Roy Hanschke use this one
Donna  Brennan
Colorado Christian Writers Conference
Faculty Member
Roy Hanschke


Just writing a great book isn’t enough. You need to promote it, and at the same time promote yourself. One way to do that is with public appearances, presentations, and radio interviews.

Yet where can we learn to not only put together a great presentation, but to deliver it at the right pace, voice, and volume?

Help is on the way in the form of a Speakers’ Clinic at the Colorado Christian Writers Conference May 14-17 at the Estes Park Center. Roy Hanschke, a Christian radio personality and speaker, has trained and coached beginning and seasoned speakers for over 15 years.

Roy’s style of teaching is simple, practical, and effective. He can help you focus in on your ministry’s main message and teach you how to present it. He’ll show you how to organize one of your talks to maximize time and effectiveness and how to deliver that talk with power and pizazz.

And you’ll have the opportunity to test what you learn right in class, gathering feedback from Roy and from your peers who will be learning right along side you.

I asked Roy for more information about the Speakers’ Clinic. Here’s what he had to say.

Question:  Why would both fiction and nonfiction authors need to be able to give an effective talk or presentation?

Whether you’re a fiction or non-fiction author, you have a message. Take every opportunity you can get to communicate that message to others whether it’s through a radio/TV interview or a talk to a group of people.

Question:  What do you mean when you talk about “voice personality?” Why is that important?

Everyone’s voice has a personality of its own. As we all know, we really can’t change our personality, but we can consciously use it to more effectively impact others. The same is true of our voice. You can train it to bring out the best in your personality.

Question:  Can someone really be taught to improve their speaking voice?

Yes. You don’t actually change your voice as much as the way you use it. It’s like learning a musical instrument. A saxophone is always a saxophone, but the way you use it can engage your listeners or make them leave the concert early. There are principles, effects, and exercises to improve the effectiveness of your vocal delivery.

Question:  If we want our ministry to reach lots of people, why is it important to identify our focus? Can we have more than one focus?

One problem with presentations that falter is that they have more than one main focus. I believe a great presentation has one focus with several supporting points. An audience can leave a well presented talk that contains many great points and say, “That was great, but I don’t remember what she/he was trying to get across.” Furthermore, when you identify your   focus, you have a better chance of deciding whether or not that’s what you want to say and if it’s powerful enough to move your audience.

Question:  Will you be showing us how to give radio interviews? Is that something that’s hard to do?

I have 25 years of experience in conducting interviews, listening to interviews, and being interviewed. From that I’ve developed a set of principles that can help you relax, communicate your message, and make the listener feel glad he/she listened to you. We’ll make it simple and fun.

Question:  What if we tend to get tongue-tied or choke up when we speak to a group? Will your clinic teach us ways to overcome that and give an effective message despite our fear?

Managing your fear as a speaker is a big part of what we work on. It’s really a result of everything we work on in the clinic. There are, however, a few secrets to “saving the moment” when fear attacks.

Question:  I know I’m sometimes told I should slow down when I’m speaking, even when  I think I’m already doing that. Will your clinic help us to tell if we’re talking too rapidly, or too softly, or doing something else wrong?

More than that, it will help every speaker, no matter what their typical pace and style, to follow effective patterns of success without giving up who they are. We’ll work on becoming aware of our personality styles and our habits and learn to control them rather than be controlled by them.

Question:  Will you show us tips or tricks to prevent us from skipping any parts of our talk or important points we want to make? How do we not lose our place without reading from the page?

If your talk isn’t “rememberable” to you, it certainly won’t be to the listeners. Yes, there are tips and tricks and so much more. It has a lot to do with the way you structure your talk.

Question:  What if we still don’t entirely “get it” by the end of the clinic, or we don’t feel secure enough in our “delivery”? Will we be able to contact you afterward for more help?

Sure. I’m happy to answer questions by email or phone anytime, and I am available to coach you personally by phone, SKYPE, email, and in person (in the Front Range of Colorado). My goal is to maximize your improvement while minimizing the expense to you.

Great questions, Donna, and very helpful answers, Roy.  For more info on Roy’s Speaker’s Clinic and the application go to http://colorado.writehisanswer.com/clinics. Father, thank You for this opportunity to learn how to more effectively present the message You have given us.

reflections on Christ - crucifixion


I have a new understanding of what Jesus felt when the crown of thorns was shoved on his head. Saturday I fell into a rose bush! Leaning over too far and stretching awkwardly as I tried to pound in a fertilizer stick, I lost my balance and fell head first into one of the thorniest rose bushes in my garden. It’s really amazing that I wasn’t seriously hurt. Thank You, Father! And thank You, Jesus, for enduring the thorns and the lashing and the cross.  The strength of Your will, Your commitment to do what Your Father asked, and especially Your love for mankind even as they mocked You amazes me. “What wondrous love is this . . .”


