2015 Meetings

ACFW Colorado Springs generally meets the first Saturday of each month from 10 a.m. – noon (check schedule below) at First Evangelical Free Church, 820 N 30th Street, in Colorado Springs. We are happy to have you attend up to two meetings if you want to check us out before joining.


Allen ArnoldJanuary 3rd


Topic:  Your Invitation into Bohemian Creativity

 With passion and practical insights, Allen helps reset the foundation for Christian writers with this wildly counter-intuitive session. Prepare for a taste of “bohemian creativity” that is a feast for both the imagination and soul as you enter the creative playground with God, awaken to your “truer” voice, learn to survive creative deserts, embrace the themes and the scars of your story, and infuse your writing with the glow of eternity.

BIO: Allen Arnold loves the epic adventure God has set before him. His personal ministry is to help artists create from an awakened heart. It is an invitation into creative intimacy for songwriters, poets, chefs, novelists…anyone who desires to create with the Creator. He passionately pursues his calling to the larger creative community as a featured or keynote speaker at numerous gatherings and conferences each year.

From the mountains of Colorado, Allen also leads Content & Resources for Ransomed Heart Ministries – a ministry founded by the New York Times Bestselling Author of Wild at Heart, John Eldredge. Before that, Allen worked at several top advertising agencies in Dallas and then spent 20 years in Christian Publishing at Thomas Nelson. While there, he led the strategic branding and marketing campaigns for many of the world’s most popular Christian books.

In his second decade within Christian publishing, he pursued his love of story by founding Thomas Nelson Fiction. As Publisher, he oversaw the launch of more than 500 novels. Publishers Weekly deemed this new Fiction Publisher one of their “40 under 40” – meaning a rising talent to watch who was under 40 years old. In 2012, Allen received the ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers) Lifetime Achievement Award – an honor only bestowed to three people prior to him.

But that doesn’t really describe the man. Allen savors time with his family, craves the beach, drinks salsa by the glass, and is hooked on the TV series “Once Upon a Time.”


Susan Mathis February 7th


Topic:  Organize Your Writing Project & Your Writing Life!

Organizing your writing project—and your writing life—can help you succeed as a writer. Whether you’re planning your book, scheduling your writing time, finding the right tools to help you get organized, or getting ready to write the next Great American Novel, organization is key. This workshop will give you practical tools to do just that.

BIO: Susan is a published author, freelance writer, editor, a publication’s consultant, a writing coach, and a speaker. As the Former Editorial Director at Focus on the Family and Founding Editor of Focus on the Family’s Thriving Family magazine, Susan has over eleven years of editorial experience.

With over 17 years of publishing experience, Susan finds great pleasure in passing on the wealth of knowledge she has gained through the years. She enjoys mentoring editors, coaching writers, and providing consulting services to Christian writers and publications. Susan also loves speaking at writer’s and women’s events. For more info contact her at:  www.SusanGMathis.com 



March 7th


Topic:  Understanding Type and Temperament to Enhance Character Development

People are different on so many vectors, and those differences impact how they talk, how they respond to others, how they solve problems, what kind of jobs they gravitate to, and so much more. Understanding the different types and temperaments can help

In this workshop we will discuss:

  • Elements of the design of our personality type and temperament
  • Implications of type and temperament in interpersonal relationship development, conflict resolution, decision making, responses to stress
  • Various career choices made by type and how understanding that can help in character development

Pre-workshop Preparation:

No preparation for the workshop is required. However, those interested in completing a Type assessment prior to the workshop can do so. The assessment is online and costs $17.00. If you have never taken the MBTI or similar assessments and are interested, please contact Peter directly.

BIO: Peter and Carol have taught and used Type and Temperament for over twelve years as tools to help individuals, couples, and work teams understand one another better. Our experience is that understanding how people have been designed creates the opportunity for excellence in communication. As the publisher of Discipleship Journal, Peter and the editors used type to make sure that articles communicated to the entire audience, not just particular segments. Carol is the Division Lead for Children’s School at the Colorado Springs School. Peter recently resigned after nine years as Associate Pastor at First Evangelical Free Church. He also worked for the Navigators/NavPress for 21 years.

