I Need Your Feedback

I Need Your Feedback


Hi faithful readers!

I’m considering doing an every-other-month book club via my website and Facebook author page. Is this something you would be interested in?

I’ve always wanted to be part of a book club, but I’ve never had the joy of having local readers with similar tastes. I thought it would be great to get together with others who like reading Christian Historical Romance (like you!) and have our own online book club. I’m still trying to sort the idea out, but before I put too much effort into it, I wanted to have your feedback.

 

My current thought is to vote on a Christian Historical Romance novel, pick a day where we come together via Zoom (or just posts online) to discuss the book, play a game or two, and participate in a giveaway. I’d send discussion questions ahead of time because if you are like me, you need time to think and process. It would be an event you sign up for ahead of time and wouldn’t necessarily have to participate every time.

If I did it, I think the schedule would be January, March, May, July, September, and early November (to avoid holiday hassles).

 

The first one would be pretty short notice for this July, but the book options I’m thinking are:

 

  1. The Lost Lieutenant by Erica Vetsch – Regency
  2. A Name Unknown by Roseanna M. White – WWI
  3. Veiled in Smoke by Jocelyn Green – The Great Chicago Fire

 

If this is something you are interested in, please comment below. Let me know what book would be your top choice and any suggestions you might have.

Ready to sign up? Fill out the Google form at this link: https://forms.gle/a2MyEyzt4aTa1DqQ7

 

Attend the KCWC Online Writers Conference

Attend the KCWC Online Writers Conference

2020 has been a year for the record books. Everyone across the globe has been challenged during this time, and yet there have been some good things come out of it. Although so many conferences have been canceled this year, many have shifted to an online venue, opening up access to many who would not be able to attend otherwise. This is true of the Kentucky Christian Writer’s Conference. I am so blessed to have led the Teen Seminar last year, and while this year’s seminar has been pushed off to 2021, I am pleased to say that the online KCWC conference will be open to teens for this year.

Not a teen? The KCWC is a great opportunity for writers of all levels and ages. The faculty line up and topics are fantastic, and if you register, you will have access to the recordings for 6 months. Below is the key information to know, and I encourage you to visit the website to get a look at the classes being offered.

 

What: Kentucky Christian Writer’s Conference

When: June 19 & 20, 2020

Cost: $20.20

Keynote Speaker: Bob Hostetler

Workshop Selections: https://kychristianwriters.com/workshops

How to register: https://kychristianwriters.com/register

 

I hope to see you there!

 

You’re Invited to Join the Journey

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Are you interested in an author’s writing journey? Do you want to interact and be a part of that journey on a regular basis?

I have created a Facebook group called Crystal’s Creative Cohorts so that I can be more interactive with you on a regular basis. While blogging and my newsletters are great, they are often one-sided and I really want to interact and get to know you.

So what will Crystal’s Creative Cohorts do? Give input on current works in progress–like character names, descriptions, quirks, story ideas–, be the first ones offered a chance to be beta readers and members of my eventual street team, get a glimpse into the real life of an author and sneak peeks at my writing, and have access to exclusive contests. Because who doesn’t like a good contest?

In fact, my first giveaway will happen when the group reaches 50 members. Want a sneak peek at the prize? I thought so…

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So what are you waiting for? Come join the party and become a Creative Cohort.

Christian Fiction Reader’s Retreat 2019

I know, it’s a year away, but registration is OPEN for the amazing Christian Fiction Reader’s Retreat taking place in Washington, D.C. April 5-6, 2019.

 

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If you are able, I highly recommend attending this event. The information below comes from the Christian Fiction Reader’s Retreat Page. Please visit them for more information and register soon!

 

What is CFRR?

“Christian Fiction Readers Retreat is a one day event gathering of Christian Fiction readers and authors. The event’s theme is “Honoring God through Christian Fiction” and will feature speaker sessions, author panels, breakout sessions, prayer & worship and author signings.

An unprecedented event in the Christian Fiction genre, the Christian Fiction Readers Retreat (CFRR) offers an opportunity for readers to meet and chat with authors. The event will include food, games, giveaways and free books. Following a successful 2016 debut in Nashville, and a second one on August 12th in Cincinnati, Ohio, the next CFRR will take place in the Spring of 2019 in the VA/DC/MD area.”

– CFRR Website

 

What Authors will be OFFICIALLY there?

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Amber Lynn Perry Gabrielle Meyer Megan Whitson Lee
Becca Whitham Janet Ferguson Melissa Tagg
Bethany Turner Jayme H Mansfield Mesu Andrews
Carole Towriss Jean C. Gordon Mikal Dawn
Carrie Turansky Kimberley Woodhouse Misty M Beller
Cathy Gohlke Kristi Ann Hunter Roseanna M. White
Connilyn Cossette Kristin Noel Fischer Ruth Logan Herne
Dawn Crandall Lindsay Harrel Sandra Ardoin
Deborah Giusti Lindsey Brackett Stephenia H. McGee
Elaine Stock Lisa Cox Carter Susan May Warren
Erica Vetsch Lisa Jordan Toni Shiloh
Eva Marie Everson Mary Connealy Tracey J Lyons

 

Last year, I discovered that authors are just as excited to go as a reader to a reader event. And why not? We’re avid readers, too.