Updates – May 14-17 Colorado Christian Writers Conference

John Sloan

New faculty member
John Sloan
Senior Executive Editor
HarperCollins Christian Publisher

John has worked for thirty-four years in religious publishing.  He specializes in non-fiction essay and narrative nonfiction, including memoir and autobiography, and he has worked on books with authors Philip Yancey, Ben Carson, Chuck Swindoll, Chuck Colson, Joni Eareckson Tada, Lee Strobel, James Houston, Ravi Zacharias, Howard Hendricks, Bill Hybels, Patrick Morley, Gary Thomas, John Ortberg, and now Gary Wilkerson as he pens the authorized David Wilkerson biography. John uses editorial experience and creativity to advocate nonfiction narrative with authors and agents, focusing on book organization for final writings. Structure, unity, and arrangement of material are keys John looks for in his evaluations. He has edited 22 Gold Medallion Award-winning books, two Book of the Year winners, and written one book, The Barnabas Way.

Thursday evening Night Owl - Narrative Non-Fiction, from Hillenbrand to Tuchman
In nonfiction, how do we write clearly, without qualification or uncertainty, with authority and conviction?  One way, is to learn to tell stories, as in fiction, and to tell them well. And, what are some of the tools that can be used in third person, story-driven narrative? Many can be found in your own writing.  This seminar includes a few of the techniques that illustrate how nonfiction storytelling can  drive the narrative in a way that is similar to fiction and different than essay, using some of the best writers, like Lauren Hillenbrand (Unbroken).

What kind of manuscripts do I want to see - Narrative nonfiction. Can be any of a number of forms demonstrating good non-fiction writing, such as essay, autobiography, biography, investigation, exploration, memoir, and collaboration, as seen in Larson, Lamott,  Didion, Yancey, Lewis, and Buechner. Such writing has a narrative rather than anecdotal quality, an arc from beginning to end, a strong voice, 3-dimensional scenes, and the narrative tools of writing, as demonstrated in the night owl on narrative nonfiction.  A bonus appointment with John (in addition to the appointments you are entitled to) is available on a first-come basis. If you have already submitted an appointment request form, just email our Appointment Coordinator, Margie Vawter, at mvawter@writehisanswer.com. In the subject line please put “Request for Bonus Appointment with John Sloan.”


Shawn Kuhn

New faculty member
Shawn Kuhn

In December of 2011 Shawn Kuhn joined the SuzyQ team. With his love for reading and his background in teaching and youth ministry, he finally settled in the book industry, combining his love for business, reading, and people. Shawn was the vice president of a bargain book chain for more than 25 years. His years of hand selling books and in store promotion bring a fresh approach to an author’s digital presence. Shawn offers SuzyQ’s clients guidance and support in all aspects of their book careers with the ultimate goal of reaching their target audience. www.SuzyQ4U.com
A bonus appointment with Shawn (in addition to the appointments you are entitled to) is available on a first-come basis. If you have already submitted an appointment request form, just email our Appointment Coordinator, Margie Vawter, at mvawter@writehisanswer.com. In the subject line please put “Request for Bonus Appointment with Shawn Kuhn.”

Updates – July 30-August 2 Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference

The race is on right now to prepare for the Colorado conference so I’ve not been able to do more updating to the Philly site. Soon, I hope. Meanwhile, if you have not received our 16-page brochure, please email your USPS address to me at mbagnull@aol.com.

News You Can Use

Writing Opportunities – Jeanette Littleton just sent me the following three opportunities:

* One is a brand new manuscript call for the book, “Please Tell Me I’m Not a Bad Mother…,” an idea that’s been on my heart for a long time. This book is designed to inspire, encourage, and support moms. Due date is June 27. For guidelines contact Jeanette at JGLProjects@earthlink.net.

* We’re still looking for manuscripts for Jim Bell’s project with Bethany House, “Jesus Stories.” This book is about encounters with Christ–supernatural or otherwise. For guidelines contact Jeanette at JesusStories@earthlink.net.

* If you live in the Midwest (or like to take trips), join us April 26 in Kansas City for our Heart of America Christian Writers’ Network (www.HACWN.org) Super Writers Saturday with best-selling author Angela Hunt presenting a whole day of teaching for writers who want to learn and grow.

Keep writing and living His answer!

ASSIST News Service (ANS)
PO Box 609, Lake Forest, CA 92609-0609 USA

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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Writers for Such a Day as ThisWHA logo on Shaw guides

By Becca Anderson
Special to ASSIST News Service

ESTES PARK, CO(ANS) – It used to be that restrictions on sharing one’s Christian faith or writing and speaking freely about matters of faith were things that happened on the other side of the globe. Increasingly today, North American Christians find themselves muffled by politically correct demands on their speech.

