Monday, October 30, 2006

Online Writing Groups

So, you want to be published? Get connected.
Can't find a writers group near where you live? Join an online group!

For your convenience, I am once again listing a number of great online writers groups you can join.

FCW - Fellowship of Christian Writers
Excellent group that shares writing help along with promoting accountability

TWV1 - TheWriters View 1
For published authors only - lots of marketing and industry info.

TWV2 - TheWriters View 2
For writers who are just starting out - GREAT group.

CWG - Christian Writers Group
General discussion group.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Writing Exercise

Here is a writing exercise for those writers who need a bit of inspiration - or a kick in the you-know-what to get them started.
Most of you know the line "It was a dark and stormy night.." made famous by the THE most famous (infamous?) writer of our century - Snoopy. This line was originaly penned by Victorian novelist Edward Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton, as the beginning of his 1830 novel Paul Clifford. Here is the complete opening line.

"It was a dark and stormy night; the rain fell in torrents, except at occasional intervals, when it was checked by a violent gust of wind which swept up the streets (for it is in London that our scene lies), rattling along the housetops, and fiercely agitating the scanty flame of the lamps that struggled against the darkness."

Your assignment -- rewrite this opening using Showing techniques rather than Telling ones. Don't overwrite. Don't use a lon list of adjectivs. Break up the sentence into manageable bites. In other words -- write tight -- write clean -- write a great opening.

If you are interested in a free critque of your rewritten paragraph, drop me an email.

Louie Bergmann DuMont
Author, Speaker & Facilitator of the North Jersey Christian Writers Group (NJCWG)

Book Proposals That Sell

"If you are currently writing a book or even thinking about writing a book, you won't want to miss this online event. "
Louise Bergmann DuMont, NJCWG

From Editor and Author - Terry Whalin
Let's Talk About Book Proposals
On Thursday, October 26th, I will be chatting for two hours at the Institute of Children's Literature. The topic is book proposals and how as writers submit better proposals, then they will improve the results from their submissions.
If you can, join us for the chat. I recommend you go to the chatroom ahead of time to register (free) then participate.
Here’s the times:
9-11 p.m. Atlantic/Canada
8-10 p.m. Eastern
7-9 Central
6-8 Mountain
5-7 Pacific

If you are reading this article after October 26th, the transcript for this chat are stored online. These archives are a rich resource of writing information on a variety of topics from many different participants. In the past, I've been in this chatroom--in fact three times but Thursday will mark the first time talking about Book Proposals That Sell. I hope to see you there.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Chat with Terry Whalin

On Thursday (10/26/06), Terry Whalin is going to be chatting about Book Proposals That Sell for two hours at the Institute of Children's Literature website. This event is free--but he advises that you register ahead of time so you will be ready to participate. If you can't make it, the transcript will be stored on the ICL website--after the chat.

Here's where you can learn the details:

Writing Op - Morning Song

This just came across my desk
Facilitator, NJCWG
I am the publisher of a new e-Newsletter called "Morning Songs". The newsletter is about Christian and Gospel music, Christian life, faith, spirituality, and just life in general. If you are interested in contributing to this monthly publication, send me a 500 word article along with your contact information. We'll review it for potential publication. If you have any more questions about it you can contact me directly at I think there can be some great, ongoing contributions that come from you. I can't wait to hear from you. If you just want to read it when its done, you can also email me. We hope to have the first publication ready in November, just in time for Thanksgiving. Be blessed.

Chance Glenn
Editor - Morning Songs

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Next Meeting - NJCWG

Louise Bergmann DuMont at the Glorieta Christian Writers Conference
She is teaching her KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE/WRITE TO MARKET class.

I'm SO excitied about our next meeting. I hope to share some of the many things I learned at the 2006 Glorieta Christian Writers Conference.

The worship, devotionals, opening and closing sessions were amazing.

The classes exceeded everyone's expectations.

God brought me so much more than I ever expected during the faculty to faculty sessions (you will be nearly as excitied as I am when you hear about it all).

The attendee to faculty appointments that I participated in were awsome as well.

And of course I reconnected with great old friends and made dozens of new ones.

To be the first to hear all the details, come to our next NJCWG meeting.

