Cascade Christian Writers Conference Faculty

2022 Cascade Christian Writers Conference

Editors, Agents, and Mentors

Oregon Christian Writers is pleased to introduce the wonderful editors, agents and mentors who will join us for the Summer Conference. For editors and agents, pay particular attention to types/genres of writing they want to acquire. 

Agents

Rachelle L. Gardner ~ Gardner Literary ~ Founder and Literary Agent

Rachelle Gardner is an agent with Gardner Literary LLC, representing fiction and nonfiction. Having worked in publishing since 1995, Rachelle has been on the inside of two publishing houses in sales, marketing, and editorial. She’s been an agent for 14 years and currently represents an impressive list of 75 best-selling and award-winning authors, in addition to coaching unagented authors. Rachelle is seeking fresh new voices at the intersection of faith and culture.

Rachelle is looking for:

Fiction – psychological thriller, contemporary upmarket women’s fiction.

Nonfiction – deconstructing and reconstructing faith; asking hard questions about faith; books by BIPOC authors; books that grapple with racial issues, LGBTQ+ issues, and all social issues; deeper spirituality and prayer books; feminism and women’s issues; memoirs about any of the above; family life—interested in unique and/or extraordinary takes on parenting and family, whether it’s memoir or self-help. All submissions must be well-written and the author should have a platform.

Rachelle is not looking for cookbooks, poetry, short stories, novellas, screenplays, graphic novels, children’s, middle grade, or YA books.

Workshop: “How Do I Decide? Traditional or Indie Publishing”

Coaching Class: “Pen to Published”

 

Linda S. Glaz ~ Hartline Literary ~ Agent

Linda is married with four grands, and, yes, they are, thank you! She has been with Hartline Literary Agency for 10 years and represents authors in both fiction and nonfiction. She loves, loves, loves romantic suspense, suspense, historical, historical romance, other fiction, and a great piece of nonfiction with someone who gets that marketing is rule number one in today’s industry.

Linda is looking for:

Fiction – all types with the exception of children’s and spec.

Nonfiction with a timely hook and where the author understands the need for platform in today’s industry.

Linda is not looking for children’s or spec fiction

Workshop: “You Need a First Page That Pops and Pops Again”

“Historic Laundry List: Putting People to Sleep in Different Eras”

 

Nick Harrison ~ WordServe Literary ~ Author Advisor

Nick Harrison is a book scout and author advisor with WordServe Literary, who has written more than a dozen books, both fiction and nonfiction. Nick graduated from San Jose State University with a degree in English and a minor in journalism. After graduation, Nick transitioned into bookstore management, overseeing a Zondervan Family Bookstore, then eventually owning his own store. For 15 years Nick served as a senior editor at Harvest House Publishers, acquiring both fiction and nonfiction. Nick has a long history of championing new and unpublished writers. Nick and his wife, Beverly, an avid quilter,  are the parents of three grown daughters and grandparents to two boys and two girls.

Nick is looking for fiction and nonfiction (spiritual life, men’s books, women’s books, prayer).

Nick is not looking for prophecy, poetry, gift books, or children’s books.

Coaching Class: “What I’ve Learned”

 

Tawny Johnson ~ Illuminate Literary Agency ~ Agent

Tawny Johnson has learned to rely on her professional instincts to recognize books that will have a solid message and win readers’ hearts. She first honed this ability during her years of experience as a bookstore manager, regional manager, product buyer, and marketing manager for a chain of 10 successful Christian bookstores. After her career in retail, she moved into publishing at Multnomah Press, where she shared her expertise in marketing and advertising while becoming adept at negotiating international book rights. In 2014, Tawny became a literary agent with Don Jacobson and Jenni Burke at D.C. Jacobson & Associates. When Jenni acquired the agency and rebranded it to Illuminate Literary, Tawny joined her there.

Tawny is looking for nonfiction only – Christian living, men’s, women’s, and marriage.

Tawny is not looking for children’s, Bible studies, poetry, memoirs, or fiction.

 

Barbara L. Roose ~ Books & Such Literary Management ~ Agent

Barb Roose is a literary agent with Books & Such Literary Management, representing nonfiction and adult fiction exclusively to Christian publishers. She loves partnering with authors to achieve their publishing career goals. With experience as an author, award-winning pharmaceutical sales representative, and executive leader in the megachurch environment, Barb embraces the challenges and opportunities that agenting in Christian publishing offers. She is the proud mother of three adult daughters; and, whenever possible, Barb prefers to eat dessert first.

Barb is looking for:

Nonfiction – women’s issues, Christian living issues, devotionals, race & culture, memoirs, narrative nonfiction.

