevering in a topic with Tessa Emily Hall.” Kathryn Dover

Carol Baldwin brainstorming a sensory fantasy world with the teens.

 

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“At this year’s Write2Ignite, I learned a great deal of information, including world-building, painless editing, and completing query letters. I gained valuable knowledge and wisdom from the presenters and especially loved meeting them in person. I also enjoyed getting the chance to talk with other aspiring authors about writing. Overall, I really enjoyed attending Write2Ignite and I can’t wait until next year!”  Olivia Kirkland
Olivia Kirkland with Tessa Emily Hall.

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“I was truly honored to receive the award. But the best part of the conference was connecting with and learning from everyone there, from the presenters to other first-time attendees. I hope to keep up with and see them again next year!”  Tina Hartig

Brenda Covert awards Tina Hartig with the Editor’s Choice Award made possible by Christian Book Proposals.

What did you learn at the conference? Leave a comment — we’d love to know!

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Do You Wish You Had Been There?

     THEN SAVE THE DATE FOR NEXT YEAR!

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Decisions, Decisions

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.

Visit: https://write2ignite.com/registration-2019/

 

Kim Peterson – Deepen Your Middle Grade & Young Adult Novels

In this hands-on workshop, explore how to make your MG and YA novels more compelling. First, determine your novel’s theme and learn ways to reveal that message to the readers, making it memorable. Then, get to know your characters better by deepening characterization: explore your characters’ goals, what motivates them to pursue those goals, and how conflict grows your characters as they overcome obstacles. Finally, transport your readers into your
novel’s setting. Whether your characters visit the past, the present, the future, or a new land, learn how to create a place your readers want to visit often.

 

Nancy Lohr – Read Like a Writer

Just as athletes watch game tapes to study other athletes, writers need to analyze the work of other writers. You should read widely and read well both for inspiration and instruction. Whether intuitively or intentionally, writers need to read with a different focus and greater awareness than the average reader does. This workshop will examine various techniques for reading like a writer.

Attention Teens! Carol Baldwin – Creating a Sensory Setting

The Lord has given us five senses. So, why do we just describe things which our characters see? In this hands-on workshop we’ll touch, taste, hear, smell, AND see things that our characters may experience in different settings.

 

 

 

How I Turned a Facebook Page Into a Weekly Storytelling Medium.

I  give you a box with an “ON” switch in the palm of your hand.
I then tell you to close your eyes and think about a couple of those
publishing ideas you’ve been kicking around. While your eyes are still closed, I task you to choose one of those ideas…the one story you feel most people have the most excitement for.

You choose that one topic and then you open your eyes! Now you immediately flip the switch and you discover that what you’ve actually launched with that switch was…your own weekly magazine with content based on the idea you chose! This magazine you just published is full color, distributed all over the nation and has an audience that loving greats you each week, ready to consume more content related to your story.

If something like this is real, it simply couldn’t be free. And it’s not. What it costs is a little time, in exchange for your first 1,000 readers. Attend “How I Turned a Facebook Page Into a Weekly Storytelling Medium” and you will leave with a roadmap that reflects how Tony converted a Facebook business page into a weekly publication with an audience of readers from 0 to 5,000 people. No tricks or internet shortcuts, but proven steps applied to a modern reading platform.

Samantha Bell – Polishing Your Picture Book

You finally have the text of your picture book down on paper. You’ve heard every manuscript should be revised, but yours is only a few hundred words long. What more could it need? You’ll find out in Polishing Your Picture Book! In this workshop, attendees may bring along a copy of their works-in-progress. As a group, we’ll read as many as time allows. Then we’ll consider ways to polish the manuscript to get it ready for submission. Even if your story is still in the idea stage, you’ll learn valuable tips for writing your own picture book!  

 

 

Daniel Blackaby – Tolkien, Lewis, & Christian Imagination

Daniel Blackaby

How would you feel if your best friends called your book “almost worthless” or a “carelessly written jumble”? This was J. R. R. Tolkien’s review of C. S. Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. The two dear friends are forever linked together as fathers of Christian fiction and Art, but each had a radically different idea of what Christian fiction should be. Their greatest legacy was not to establish a narrow template for Christian writers to follow, but to demonstrate that there is no template. In this seminar, Daniel Blackaby will explore these two vastly different approaches and showcase the great freedom you have as a Christian writer. 

