Local authors talk shop at Christian Women Authors of Winchester event

Published 1:45 pm Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Those interested in expanding their writing talents had another opportunity to learn how to do so recently during the second meeting of the Write Now Workshop.

The event, which was held at the Clark County Public Library, was hosted by the Christian Women Authors of Winchester.

“I absolutely love seeing people, ‘Women’, come together…those of different generations, experiences, and purposes..working together for a common purpose. That purpose, which is writing in our case, will be packaged differently. Some of the ladies have come with one direction in their minds and have been able to step back and see how God may be sending them on a different path in their writing all together,” said Rhonda Gould, ACC Life Coach and author of “The Journey: Finding Healing Through Scripture from Life’s Hard Questions.” “It’s exciting to see smiles, hear laughter and in some cases feel the sense of hope they have in their writing purposes. I personally had tears welling up in my eyes as some of the women shared their God-given purpose. It is a true blessing for me.”

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At the event, which many attended despite inclement weather on May 20, several local published authors took time to explain the writing process further and build on lessons from the first workshop.

Sher Hudson, a graphic and web designer and also the author of such works as “How to Start a Paint Party Business” and “Mara, Not Mara: Downward Spiral, Upward Faith,” led the participants through the first part of the workshop.

As well as sharing resources that fellow writers used for research and had learned from, Hudson facilitated the group in a writing process that had them use pictures, title the story, and write about their idea using as many steps in the Hero’s Journey process as they could.

Stories then got shared, with participants explaining what was behind their ideas, who their target audience was, and more.

“Your story is not for everyone, but it’s definitely for someone,” Hudson said.

Before Hudson’s presentation, Nicole Webb spoke to the participants.

An engineer, career coach and author of “The Journey: 30-Day Guide to Take Control of Your Thoughts”, Webb explained the process of laying out a book and different types of publishing, such as traditional and self-publishing via an independent publishing company, i.e., Amazon KDP.

She also reviewed potential pitfalls to be aware of, including the fact that certain vanity presses might publish substandard work without complete editing.

It also thrilled Webb with what fellow facilitators had to explain.

“We’ve done two workshops so far with a goal to share what we have learned in our writing journeys and encourage other writers in their own projects. As rewarding as it is to be part of a group like this, what was even better was how many helpful resources and new ideas for projects I came away with. I think we all did”, she said.

Joy Matthews is the author of “The Church Under the Mango Tree and Other Missionary Adventures” and founder and former Director of ICL Global, a 501(c)3 ministry.

Matthews shared editing tips and how to market a book and avoid common errors.

She later spoke of the experience.

“Workshop number two contained excellent teaching and equipping information for both current and aspiring others,” Matthews said. “It was a joy for us to meet together to learn, grow, and share.”

Certainly not least, Gould discussed how to avoid lofty expectations threatening to diminish the writing process.

In line with faith-based thinking, one tip is to determine why you are writing and be okay with how God uses it if financial gain becomes a source of stress.

Although she wasn’t present, fellow Christian Women Authors of Winchester writer Caren Massey also provided a comment.

“The growth of this group has been exciting to watch, not only on the outside with others joining us, but on the inside. Working together, pulling out our experiences as writers, to encourage others that they too can write and tell their stories has personally been a wonderful learning experience,” she said. “Our hearts [have] been to serve others and hope to continue to do this in new creative ways as the Lord leads us.”

Massey, a Chaplain and CISM Trainer, is also the author of “In the Stillness: A Prayer Journey to Hearing the Voice of God.”

Christian Women Authors of Winchester have previously trained others in writing at the Kentucky Correctional Institution for Women in Shelby County and plan to host a Writer’s Workshop for residents in July and September.

The group also looks forward to gathering locally in June for further discussions and planning.

Christian Women Authors of Winchester can be reached at christianwomenauthorsofwin@gmail.com.