Fiction – women’s, romantic suspense, suspense/thriller, historical, romance, legal and family issues.

Barb is not looking for fantasy, cookbooks, sci-fi, YA books, poetry, children’s, pandemic/Covid-theme fiction or nonfiction related, or picture books.

Workshops: “Platform 101”

“Greenlight Your Way to a Literary Agent”

 

Editors

Andrew Breeden ~ The Upper Room daily devotional guide ~ Acquisitions Editor

Andrew Breeden is the acquisitions editor of The Upper Room. Between an internship and full-time employment, he has worked at The Upper Room for more than 10 years. He attended Lipscomb University and Vanderbilt University Divinity School. He is a native middle Tennessean, lives in a small town not far from Nashville, and loves the outdoors―hiking and cycling in particular.

Andrew is looking for short devotional pieces (“meditations”) of 250–300 words that help readers see the connection between Scripture and what God is doing in the writer’s life. He looks for three elements in every meditation: a personal story, a connection to Scripture, and application or “takeaway” for the reader.

Andrew is not looking for poetry, fiction, cartoons, or humor. Since The Upper Room is translated into more than 30 languages, they do not publish meditations built on alliteration, puns, hymns, or situations that require extensive explanation for other cultures.

Workshop: “Writing a Meditation for The Upper Room

 

Rochelle Gloege ~ Bethany House Publishers ~ Senior Acquisitions Editor

Rochelle Gloege is a senior acquisitions editor at Bethany House Publishers, a division of Baker Publishing Group. Bethany House has been a part of her life since her grandmother first put a copy of Love Comes Softly into her hands. During the more than 25 years Rochelle has edited and acquired for Bethany House, she has had the privilege of working with many best-selling and award-winning authors, including Janette Oke, Beverly Lewis, and Julie Klassen. Rochelle and her family call Minnesota’s beautiful Twin Cities home.

Rochelle is looking for historical and women’s fiction, as well as romance in all its inspirational forms, including historical, dual time, and suspense. She prefers stories with a strong sense of place and interesting, relatable characters. Elements of mystery are always welcome.

Rochelle is not looking for children’s books, apocalyptic fiction, fantasy, or sci-fi.

Coaching Class: “What I’ve Learned”

 

Linda Howard ~ Tyndale House Publishers ~ Associate Publisher

Linda Howard is Associate Publisher for Children and Youth at Tyndale House Publishers. She brings an extensive background of working with children and children’s products to her role, including teaching, marketing, and product development for several brands. Linda currently leads the kids’ team, developing an overall strategy for Tyndale Children and Youth, acquiring projects, and overseeing product development of all books. She has also worked in the marketing arena and built strong relationships with several of Tyndale’s publishing partners. She oversees the Compassion International Publishing partnership and has worked with best-selling authors Ann Voskamp, Mike Nawrocki, Amy Parker, John Ortberg, and more.

Linda is looking for devotionals, board books, picture books, middle grade, and YA fiction and nonfiction.

Linda is not looking for adult fiction or nonfiction.

Workshop: “Publishing Financials 101”

 

Terri Kalfas ~ Grace Publishing House ~ Founder and Publisher

Terri Kalfas began her career as a journalist, working as a newspaper reporter, freelance writer, managing editor, and editor before making the move to Christian book publishing. In the Christian market she has held positions ranging from editor to publisher. She has been on the faculty at writers’ conferences across the US and in Canada, speaking, teaching workshops and continuing classes, and critiquing manuscripts. In 2013, Terri founded Grace Publishing House, an independent Christian publisher with the intent to develop and distribute resources that challenge, encourage, teach, equip, and entertain young and old in their personal journeys.

Terri is looking for
Fiction
Nonfiction
Bible study
Memoir
Anthology series (not a compilation of one author’s work)

Terri is not looking for

Poetry
Children’s picture books
Speculative fiction

Coaching Class: “What I’ve Learned”

 

Susan King ~ Short and Sweet series ~ Compiler and Editor

Compiler and editor of the Short and Sweet series, Susan King (https://susankingedits.com/) offers editorial services that include editing (nonfiction books, novels, devotionals, articles, Bible studies, and more) and also mentoring writers. While serving 24 years as an editor for The Upper Room devotional magazine, she began teaching at what are now more than 100 Christian writers’ conferences in the U.S. and Canada. Her professional life has also included 27 years of teaching English and feature-writing classes at Lipscomb University, Biola University, and Abilene Christian University. Early in her career, Susan served as a book editor and radio-program producer/on-air talent, wrote magazine features as a freelance writer, and functioned as a seminar facilitator in leadership and group dynamics. Susan and husband, Joe, live in middle Tennessee and have three grown children, two grandsons, and two foster grandsons. Ask her about the latest Short and Sweet story assignments.

