Skip to navigation Skip to content

Events at Montrose Bible Conference
Behold I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people, Unto you is born this day a Savior which is Christ the Lord.
Luke 2:11

Our Events

28th Annual Montrose Christian Writers Conference

July 16-21, 2017

Register Online


New and experienced writers will be spiritually renewed as they sharpen their word-smithing skills and learn about Christian publishing at this annual conference.
  • 4 Continuing Morning Classes
  • 3 Work-in-Progress Seminars
  • 43 Afternoon Workshops
  • 1 Faculty Panel Discussion
  • Appointments with Editors and Agents
  • Professional Critiques and Consults
  • Hands-on Mentoring Opportunities

Our faculty will include Darlene CatlettDon Catlett, Mike DellossoJim Hart, Vie Herlocker, Jeanette Levellie, Torry Martin, Cathy Mayfield, Gloria Penwell, Barbara Scott, Patti Souder, Diane Stark, B.J. Taylor, Carol Wedeven, Dave Weiss and Lora Zill This conference is directed by Marsha Hubler.

Continuing Classes

Designed to provide in-depth learning and participation. Most valuable when taken as a series but open to those who cannot attend every day.

MAJOR MORNING CLASSES

10:40-12:10 Monday-Thursday

WHAT’S THE BIG IDEA? (Advanced Fiction) - TORRY MARTIN

WHERE DO I BEGIN? (Help for Newbies) - BARBARA SCOTT

THE JOURNEY TO PUBLISHING NONFICTION - B. J. TAYLOR

THE ART & CRAFT OF POETRY - LORA ZILL
   WORK-IN-PROGRESS SEMINARS
MORNINGS:10:40-12:10 Monday-Thursday (Limit 8 Conferees)

PICTURE BOOKS FOR PUBLICATION - CAROL WEDEVEN  - CLASS IS FULL

READY, SET, WRITE … AND FINISH (TEEN TRACK) - CATHY MAYFIELD

*Afternoon: 2:30 – 3:15 Monday – Wednesday

 POETRY BOOT CAMP (Limit 6 conferees) - LORA ZILL

Afternoon Workshop Series

(How-to instruction on specialized topics)

BLOGGING 101 & THE SOCIAL MEDIA
3 Sessions: 1:30 Tues. - Thurs.  Don Catlett

AN EDITOR’S PET PEEVES
4 Sessions: 2:30 Mon. – Thurs.  Vie Herlocker     

DRAMA THAT MATTERS
4 Sessions: 2:30 Mon., 1:30 Tues. – Thurs. Patti Souder 

WRITING FOR CHILDREN
3 Sessions: 2:30 Tues. – Thurs. Carol Wedeven 

Afternoon Workshops

Monday
1:30-2:15
1.  Indie Publishing vs. Royalty Publishing. What’s New? - Faculty Panel

2:30-3:15
2.  Why Drama? - Patti Souder
3.  Formatting before Beginning - Vie Herlocker
4.  Fiction: Character Building (Part One) - Mike Dellosso
5.  21 Ways to Overcome Writers’ Block - Jeanette Levellie

3:30-4:15
6.  Get the Most out of the Conference - Gloria Penwell
7.  The Art of Collaborative Writing - Torry Martin
8.  Fiction: Character Building (Part Two) - Mike Dellosso
9.  Conducting High Profile Interviews - Diane Stark

Tuesday

1:30-2:15
10.  Blogging 101 - Don Catlett
11.  Creating a Viable Stage Production - Patti Souder
12.  Shock the Clock: Time Management - Jeanette Levellie
13.  Marketing for Writers Who Don’t Like to Market - Jim Hart

2:30-3:15
14.  Seeing Through the Eyes of a Child - Carol Wedeven
15.  Powerful Sentence Structures - Vie Herlocker
16.  Fiction: Setting and Description (Part Three) - Mike Dellosso
17.  Write for your Life - Torry Martin

3:30-4:15
18.  Prayer in the Life of a Writer - Gloria Penwell
19.  Creative Blockbusters - Dave Weiss
20.  Making your Fiction Matter (Part Four) - Mike Dellosso
21.  Writing for Parenting Magazines - Diane Stark
 
Wednesday
1:30-2:15
22.  Blogging 102 - Don Catlett
23.  Format and Performance Know-How - Patti Souder
24.  Writing Compelling Devotions - Jeanette Levellie
25.  No Market for your Book? What to Do - Jim Hart

2:30-3:15
26.  Putting Characters in Place - Carol Wedeven
27.  PUGS Specifics for Christian Writers - Vie Herlocker
28.  Writing for Guideposts and the Guideposts Contest - B. J. Taylor
29.  The Power of Story Telling - Barbara Scott

3:30-4:15
30.  Bible Studies that Sell - Gloria Penwell
31.  Real “Artist-Ship” - Dave Weiss
32.  Aspects of the Editing Process - Darlene Catlett
33.  Breaking into Anthologies - Diane Stark

