Blog | Maranatha Christian Writers' Conference


Dave Lambert: Program Director

Posted by on Sep 2, 2014 in General | 0 comments

LambertD Dave Lambert serves as the program director for the Maranatha Christian Writers’ Conference.  He is the author of ten published  books. He has received numerous awards for magazine articles  and short stories published in such  places as Virtue, Moody, StoryChristian Parenting Today,  Sweet Sixteen, Decision, Montana  Magazine, Campus Life, Outreach, and many other  periodicals. David has an M.F.A. in fiction  writing from the University of Montana. He has held a  variety of positions in publishing, spending  eighteen years as an acquiring editor at Zondervan,  most of that time as executive editor for fiction,  and more recently, three years as senior fiction  editor at Howard Books, a division of Simon &  Schuster. David is the editorial director for Somersault Group.

Madeline Hamlin: General Volunteer and Prayer Warrior

Posted by on Aug 27, 2014 in General | 0 comments

hamlin Madeline Hamlin is a vital part of our conference prayer team. She loves to hear the needs of  others and take them to throne of grace in prayer. Throughout the conference, Madeline will be  available for one-to-one prayer needs and will also maintain a list of prayer needs for the  conferees. She can direct you to the Maranatha Prayer Tower (with a spectacular view of God’s  creation!) or to the prayer room. Madeline is a long-time volunteer in a rich variety of ministries  including children’s ministry, drama, and service. She spends much of her time pouring into the  lives of her two precious grandsons.

Surprised by God at Writers’ Conferences

Posted by on Aug 18, 2014 in General | 0 comments


grounds-9998ps Surprised by God at Writers’ Conferences

By Cindy Lambert


I wonder sometimes when I’ll stop being surprised at how God shows up at writers’ conferences.

I’ve taught at quite a few over the years, and each time, I’ve had that “goose bump” feeling more  than once when I’ve witnessed God at work among his people. Serving on faculty at a writers’  conference means being given front-row seats to God’s story at work in the lives of writers and aspiring writers. I meet people who’ve encountered devastating loss and yet are willing to put their pain to God’s use in reaching out to others through their writing. I’ve seen new relationships formed when writers find kindred spirits from miles away and forge a bond of encouragement. I’ve seen people with great ideas meet people with the skills to capture their message effectively in writing. I’ve seen discouraged conferees come to grips with the reality that they have much to learn and are far from publishable—yet they seek God’s wisdom and discover that their writing is never wasted, never, because in the very act of writing they’ve grown to know God better and love him more. I’ve seen faces from years before and remembered when that person was an overwhelmed novice, so awkward on the page, so clueless about the process of publishing, and now they are successfully publishing and coaching others.

At the last conference where I served (Colorado Christian Writers’ Conference), I met a woman with a story that touched me so deeply that she and I have already forged a bond and are now working together. I was handed a copy of a published book that had been only a dream a few years before – and read in the acknowledgments that I’d helped shape that book! Who knew? I spoke to a dear elderly woman who had been a displaced, victimized orphan in Europe during WWII, and now all these decades later she is ready to write the account of God’s provision for her as her legacy to her family. She sought me out with a burning question: How do I write the truth of what was done to me without bringing pain or shame to the grandchildren of my abuser? My throat tightened with emotion as I looked into the gentle wise eyes peeking out of deep wrinkles. Her story could have produced an embittered hater, yet before me stood the evidence of a God of grace who’d worked his love into this woman’s heart. Now his work will spill out onto her pages and into the lives of her grandchildren and great grandchildren. I confess: I wanted to write her story myself, just so I could experience more of God’s grace personally!

God has whispered to me, shouted at me, nudged, guided, humbled, amazed and refreshed me at writers’ conferences. Why? Because his people have gathered together to seek him out, to follow his leading, to learn and stretch and grow and dream. God calls them there and meets them there. He is at work in his body! Is there a more beautiful sight?

That is why we’ve chosen this year’s theme verse at Maranatha Christian Writers’ Conference:  From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.

 Ephesians 4:16 (NIV)

That is why our 2014 theme is Every Writer Needs a Team. It’s true! None of us can go it alone. God has given us his body, filled with experience and skill and insight, and he’s fashioned us to work together to grow into all he calls us to be.

Today I was praying over the list of faculty and registrants (and yes, there is still time to register) and I was overcome, thinking of all the lives that will be intersecting September 15-18 along the lovely shoreline of Lake Michigan. God has already written the story of what will unfold there–lives to be touched, skills to be honed, discoveries to be made, relationships to be forged. I can’t wait to capture a glimpse of what he will be accomplishing.

I hope to meet some of you there and discover more of God’s story through you.

P.S. A special offer is available: $25 off all full event registrations. This discount is good through August 31. Enter promotional code buildmyteam2014 when registering.

