Like many of the authors here on the Inspired by Life and Fiction blog, I had the honor of attending the ACFW conference in St. Louis, MO last week. What a glorious time of learning, fellowshipping with other authors, meeting new friends, and giving back to the organization that has done so much to bless my personal writing journey.
In my previous post (which you can read here), I shared the story of how God and ACFW came together in 2007 and 2008 in such a way that led to my first publishing contract. Every year, the blessings continue to abound.
Some of the highlights for me this year included meeting new friends who I felt an immediate connection to. Authors like new Bethany House acquisition, Kristi Hunter who I not only got to meet while she was dressed in her regency finery at the genre dinner, but who I also got to sit with at our publisher’s dinner and who sang with me in the conference choir. God kept throwing us together, and I loved every minute of it.
I also had the opportunity to teach with dear friend and fellow IBLF blogger, Jody Hedlund. We were slated for the last workshop session of the last day, and we worried that people would be too tired to come to our session. But by the time we were underway, our room was nearly full! What a blessing that was. Working with Jody is always a treat for me. Especially when she didn’t shoot me for running long on my portion of the material. (Oops! Sorry, Jody.) Overall, though, the session went well. We had great participation and afterwards, so many people took the time to stop and encourage us with words of blessing. Jody and I felt a bit like rock stars when several people in a row stopped to get their pictures made with us.
One of the highlights, though, was seeing people dressed up at the genre dinner. My favorites were of course the historical costumes. I sat at a table next to a lady dressed in roaring 20’s style. So beautiful and fun. No one could beat our own Julie Klassen and the always spunky Regina Jennings, though. Julie looked so elegant in her pink regency gown, and Regina wore the actual dress that her cover model wore on Caught in the Middle. She even got the boots in there. Love it! One of these years, I’m going to have to get me a dress like that.
At the gala event on Saturday night, we even found time to snatch a picture of the four of us who will be partnering up for a novella collection in the next year or so. Regina Jennings, me, Mary Connealy, and Melissa Jagears.
- What is your favorite thing to do when you get together with friends you haven’t seen in a year or more?