American Christian Fiction Writers
Kristin Billerbeck

Our new publicity officer has previously served on ACFW’s advisory board. Kristin Billerbeck is a best-selling, Carol Award–winning author of over thirty novels, novellas, and one nonfiction title. Credited with helping to bring Chick Lit to the CBA, she appeared on the Today Show to discuss the new genre and was written up in the New York Times, The Atlanta Journal Constitution, World Magazine and USA Today. Kristin’s novel What a Girl Wants sold over 100,000 copies and is currently being shopped as a movie. Many of her novels have been translated into several languages. She holds a degree in advertising from San Jose State University and is a proud fourth-generation Californian. She lives in the Silicon Valley with her family. Please visit Kristin’s website for more information:

Why Enter Contests?

Fiction Finder

As an up-and-coming writer, do you wonder why contests are so prevalent in the writing industry? Here are just a few reasons that you might want to consider entering a contest. More specifically, the prestigious Genesis contest with ACFW.

1. Contest judges, fellow writers and industry professionals, provide feedback on your writing without the fear of rejection. Sending your baby off to a complete stranger is frightening, but this contest gives you time to make corrections before a publisher sees it.

2. Contests are often judged by published authors who have connections to publishers. Judges can help you get your foot in the door if your book is ready for publication. Chances are that author will tell his or her editor about you.

3. Final judging is often done by an editor for a house you may be targeting. This is a way to get your manuscript out of the slush pile and in front of the editor.

4. Many publishers aren’t open to unsolicited manuscripts, and contests provide an opportunity to bypass this system. (Writing conferences, though expensive, are another route.)

5. Winning contests gets your name posted in various places, and anytime your name is out there to be seen by publishers and fellow writers provides an imprint. As your name gets seen more and more often, it becomes clear that you’re serious about this trade. It gives you recognition.

6. It feels good to win! Sure, you may not always get the feedback you’d like, but writing is subjective, and seeing various takes on your work provides a better idea of who your target market is.

ACFW’s Genesis Contest offers unpublished authors the opportunity to compete in nine categories within the Christian fiction genre. Here are this year’s finalists. The winners will be awarded at this year’s conference (, September 22–25 in St. Louis, Missouri.


Will your name be listed next year?

Katy Pistole
Lori Stafford
Delores Topliff

Pepper Basham
Mary Curry
Jessica Nelson

Johnnie Alexander Donley
S. C. Iles
Renee Yancy

Sarah Ladd
Naomi Rawlings
Sherri Shakelford

Dianna T. Benson
Shelley Ledfors
Bethany Macmanus

Kelli Hughett
Renee Ann Smith
Jan Warren

Patrick Carr
Matt Jones
Christian Miles

Sally Bradley
Camille Eide
Karen Schravemade

Pepper Basham
Stephanie Landsem
Nicole Quigley