Planning Team

We are a team of talented volunteers with a wide range of skills and experience in the field of writing for publication. We love that God allows us to do what we do, and we do it with passion. We pray we are a blessing to everyone who visits our website.

Debbie Arnn

Debbie’s purpose is to show people (especially young children) their value to God and to help them live up to their fullest potential. She has 30+ years of experience in education, working with children from infants through 5th grade. She is active in the writing community and has written and edited kids curriculum for her church for the last six years. She is the mom of four great kids and currently lives in Texas with her husband and their dog, Barkley.
FACEBOOK: @debbiearnn
TIKTOK: @debbiemerloarnn
TWITTER: @debbiearnn

Carol Baldwin – Blog Coordinator

Carol’s most recent book is Teaching the Story: Fiction Writing in Grades 4-8 . She loves all things literary: reading, writing and  teaching writing. She has presented at many educational, library, and writing conferences and taught in the continuing education department at Central Piedmont Community College, She coordinated the Charlotte SCBWI writers group for over 20 years, and co-publishes Talking Story, a newsletter for educators and media specialists.

Carol is currently working on her first young adult novel– a middle grade story set in North Carolina in 1952.

WEBSITE: Find Carol’s book reviews, writing tips, and classes at
FACEBOOK: Carol Federlin Baldwin
TWITTER: @CBaldwinAuthor

Gail Cartee – Registrar

Gail Cartee is an author, blogger, and conference teacher. She is a team member of the Write2Ignite Conference. She is a Honor graduate of the University of South Carolina, holding a BA in Early Childhood Education and an MEd from Southern Wesleyan University. She lives with her husband, Richard, in the foothills of Upstate of SC where they raised three children.

Brenda Covert – 2 for 1 Critiques Coordinator

Freelance author and editor Brenda Covert’s writing career began in 1999 with a paid article in a Christian women’s magazine and poem in Clubhouse Jr. Since then, she has written more than 400 short children’s stories for Union Gospel Press and a handful of poems for their Adult Bible Study guides. Brenda has written numerous scripts for use in schools, the two most popular being K.C.’s Dream and The Constitutional Convention. Brenda’s editing career began in 2002, first in the educational field and then in the Christian market. She has edited many books published by Christian publishing house Ambassador International. Her experience covers fiction and nonfiction for all ages, from picture books to YA novels and beyond, including inspirational books and Bible studies. She is a member of the Editorial Freelancers Association (EFA).

You can find Brenda online at

WEBSITE: If you’re especially fond of Christmas, you’ll enjoy Brenda’s blog at
FACEBOOK: Covert Action Editing
INSTAGRAM: @bbcovert

Dr. Debbie DeCiantis – Financial Administrator

A lover of books and excellent writing, Deborah S. DeCiantis enjoys connecting children and young adults with books they enjoy. A special concern is promoting writings with a sound, biblically consistent worldview. She enjoys staying in touch with many former students whose writing she has encouraged. 

Debbie completed a long teaching career in 2017, retiring from North Greenville University as Associate Professor of English. She previously taught English composition, literature, and creative writing, and/or French at three other colleges and universities, library skills at two Christian schools, and served as adviser to student newspapers and literary journals on both K-12 and college levels. 

Debbie first connected with Write2Ignite Conference in 2010, when she was asked to serve as liaison between NGU and the then-new-to-NGU Christian writers’ conference. She was hooked after the first conference she attended, and has since served on the W2I planning team, with a stint as Director when Jean Hall was otherwise occupied. 

Debbie does freelance editing, writes professional critiques of student publications, and spends a lot of time with grandchildren and adult children, including weekly Skype calls with one daughter and family who are longterm residents of Japan. Her personal writing includes articles in organizational magazines and newsletters, blogging about writing, literature, and stories for grandchildren. She oversaw production of the W2I Team’s first bilingual devotional for children, Too Big for a Band-aid, which was designed by Robyn Grage and edited by Grace Geide. 