 

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Finally Friday AND TWO GIVEAWAYS!

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.

Visit: https://write2ignite.com/registration-2019/

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

 

 

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Is Your Creativity a Mirror or a Flashlight?

Is your creativity a mirror or a flashlight? Is it a thermometer or a thermostat? Does it reflect what’s in the heart already or change the surroundings?

A mirror reflects what’s in front of it. The viewer sees what’s already there.
A flashlight sheds light in darkness. The viewer gains new insight that’s useful in moving ahead.

Here’s an observation about Aaron’s creating the golden calf in the book of Exodus.

During their time in the wilderness, the Israelites became restless while Moses was away receiving the Ten Commandments from God.

They strongly encouraged Aaron to use his creative skills to make a golden calf they could use to worship. Aaron used his artistic ability to create an art piece that reflected the sinful nature that was already in the hearts of the people.

Watch this.

The people were already disobedient and had sin in their hearts.
They expressed that they wanted Aaron to create a golden calf, a creative work that would give life to the disobedience that was within their hearts. Aaron complied, pleasing the people with his talent rather than pleasing God.

Our creative talent has power because it’s a gift from God. It has the ability to influence people.

How will you use your unique ability?
Will you use it to make people “look” . . . or help them see?
Will you use it to make people hear what they want or to listen to what they need?
Will your creativity reflect the culture or shine a light for it?

What if Creatives were the key to revealing an age-old conspiracy? What if those flighty, imaginative misfits we all know were the key to an invisible battle for the destruction of mankind?

I’ll talk about it during my workshop “How Creatives Impact the Culture” at Write2Ignite 2017.

Take a peek:

WHAT IF: The Battle Against the UNSEEN! from Tony Snipes on Vimeo.

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Tony Snipes started out as an entrepreneurial artist and has grown with the times to become a digital strategist, with a focus on marketing and small business. He spent most of his career in the news media industry, blending his internet marketing and sales experience with his passion for the arts and entrepreneurship. Tony now devotes his time to illustrating, writing, consulting, and speaking, especially using his blog ArtLessonsFromGod.com as his primary platform.

 

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ArtSlam Live!

Six artists with one hour (or less!) to paint a picture that’s three feet square in size. What else could it be but ArtSlam Live?

For the past two years, I’ve had the privilege of participating in ArtSlam Live, a timed art competition created by artist, writer, and creative coach Tony Snipes. Although a winner is chosen each time by those who are watching, ArtSlam Live is so much more than a contest.

artslam-3For viewers, ArtSlam is a way to meet different artists and learn about their techniques. In the contests I’ve participated in, each artist had a different art background and style. I’ve taught a lot of beginning art classes, and I usually paint nature scenes or wildlife. Another artist drew caricatures at a theme park for several years; his work is bright, crazy, and fun. Another artist started painting just a few years ago and has already sold many of her pieces in galleries and online.

For artists, ArtSlam is a challenge to do something outside comfort zones. The competition was way outside of my comfort zone. I was so nervous the first time—worried that my art wouldn’t quite measure up with that of my competitors. But with each contest, my confidence grows. ArtSlam is also a great time for artists to connect with the public and promote their work. And that’s what Tony is all about—providing opportunities and direction for creative people as they strive to discover their true purpose.

I’m so excitedartslam-1 that Tony will be teaching at Write2Ignite this year. If you can’t wait until then to hear from him, be sure to check out his website. You’ll find a description of his book, God’s 7 Keys for Creative People, there, as well as lots of free resources.

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If Your Future Could Speak

tony-quotesMondaysWhen I was in the 3rd grade, Mrs. Wheatley, my teacher, gave my mother a warning. She said, “Mrs. Snipes, we just can’t let his imagination run off with him.” My mom didn’t heed that warning . . . and it’s the reason why I still daydream today!

One of my favorite daydream scenarios might actually involve you.

Here’s what I mean:

I love science fiction, especially stories about time travel!

What if I were a time traveler from the not-too-distant future, sent on a mission back to this decade? Let’s imagine that I’ve been here for a few years now, so I’ve blended in very well. (I know it’s not real, but humor me for a moment!)  🙂

But what if the mission I was sent on involves you?

Let’s imagine that where I’m from, your creative endeavors have already grown and have been the key to lives being impacted, prayers being answered, and people being changed.