Susan is looking for: 

short nonfiction, short fiction, poetry

Susan is not looking for: 

scripts, Bible studies, novels

Coaching Class: “Writing Nonfiction—from the Ground Up”

 

Sherri Langton ~ Bible Advocate and Now What? ~ Associate Editor

Sherri Langton has worked in Christian publishing for more than 30 years. She is an award-winning freelance writer whose work has appeared in Focus on the Family magazines, In Touch, The Upper Room, Today’s Christian Woman, Marriage Partnership, Discipleship Journal, Decision, LIVE, and other publications. She is currently writing on assignment for AG News, Standard, and The Quiet Hour. Sherri has also contributed to two Chicken Soup for the Soul volumes, My Turn to Care, Teatime Stories for Women, Becoming a Godly Man, Faces of Faith, Hurray God!, and Understanding Depression and Suicide: Hope in the Darkness. In addition, she teaches workshops at several Christian writers’ conferences. Sherri lives in Denver, Colorado, and plays drums and percussion at her church.

Sherri is looking for personal experiences, articles, and testimonies.

Sherri is not looking for fiction, devotionals, or Bible studies.

Workshops: “Writing Articles That Teach”

“The Literature of Personal Disaster”

 

Rachel Pfeiffer ~ Focus on the Family Clubhouse and Clubhouse Jr. magazines ~ Senior Associate Editor

Rachel Pfeiffer serves as the senior associate editor for Focus on the Family Clubhouse Jr. magazine and as a contributing editor for Focus on the Family Clubhouse magazine, acquiring and editing stories to entertain and engage children. She graduated from Taylor University with a degree in professional writing and has published a variety of freelance articles. When Rachel isn’t curled up with a good book, she can often be found hiking the beautiful mountains in Colorado.

Rachel is looking for articles for both magazines. –

Clubhouse, a Christian magazine for kids ages 8–12

  • Fiction stories: choose-your-own-adventure, contemporary, science fiction, historical
  • Personality features of ordinary kids doing extraordinary things
  • Quizzes (multiple choice or true/false) that teach a biblical concept or character trait
  • Factual stories from a Christian worldview that talk about apologetics, biblical archeology or Christian values
  • Recipes and crafts

–Clubhouse Jr., a Christian magazine for kids ages 3–7

  • Fiction stories: choose-your-own-adventure, contemporary, science fiction, historical
  • Poetry
  • Bible stories
  • Rebus stories
  • Nature features
  • Recipes and crafts

Rachel is not looking for:

–Clubhouse, a Christian magazine for kids ages 8–12

  • Stories where adults solve every problem
  • Mystery stories (They have a monthly column.)
  • Stories that deal with boy-girl relationships
  • Preachy sounding stories with an overbearing moral or message
  • Bible stories
  • Poetry

–Clubhouse Jr., a Christian magazine for kids ages 3–7

  • Stories where adults solve every problem
  • Puzzles
  • Preachy sounding stories with an overbearing moral or message

Workshops: “Dos and Don’ts of Writing for Children”

“Writing for Focus on the Family”

 

Janyre Tromp ~ Kregel Publications ~ Editor

Janyre Tromp has worked in the Christian publishing industry for more than 20 years, spending time in both marketing and editorial. Currently, she is a developmental and acquisitions editor for Kregel Publications by day and a writer at night. For the record, you pronounce her name Jan-air . . . like the stove, but not like the book. She loves talking about books and interacts regularly with authors on Twitter (http://www.twitter.com/JanyreTromp), including biweekly writing and editing tips.

Janyre is looking for:

Nonfiction – titles that tackle contemporary issues, using a single biblical story or book. Also looking for manuscripts that deal with issues surrounding mental health, adults with special needs, social justice, as well as new takes on perennial topics like women’s issues, marriage, and parenting.

Fiction – historical romance, contemporary suspense, historical fiction, and women’s fiction with biblical grounding. Please no poetry, scripts, or memoir. One sheets, proposals, and synopses are helpful but not necessary. First-time authors welcome.

Janyre is not looking for speculative, memoir, poetry, or scripts.

Workshops: “Three Things Editors Want in an Author”

“Turning Your Speaking Ministry into a Book”

 

Authors/Mentors

Karen Barnett ~ Author

Karen Barnett is the award-winning author of eight historical romance and dual timeline novels, including When Stone Wings Fly and the Vintage National Parks Novels. Before becoming a writer, she worked as a ranger and naturalist at Mount Rainier National Park and Oregon’s Silver Falls State Park. When not writing, Karen enjoys public speaking, photography, hiking, and cake decorating. She and her husband live in Albany, Oregon, and are enjoying their first official year as empty-nesters.