Thursday
1:30-2:15
34.  Social Media 101 - Don Catlett
35.  Sharing the Fun of Drama - Patti Souder
36.  Column Writer as a Platform Builder - Jeanette Levellie
37.  Peace in the Literary Storm - Jim Hart

2:30 – 3:15
38.  Writing for Picture: Magazine or Picture Book for Children? - Carol Wedeven
39.  Understanding the Business of Writing for Publication - Vie Herlocker
40.  Selling Personal Expereince Short Stories - B. J. Taylor
41.  Pick a Genre - Barbara Scott

 3:30-4:15
42.  Irresistible Queries and Proposals - Gloria Penwell
43.  Proofread with Excellence - Darlene Catlett
44.  Writing the Profile Piece - Diane Stark

Workshop Leaders

Darlene Catlett: began her career in copy editing in 2002 while working on the very popular Lamplighter series. Has had the joy of helping several first-time authors polish their books for print & squeezed in 4 years as the editor of a quarterly magazine & multiple newsletters. She lives by this motto: “I’m serious about editing ... but not too serious to enjoy a good laugh over it!” 

Don Catlett: has worked at the crossroads of web design, photography, marketing, & social media for more years than he cares to count. Since launching Clearly See Media in 2008, he continues to work as a digital advertising specialist for companies including Amazon Publ., Lamplighter Publ., QVC, The Shopping Channel, Child Evangelism Fellowship, and many retail & service businesses. 

Mike Dellosso: the author of a dozen novels and several non-fiction titles. In addition to his writing he’s also a writing teacher, adjunct professor, and healthcare worker. He lives in PA with his wife, five daughters, & their border collie, Kylo.

Jim Hart

: has been a full-time agent with Hartline Literary Agency for 3 years, though he’s been involved in the family business on-and-off for many years, reading proposals & attending conferences. Also a musician/songwriter/worship leader. He’s looking for fictional suspense, romance, women’s fiction, some sci-fi, & non-fiction: Christian living, church growth, & social issues. 


Vie Herlocker: editor for Sonfire Media, a small traditional Christian publisher, & its fiction imprint, Taberah Press, in Galax, VA. Also a freelance editor at Cornerstone-Ink Editing & a member of the Christian Editor Connection, Christian Proofreaders & Editors Network, ACFW, and ACW. Sonfire: looking for Christian living & inspirational books, including memoirs. Taberah Press: YA/New Adult spec. fiction. 

Jeanette Levellie: Pastor’s wife & author of 4 books & hundreds of stories. Newspaper columnist since 2001 with the popular weekly humor/inspirational column “God is Greater.” Humorist & inspirational speaker for over 20 years. Member of the Christian Authors Network, Advanced Speakers and Writers Assoc., WomenSpeakers.com, & The Christian Pen. 

Torry Martin: Award-winning actor, comedian, and author who writes comedy sketches, screenplays, and humor columns. Writes for “Adventures in Odyssey,” creating the character of Wooton Bassett. His most recent acting roles include The Ultimate Legacy and Matchbreaker.

Cathy Mayfield: With a passion to use God’s gifts to help young students/writers find their calling and have fun doing so, Cathy spent 25+ years homeschooling & teaching writing classes. Several students, including her three daughters, went on to win awards for their writing. Her motto? “I was born to teach!” 

Gloria Penwell: Her expertise & love of writing comes from years of travel with her husband, Dan, attending writers’ conferences together while Dan was acquis. editor at AMG Publ. Currently she’s acquis. editor for Bold Vision Books. Looking for fiction: romance, mysteries, historical. No fantasy. Nonfiction: Christian living & Bible studies in our Nuts and Bolts imprint: craft books for arts and business, how-to books on teaching, preaching, speaking, marketing & social media. 

Barbara Scott: An inspirational book editor for more than 18 years, Barbara’s also an author. Gilead Publishing recently released her novella “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” in an inspirational collection, Sleigh Bells Ring. In the mid-1990s, she published 2 bestselling novels & numerous gift books & devotionals before her long stint as a senior acquis. editor for several Christian publishers. 

Patti Souder: former MCWC director whose articles, short stories, poems, & drama sketches have appeared in various publications such as The War Cry, Guideposts, Power for Living, and Pockets. Has written or contributed to 14 published books & has written & produced a number of plays & musicals. Many of her drama sketches can be found at www.AlphaStarDrama.com. 

Diane Stark: a freelance writer the last 10 years. Published in 35 Chicken Soup for the Soul books & dozens of magazines, including Focus on the Family, Woman’s World, War Cry, & Faith and Friends.  Published in children’s publications, including Our Little Friend & has received 3 Church Press Awards for her writing with The Salvation Army. The author of a devotional book for teachers.

B.J. Taylor: award-winning author, won a spot at the Guideposts Writers Workshop in 2004. She’s published in Chicken Soup for the Soul (40 times), Writer’s Digest, Guideposts, Angels on Earth, & many others. Her works include a memoir: Charlie Bear: What a Headstrong Rescue Dog Taught Me about Life, Love, and Second Chances. Representing Guideposts and Inspiring Voices.

