Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Glancing Back to Last Autumn, "The Write Stuff, 2018"!

Last October the Great Lakes Chapter of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW-GLC) enjoyed a terrific day of information and inspiration in Jackson, Michigan. What did attendees think of that day? Here are a few quotes!

Worship leader Cody Morehead began the
meeting with a time of singing and worship.
Mary Vee:
      "I came home from The Write Stuff one-day conference with a mountain-peak experience. The speakers touched my specific needs at this time. I was extra pleased to have a one-on-one conversation with an agent. He answered all my questions and gave excellent advice. I feel like it's final exam week with all the new tasks on my list, but I  am ready for them, thanks to the teachings and encouragement at the conference. As an added bonus, I met with other great author friends and all in all, had a memorable time."

Patsy Reiter:
      "What an event! I learned so much about writing and publishing. Great speakers, wonderful fellow-ship, fantastic food, a terrific day. Thank you."

Editor Pegg Thomas discussed writing and
publishing from the editor's perspective:
"Where to Start Your Story" and "The Basics
of Story Structure.
Judy Eick:
      "Terrific conference, well organized, time frames maintained, and there was time available to visit with friends in the group. I liked the teaching, encouraging us to think beyond your current project, to thinking about your story as a screenplay – after all, why not you? Great day and worth the drive."

Kathryn Moore:
      "I loved it. The time of year was perfect. I liked how much you and the team were able to pack into a one-day event and the myriad guest speakers were fantastic. So much learning and networking close to home and for a very reasonable cost."


Joy Avery Melville: 
“It was a tremendous conference – so very, very glad I was able to attend. What a great group of writers we have in our state!
Melissa Kerley, Founder of the faith-based film company
Generation Courage, spoke on "Novels as Movies: Things
Writers Need to Know."
“I was impressed with the line-up - the schedule for the most part. The lunch and snacks were superb – great job there.”
“The only thing that bothered me: we travel so far and have so little time to talk one-on-one with the others present – especially other writers.
“It was so good to see new faces in the chapter – didn’t get to spend much time with most and got none with some – finding out where they live, what genre they write, which stage of this writing gig they’re at, etc. That was the only thing I feel was missing.
“You guys did a stupendous job, and I for one got a lot from the marketing presentation. The other was noteworthy too.”

Literary agent Cyle Young discussed "The Author Platform
Being Taken Seriously by Publishers."
Deb Allard: 
“The Write Stuff event surpassed my expectations. It was like a weekend conference condensed into 7 hours at a fraction of the cost. For $35 we heard five speakers give valuable information for our writing projects. It was the best deal I’ve ever come across, thanks to the hard work of all involved.”

Pegg Thomas:
      "It was a nice, laid-back event. No pressure, just a good time with encouragement and teaching and sharing."

      Plus, an unscheduled bonus was the appearance of film director Joel Reisig (not pictured), who works actively with Melissa Kerley at Courage Generation. Joel discussed what he, as a director, looks for in a screenplay, emphasizing Do's and Don'ts for authors who would like their novels to be considered for adaptation to film.
      Look for more upcoming events for ACFW-Great Lakes Chapter in 2019!

A final group photo pictures a bunch of happy writers and speakers who came 
together to fellowship and sharpen their creative skills for the Lord!

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Join Us October 27 - "The Write Stuff 2018"!


Christian writers! Join us in Jackson, Michigan, on October 27 for special day planned just for you!



Thursday, August 23, 2018

Leslie L. McKee - Edits and Reviews by Leslie: Takeover Thursday with Catherine Brakefield ... an...

Leslie L. McKee - Edits and Reviews by Leslie: Takeover Thursday with Catherine Brakefield ... an...: Catherine is here to share a bit about her series, as well as her latest release . She's offered to give away a hard copy of t...

Monday, January 22, 2018

"Fireside Chat" for ACFW - Great Lakes Chapter!

by Catherine Brakefield


The United States had reached the bottom of hopelessness during the Great Depression years. Between 25 and 33 percent of the work force was unemployed! Then Franklin D. Roosevelt decided to hold the first of his radio broadcasts, which became known as “Fireside Chats.”

Our Great Lakes Chapter has just 10 percent of its members willing to participate and accept the challenge of growing, learning, and encouraging their fellow GLC members.

My hope for GLC is to become a unit of caring, encouraging, and spiritual confidants for this glove of the United States. GLC members can be that hand from which Christ’s message flows throughout Michigan and spills into other states and into the world. There is a great mission field in the GLC for our Christian literature. We need to get the word of encouragement and inspiration out to a struggling society, most of which does not realize they are lost or needing a Savior!

Through the 30 speeches Roosevelt gave in his fireside chats, people related to and felt the problems of a nation. Yes, the American people responded, feeling that bond and that handshake of friendship FDR offered.

Well, we won’t be having 30 fireside chats. Just one, for now. Let’s get united in a common bond to see the GLC flourish like never before!

Kathy Rouser has graciously invited us into her home from 2 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, January 27th, for our first fireside chat for this 2018 year (2117 Cobblestone Lane, Brighton, MI 48114). We will be having soup and salad. I’m bringing the dessert. (That’s my favorite part of every meal. I’ve heard Kathy makes some fantastic soup, so I just might be changing my preferences!) If you’d like to bring something, we are presently looking for someone who does a great salad.

Do you have a new book out, or a book pending? Bring the information for our next newsletter. Everyone, please bring a copy of your one sheet, and a reference book that helped in your writing career. Most of all, bring your ideas for what you
would like to see covered in the GLC for 2018. 

You don’t have a one sheet? You will after this Fireside Chat”! You don’t have a favorite reference book? You will after this “Fireside Chat”!