Cindy Lambert

Program Director, Maranatha Christian Writers’ Conference

Publishing Strategist, Somersault

Collaborate Author, Freelance Editor

To learn more about Maranatha Christian Writers Conference, visit


Cindy Lambert, publishing strategist for Somersault and collaborative writer, is a veteran of the publishing industry devoted to excellence in furthering the impact of Christian publishing on our global culture. Cindy began her career as owner of an award-winning independent Christian bookstore in Maryland, then expanded into leadership roles in distribution, editorial, consumer research, and publishing at Ingram, Simon & Schuster, and Zondervan, where she most recently served as vice president and associate publisher of trade books. Lambert, editor of the #1 New York Times bestseller Mistaken Identity (Howard Books, 2009, Van Ryn, Cerak, Tabb), has worked alongside such bestselling authors as Mark Batterson, Kyle Idleman, Kay Warren, Ruth Graham, Debbie Macomber, and Christine Caine. As a collaborative writer, Cindy co-authored the bestselling book UnPlanned (Abby Johnson, Tyndale and Focus on the Family, 2010), 40 Days for Life (Bereit and Carney, Cappella Books, 2013) , One Light Still Shines (Marie Monville, Zondervan, 2013), and Unstoppable (Christine Caine, Zondervan, 2014)


PeggySue Wells: Bookstore Volunteer and Faculty Coordinator

Posted by on Aug 5, 2014 in General | 0 comments

PSW- arms folded
 Multi-tasking author, editor, teacher, and speaker, PeggySue Wells is the author of thousands of  articles  and two dozen books published nationally and internationally, translated into five  languages, and  include a Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestseller, audio finalist, and made  for TV film. PeggySue is a broadcast co-host, columnist, and writing coach. Her books focus on  strengthening  relationships, the intrepid human spirit, and our great God with whom all things  are  HIMpossible. 

Cindy Lambert, Program Director

Posted by on Jul 16, 2014 in General | 0 comments

LambertC Cindy  Lambert serves as program director for Maranatha Christian Writers’ Conference. Cindy is  the publishing strategist for Somersault Group and collaborative writer, began her career as    owner of an award-winning independent Christian bookstore, then expanded into leadership  roles  in distribution, editorial, consumer research, and publishing at Ingram, Simon & Schuster,  and  Zondervan, where she served as vice president and associate publisher of trade books. As a    collaborative writer, Cindy has co-authored the bestselling book UnPlanned with Abby Johnson    (Tyndale and Focus on the Family, 2010), 40 Days for Life  with Bereit and Carney (Cappella  Books, 2013), One Light Still Shines with Marie Monville (Zondervan, 2013), and Unstoppable with Christine Caine (Zondervan, 2014)She and her husband, Dave, have six children and nine grandchildren.

Premium Sessions

Posted by on Jun 18, 2014 in front page, General | 0 comments

Premium Sessions


In addition to the quality instruction you’ll get during workshops and general sessions, we offer three premium sessions for you to spend quality time with experts who will help you grow in very specifically targeted skills.These three special fee sessions require special advanced registration,  so make sure you read the instructions closely.

Follow the link below to register for these advanced sessions:


Pre-conference Proposal Workshop: Mapping Your Book from Concept to Consumer

A detailed exploration of the book proposal process, the seven audiences of a proposal, a proposal template you can use, and a plan for “mapping” the writing of your book. Taking this workshop Monday equips you to complete or refine your proposal prior to meeting with editors the rest of the week.

Monday morning, Sept. 15, 10:00 to 12:00.

Additional fee: $95.00

More Info


Professional Manuscript Editing & Consultation

Have you ever wanted to work with a professional editor? Take advantage of a one-on-one consultation with experienced editor and author, Lissa Halls Johnson. She will review 20 pages of your submitted project in advance of the conference and then provide a 30 minute consultation at the conference. Submissions are due no later than September 1, 2014Only the first 15 manuscripts will be accepted.
Additional fee: $50.00

More Info


Social Media Consultation

Know you need to beef up your social media and online presence, but not sure how to go about it? Finding it hard to keep up with the rapid-fire changes in the world of social media? Need advice from a specialist on social media tools and strategies? Unsure whether your time and effort are best spent on Facebook, Google Plus, Amazon author pages, or your blog? Then we encourage you to sign up for a private consultation with Tim Haines.

Social media specialist, Tim Haines, an associate of Somersault, will help you understand what strategy and tools will best serve you moving forward. The fee for the half-hour consultation is $50. Tim will be with us only on Monday the 15th and Tuesday the 16th, and his time is limited, so sign up as early as possible! Send your request to

Sign up now for your half-hour, private consultation with social media specialist, Tim Haines.

Additional fee: $50.00

To register for this premium service, email your request for Social Media Consultation to