Next meeting -- NJCWG
Monday, October 23, 2006

Ringwood Baptist Church
30 Carletondale Road
Ringwood, NJ 07456

6:15-7:00 - Chat Time
7:00-8:00 - Lesson / Glorieta
Networking Ops, Classes, Connections, , CD's Available, Writers Guidelines & Sample Copies... and so much more.
8:00-9:00 - Critiques
Posted by Picasa

Terry Whalin, Fiction Acquisitions Editor Howard Books

Terry Whalin, Fiction Acquisitions Editor Howard Books, and author, Louise Bergmann DuMont, pose for a picture after dinner at the 2006 Glorieta Christian Writers Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico. Posted by Picasa

Editor Appointments

Attendee and editor in the midst of an all-important appintment. Posted by Picasa

Nick Harrison

Nick Harrison, author and Acquisitions Editor for Harvest House, allowed me to snap this picture one afternoon when we were having lunch together. It was such a pleasure to learn from this knowledgeable (and patient) man. Posted by Picasa

Joe Box Mysteries author, John Robinson

One of my favorite authors, John Robinson, takes a break and enjoys the glorious weather in between his faculty to faculty appointments, attendee to faculty appointments, and rigorous teaching schedule. It was a real blessing for me to reconnect with John at this conference. Posted by Picasa

Glorieta's Chuck Wagon

Members taking a break at the Chuck Wagon

TheWriters'View1 is an online Christian writing group for those activingly engaged in publication. We gathered after the days sessions for popcorn, lattes and a good time at Glorieta's Chuck Wagon Cafe. These after hour get-togethers are a great place to connect with editors and publishers whose appointment schedules are full during the day. Posted by Picasa

De-Cluttered Bug

Author, Kathryn Porter, poses with her new book (Too Much Stuff: Decluttering Your Heart and Home) and friend Louise Bergmann DuMont. We met at last yer's Glorieta Christian Writers Conference and were able to reconnect this year. SO much fun. One great reason for attending writers conferences is the friends we make -- friends who encourage us and lift us beyond the places we can go on our own.

Do check out Kathryn Porters books. She is both an amazing person and great author. You'll be seeing more from this lady. Posted by Picasa

Nancy Wialliams

Author, counselor, speaker & life coach - Nancy Willaims (o the left) shares a moment of fun with fellow Glorieta attendee. Posted by Picasa

Writers View Phot

TheWritersView1 members got together in Glorieta's after hour cafe (The Chuckwagon) for a few lattes and this photo. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, October 19, 2006

SpiritLedWriter - Pls Read

The SpiritLed Writer has been having a few electronic problems. If you submitted to this publication, please read the message below.

Hi all,

When your publication works solely by email, an ISP problem is a big deal. SO...

Just a quick note to say that due to a problem with the host for the magazine:

1) we've lost all emails in my inbox from July, including submissions and requested manuscripts (unfortunately, we didn't realize this until last month when we noticed no emails coming in, and when the inbox was wiped out).

**Our webmaster is trying to figure all this out, but in the meantime we have issues to get out...

2) we are experiencing problems receiving email (including responses to our feedback buttons, etc.). If you received a "blocked" email from the site this explains why.So, I'd appreciate any help with the following.

Please respond to me at

1) you have sent a manuscript, please resend (I responded positively to several subs last month, and have not received the manuscript -- I expect these were blocked) -- at

2) if you have a reprint to offer, please submit it at

3) please continue to pray for the ministry of SPIRIT-LED WRITER, we so appreciate it.

Lisa, Publisher

FREE Business Cards

Vista Print is at it again. They are offering FREE business cards to anyone who wants them. Sure there is a catch (you didn't really believe that they would give them away without a catch did you?).

Here's the deal - 1) you must pay the shipping - which is minimal. 2) Vista Print puts their web address in very small print on the back of each card. That's it.

I use Vista Print for all of my business cards, oversized publicity post cards, etc. They do an excellent job and you sure can't beat this price.

Writers need business cards. While I was at Glorieta I collected dozens of them and will file them for future contact information. Editors and publishers file them for future use too. Get 250 FREE Business Cards Now! Here is their link: FREE CARDS

To see all of Vista Print's products and other free offers go to:

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Kathy Pride- Featured Author of the Month

October's Featured Author
Kathy Pride
Author of Winning the Drug War At Home

Kathy Pride wears many hats, including author, newspaper columnist, speaker, and parent educator. Her favorite roles are as a mother to her four children, best friend to her husband, and high energy advocate for people whose hope tanks are running low. She has recently authored a book entitled Winning the Drug War at Home, released by AMG Publishers in April, 2006.

You can find out more about Kathy and her ministry (Tapestry Ministries) at her website.

