Classes 2017-11-14T11:37:39+00:00

2018 classes to be announced soon.

Below is a list of 2017 Classes.


At Blue Lake Christian Writer’s Retreat, we offer fiction and nonfiction continuing classes and workshops. A continuing class runs three days, with new material  each day. A workshop is only offered once.

Our classes are designated at different levels so you can choose the right one for yourself. A beginner’s class (B) is for new writers who are getting started or want to learn more about a topic. An intermediate class (I) is for writers who have some experience and desire to hone their craft or learn more about a particular area of writing. An advanced class (A) is for experienced writers who are published and furthering their careers.

You may register for classes when you check in on Wednesday.

Eva Marie Everson

Eva Marie Everson

Foundations of Fiction (Taught through Film) (Fiction Continuing Class, B/I)
In an innovative and hardly boring series of ongoing classes, Eva Marie teaches the dynamics of writing fiction using the 1940 movie Rebecca, the 1947 film Daisy Kenyon, the 2000 film The Nephew, or the 2009 movie Loving Leah (based on the class). The class spends time watching the video, breaking it down scene-by-scene, character-by-character, plot point-by-plot point, writing out scenes and repeating until the movie ends. Eva Marie provides pages from her own “workbook” that teach concepts such as “The First Three Things,” “Conflict/Scene by Scene,” “Backstory Timeline,” and more.

How to Write a Good Proposal  (Workshop, B/I/A)
What does an author need to include in a proposal? How can you make your proposal attract agents/editors?

Susan King

How to Become a Best-selling Author writing Devotions and Articles (Continuing Class, B/I)
It’s not a hard cover and you’re not the only author on those pages, but when a magazine publishes your work, you reach thousands more people with your message than most books do—and with a much faster turnaround time. This class will focus on analyzing magazine and devotional markets, and writing and marketing your non-fiction devotions and articles.

Typically, the shorter the piece, the harder it is to write. And publishers expect much from the 300-word length of a typical devotional. The practice of writing devotionals also provides great spiritual discipline. After all, connecting God’s Word to the experiences of our lives is what Christians should be doing every day. So why not write about this connection and publish for a magazine that reaches millions of readers worldwide?


Kathi Macias

James Watkins

Three Things Today’s Book Author Must Have: Part 1 and 2 (workshops)
In today’s publishing world, a book author must have a “brand,” a “platform” and an “online presence.” This two-part session will demystify these terms and provide practical ways to develop these essential tools for the would-be book author.

Connie Stevens

Kim Vogel Sawyer

Building A Strong Story Foundation (Fiction Continuing Class B/I/A)

Part 1  Characters That Walk Off the Page (Into Your Reader’s Heart)—Gingerbread men are wonderful treats at Christmastime, but no reader wants to find cookie-cutter characters in a story. Participants will explore the elements needed to bring characters to life on the page and will practice using their own works-in-progress as the basis for study.

Part 2  Plotting for Seat-of-the-Pants Writers—A seat-of-the-pants writer enjoys the surprise of creation (who knows what will happen next?), but the downside of such writing is that it’s easy to write yourself into a corner. By employing a few simple techniques of planning roadblocks involving all three story threads, a map guides the SOTP-er to a satisfying conclusion for both writer and reader.

Part 3  Settings That Live and Breathe—A writer’s goal is to transport the reader into his story world. Creating a setting that is as rich and real as the characters provides this experience. Writers will examine their current work for sensory imaging and work together with the facilitator to build in the sights, sounds, scents, textures, and emotions that bring the setting to life on the page.

Building a Professional Speaking Ministry— (Fiction and Nonficiton workshop) Writing and speaking often go hand-in hand, but on what topics should a writer speak? How much should he charge? How often should he schedule speaking events? These questions and more, including how to stay on the right side of the IRS, are addressed in this practical, thought-provoking workshop that guides the writer in connecting more intimately with his readers

Connie Stevens

Connie Stevens

Seize the “What If?” (Fiction Workshop, B/I)
Brainstorming your story—where do you begin? Start by asking questions and creating circumstances to twist your plot, layer the threads, and complicate your characters’ lives.

Fire the Narrator (Fiction Workshop, B/I)
Take Showing vs. Telling one step further. Whose story is it? Weed out that pesky narrator’s voice and let your characters tell their own story.

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