What I’ve learned from being a writers conference director

My husband always says, “You remember your first.” We even created a book of firsts while we were dating that has evolved into a scrapbook that I’ve continued to update over the years.

Directing the one day writers’ conference for West Branch Christian Writers was a first for me. And I admit, at first I wondered if I’d plunged too deep in the river to keep my head above water with an undercurrent of events that seemed to churn the waters right before the event.

And when I say undercurrent of events, I mean the following:

  • My MIL car broke down the day before she was to arrive to take charge of the kids for the weekend.
  • My husband had to drive 2 hrs one way to pick up my MIL so I was one hand short for Friday afternoon preparations.
  • My van hatch decided it wouldn’t open unless you put the key in and held it as you pulled up on the latch.
  •  A fellow member had a pipe burst in her bathroom that leaked into her living room.
  • One of our faculty members fall ill and wasn’t able to make it.

Everything happens in three’s right? Well, not this time.

However, rather than reflect on the bad things, I focused on what I did have.

  • Had a great group of people working together to make the day happen.
  • I had friends, church members, and spouses step up and help in amazing ways.
  • The church had done over half the set up for us the Sunday before due to a luncheon by our “pink ladies.”
  • I had an amazing husband, who made it a point to run behind the scenes and help out where help was needed and allow me to attend a class or two when I wasn’t teaching.
  • I had the advice of two other directors of writers’ conference to help guide me on this journey.

For every challenge, I had something positive to fall back on.

Having read many wonderful notes of thank you and appreciation from attendees and faculty, I feel encouraged and uplifted that the day went well. Not only was it a learning experience I feel for all of us who worked together, but it provided me with that little push I needed to grow both spiritually and personally.

If the number one thing I ever learned about directing a writers’ conference is…. It’s about His glory, not ours. It’s about serving Him, putting your trust and faith in someone else other than you, and letting go of the things that aren’t yours to control—like a fear of public speaking that turns out not to be so scary after all.

It makes me feel, if I can do this, then I can do anything that God is leading me to do, without fail.

Bring on the firsts!

What challenges are you facing that you’re not sure you can conquer?


Daughter of a dairy farmer, this crafty mom has a heart for all things handmade. When she's not writing or crafting, you can find her creating memories with her family.

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3 comments on “What I’ve learned from being a writers conference director
  1. It was a great conference! It’s so hard to let go of control. I struggle with that often.

  2. […] year, not only was I blessed with an agent to represent my writing. I was honored and blessed to direct a one day writers’ conference. I stepped up on to that see-saw and I’m glad I […]

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