Flash Sale! Register Today for the 2017 West Coast Christian Writers Conference!

An Author Interview with Susy Flory– Originally Posted January 21, 2017

WCCW conference director, Susy Flory, recently announced a limited-time, special registration price in January for $179 ($149 for Inspire Members). This incredible two-day conference will be featuring keynote speakers Michelle Cushatt, Michael Hyatt’s cohost on This is Your Life podcast, and New York Times bestselling novelist Tosca Lee.

Susy Flory, the New York Times bestselling author of Thunder Dog, has authored or co-authored eleven books. She’s been a reporter, an educator, a wife, and a mom. Now a full time writer, she loves chasing big, true stories with themes of adventure, courage, hope, transformation, and redemption.

The WCCW board includes five talented authors. Collectively, they’ve published over 30 books and have served through ministries such as Focus on the Family and Proverbs 31. The team excels in teaching on the craft of writing, speaking, marketing and social media, platform building, as well as book, proposal, and article writing. But they’ve invited more industry professionals to join them in presenting Bay Area writers with this amazing learning opportunity.

Please help me welcome Susy as she shares why writers will not want to miss the 2017 WCCW conference.


Susy, thanks for joining us. Would you please share what makes the WCCW conference different from some of the other two-day conferences currently available?

Glad to be here, Friend! The WCCW Conference is a warm, friendly, encouraging conference dedicated to bringing Christian writers, of all ages and stages, the latest and most inspiring workshops and keynote speakers to help us all grow to the next level in our writing. And we try to keep it as cost-effective as possible!


You’ve secured over 30 workshops for the WCCW conference. How can beginning, intermediate, and advanced writers benefit from such a wide variety of learning opportunities?

This year we’ve added workshops for writers interested in children’s and Young Adult literature, as well as workshops on screenwriting, writing Christian romance, developing your platform, and traditional vs. self-publishing. We work hard to provide something for everyone.

And don’t be afraid to cross over genres or the fiction/nonfiction distinction to learn something from an expert who writes different kinds of books than you. Some of the best workshops I’ve taken have been geared towards fiction (and I write nonfiction!)


With so many great workshops to choose from, how can writers choose a schedule that best suits their needs?

Spend some time before the conference browsing our website and reading through the workshop descriptions and the faculty biographical info. You might even want to check out individual faculty websites to find out more about them. Once you register for the conference, you’ll be invited to join a private Facebook group where you can see short videos of the faculty members and get a sense of who they are and why they do what they do. And don’t forget—if you have to miss a workshop because there are two you want to go to at the same time, you can always purchase the recording.


What can conferees expect from the quality of faculty serving at this event?

 All faculty members are professional writers with the best reputations in the business for integrity, excellence, and a heart to serve other writers. Most are multi-published, multi-talented, and many have bestselling credits on their resume. They are wonderful people who love the written word and are dedicated to helping writers be the best they can be. They could each be doing something else, but they choose to be at the conference and help writers like you and me!


How can writers benefit from the one-on-one appointments with the agents and editors serving at the 2017 WCCW conference?

 We have a group of experienced, wise writing mentors who will be available to look at excerpts of your work and give you honest but kind advice and encouragement. Sometimes you need someone who is experienced and can give you just the right idea or insight to get unstuck, or go in a new direction that makes all the difference in the world. Publishing is a business with many paths to getting published, and so advice from a seasoned professional can help you find that path that’s best for you. More information on this program, called Coaching and Critique, is coming soon.


How can writers prepare for meetings with agents and editors?

I remember going to my very first writers conference hoping to meet an editor or agent and feeling like I was about to meet super humans. I was shocked to find out that they wear jeans, tennis shoes and T-shirts just like we do. In fact, they are exactly like us—people who God has called to study and master words, and use those words to make a difference in the world. Every published author or publishing professional was once unpublished. They know what it feels like to be bubbling over with a message God has given you to write, but you’re not quite sure how to do that.


Why should writers take advantage of the on-site critique coaches?

There’s no substitute for good critique—meaning honest and kind feedback from an experienced professional writer or editor. They are there to help you, not hurt you. Their comments might surprise you, but listen carefully and see what you can glean to help move you forward. Also, don’t worry about anyone stealing your ideas. You and I can have the exact same idea for a book or article and it will be unique because we have different ways of carrying out that idea. Your voice and your imagination is your own. Celebrate it and use it in the way that only you can.