The Colorado Christian Writers Conference, May 14-17 at YMCA of the Rockies in Estes Park, CO, will challenge and train writers to take a strong biblical stand on the issues that confront our culture.The restriction on Christians to share what they feel compelled to speak and write about is no longer limited to “over there.” Writers increasingly put their very lives at risk around the world to bring the message of Christ to others. Every day in the United States and Canada, people are censored, jobs are lost, and legal action is threatened when the Christian message is shared. One answer is to cease to write and speak this vital message. The other answer is to continue to be bold, with improved skills and added determination.

“I feel a sense of urgency to encourage and equip Christians to ‘write His answer’ – now,” said conference director Marlene Bagnull. “I believe the day is fast approaching when we will not have the freedom to print or distribute Christian literature or to share our faith on the Internet. We need to be aware, and ready to take advantage of every media to get our message out as the ‘signs of the times’ become more apparent.”

In addition to a full schedule of 62 workshops covering all aspects of writing, eight continuing sessions, panel discussions, hands-on clinics, appointments with editors and agents, and general sessions, the conference also includes a special session on Compassion, Justice, and Advocacy. The topic is taught by Steven Lawson, a freelance writer, editor, writing coach and publishing consultant with a long career in Christian publishing. “The Christian writer is uniquely qualified to address many issues that confront every citizen today. Human trafficking, orphans, abortion, racism, the poor and hungry, the oppressed, and much more that is close to the heart and call of Jesus,” he said.

Writing well on topics of vital interest and importance to society as a whole is a valuable way for Christians to bring the message of Christ back into the marketplace of ideas. Offering real answers -His answers – to these perplexing issues takes courage, quality writing, and a sensitive heart. Lawson speaks to the issues and shows writers how to plug their passion for social justice into meaningful efforts.

Building on the theme of reaching the world through Christian writing, one of the keynotes addresses the sobering topic of “Write His Answer. Despite Opposition,” presented by Peter Lundell, pastor and author of Armed for the Battle. “Writers are on the front lines of an intensifying spiritual war,” he said. “We have an adversary who wants us to feel defeated. How do we silence his lies, which seem to be true, when our work is rejected and we feel overwhelmed with discouragement?” His presentation will answer those questions and leave attendees strengthened for the battle.

If you are a Christian writer who feels led to turn your words to the vast and urgent area of social justice and compassion advocacy, CCWC is a conference that could well launch you in a new direction with improved clarity on how to get the job done. Though April 15 was the deadline to register and still receive the greatest discount, if you mention that you saw this article through ASSIST News Service, you will receive the higher discount.

For more information, visit the website, colorado.writehisanswer.com/ where you can download the brochure and review all materials. Or call for the 16-page brochure, (484) 991-8581 (Eastern Time.)

Becca Anderson

Becca Anderson is a freelance writer, the editor of Fabricare Canada magazine, and has had two books published-both through contacts made at Colorado Christian Writers Conference. She can be contacted at banderson@cablelynx.com

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Arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane,
You could have called on heaven’s armies;
yet You allowed them to take You captive.

Falsely accused in a mockery of a trial,
You could have denied who You were;
yet You convicted Yourself.

Physically and emotionally abused,
You could have struck down Your tormenters;
yet You remained silent and turned the other cheek.

On the way to the cross,
You could have thought only of Yourself;
yet You spoke with compassion to Jerusalem’s daughters.

Nailed to the cross and spit upon by the crowd,
You could have cursed Your enemies;
instead You prayed, “Father, forgive them.”

Taunted to “come down from the cross!”
You could have done exactly that;
yet You chose to suffer and die
that I might have the choice to live in You.

Marlene Bagnull

In my keynote at the Super Saturday sponsored by Lancaster Christian Writers Fellowship last Saturday I quoted Chuck Colson’s sobering words in Against the Night, Living in the New Dark Ages.


“‘Dark Age’ is a strong term. I recognize that. Yet in recent years I’ve had a growing sense of storm clouds gathering on the horizon . . .  The forecast is foreboding . . . We scan the horizon with unease.

     “We sense that things are winding down, that somehow freedom, justice, and order are slipping away. Our great civilization may not yet lie in smoldering ruins, but the enemy is within the gates.

     “The times seem to smell of sunset. Encroaching darkness casts long shadows across every institution in our land. . . . We do face a crisis in Western culture, and it presents the greatest threat to civilization since the barbarians invaded Rome.”

I feel such a strong sense of urgency to “write His answer” – now. I believe the day is fast approaching when we will not have the freedom to print or distribute Christian literature or to share our faith on the Internet. Father, please open our eyes to the “signs of the time” and help us to “Make the most of every chance [we] get. These are desperate times!” (Eph. 5:16 MSG).

Today, April 15, is the last day to register for the May  14-17 Colorado Christian Writers Conference before the price increases.  Because I believe Father will use this conference powerfully, I am praying you will seriously consider coming.