Coaching Class: “Write Like a Published Novelist”

  

Melanie Dobson ~ Author

Melanie Dobson is the award-winning author of more than 20 historical romance, suspense, and time-slip novels. Five of her novels, Memories of Glass, Chateau of Secrets, Catching the Wind, The Silent Order, and Love Finds You in Homestead, Iowa, have received Carol Awards. Catching the Wind received the Inspirational Fiction Audie Award in 2018 and was nominated for a Christy Award in historical fiction. The Black Cloister, her novel about a dangerous cult, was named the ForeWord Religious Fiction Book of the Year.

 

Heidi Gaul ~ Freelance Writer

Heidi Gaul lives in Oregon’s Willamette Valley, where she gardens, hikes, and seeks new adventures. A former Bible Study Fellowship group leader and Cascade Award winner for devotionals, she has contributed to nine Guideposts devotionals, including Every Day with Jesus, Mornings with Jesus (2019–2024 editions), One-Minute Daily Devotional, and Pray a Word a Day. Many of her pieces have also appeared in The Upper Room. Her stories are included in 11 Chicken Soup for the Soul anthologies. She has also judged for major Christian writing competitions and enjoys speaking, leading workshops, and mentoring groups. She would love to hear from you at www.HeidiGaul.com or on Facebook.

Workshops: “Five Steps to Marketable Devotions”

“Broken Dreams and Detours”

  

Linda L. Kruschke ~ Editor of OCW’s Swallow’s Nest, freelance writer

Linda L. Kruschke writes candid memoir and fearless poetry and delves into hard issues others tend to avoid. She aspires to show women that God’s redemption and healing are just a story away. She is the editor-in-chief of OCW’s annual Swallow’s Nest poetry journal and the Cascade Writing Contest Coordinator. She has published two full-length poetry books and has been published in Fathom Magazine, Bible Advocate, The Christian Journal, Divine Purpose blog and magazine, and several other online publications and anthologies. She is also a regular contributor to Anchored Voices blog and Broken Believers blog.

Workshop: “Short Form Poetry for All” – a hands-on workshop exploring several short forms of poetry, including haiku, octave, tanka, quintain, sevenling, and more.

 

Christina Suzann Nelson ~ Novelist with Bethany House Publishing ~ CCWC Conference Director

Christina Suzann Nelson is an inspirational speaker and the award-winning author of five books including More Than We Remember, Shaped by the Waves, and the Christy Award-winning The Way It Should Be. She is the mother of six children, an advocate for children in foster care, a substitute teacher, Cascade Christian Writers Conference director, and the wife of her partner in this crazy adventure. 

Coaching Class: “What I’ve Learned”

 

James L. Rubart ~ Second Mile Studios ~ Owner and Author

James L. Rubart believes he is 28 years old, but lives trapped inside an older man’s body. He thinks he’s still young enough to water ski like a madman and dirt bike with his two grown sons. He’s the best-selling, Christy Hall of Fame, CAROL, INSPY, and RT Book Reviews award-winning author of 16 novels and loves to send readers on mind-bending spiritual journeys they will remember months after they finish one of his stories. He’s also a branding expert and audio book narrator. He lives with his amazing wife on a small lake in eastern Washington.

Coaching Class: “Quantum-Level Branding & Marketing”

 

Shawn Smucker ~ Author

Shawn Smucker is the award-winning author of The Weight of Memory, Light from Distant Stars, and These Nameless Things; young adult novels The Day the Angels Fell and The Edge of Over There; and the memoir Once We Were Strangers. He lives with his wife and six children in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, where they record their podcast for writers, “The Stories Between Us,” and teach online writing classes. You can find him at www.shawnsmucker.com or www.thestoriesbetweenus.com.

Workshops: “Freewriting Your Way to a Better Ending”

“Four Practices to Take Your Writing Deeper”

“Co-Writing and Ghostwriting: Collaborating as a Way of Making Money as a Writing”

“Free Indirect Style: Why You Might Want to Ditch First Person for Close Third”

 

Jaime Jo Wright ~ Author

Jaime Jo Wright has won Daphne du Maurier and Christy awards. She resides in the hills of Wisconsin, where she writes suspenseful mysteries stained with history’s secrets. Jaime lives in dreamland, exists in reality, and invites you to join her adventures at www.jaimewrightbooks.com.

Workshops: “How to Bake without Burning It”

“How to Be Spiritual without Being Annoying”