 

What do you do there?

When I went in 2017, I was so impressed with how the event went. It was like a spiritual retreat mixed with a reader’s dream. We had awesome times of worship, a devotional, speakers who glorified God, and we prayed together, authors prayed with me. It was an amazing spiritual refueling.

In addition to the spiritual side of things, we played games, won prizes, asked questions, fan-girled (I swear I wasn’t the only one), and came home with these awesome bags filled with books, reader swag, and awesome goodies. It was an amazing time.

(First Photo by EA Creative Photography)

 

What does Registration include?

The Registration Fee for the Main Event (April 6, 2019, 8:30 AM – 7:00 PM) includes: :

  • Entry to the 2019 Christian Fiction Readers Retreat (CFRR) Main Event on April 6, 2019, which includes (3) speaker sessions, at least (2) author panels, breakout sessions and the opportunity meet and chat with authors, and fellow readers.
  • Author signing at the end of the day to chat with authors and fellow readers
  • A goody bag full of swag from authors, publishers, sponsors and CFRR
  • Light breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Afternoon snack
  • All day non-alcoholic beverage service
  • Tons of chances to win giveaways donated by authors and sponsors throughout the day
  • One entry into the Grand Prize of the event
The Registration Fee for the Meet & Greet Event (April 5, 2019, 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM) includes:
  • Entry to the 2019 Christian Fiction Readers Retreat (CFRR) Meet & Greet Event on April 5, 2019. It will start at 6:00 PM and run through 8:00 PM or later.
  • Please note, the reserved space for the Meet & Greet have limited capacity, and therefore ticket sales will be closed once capacity is met. It will not accommodate all guests for the main event. 
  • Non-alcoholic beverages and light snacks will be served by the hotel. Guests are welcome to purchase additional food (only) from the hotel restaurant and bring it to the Meet & Greet.
  • A relaxed schedule will be posted closer to date.

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So what are you waiting for? This is an event you DO NOT want to miss if at all possible. Visit the Christian Fiction Reader’s Retreat Website and register, ASAP. Last year the spots filled up before the Registration Deadline. 

 

Important Dates:

  • Readers’ Registration Begins – April 30, 2018 at 11:00 AM EST
  • Readers’ Registration Deadline – September 20, 2018  or until capacity reached (whichever comes first)
  • Hotel Room block Deadline – March 15, 2019 or until block capacity reached (whichever comes first)
  • 2019 Christian Fiction Readers’ Retreat – April 5 – April 6, 2019

 

Join the Discussion: Who is going? If you can’t go, what questions would you want to be answered by a participating author? I’ll try to remember to ask them and share it when I do my CFRR Review post next May.

CFRR: A Retreat for Readers

At the beginning of the month I had a wonderful break from the grief of preparing to see my Grandma for, most likely, the last time. It was an event like no other I know and one I hope you will get to experience next year.


On August 12, 2017 several hundred readers, authors, book bloggers, and representatives from publishers got together for the one day Christian Fiction Readers Retreat in Cincinnati, OH. 

Can I say it was every reader’s dream? Not only did I discover new-to-me authors but I got to fan girl over the ones I already knew!!! 

So what is it like to go to a Christian Fiction Reader’s Retreat? We started of the day with a fantastic reader’s prayer written by Debbie Giusti and worship lead by Nicole Coley. If you haven’t heard this amazing young woman listen to my favorite song called “Masterpiece” from the retreat here. Not only did she sing it, but she wrote it!


There were wonderful games played in groups and by the participating authors. Who knew that Kristi Ann Hunter was so competitive? I laughed so hard, I snorted (don’t’ judge me).
Then we had three wonderful sessions with Cynthia Ruchti, Becky Wade and Dani Pettrey, and Shelley Shephard Gray. 

Here are my favorite quotes from those sessions.

“Christian Fiction has to be more true than truth.” 

– Cynthia Ruchti

“Someone needs your story so it can change the outcome of theirs.”

– Cynthia Ruchti

Dani Pettrey via Skype and Becky Wade in person.

 

Becky Wade and Dani Pettrey took us through the process of a writer and then shared their roller coaster ride of writing a story through a year long video diary. 

“I don’t know what I am doing!”

“The greatest satisfaction is being true to the calling He has given.” – Becky Wade


Shelley Shephard Gray spoke on how finding the “sweet spot” in writing is just like finding the “lost track of reality” spot when we read all night. I got so wrapped up in her talk, I forgot to write down any quotes. Oops.

There was also a Period Fashion Show where authors dressed in the period in which they write.
And who can forget the AMAZING Swag Bag every participant received! Just check out what mine looked like with about 8 purchased books! 

Holy cow! What a wonderful day filled with wonderful friends! Thank you to the stewards of the Christian Fiction Retreat – Carrie (Readingismysuperpower.org), Bonnie, and Annie (http://justcommonly.blogspot.com). You ladies are a huge blessing!

You want in on next year’s action? I will be sure to keep you in the loop here, but I strongly encourage you to follow the #CFRR blog at http://ChristianFictionReadersRetreat.blogspot.com.

Did you go? Share your pictures and favorite memories! Just scroll past my fan-girling moments.

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