Cec Murphey Update

A Note From Cecil "Cec" Murphey

Don Piper for whom I wrote 90 Minutes in Heaven will appear on the Today Show the first week of November. (That's the "sweeps" week.) They've asked representatives from four different religions about heaven and how to get there. Don, because of his experience, will speak from the Christian perspective. If you've never heard Don, not only did he have a powerful experience, but he's delightful to hear. I learned last week that the book has hit 1.1 million copies in sales. I'm amazed--and grateful to God.

CecCecil "Cec" Murphey
Author, When Someone You Love Has Alzheimer's
Co-author, 90 Minutes in Heaven: A True Story of Death and Life
Co-author, Daily Devotions Inspired by 90 Minutes in Heaven (available in November)

Contest - EPIC

EPIC's has a new writing contest, which is open to home-schooled as well as public school and private school kids.

CHavel EPIC New Voices 2007 contest open for entries between August 1, 2006 and November 1, 2006.

This is a writing contest for students attending public, private, or homeschools anywhere in the world. There is no entrance fee. Students should be in junior high/middle school or high school in the US or the equivalent level in the school system of their country. The student may write a story, poem, or essay for the contest or enter something written for a school assignment. For more information, visit the EPIC website:

Writing Op - Kids Ark

Hello Wonderfully Blessed Writers!

I hope this finds you all well. This e-mail has been long in coming and I don't think I'll answer ALL of the questions many of you have e-mailed me all right now. But, I need to share with you what is going on with the Ark and should then later be able to answer anything else.

1. We are slowing down the monthly printing of the Kids' Ark to every other month until we are through the process of becoming nonprofit. There are temporary financial restrictions to publishing monthly until the nonprofit status is gained. Once that happens, we will resume monthly publications.

2. Having said that, here are the updated anticipation publication dates for previous themes. (Those of you whose stories have been accepted for these themes- you will receive your payment and complimentary copy at that time).
Perseverance - October
Meekness - December
Pride - February
Anger - April
Wisdom - June
Laziness - July

3. While deadlines have already passed for Anger, Widsom and Laziness, the editorial panel is still finalizing decisions on submissions. I hope to have decisions for all stories by next week.

4. Also, we will have additional themes and submission deadlines by next week as well.

Thank you all for your prayers and patience. I realize it's difficult for you to not hear from us for so long. For that, I apologize. We held off due to the number of changes being made to make this ministry everything God wants it to be.

God really is doing great things with this magazine. In church, just the otherday, the wife of a man who is known as the "watchman" of our church, commented how much she enjoys having the stories available for her grandchildren. You are impacting so many children through your giftings. Thank you for sharing them with the world.

May God bless you exceedingly, abundantly above all you may ask, think, orimagine!I'll be in touch again soon!

Joy Mygrants
The Kids' Ark

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Glorieta Christian Writers Conference

Glorieta Conference Center, Albuquerque, NM

Well I'm back from the Glorieta Chrisitan Writers Conference. I'm almost embarased to say that I'm hard pressed for words to describe this year's experience. During the next few week's I will post dozens of writing opportunities that were presented to me by the other staff members. God is now placing them in your hands. What you do with them is between you and your creator.

I was blessed to reconnect with a number of writing colleagues and I made dozens more. I hope to post a number of photos as well. I also purchased (more than a few) CD's of the classes. These will be shared over the next few weeks at our NJCWG meetings. You won't want to miss those. I also gather writers guidelines and sample copies from dozens of publications. Again, these will be shared at the next few NJCWG meetings.

Next Meeting
Monday, October 23, 2006
Ringwood Baptist Church
Our "lesson" will be a brief recap of the conference and some interesting lessons-learned.
Hope to see you there!

Louise Bergmann DuMont
Facilitator, NJCWG

Sunday, October 08, 2006

9/9/06 Meeting Canceled

Unfortunatly I need to cancel the Monday, October 9, 2006 NJCWG meeting. Our next meeting will be 10/23/06. My apologies. As soon as I get back from Glorieta I'll post an update.

Monday, October 9, 2006

Louise Bergmann DuMont
Facilitator, NJCWG

Friday, October 06, 2006

Update From Cecil Murphey

Cec Murphey with NFL's Most
Valuable Player for 2005,
Shaun Alexander

What's new with author, teacher & speaker Cecil "Cec" Murphey

If you want to see pictures, go to:

Cecil ("Cec") Murphey

I came home tired after teaching in a two-day conference followed by
an intense mentoring clinic in Dallas. For a full month, I can stay
home to write daily, run each morning, and play in my garden every

My next mentoring clinic is in Walnut, CA (near LA) January 17-20.
Peter Lundell (host) says we still have room for two people.

