American Christian Fiction Writers
Cara Putman

Cara Putman is a woman living a dream. Barbour's Heartsong Presents has released six of her books, including Canteen Dreams, a WWII historical set in Nebraska that won the ACFW 2008 Book of the Year for Short Historical. She also has written romantic suspense for Harlequin's Love Inspired Suspense, contemporary mysteries for Guidepost, a historical romantic suspense for Summerside, and the Complete Idiots Guide to Business Law. Cara is an attorney, wife, mom to four, homeschool teacher, occasional professor at Purdue, active at her church, and all around crazy woman. Crazy about God, her husband and her kids. Visit her at

ACFW Conference: Are You Coming?

Fiction Finder

In just a couple months, more than six hundred authors, writers, editors, agents, and other publishing professionals will descend on the Hyatt Regency St. Louis at the Arch for four days of fellowship, teaching, and celebrating. Each year almost a third of those who attend come for the very first time.

Casey Herringshaw is coming for the first time for “[l]earning opportunities. To stretch my brain in new directions while meeting and socializing with others of my faith and ‘novel’ quirks. After listening to three years’ worth of conference recordings, the value that will be received from just being there is going to be astronomical! I am more than excited to see what God does.”

Best-selling author and conference emcee Brandilyn Collins always tells attendees that one of the best parts of conference is that for one weekend a year, writers are surrounded by other writers…people who get the unique way we think. “We just have to be careful, since we share the hotel with normals who get a little nervous while standing in an oh-so-small elevator with a half dozen authors who start talking about effective ways to kill people.”

There are the pitch meetings with editors and agents, but at ACFW the editors and agents are also available at meals and often in the lobby. It’s fun to watch them interact with everyone, from multi-published, best-selling authors to those who dream of completing their first novel.

The conference has five levels of continuing education classes taught by pros like DiAnn Mills, Randy Ingermanson, Jeff Gerke, Erin Healy, Allen Arnold, Jim Rubart, and Julie Gwinn. Then there are thirty workshops and eleven spotlights on different publishers. As Jeff Gerke says, “If you’re a Christian who writes fiction, you have to come experience what it’s like to be surrounded by six hundred other people just as wonderfully crazy as you. Great teaching, excellent networking opportunities, and best friends waiting to be met.”

I can’t imagine a year without the conference. From the worship sessions to the classes to the squeals of excitement as online friends turn into face-to-face friends, it’s four days locked on my calendar.

I hope you’ll join us this year. Come see what makes the ACFW conference such a special place for novelists, both published and in-training.