You just don’t know it right now.

i-believeRewind back to this point in your creative life. What if you, like many creatives, are at a crossroads?

  • You’re not really sure you have what it takes, but you know it’s a passion you can’t ignore.
  • You’re frustrated because you know you have talent, but you don’t know what you should be doing with it.

 

What if you find yourself asking these 3 age-old questions:prayer of the creative

  • Who am I? (Am I really a writer? Am I really an artist, teacher, musician, etc.?)
  • Why am I here?
  • What should I be doing? (What’s the purpose for my talent?)

This is what my session at Write2Ignite will tackle head on. The session is based on my book, God’s 7 Keys for Creative People. We will discuss:

  • How to know your creative identity.
  • Why your talent is important to God . . . and significant to the enemy!
  • Why it’s not too late to pursue your creative dreams.
  • How to stay creative, even with a schedule that doesn’t allow you to!

I’m so looking forward to meeting you in person at the Write2Ignite conference! In the meantime, here’s a super short video clip to give you a better idea about what I plan to share during my session: God’s 7 Keys for Creative People—2016 (from Tony Snipes on Vimeo).

Want to hear more? Visit my website, ArtLessonsfromGod.com, and follow me on Facebook! Take a peek at video from my LIVE art events: ArtSlamLive.com, or just email me at tony@artlessonsfromGod.com.

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Reflecting with Illustrator and Author Tony Snipes

Tony Snipes illustrates and writes with passion. He shares that passion and his love for God as he helps others discover their purpose. Tony will share his talent as he returns to Write2Ignite this year to present two workshops.

In the adult workshop “A Mirror or a Flashlight?,” Tony will guide others to discover their power of creativity. The teens will enjoy Tony as he teaches a hands-on workshop, “Sketching Faces.”

Tony’s life brims with many things, including his precious wife and three daughters, but we’re glad he took a few minutes to chat with us.

Tony, what three things are most memorable to you about 2014?

The day we gave our daughter her first car, my last Art Slam Live event, and Christmas morning.

Was it your last Art Slam event or was there something extra special about the last one you hosted?

Yes, I still host the Art Slam Live event. I should have said the “most
recent” rather than “last”. The most recent event is when we actually
partnered with the city of Mauldin, SC. It led to more credibility. We are
partnering with them this year as well!

That’s great! And, I bet your prayer level went up as well with that first car!

BIG yes on that!

First cars, first sweethearts, and first jobs will always be memorable though. What was your first job?

Working for the Housing Authority for the summer when I was thirteen years old.

What type of work did you do for the Housing Authority at age 13?

It was a part of a city-wide summer program for kids. Another
young man and I assisted the maintenance team of an apartment complex. We didn’t
fix anything ourselves, just helped a LOT on the clean-up side of things.

That early exposure to maintenance and clean-up probably makes you a great husband today!

Tony,  you’ve done a variety of work over the years. At what point did you know you wanted to become a writer?

I knew I wanted to write my first book around 2003 when I began collecting my thoughts in journals.

Looking back over your writing journey, what is one thing you wish you had known earlier?

I wish I had known more about the marketing side.

Anything specific about marketing?

Yes, how to build a following before you launch your book. It’s much
easier to do that now that we have social media. Also, not to look at
authoring a book as a method of getting rich, but rather looking at it as
a form of a “magnified business card”. Being able to put “the author of”
at the end of your name adds significant awareness to your personal brand.

Do you have any recommendations, of books or websites on marketing, for our blog readers?

Yes. Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World by Michael Hyatt. Great book on basic methods of building a following!

What do you hope to learn this year?

How to perfect storytelling.

If awarded one day to talk with three authors (from any time period), whom would you choose?

Dr. Myles Munroe for his awesome books on purpose and the Kingdom principles of business; marketing guru Seth Godin; and entrepreneur expert Dan Miller.

The theme for Write2Ignite 2015 is “Shine.” What three helpful hints would you recommend to writers to make their work shine?

  • Tell great stories.
  • Have a marketing strategy.
  • Build your following, even before you launch your next book, using social media.

Tony, thank you for sharing your thoughts with us. We look forward to seeing you at the conference!

Readers, you can connect with Tony at ArtLessonsfromGod.com and TonySnipes.com and on Facebook.