Why should attendees consider entering the writing contest?

First of all, it’s fun to win a prize! I think everyone enjoys the encouragement of an award certificate assuring us that we’ve worked hard and done something very well. Second, it’s a great way to spur yourself on to finish a story. Writers often perform better under the gentle pressure of a deadline. Last, the writing contest is free to enter this year, so what do you have to lose? Take a look at the rules here and give it a shot!


How can connecting with the prayer team help writers during the conference?

We have a dedicated prayer team already praying for each and every writer who will be attending. There will also be prayer team members available during the conference if you’d like someone to pray with about anything that’s bothering you—writing related or not. Every writer needs prayer, and having a writer pray for you is something special.


Why should writers plan to invest in some of the resources offered at the WCCW bookstore?

One special offering is the Christian Writers Market Guide, the definitive guide to the publishers, conference, and literary agencies in the Christian market. We’ll have a special conference price, so be sure to look for this. We’ll also have books from the faculty and attendees available for purchase, in just about every genre and specialty under the sun. I can’t wait to buy some books myself!


How can writers be praying for the WCCW team, the faculty, and the volunteers, as you prepare for the conference?

 Please pray that God would strengthen and encourage each writer individually, and as a part of the writing community. We are stronger together, especially with God at the center.


How can writers make sure they don’t miss out on the upcoming Flash Sale, or any other important updates and announcements, as the conference approaches?

The January sale of $30 off goes for the whole month of January, ending at 11:59 pm on January 31. If you go to our website, you can register online for just $179 (and buy a box lunch for Friday, too, if you’d like.) Inspire Members get another $30 off for a total of $149 for the two-day conference.


What final word of encouragement would you like to share with writers who are considering registering for the WCCW conference?

Writers need each other. When I started attending this conference (back when it was led by Pastor Jon Drury) I felt like I was part of a family, or a group of close friends. That’s our dream—that you would feel a part of the writing family when you attend the West Coast Christian Writers Conference!


Thanks for investing in the training of Christian writers, Susy. And thanks for being willing to drop in to answer questions and encourage writers in the comment section below this post.  

Thanks, Xochitl. It’s an honor.


To find out more about what God’s doing in and through Susy’s writing journey, you can visit her website.

REGISTER TODAY to take advantage of this limited-time, special registration price and to receive a FREE WCCW mug!

You can also subscribe to the WCCW blog and newsletter to learn more about the board members and the 2017 conference keynotes, faculty, and workshops.

We’re praying for you and looking forward to seeing you at the 2017 West Coast Christian Writers Conference, February 17-18 in Pleasanton, CA.

Susy Flory’s interview was originally published on the Inspire Christian Writers blog on January 21, 2017.


Xochitl (soh-cheel) E. Dixon encourages women and teens to embrace God’s grace and grow deeper in their personal relationships with Christ and others. Her devotions will be featured in Our Daily Bread, starting in 2017. Married to her best friend since 1994, she enjoys being a wife and mom, traveling, photography, and sharing God’s Word through Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and her blog.


We Need You!

Why Other Writers Want You to Attend the 2017 West Coast Christian Writers Conference

When I interviewed Susy Flory, the WCCW conference director, she announced a special registration price available until the end of January. We’ll be spending two full days enjoying general sessions led by two dynamic keynote speakers, over 30 training workshops, personal meetings with editors and agents, free professional critiques, panel discussions, a writing contest, an onsite bookstore, and worship. The high quality faculty and workshops are great reasons to invest in this conference, but I’d like to share five reasons why your attendance benefits others.


  1. We can connect with others who speak our language.

There are certain phrases only writers can translate. When we say we’re on deadline or waiting to hear from an agent or an editor, writers know we need prayer and encouragement. When we’re brainstorming ideas for killing a character or growing our platform, writers don’t furrow their brows in confusion or concern. Seasoned writers don’t need to consult a dictionary when we discuss the pros and cons of using multiple POVs or the excitement of constructing great plot twists. (Beginning writers, don’t worry, seasoned writers will teach you our secret language.)