Carol Wedeven: author of 11 children’s books, curriculum, poetry, fillers, short stories, & drama scripts.  Enjoys drama improvisation, plays with words, hosts a critique group, and mentors writers.

Dave Weiss: Pastor/Speaker/Author, Dave’s worked in the visual arts since 1986. Travels the U.S. using art to communicate the gospel. Written and/or illustrated 18 books on creativity & creative ministry & has ministered in over 150 churches in the last 4 years using art & storytelling to challenge people to use their gifts to serve the Lord. 

Lora Zill: teaches writing at Gannon University & for Allegheny College’s arts programs for public schools. Publishes a poetry journal, “Time of Singing,” & speaks at writing, education, & arts conferences. Her award-winning writing has been published widely. Is completing a book about feeling God’s pleasure through creative expression & blogs at www.thebluecollarartist.com. 

WORSHIP LEADERS

Conrad and Donna Krieger: accomplished musicians, who have traveled worldwide presenting concerts & workshops in churches & conferences. Conrad has been a church music director for many years.  He plays the piano, guitar, & flugelhorn. Donna has taught music at the college level and is a pianist, vocalist, writer, & arranger.  The Kriegers have recorded 13 albums, & Donna's publications include solo, duet, piano & choir arrangements, as well as two original cantatas.

Editorial Appointments

Private 15-minute appointments with editors and agents to show them material which may be suitable for their publications and/or to discuss ideas for stories. Sign-up sheets available at the conference. Bring professionally prepared manuscripts. Be sure to bring copies! No charge. 

Professional Critiques

This is a great opportunity to have your work evaluated by a published professional. You will receive a written evaluation of your manuscript plus a 30-minute private appointment to talk about ways to improve and/or market your piece.

Register for MCWC by June 23 and request guidelines for emailing your manuscript. $40.00 per critique.  Only a limited number of critiques will be accepted.

Vie Herlocker – Christian living, devotionals, memoirs, fiction – any except romance.

Gloria Penwell – Bible studies.

Patti Souder – Drama sketches, monologues, 10-minute plays. 

Mike Dellosso - suspense/mystery, spec fic., contemporary, and memoir. No romance, historical, or Amish.

B.J. Taylor - Inspirational short stories for Guideposts/Angels on Earth/Mysterious Ways/Chicken Soup for the Soul; Memoirs.

Diane Stark – Creative nonfiction, essays, parenting articles, 1st person pieces for anthologies.    

Other Opportunities

MORNING WORK-IN-PROGRESS 
Picture books with Carol Wedeven: $40 (4 sessions)
Teen Track with Cathy Mayfield: $25 (4 sessions)

AFTERNOON  WORK-IN-PROGRESS
Poetry with Lora Zill: $25 (3 sessions)

CRITIQUE GROUPS and GENRES of INTEREST GROUPS

Opportunity for feedback from other writers. No charge.

BOOK TABLE
Features books by faculty and conferees.  When registering, please indicate books you’ve written which you would like to sell.

BUDGET BOOK SALE AGAIN THIS YEAR! 
Too many books on your shelves? Bring them with you and donate them to our Budget Book Sale. Looking for some good books at budget prices? Check out this special sale. All proceeds go to the General Scholarship Fund.

PRIVATE BLOGGING LESSONS
Work one-on-one with social media guru, Don Catlett, to start a blog or upgrase the one you have.  Each 45-minute session $20. 

RECORDINGS

Listen to the sessions you missed or those you want to hear again. 

EVENING EVENTS

MONDAY: TORRY’S POTPOURRI -  an organic event that will leave you talking. Whether that’s good or bad is yet to be determined.


TUESDAY:  MASTER-piece PAINT NIGHT or TORRY’S MOVIE or FREE TIME –
Painting: a fun activity simplified so anyone can do it. Cost for the event is $20. Limit 20 (Dave Weiss)
or
A Night at the Movies: View one of Torry Martin’s latest films, “Heaven Bound.”

WEDNESDAY: PICTURES OF JESUS - Dave Weiss will present “Pictures of Jesus,” a program including storytelling, video, and five live paintings each painted in six minutes or less.

THURSDAY: WRITERS’ THEATER: Bring your own work, an excerpt from a short story, memoir, novel, or a poem and trimmed to three minutes, and read it to the conferees at the Writers’ Theater.  

Scholarships

Shirley Brinkerhoff Memorial Scholarship: $100 grant for tuition
Awarded to a writer actively striving to hone the craft of writing who has not yet secured a publishing contract.  See below for application. 

General Scholarship

Help available according to need. Please inquire when registering.   

Back to list

Montrose Bible Conference // 218 Locust Street, Montrose, PA 18801 // Phone 570-278-1001 // Toll Free 1-800-598-5030 // Contact Us