On the news front, Touchdown Alexander that I wrote for Seattle
running back, Shaun Alexander, sold 50,000 copies and nearly 2,000 of
the audio version during its first month. Daily Devotions Inspired by
90 Minutes in Heaven by Don Piper and Cecil Murphey
(Berkeley/Penguin) comes out in November with an initial printing of
110,000 copies. CBD (Christian Book Distributors) asked me to write
study questions for each chapter of 90 Minutes in Heaven. They want
to put this in their Giant Reading Group and promise (according to my
editor Vicki Crumpton) "to give the book big promotion in terms of
catalog space, focus, and sales,"

The fall issue of Marriage Partnership printed a series of articles
about couples and cancer. Shirley's breast-cancer story is in it
along with a first-person story by my friend, Dr. Amy Givler. The
issue features a story about another friend, Chris Maxwell. He had
viral encephalitis and no longer has any short-term memory. It's an
inspirational account written by Corrie Cutrer.

Comfort Cafe - New Devotional

Louise Bergmann DuMont has a new Devotional at the Comfort Cafe
Moving a Mountain - One Mole Hill At A Time

Writing Op- Adams Media

Writing Op forwarded to me by Maude Carolan

Has God ministered in your life through the Serenity Prayer? Is there an element of the Serenity Prayer that especially speaks to you?

If so, you're a prime candidate to write a personal experience story for a compilation book on the Serenity Prayer that Adams Media is putting out as part of their Christian line, and I'd like to invite you to be part of this.

We're looking for 1000-1200 word stories on how the Serenity Prayer has affected or changed lives. Your story will need to be deeper than just, "I prayed the Serenity Prayer and God made everything wonderful." Instead, focus on a specific time in your life when this prayer or an aspect of it made a difference in your life. Tell us specifically how this prayer made a difference--specifically how God used it to bring grace, healing, renewed relationships, courage, or whatever. As in any time you tell a story, remember to "show" us instead of just "telling" us. Also, it looks like too many writers so far are focusing on the "Accept the things I can" aspect of the prayer, so you might consider writing on another section of it.

This book is distinctly Christian, but will be sold in secular outlets (and Adams is a secular publisher that has a Christian arm, like the Cup of Comfort Devotions series, and the His Forever testimony book). So in your writing, try to weed out Christianese--try to give spiritual concepts concrete support so the readers can relate, and don't assume your reader knows what the Christian phrases mean. Feel free to use scripture in this as well--just watch the Christian lingo.

Also, one of my concerns is that too many of the stories submitted will focus on AA or recovery programs. It's great if the Serenity Prayer has ministered to you through this, but downplay programs and concentrate on the difference in your life. Also feel free to pull from elements of the long version of this prayer:

The stories are due Oct. 25 (this has been extended from the original deadline), but I'll start accepting them right away. Yes, you may tell someone else's story in their voice, an "As Told To." You'll receive $50 for each story that's accepted. If you have questions or would like to submit a story, the e-mail address for this one is: I prefer attachments in Word.

And please, feel free to pass this along to your writing friends! This is the perfect opportunity for people who want to write something that will make a spiritual difference in markets that aren't Christian bookstore markets. So a perfect venue for those of you who have a desire to be "missionary writers."

Thanks. I look forward to reading how God has used the Serenity Prayer in your life.


Jeanette Gardner Littleton
Editor, Serenity Prayer Project
Adams Media

Note From NJCWG Faciliator

Glorieta Conference Center, Albuquerque, NM

Well, I've once again neglected the blog for a short time. This was due to preparation for the upcoming Glorieta conference in Albuquerque New Mexico. I will be teaching Writing Devotions: 101 and Know Your Audience / Write To Market

Please keep me in your prayers for the following:
1) That I might have a good flight - without incident and on time
2) That my teaching might be of benefit to those taking my classes
3) That my conduct might glorify Christ
4) That my pitches might fall on receptive ears
5) That someone needing encouragement might find it in my words
6) That God's direction for my writing might be made clear
7) That I might bring back loads of information and writing opportunities for the NJCWG
8) That I might sell a few copies of my books in the bookstore
9) That I won't be totallly exhausted when I get back on Monday night (10/16) since I do have to go back to work on Tuesday (10/17)
10) That God would use all the speakers and teachers to raise up writers for His purpose
11) That editors and publishers would find the writers that they need and that writers would find a market for their work at Glorieta

Please note that the NJCWG is meeting on Monday, 10/9/06. Hope to see many of you there.