  1. We can bond with people who encourage us, because they’ve been there.

People who serve in any other non-writing ministry cannot help us with writerly-problems. How can they possibly offer suggestions for creating plot structures or combatting negative voices before submitting projects? By the time we explain the complexity of either process, our frustration will drown out those negative voices. So, I guess I was wrong. They could be helpful. Still, only a writer can minister to us from a place of knowing, of having experienced the emotions, because they’ve been there or are right there with us.


  1. We can discover we’re not alone . . . or weird.

If you’re like me, your writerly quirks surfaced before you or your friends and family realized your personality and creative thinking process would benefit your writing endeavors. When we gather with our writing tribe, we can begin to appreciate how God’s intentional design prepares writers to offer their gifts for His greater plan. We’ll connect with people who understand and can pray with us and for us as we write, even as we battle insecurities, fears, or frustrations.


  1. We can honor God by being good stewards of the gifts He’s entrusted to us.

All writers will experience times when we’ll doubt our skills, struggle with projects, and even want to quit. But Christian comradery empowers us to be diligent in learning and fearless in sharing our work with other writers and with readers.

As we encourage one another to hone our craft and persevere in faith, we’ll help one another get through the tough moments in our writing journey. We’ll rejoice with one another, as we praise God for using our words to minister to readers. We’ll celebrate the diverse voices of our fellow scribes, honoring God as we create offerings for His Kingdom purpose.


  1. Though there are many reasons to attend the 2017 WCCW conference, the most important reason is because you are you.

Your God-given voice is valuable in the writing community. Your love-offerings to the Lord make a difference. God has planned to minister to specific readers through the words He gives you to write. We’ve got a lot of work to do, if we’re going to reach the ends of the earth by sharing God’s love and truth through writing in a variety of genres. And the adventure is much more fun when we remember we’re in this together.


Click here to take advantage of the special pricing, only available through January, and register for the 2017 West Coast Christian Writers conference today.

To read my interview with Susy Flory, the director of the WCCW conference, click here.

Photos taken by Xochitl E. Dixon at the first WCCW conference.

Xochitl (soh-cheel) E. Dixon encourages women and teens to embrace God’s grace and grow deeper in their personal relationships with Christ and others. Her devotions will be featured in Our Daily Bread, starting in 2017. Married to her best friend since 1994, she enjoys being a wife and mom, traveling, photography, and sharing God’s Word through Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and her blog.

Finding Your Writing Voice

At every conference I’ve attended, the process to find your unique voice has been hammered into my head like a railroad spike. The question is, how do you find your voice?

Great question, fellow writer.

The answer? Write. A lot. Keep writing. Copy other writers until you find your unique voice. Simple? Nope.

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When I started writing my yet-to-be-published novel in 2008 (yup, eight years ago), I wanted to write like Rosamind Pilcher. Beautiful, flowing descriptions. British accents galore. When I read my first few chapters back, out loud, it sounded phony. Definitely not my style. Not my voice.

I tried emulating Francine Rivers. I read her books and copied her voice. That didn’t work either.

It took thousands of words and countless hours to find my voice. Experts say to reach success, it takes ten thousand hours. A quick calculation of ten thousand divided by eight years, yields 1,250 hours per year. Divided by 365 is approximately 3 ½ hours per day. Think on that while you read on.

Below are three examples from some random authors. See if you can determine which one is Anne Lamott:

Example # 1:

People rarely took any notice of the tongue-tied and sadly inhibited Missy Wright, but Una, as the new assistant was named, had seemed instantly to detect in Missy the stuff of a good friend.

Example # 2:

The next morning, Elizabeth was on her knees weeding in the flower bed near Rosie’s window, impatiens and columbine. Rosie discovered this when she threw her window open, her room already hot and bright with sunshine. She said hello to her mother, and her mother answered, “Hello, darling. What are your plans for today?

Jeez, Rosie thought, it was like living with a secret agent.

Example #3:

Monday mornings had never been FBI Special Agent Savannah Barrett’s favorite day. Lawbreakers did their best work during the weekend. She stared at the crime report on her computer. Another Houston church burned during the night. This was her city, her responsibility, and the fourth church torched in the past two months.

Which one do you think sounds most like Anne Lamott? If you picked number two, you are correct. Her voice combines beautiful descriptions, gritty dialog, and snarky undertones. The paragraph is from her novel Imperfect Birds.

Have you grasped the enormity of what it takes to find your voice? Does the thought of 3 ½ hours a day for 8 years scare you? I hope not.

