I have the privilege of being the Director of Portland’s First FAITH & CULTURE WRITERS CONFERENCE: Taking our writing to the streets, the coffee shops, and yes, the church, which is scheduled for Saturday, April 2, 2011 at Western Seminary Portland Campus.
(Martin French – Designed the WORDS logo for our event)
Western Seminary, in collaboration with Multnomah University and Corban University, is presenting this unique writers conference, featuring key note speakers Paul Louis Metzger, a professor Christian theology and theology of culture at Multnomah Biblical Seminary and the author of The Gospel of John: When Love Comes to Town and Consuming Jesus: Beyond Race and Class Divisions in a Consumer Church as well as Gina Ochsner, writer-in-residence at Corban University and the author of The Necessary Grace to Fall, winner of the Flannery O’Conner Award for Short Fiction and the Oregon Book Award, and The Russian Dreambook of Colour and Flight, long-listed for the Orange Prize for Fiction.
They will join 18 other workshop leaders and literary agents from a diverse background, including: Richard Twiss, a Native American author and international speaker who looks to “rescuing theology from the cowboys,” Dan Merchant, whose documentary “Lord, Save Us From Your Followers” which received outstanding reviews from USA Today and other secular and Christian publications, and Heather Thomas, pastor of women’s formation at Imago Dei and granddaughter of the founder of Torchbearers Bible Schools-Capenwray.
Wilson Smith, worship leader of South Lake Church, will head worship for our event. Wilson is an award-winning designer for Nike Inc., for whom he created the Air Jordan 16 & 17 shoes inspired by conversations with Michael.
Other workshop presenters include: Melanie Dobson, award-winning author of eight fiction books being sold at Wal-Mart, Costco, Barnes & Noble and LifeWay Christian Stores, was the former corporate publicity manager at Focus on the Family; David Sanford, a literary agent working with top name publishers such as Zondervan, Tyndale, Random House, and Simon & Schuster; and Jenni Burke, a literary agent with D.C. Jacobson & Associates, whose first client was Francis Chan—author of Crazy Love, which has sold one million plus copies. I will be speaking as well on freelance writing.
We have a wide range of workshop titles, such as: “Why (Evangelical) Christians Do Bad Art” (Brad Harper), How To Write What You Love and Still Get Published (Matt Mikalatos), and “God Likes to Laugh – Creating Humorous Christian Children’s Books” (Mike Thaler)
It is exciting to see this event go from a seed — long conversations with Bev Hislop of Western Seminary for months and months about this — to where we are today with 20 diverse workshop leaders thrilled about joining us. And, my hat is off to the amazing leadership team whom God has assembled; they have run with the vision for this unique writers conference, and I am honored to serve along side these wonderful people. We are excited to see what God is doing and will continued to do through this event. It is my heart to connect and encourage writers and that is my prayer for this event.
Register online and find more information at: www.westernseminary.edu/events/writers
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