Friday, September 23, 2011

Glen Eyrie Report

Hey FFFers - I had an amazing time at the Glen Eyrie Writing for the Ages conference. Here's my report:

I went to work on Koda's Quest, learn some stuff, make some friends and get excited about writing again. I did all those things, BUT, here's the big thing: at lunch one afternoon, we were talking about being honest in our writing and I brought up the book idea I have on being the parent of a special needs child. Kathleen Kerr (past editor at Zonderkidz and how with Harvest House) said, "You HAVE to write this book! And you HAVE to send it to me!" I told her Steve Lawson suggested partnering with Joni and Friends, and Kathleen said Harvest House partners with Joni and Friends on certain projects!! I almost couldn't breathe. And while I did the homework Kathleen gave us in the YA class on characters (for Koda's Quest), I will not be diving into that right away. I'll be working on three chapters and an outline for my nonfiction book. Even when we were saying goodbye, she reminded me to send her the proposal.

I took lots and lots of pictures and will be working on an album on Facebook when I get them off the camera and on to my computer. The grounds are amazing and the gardens are tended by volunteers! I met one lady who has been working on the gardens for 13 years! I'll work to get some more fantasy pics posted here, too.

The food was delicious, the accomodations comfortable, the people so friendly and the faculty marvelous! Nancy Rue, who has been my mentor for 10 years, was the director and she never once separated herself from the conferees. I'm hoping the general session speakers were recorded because I would love, love, love to have a tape or CD of each. Jesse Florea was incredible, Bill Myers engaged us and made us laugh, Kathleen Kerr made us think - and cry - and Nancy was so eloquent and encouraging. I could have sat for hours listening to each one. I did my best taking notes, but I couldn't really capture it all.

We played kids' games the first night. In my group, I won the spitball contest. HA! And another night, I won the helium speaking contest. There was paper and markers on the tables where we could draw, doodle, scribble, whatever we wanted. We could rip the paper off and put more on and keep going. I'm not an artist, but I drew and colored two scenes from Koda's Quest. I took pictures of my drawings and also brought them home. The last night, we were entertained by an Improv Group. They were really good and we laughed and laughed.

We had the opportunity to submit 800 words for a "kids' critique" in picture books, tween or teen. The kids read our stuff and filled out a form. We received them back and were able to attend two panels - one tween and one teen - and we could ask the kids all sorts of questions, just not about our manuscripts. It was amazing. The kids were well spoken and totally honest. I asked one of the teen boys if he would read a book that had a girl as the main character and he said, sure, as long as she was good with a sword or bow and arrow. HA!! We could have sat and talked with the kids for hours. What great sports they were!

Every night, we were read a bedtime story by the faculty and had a nite-nite prayer. And we were back in our rooms by 830pm. My roommate and I got our jammies on, jumped into our beds and read until we fell asleep. It was glorious!!

They have a Prayer Walk, which I couldn't complete, but what I did spoke to me and helped me see God more clearly.

THANK YOU, Nancy Rue, for directing such a wonderful conference. I was blessed beyond words and can't wait to go back! You all need to seriously consider coming out next year if you are writing for kids. My understanding is they are going to add a fantasy track. Woo Hoo!! The dates are October 14th-17th. Be aware, though, the altitude is high and there was a lot of walking, at least on my part. I did not stay in the castle (too expensive) but that was an option. Less walking then, although it depends on where your class is being held. My poor East Coast lungs got a real workout. :)

I'll remind you when it gets closer.


  1. You yourself were a blessing at the conference, Pammy. One of my greatest joys of the week was that you were there. Blessings my fellow writer and dear friend. Nancy Rue

  2. Sounds like it was wonderful! I so wanted to go, but
    had found out about it only a couple weeks before-
    hand. Glad you had such a great time! :)

  3. Hey Pam, your experience at Glen Eyrie sounds absolutely incredible--better than we even hoped, dreamed, or imagined. Of course, anything connected with Nancy Rue has to be AWESOME! So I have put next year's date on my calendar and am planning to be there.

  4. What an amazing few days those must have been! I've heard nothing but glowing reviews from some other attendees, too. Candy's right -- I have no doubt that anything connected with Nancy has to be awesome. I've marked the dates and will be praying and saving in case I get to go next year. :-)