Three and a half years ago, just as I was about to try to launch a career as a commercial writer and editor, I had the good fortune to attend the 2012 Catholic Writers Conference. By some miracle, it was being held practically in my own backyard, in Arlington, Texas. I’m not exaggerating when I say that the experience changed my life forever – not least because it sparked the founding of the Dallas/Fort Worth Catholic Writers Group, which I’ve been an active part of ever since. It may be a long time before I have the opportunity to attend the annual conference of the Catholic Writers Guild (normally, it alternates annually between New Jersey and Chicago), but I hope very much to be able to take part in this year’s online conference – and you can, too.
Two things have helped me persevere in my efforts as a writer: the education I’ve gleaned from expert writers and editors, and the fellowship I’ve enjoyed through our local Catholic writers group and the Catholic Writers Guild Facebook group. The upcoming online conference (March 4-6, 2016) will offer a combination of both, with a new webinar format that will make the online conference more engaging and interactive than ever. Check out this recent article on Aleteia to find out more about what makes the Catholic Writers Guild, and our online conference, special.
Here are some of the things you can look forward to:
- A greater emphasis on how our faith informs our writing. We have speakers who will discuss writing as a Calling, literature as evangelization, and even how genre fiction like horror and science fiction can still reflect our Catholic values.
- Practical advice and tips you can put to work immediately. From managing your time to reconstructing your plot, developing great characters to building your social media presence, our experienced and well-published presenters share their best practices.
- Webinar format that incorporates audio and visuals. This year, our presenters come live to your screen. It’s easy – if you can handle Skype or Facetime, you can do this! (Don’t worry, there’s still chat available for talking or “passing notes.”)
- Networking. One of the comments in the past has been there’s not time to just get to know fellow attendees. This year, there’s time in between each session, we have open chat time, plus an open chat room on the conference website.
- Recordings! Did you have to run after a toddler and miss part of a lecture? We’ve got your back. We’ll have recordings of each session available for you free!
- Pitch Sessions. They’re back! We’re recruiting publishers of Catholic and secular media to hear pitches from authors with manuscripts ready to submit! Check out the growing list.
Get all the details here. The cost is just $25 for Guild members, and $40 for anyone else.
Meanwhile, writers in the Dallas/Fort Worth area will have another opportunity to get together for critique and mutual encouragement this Tuesday evening, 23 February, at the University of Dallas. Join us!
This post originally appeared on the DFW Catholic Writers Group blog.
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