Jane S. Daly, Christian Author

I’ll be teaching an entire workshop on finding your voice at the West Coast Christian Writers Conference, February 17 and 18 in Pleasanton, CA. Hope to see you there!

For more information on my books and my blog, please visit www.janeSdaly.com.

Jane is the author of two nonfiction books, Because of Grace (2015 Hallway) and The Caregiving Season (2016 Focus on the Family/Tyndale). She makes her home in northern California.

Cyber Monday $99 Conference Registration!

2017 West Coast Christian Writers Conference










Writers, you will not want to miss the Cyber Monday deal for the 2017 West Coast Christian Writers Conference!

For one day only, you can register for the 2017 WCCW Conference for only $99 per person. The one-day only sale starts Monday, November 28, 2016 at 7am. Registration with this special one-time offer will be open until 7am on Tuesday, November 29, 2016.

You must register during the Cyber Monday hours to receive this special registration price.

What can you expect to receive in exchange for your investment?

This two-day conference will be held at CrossWinds Church, 1660 Freisman Road, Pleasanton, CA 94588. on February 17-18, 2017.

Michele Cushatt and Tosca Lee will be serving as the 2017 WCCW conference keynote speakers. We’ll enjoy two full days of workshops and meetings with publishing professionals, including literary agents and acquisitions editors from book and magazine publishers. Between classes, we’ll be refreshed through special times of worship, fellowship, and encouragement.

To receive this amazing Cyber Monday $99 per person price, register online between 7am, Monday, November 28, 2016 and 7am, Tuesday, November 29, 2016.

I’m looking forward to seeing what the Lord has in store for us at the 2017 West Coast Christian Writers Conference!


Author Photo 2016 - INSPIRE ThumbnailXochitl (soh-cheel) E. Dixon encourages women and teens to embrace God’s grace and grow deeper in their personal relationships with Christ and others. Her devotions will be featured in Our Daily Bread, starting in 2017. Married to her best friend since 1994, she enjoys sharing God’s Word to the ends of the earth, being a mom, traveling, and photography.

2017 Western Coast Christian Writers Conference – One Day Sale on Registration

$99 admission to the ENTIRE TWO-DAY conference during a crazy, ONE-DAY ONLY sale.


$99 One-Day Flash Sale Monday, Nov 28

Sale starts at 7 a.m. PST and ends at 7 a.m. Nov 29, PST.

To make it as affordable as possible for you, we’re offering $99 admission to the ENTIRE TWO-DAY conference during a crazy, ONE-DAY ONLY sale. (The $99 rate is more than 50% off the General Admission fee… you’ll save $110!)

This sale is good one day only: Monday, November 28, 2016 (That’s Cyber Monday.)

Register: westcoastchristianwriters.com/conference/registration/

  • Starting at 7 a.m. PST, you’ll have 24 hours to register for the WCCW conference for only $99. (Check out the Registration page now so you’ll be ready.)
  • To take advantage of this crazy, one-day sale, you MUST register on Monday, November 28 (sale ends Tuesday, November 29 at 7 a.m. PST).
  • This is a one-time offer. After the crazy, one-day sale ends, the Early Bird registration rate will go back up to $189 (there will be discounts for Inspire members and full-time vocational ministers.)

The 2017 West Coast Christian Writers Conference (formerly the Christian Writers Seminar of Castro Valley) is expanding to TWO full days, February 17-18, 2017.

Conference Schedule: westcoastchristianwriters.com/conference/schedule/

Conference Venue: http://westcoastchristianwriters.com/conference/venue/

We also have a preliminary list of workshops here westcoastchristianwriters.com/conference/workshops/ and a list of committed faculty (to date) here: westcoastchristianwriters.com/conference/faculty/

Please Help Us Spread the Word

We’d love your help in publicizing the Cyber Monday $99 sale. Please take a minute, right now, to copy & paste these Twitter-length social updates and share them on Facebook, Twitter, and other places you hang out online.

West Coast Christian Writers Conference: $99 registration ONE DAY SALE, Nov. 28 (Cyber Monday) http://westcoastchristianwriters.com

$99 FLASH SALE! Register for 2017 West Coast Christian Writers Conference on Cyber Monday for 50% savings http://westcoastchristianwriters.com