A native of New Jersey, Debbie and her husband now call South Carolina home.  

Jean Hall – Director

Jean lives in LaGrange, Kentucky. Her first picture book God’s Blessings of Fall was released by Little Lamb Books in September 2019. Her second picture book is set to release in 2022.

When not enjoying time with family (eight gorgeous grandkids–want to see pictures?) and church Jean is immersed in children’s picture books—reading them, reviewing them, writing them!

Jean is a member of the SCBWI, Word Weavers International, Write2Ignite and the Kentucky Christian Writers.

FACEBOOK: Jean Matthew Hall Author
TWITTER: @jean_hall
PINTEREST: jeanmatthew_hall

Sue Irwin

A CANSCAIP and SCBWI member and former teacher, Sue’s writing has appeared in AppleSeeds Magazine, Highlights for Children, and Reading A-Z. Her two middle grade books for the general market have received top awards in Canada where she lives, and she has several Christian picture books in the works.   Sue often hums, whistles, and sings along to happy tunes as she writes, and she thanks God every day for His blessings. She loves doing author visits with children in classrooms and libraries, and joining in on the fun with parents, educators, and librarians at library conferences and children’s book festivals.   When she’s not reading or writing, Sue can be found digging in the garden, designing and creating crafts, or cheering on her favorite athletes as they compete around the world.  
CONNECT: You can connect with Sue on Linktree (
TWITTER: SueIrwinWrites

Sally Matheny

Sally Matheny – Pinterest Editor

A freelance writer and blogger, Sally Matheny’s writing is published in worldwide, national, regional, online and print publications including AppleseedsClubhouse Jr., Homeschooling TodayPractical HomeschoolingKeys for Kids, and The Old Schoolhouse. Sally also writes wholesome and entertaining books for children.

Speaking at events for women, children, and married couples, Sally encourages people to live victoriously and to courageously tell the next generation wondrous things.

A former public-school teacher, Sally has homeschooled for over eighteen years. She teaches history and creative writing classes to homeschool groups. In addition, she leads an N.C. Jr. Historian club in association with the N.C. Museum of History.

She and her husband have three children, two sons-in-law, and armsful of grandbabies. They live in the North Carolina foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

You can connect with Sally here:
FACEBOOK: Sally Matheny – Encourager, Writer, Speaker
PINTEREST: @sallymatheny

Kathy O’Neil

Kathy O’Neill grew up in Maine. She loves the Lord and His gifts of family, pets, and walks on the beach when storms send waves crashing against the rocks. As a teacher, writer, and speaker, she enjoys engaging children’s and adult’s hearts and hands to discover God and their own creativity through art, history, and nature. Kathy has written for The Quiet Hour, Light from the Word, Refresh Bible Study Magazine, Highlights,DevoKids,Clubhouse Jr., Starlight, and Appleseeds.

WEBSITE: To discover activities and workshops, visit Kathy’s site at

Kathy O’Neil

Cindy Lynn Sawyer – Website Admin + Newsletter Editor

January 2023 Cindy launched Designed2Glow with the mission to help kids to “Go and be the Light Of the World” (G.L.O.W.) through her writing. She has written for publications, such as Clubhouse and Clubhouse, Jr. magazines, and is currently working with a writing coach on her first mid-grade novel, ALMOST A GHOST. (Psst … You can follow her invisible protagonist on Instagram – see below.)

She is also working on several picture books, including THE DOG WHO ATE CHRISTMAS, REMMY’S STICKY SITUATION, and WHO GLOWS THERE.

In addition to writing stories with creative messages of kindness, compassion, and spiritual growth, she is an advocate for the protection of all children, with a special emphasis on the growing issue of child trafficking.

When not writing, Cindy is marketing for other clients, planning fun events or adventures with her family, or traveling with her husband.

Share and connect with Cindy.
FACEBOOK: KitLitWriter
INSTAGRAM: @designed2glow + @graysoninvisiblephillips

Want to volunteer for our Planning Team? email us at