Welcome to the Florida Christian Writers Conference! We are so glad you stopped by to check out what we have in store for you this year. This conference is nestled in the heart of Florida at Lake Yale Conference Center. The sunrises and sunsets are breathtaking, and the spreading Oak trees beckon you to sit beneath their limbs and write a page or two in your journal.

It’s an opportune week to meet agents and editors, award winning writers and others who have heard the same call to write.  Come attend workshops and continuing classes that will sharpen your pen, develop your platform, and strengthen your resolve. Critique groups, meetings with agents and editors, writing contests, and camaraderie with fellow writers make this week one to remember.

If you have a book inside of you, if you have the dream to publish that book, and you don’t know where to begin, come be encouraged and trained at the Florida Christian Writers Conference February 21-25.

 

 

Newest Blog

Follow Through with Proposal Requests: 5 Tips to Stay on Track
Friday, April 20, 2018
Andy Lee

 

By, Andy Lee

One morning a farmer told his wife that he was going out to plow the "south forty."

He got off to an early start so he could oil the tractor. He needed more oil, so he went to the shop to get it. On the way to the shop he noticed the pigs weren't fed. So he proceeded to the corn crib, where he found some sacks of feed. The sacks reminded him that his potatoes were sprouting. Then when he started for the potato pit, he passed the woodpile and remembered that his wife wanted wood in the house. As he picked up a few sticks, an ailing chicken passed by. He dropped the wood and picked up the chicken. When evening arrived, the frustrated farmer had not even gotten to  the tractor, let alone to the field.

 

When I read this “parable” the other day, I thought, “Oh my gosh! That was my week! I got nothing accomplished.”

As writers, we set our own schedules and many times our own deadlines, and it is easy to get distracted by life. My ADHD kicked in severely this week, though I like to think it was the Holy Spirit prompting my moves, there’s a very good chance that it was just me.

A few months ago I sat in front of a literary agent who was interested in my project.

“When can you get me the proposal?” he inquired.

I gave him a reasonable answer, though I knew it would be a tight squeeze to get it done.

And so now I sit in my office with three weeks to go from the deadline I gave myself, but this week, only one day was devoted to the proposal, and that day was mostly research. [sidenote:] I must confess, I needed comfort food after my research. I served mashed potatoes with a whole stick of butter and cream for dinner. I was studying the Bible literacy rates in America—it depressed me.

Perhaps that is why the following morning when another “need” came my way, I jumped at it just like the farmer who noticed the wood to gather and the chicken that needed attention. I spent two days working on that “need” as well as other demands that simply come with taking care of my family.

One of the blessings of this job called author is the flexible schedule, but it is also one of its curses. I often find myself saying yes to coffee dates when I should say no or helping others (which is a good thing) when I need to focus on my writing obligations, which brings me to the real reason for this post.

If you sat in front of a literary agent or acquisition editor at FCWC or any other writers conference and he asked you to send a proposal, and you have not done it, this is your wake up call.

I know that as the months go by, the excitement we experienced at the conference begins to wane and our confidence does too. Life begins to take over, and we begin to doubt. But I’m here to tell you that your writing, your project, your calling to share what God has placed in you is valuable and needed. There’s a good chance that if you don’t write it someone else will, but it won’t have your voice. Your heart.

If an agent or editor asked to see your proposal or project, they saw value in it. Believe me, if they saw no value, they would’ve told you.

So, this is your homework:

 Follow through.

Write.

Write everyday because you’ve been called. Put it in you schedule because it is of value and don’t let the ailing chicken or the laundry, or the coffee date opportunity take you off task. We have the time. It’s a matter of priority.

 

5 Tips to Stay on Track with Your Writing:

  • Treat your writing like a job. Set the hours you will be writing. (ex. 8:00 AM-12:00 PM everyday)
  • Get dressed as if you were going to work. (It helps me.)
  • Actually go somewhere to do your writing if you need to “go to the office.”
  • Write this phrase on notecards and place them all over your house, “My writing is valuable.”
  • Put deadlines on the calendar. Stick to them. And reward yourself after you’ve submitted the project or article with a “free” day or a mocha frappe. 

Your Turn: What is something you do to stay on track with your writing? Leave a comment. 

 

Andy Lee is a blogger, speaker, Bible teacher, and new author of two books. She is the FCWC blog coordinator and the president of Word Weavers of Wilmington, NC. Visit her site, www.wordsbyandylee.com for Bible reading plans, recipes once in awhile, and encouragement to dig deep to live fully.