January 2017 Newsletter

Volume 29  Number 5
January 2017
Living for God, Writing for People

January 9

Jesse Florea from Focus on the Family

Small Beginnings with Big Opportunities

For the Christian writer, the size of venue, scope, and readership does not determine the value of a writing project. Focus on the Family author, editor, and podcaster, Jesse Florea will join us via Skype to discuss how we make the most of every opportunity and prosper from multi-faceted writing assignments.

Jesse Florea has worked at Focus on the Family for more than 23 years. For the past 19, he’s been the editor of Adventures in Odyssey Clubhouse magazine (for boys and girls ages 8 to 12) and is currently the editorial director for youth publications where he oversees Clubhouse and Clubhouse Jr. magazines. He co-hosts the biweekly “Official Adventures in Odyssey podcast” that often exceeds 1 million listeners. He has written or co-written more than two dozen books (including The Case for Grace for Kids, The One Year Father- Daughter Devotions, The One Year Devotions for Active Boys, The One Year Devos for Sports Fans, Linspired: The Jeremy Lin Story and Playing With Purpose: Mariano Rivera). He earned bachelor and master’s degrees in communications from Wheaton College, Illinois. He lives with his wife, Stephanie, in Colorado Springs, and enjoys hanging out with his two adult children, their spouses and his granddaughter.

Next Month – February 13
Scott Noble

Reaching Your Audience
Whether you’re writing for business or for ministry, how you develop your content is critical to maximizing its impact on those you want to reach. Discover tips, techniques and approaches that will help ensure that your content is reaching people right where they are.

See website for details and register soon!
mnchristianwriters.com/seminarSpeaker: Bob Hostetler

Masterful WritingSessions will include:

  • Masterful Article Writing
  • Masterful Platform Building
  • Mastering Your Craft
  • Masterful Marketing

You won’t want to miss this one! Hostetler is a terrific speaker with a great sense of humor.

Please go to the website for guidelines for our upcoming contest!


Go, Set, Ready
by Marianne McDonough, Communications Director

Author and pastor Mark Batterson packs a lot of wisdom into every written page. A few years ago I enjoyed his book In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day and currently I’m absorbing Draw the Circle, an excellent forty-day prayer journal. One of the chapters, “Go, Set, Ready” provides interesting insights that readily apply to writers.

Think about the juxtaposition of these words–go, set, ready. Backwards? Not necessarily, Batterson says, and I think he has a good point, especially in view of a new year.

Our normal modus operandi, the one most familiar at any rate, begins with getting ready, setting everything in place, and finally moving forward. But let’s look at this from a writer’s perspective. Does that always work for us?

Maybe not. Sometimes, trying to apply due diligence, we tarry too long on specifics and organize ad nauseam.  We get stuck in neutral as perfectionism steals momentum and time shuffles a worthy project to the bottom of our to-do deck with little chance of getting in the game again.

Batterson’s point? When we know in our gut that God has His hand on something and the time is now, then we must go with it. In the going, we find that He guides things into place, and then we achieve that amazing state of being ready. Or it could be that we were ready all along and didn’t know it. Or God by His failsafe grace may have already formed the proper foundation, and we are the ones holding back unnecessarily. Whatever the scenario, His timing is the most important component, and we must seek His heart to know what it is.

Has God been nudging you to write or finish a special project for His kingdom? Today I encourage you to remember that the word “now” is often a good word, perhaps even an exactly applicable word.

Maybe 2017 is the year you go. Write NOW, every day, no matter what. You just might be more ready than you think.

P.S. For some extra inspiration, try reading In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day. Good stuff…