Michael Gantt, a pastor from Vermont who keynoted some years back, said something I’ve never forgotten when he captured the heart of the conference in the video I just uploaded to the conference website. “It is very critical that you believe what God has to say is relevant to this generation,” he said. “It is very critical that you believe, that you believe, that God will use you to bring His message to the world.”

Please take 3-1/2 minutes to view the video at http://youtu.be/-qfhH5NH7XE.

Father, please help everyone who reads these words not to doubt You or the gift of words You have entrusted to them. Move mountains to get them to the mountain in Colorado May 14-17. I know You will meet us there.

Keep writing and living His answer!

eagle 3Please Lord, help us to find you once again and heal this once great nation.

Yesterday morning I had the privilege of keynoting at the Lancaster Christian Writers Fellowship Super Saturday. In “Get the Word Out” I talked about the urgency I feel to “write His answer” – now, while we still have the freedom to proclaim our faith in Jesus Christ. We cannot, we must not, compromise the fact that Jesus said “I am the Way – yes, and the Truth and the Life. No one can get to the Father except by means of me” (John 14:6 TLB).

Today we remember how Jesus rode into Jerusalem as the crowds cheered, “Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.” Yet less than a week later they shouted “Crucify him!”

None of this caught Jesus by surprise. Indeed, we’re told in Hebrews 12:2 (TLB) that “He was willing to die a shameful death on the cross because of the joy he knew would be his afterwards.”

Have you stopped to consider that you are the reason for His joy?

Years ago my pastor’s wife told me that if I was the only person on this earth, Jesus still would have come and died just for me.

We know that He is coming again but that He tarries because He does not want even one to be lost. And so He is calling you, He is calling me, to “Get His Word Out.” An outline of my message – really a Bible study – is available online. I hope you’ll download it and make time to prayerfully consider these passages as you ask how He wants to use you to share His love with those who do not know He loved them enough to go to the cross.

Updates: May 14-17  Colorado Christian Writers Conference

Clinics – There is still room in the Fiction Intensive, Speakers’ Clinic, and Get Them Coming to Your Blog/Website Clinic so we’ve extended the deadline until the clinics are filled. My friend, Sue Cameron, a gifted speaker, took Roy Hanschke’s Speakers’ Clinic a couple of years ago. She says,

It’s often said that writing and speaking go hand in hand.
That’s why I’m grateful that CCWC offered Roy’s Speakers’ Clinic.
Roy is a dynamic example of “show don’t tell” as he actually demonstrates
different methods of effective communication.
Each participant had the opportunity to try out Roy’s suggestions
in a safe and encouraging atmosphere.
We learned from each other
and went home with a notebook full of useful instructions
on how to become a more skillful communicator.
Sue Cameron

One-on-One Appointments – CCWC gives conferees registered from Thursday through Saturday the opportunity to schedule four free 15-minute appointments with the faculty of their choice based on availability when you submit your requests. Those who have already registered will receive preference based on the date they registered as long as they submit their appointment request form by April 16. After that date appointments will be booked in the order we receive your form. All requests must be received by May 2. Nervous about show your work to an editor or agent? Check out the suggestions on how to get the most out of your appointment.


Updates: July 30 – August 2 Greater Philly Christian Writers Conference

Brochures – Our 16-page brochure is off press and should be in your hands early this coming week if we have your USPS address. It can also be accessed online.

One-on-One Appointments - GPCWC also offers four free 15-minute appointments with faculty of their choice – five appointments for the first 75 to register for Thursday through Saturday. Faculty bios and editorial needs will be posted to the website in the next couple of weeks.

News You Can Use

Building Your Platform - Check out Cec Murphey’s blog on this critical topic. Thanks, Cec for your helpful advice. (Note: Cec will be keynoting and teaching a continuing session at the Philly conference.)

Don’t Just Do It – Literary agent, Dan Balow, with the Steve Laube Agency provides some important food for thought in this blog.

Keep writing and living His answer!

Blessed is He!

Palm branch“Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!”
The crowd cheered and sang praises.
They waved palm branches.
and threw their cloaks before Him.
But Jesus was solemn as He traveled that road -
that road to the cross.

As God incarnate He knew all that was to come.
He saw not just His own death on the cross,
but the persecution of His followers
and the destruction of Jerusalem.
He saw nation rising against nation -
the madness of yet-to-be-born rulers.
And Jesus wept.

He would be wounded and bruised for our sins,
chastised that we might have peace,
lashed that we might be healed;
yet few would accept His gift of life.
The darkness of evil would continue to reign,
but the light of His love
would not be extinguished.

Entrusted to us,
His light will grow brighter.
A cloud of witnesses are cheering us on,
to daily take up our own cross
and follow Him closely.

Blessed is He who is coming – again!


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