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once upon a timeIn just four and a half weeks, I’ll be on a plane to St. Louis to attend the ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers) Conference. In addition to rubbing shoulders with other writers, meeting editors and agents, and learning from some of the best teachers in the industry, two of my novel manuscripts are Finalists in the Genesis contest for unpublished (in fiction) authors and the winners will be announced at the Gala on Saturday night.

With that level of opportunity looming on the horizon, it’s little wonder that my refocus on Faith and Family this fall also includes the third element of my personal mission statement–Fiction!

To be honest, the main reason I spent the summer recycling past garden posts on this blog was to devote undivided attention toward polishing these two latest manuscripts until they shone. Now, I’m busy tweaking my one sheets and practicing my pitches so I’m ready whenever someone asks, “What do you write?” My hope is to acquire both an agent and a publishing contract in the near future. So, while I know the ultimate results lie in God’s hands, I’m doing all I can to be prepared for any doors He may open.

Beyond the conference, I am also looking into ways to better market the existing non-fiction books I have written. I definitely need to come up with a better balance between writing and marketing activities. Ideas mulling around in my head include launching a newsletter for readers, an instructional newsletter for writers, free downloads of past magazine articles, contests, and limited-time discounts on ebooks.

Last, but not least, I’m brainstorming and plotting four different story ideas. I’m hoping for feedback and inspiration at the conference to know which to write first, but at least there isn’t a shortage of future characters and plots. Once I’m past the conference and my daughter’s guardianship process, look for the word counts to rise after the first of the year.

What about you? Are you getting closer to achieving your dream? What practical steps are you taking to get there? Where is your focus this fall?

 

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