Also, plans are in the works for a one-day conference in the Jackson area for either April or May; a weekend retreat (location undecided at this time); and a special GLC gathering at the ACFW Conference held in Tennessee. You have something to offer GLC! We look forward to seeing you on January 27th.

P.S.: If you intend to come, please RSVP at catherineulrichbrakefield@yahoo.com. (And if you have questions or would like to host the next Fireside Chat, drop me a line at the same address!)

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Mark your writer calendar for Oct. 28!


The Great Lakes Chapter of ACFW is pleased to announce a terrific event for Christian writers. But this isn't a mere luncheon! It's an afternoon called "The Write Stuff!" for all of you who enjoy food, fellowship, information, inspiration, and motivation for the writing side of your life. We've lined up TWO speakers who know their stuff and are ready to help you take your writing to the next level. To make the day a tasty treat, it will be held at La Herradura Mexican restaurant, and you will enjoy whichever lunch meal (and maybe dessert?) that you decide to purchase. 

Please see the flyer for details. Better yet, share this news with a writer friend and join us together!


Questions, or ready to RSVP? Write us at ACFWGreatLakesChapter@gmail.com.


Tuesday, January 31, 2017





                                        UNITED WE STAND!

Exciting plans for the February 25 board meeting to be held at 3303 Curtis Rd., Leonard, MI. The meeting will begin promptly at 1 p.m. I will be sending a tentative agenda next week.

What I need from you NOW is a head count on who will be attending for two specific reasons:

1. Terri Styles from Oxford Cable TV will be here to do a documentary about ACFW-GLC and will include five-minute segments with each author (so they can promote themselves and their books).

2. After the documentary, Terri will “cut” each author interview to allow every author access to their five-minute segment for YouTube. This will be a great promotional tool for you to use for advertising purposes.

What I will need from all GLC members attending February’s meeting:

1. Your name and e-mail/address telling me that you will be attending the Saturday February 25 meeting at 1 p.m. and:

2. Enclose how long you’ve been an ACFW-GLC member, the name of your most recent book and a short blurb about you and your book. This I will forward to Terri of Oxford Cable TV so she is prepared.

3. Dress to impress. Bring with you a one sheet that Terri can keep.

I hope to see everyone there. E-mail me at catherineulrichbrakefield@yahoo.com Bring yourself, your books, and your ideas for our GREAT Lakes Chapter. Plan on brainstorming, and plan to make this a GREAT year for GLC members to learn, improve, and promote books this 2017 year.  May our good Lord bless and keep you!

Catherine Brakefield, President
Ed Brakefield, Vice President/Treasurer
Rick Barry, Secretary


P.S. Treasurer Ed Brakefield has informed me that four members have paid their 2017 dues. Please mail your check for $10.00 or ($11.00 via Paypal) to: Ed Brakefield, 3303 Curtis Rd., Leonard, MI 48367, made out to ACFW-Great Lakes Chapter

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Have you ever done something—or not done something you felt you might regret?

When I first heard that our Great Lakes Chapter might close, I thought, “What a loss.” I learned so much from the chapter conferences and enjoyed meeting new writers. The camaraderie of sitting down at the breakfast table with our Great Lakes group during an ACFW Conference helped me gather up my courage for the day ahead.

Throughout the Great Lakes Chapter years, many dedicated writers have worked hard in making this chapter a success. I understand that everyone is busy and there is hardly time in the day to accomplish what needs to be accomplished. Daniel sums this up better that I in 12:4 “…many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase.” Writers, our time is short to make a difference in a reader’s life. The days, weeks, and months appear to fly by. Just where did 2016 go?

Learning that this Great Lakes Chapter is the ONLY chapter representing Michigan caused me to ponder our options.  Reinstating another chapter in the future would end the history of this chapter’s accomplishments. The dedication of those writers who have kept the torch burning and participated in a board of directors’ capacity would be lost.

I am much to blame. I used the excuse for not volunteering on the board due to my busy lifestyle and because of my inexperience on social networking.

I am not savvy on social media. I have just sent out my first Mailchimp e-mail last month! My blog posting is irregular; I have Skype but know little about how to us it and my author Facebook page often gets overridden by my public Facebook page! I don’t understand Twitter and I never heard of YouTube until CrossRiver introduced me to this.

To end this diatribe, my husband and I have spoken to regional ACFW rep Michelle Lim, and Michelle and Ane Mulligan are willing to help us keep ACFW Great Lakes Chapter alive! Karin Beery and Pegg Thomas have been wonderful and extremely supportive!  

So let’s do something we shall never regret! Send your dues to the Great Lakes Paypal account for $11.00 or mail your check to Ed or Cathy Brakefield, 3303, Curtis Rd, Leonard, MI 48367 and please MAKE OUT YOUR CHECK TO: ACFW Great Lakes Chapter in the amount of $10.00.

There will be a meeting at my house on February 25 or 26 (depending on the weather) for 2017 members. Address is above (6 miles NW of Oxford; 10 miles NE of Romeo, 12 miles N of Rochester ). Plan on brainstorming.  Be prepared to give a one liner about your latest book.  There will be a photo opt. I need pictures to put on Great Lakes’ facebook page and also for advertising purposes. Oh, and bring your laptops.


People can’t know about us if we don’t tell them about our group! Thanks to my publisher, CrossRiver Media Group YouTube and social networking is no longer my enemy! I will need a head count for the pizza and bring a dish if you like (not required). Be prepared, I still have my Christmas trees up! Hope you can make this fun event! You can e-mail me at CatherineUlrichBrakefield@yahoo.com  or call me at 248 628-4415.