About Us

Originating in 1954, the Minnesota Christian Writers Guild celebrated 60 years in the spring of 2014. Our membership includes beginning and professional writers, editors, and publishers who write for Christian and general markets.



• To network writers of all levels, from novice to professional
• To instruct writers to learn their craft and develop their skills
• To support high standards of professionalism
• To strengthen writers' relationships with editors, employers, and clients
• To recognize the work of members at monthly meetings and through annual contests
• To encourage writers to serve their communities


Mission Statement

The Minnesota Christian Writers Guild is a professional and educational nonprofit organization dedicated to serve professional and amateur writers by providing opportunities to exchange ideas, knowledge, and experience toward publishing works that reflect a Christian worldview. The Guild promotes the literary arts and provides opportunities for its members to serve the broader community. The Guild sponsors speakers, contests, workshops, and seminars that further our goals of instruction, inspiration, and fellowship.


Beverly Snyder

Beverly Snyder is a part-time freelance writer, full-time caregiver, and avid reader. She encourages and supports writers and has served on the MCGW Board for many years. Beverly actively participates in book groups and teas with authors, as well as Bible studies and mission trips. Writing interests include newsletters, articles, book reviews, and devotions.

Blending a passion for children with a love of Bible, Beverly has volunteered as a children’s leader for Bible Study Fellowship, taught all ages of Sunday school, coordinated numerous Christian education and vacation Bible school programs, worked with Boy Scouts of America as an assistant scoutmaster, and coordinated bookstore events and children’s programs.

Beverly is the proud parent of a daughter and two sons and grandmother to four adorable grandchildren. When not otherwise occupied, Beverly reads to stay sane, plays in the kitchen, crochets items to support missions, and watches movies with her special-needs daughter.


Joyce Ellis
Seminar Director

Joyce K. Ellis, award-winning writer and editor for about forty years, has published hundreds of articles and more than a dozen books, including The 500 Hats of a Modern-Day Woman (updated & revised). She has served as assistant editor for two national magazines and currently serves as editorial assistant for Prayer Connect magazine. Joyce also writes a grammar column, “Your Writing GPS (Grammar, Punctuation & Style)," for the Christian Communicator magazine, and her book based on those columns is soon to be released in December 2015.

A member of the National League of American Penwomen and the Evangelical Press Association, Joyce also speaks for women’s events and retreats, and teaches at writers conferences around the country, on college campuses, and internationally. She has also mentored writing students for many years, both individually and via correspondence course.

She and her husband have three grown children, five grandchildren, and two step-grandchildren. Joyce’s interests include needlework and music, and her frequent mission trips have taken her to Guatemala and Portugal. She enjoys traveling, a good cup of tea, and just sitting by a lake or ocean, reading.

Marianne McDonough

Marianne McDonough
Communications Director

Marianne McDonough, a freelance journalist, loves the process of writing, whatever the genre. Her experience includes direct marketing, magazines, and community newspapers, but she enjoys poetry, devotionals, and memoir as well. A member of the Guild for ten years, Marianne also leads a monthly critique group. In the Fall of 2016, Marianne released 8 Steps to Getting Real with Cancer: Empowering Newly-Diagnosed Patients and Those Who Love Them. This is the first of a three-part book series designed to inspire cancer patients and their supporters.

Founder and director of W.I.N.D. (Worshiping in New Dimensions) of the Spirit Ministries in Eden Prairie, Marianne also coordinates Great Commission Artists (greatcommissionartists.com), a service-oriented and educational collaborative for visual artists. In that capacity, she has sponsored seminars, exhibits, and DVDs about art ministry. Her passion is to see the arts unite Christians as they pursue God’s glory together

Marianne loves to read and relax on her porch at the cabin, play bridge, dance, and attend live theater, especially musicals. She and her husband are proud parents of two adult daughters and doting grandparents of three delightful granddaughters.

Sisam Photo

Jason Sisam
Web and Media Director

Jason is a professional blogger, pastor and author. He helps writers and leaders stay motivated with clear thinking so that they can find their voice and succeed in life.

Jason has a Bachelor of Divinity from ACTS International Bible College. He is a certified leader and trainer through Leadership Training International and serves on the Board of Directors for the Minnesota Christian Writer’s Guild. Through travels to five continents Jason carries a passion to see this generation of leaders live surrendered lives so they can walk in their calling. Jason lives in Minneapolis with his wife Kari.

Kathy Gruber Membership Director

Kathy Gruber
Membership Director gruberkathy@hotmail.com

As a member  for over 12 years, Kathy Gruber has faithfully participated in meetings and seminars, often volunteering to support and serve with various tasks as requested. Her writing experience includes newspaper and magazine articles, a Christmas drama  and Sunday school curriculum. As part of her profession, she has experience writing standard operating procedures for a specimen processing laboratory.

Kathy has also participated in critique groups in the past and will be able to apply that experience to our upcoming critique group initiative. We are happy to welcome Kathy as a candidate for the membership director.

Our Organization

As stated in our Constitution

This constitution establishes the Minnesota Christian Writers Guild (MCWG) as a 501(c)(3) non-profit, professional, and educational organization in the state of Minnesota. The Guild shall serve as a medium for the exchange ideas, knowledge, and experience of professional and amateur writers in producing published works that reflect a Christian worldview. The Guild shall provide opportunities for its members to serve the broader community and promote the literary arts. The Guild shall sponsor speakers, contests, workshops, and seminars that further these ends. The Guild’s undertakings shall be dedicated to the goals of professionalism and Christian virtue, and shall abide by Minnesota law where applicable.