Friday, July 23, 2010

My Literary Life

Those of you who have attended any of the Indiana ACFW chapter meetings know that my two teenage daughters usually come to the meetings with me. They are both fantastic writers, and I take every opportunity to include them in my “literary life”. They love meeting other authors. They are excited that the ACFW conference is coming to Indianapolis. I think they plan to camp out at the book signing table!

This past month Amber and I traveled to a wonderful writer’s retreat sponsored by the Minnesota chapter of ACFW. (I’m waving at you guys!) Susie May Warren, who is one of my favorite authors and one of the best writing instructors I’ve ever met, taught at the retreat.
Susie has a way of simplifying complex writing processes. The retreat built in writing time which allowed us to immediately implement the teaching into our current WIP. We could then get feedback directly from Susie if we had any questions. Wow! My manuscript improved by leaps and bounds.

At the end of the retreat, Susie prayed for each author in attendance. It was a sweet moment. She was so very perceptive to pray for me as both a writer and a mom.

Amber and I spent much of the drive back from Minnesota talking about the things we learned at the retreat. We talked about characterization, plot, and language, but the conversation became the most interesting when we talked about “voice”. It makes for a pretty vivid picture to compare an author trying to find their voice to a teenager trying to grow into the adult that God wants them to be. That daughter of mine is pretty perceptive.

If you are looking for a writer’s retreat or a great book on the craft of writing, be sure to check out Susie’s site at I highly recommend that you add this to your writer’s toolbox. Next month, Michelle will post an interview with Susie.

The north shore of Minnesota is absolutely gorgeous and the people are incredibly nice! If you happen to be a writer in Minnesota, consider joining the Minnesota chapter of ACFW!


  1. Michelle WeidenbennerJuly 23, 2010 at 8:50 PM

    What a great memory you created with Amber. I can't wait to take my characters into therapy with the team. Thanks for sharing your experience.

  2. Wish I could have been there. Have heard wonderful things about Susan Warren. Am always looking for new hints and tips to pass along in my own groups. Like the Lion King's Circle of Life, we writers are the circle of writers. A neverending source of lifeblood for the writer. Thanks for the info.