Nan Rinella: Learning about the personalities has been a terrific boon to my relationships—family, friends, & fellow workers. It’s also aided me in interviewing people, writing about them, and now creating characters in my novel. – www.nanrinella.com


April 11th – No regular meeting




Bestselling and Award-winning Author,


Kim MahoneMay 2nd  

Speaker:  KIM MAHONE

Topic:  Characters in Corsets: How to Write Fashion into Your Fiction

Whether you’re an author writing historical fiction or a time travel sci-fi – think Michael Crichton, Kage Baker, or Lisa T. Bergren – your accurate knowledge of historical fashion is important to your readers. Why?  Because your credibility as an author depends on it.

In this workshop we will discuss:

  • Five details you absolutely need to know about historical fashion
  • Research sources to increase your fashion knowledge
  • Seven effective ways to integrate fashion into your writing by “showing” vs. “telling”
  • Twelve characteristics fashion shows the reader about your characters, settings, and time period

BIO: Kim Aulerich-Mahone developed a passion for historical dress as a child and studied historical fashion and textiles at Oregon State University. From 2003 to 2009 she owned Dressed in Time, designing and creating costumes for teas, musicals, Madrigals, and Renaissance Faires. She has also taught sewing and textile classes and owns over 300 “period piece” movies.

Her workshops and classes include:

  • Characters in Corsets: How to Write Fashion into Your Fiction
  • From Bonnets to Bustles: Know Your Victorian Fashion
  • Easy Sewing to Get You Going
  • Easy Textile Science

Kim enjoys writing, reading, editing (especially historical fiction and sci-fi), teaching, and design. Her ultimate reading experience? A sci-fi combining time travel, a strong heroine, and a fantastic dress.


1799005_738874949486376_541054947_oEvangeline Headshot









June 13th

Debut Authors



Jill Buteyn, Evangeline Denmark,

Danica Favorite & Brandy Vallance



10393959_780209245374327_4539865658974738299_nJuly 11th*

Speaker: ROB & BETH VOGT

“He Said, She Said”

A Workshop on Male vs Female POV

As a writer, you are either a “He Said” or a “She Said.” You’re an expert in one Point of View (POV), based on whether you are a male or a female. But if you want to be a good writer – a writer that pulls in readers – you need to know how to write both male and female POVs.

In this workshop taught by husband and wife team Rob and Beth Vogt, you will:
• Gain insights into key differences between“He saids” and “She saids”
• Examine how a scene would be written from a male POV versus a female POV
• See concrete examples of how scenes have been rewritten based on He Said, She Said feedback


Dr. Rob Vogt is a board-certified family physician who spent 24 years in the Air Force. Eleven years ago, he opened The Family Practice in Colorado Springs. His wife Beth lured him into reading contemporary romance by asking him, “Will you read this one scene and tell me if my guy character sounds like a real guy?” (His answer? No.) He is now her trusted advisor on all things pertaining to male POV. In between dealing with the real lives of his patients, he also helps her research her novels.

Beth K. Vogt believes God’s best often waits behind the doors marked “Never.” Her husband Rob convinced her to ignore her “I’m never going to marry a doctor or anyone in the military” statements – and she’s glad he did! A 2015 RITA® Finalist and a 2014 Carol Award finalist, Beth is a contemporary romance novelist with Howard Books. Her novel Somebody Like You was one of Publisher’s Weekly’s Best Books of 2014. In 2015 she introduced her destination wedding series with both an e-novella, Can’t Buy Me Love (May) and a novel, Crazy Little Thing Called Love (June). Connect with Beth at bethvogt.com.


ErinHealy_2-medAugust 1st

Speaker: Award-winning editor and author,  ERIN HEALY

Topic: How to Think Like Your Editor

Bring one chapter from your WIP for this hands-on workshop that will teach you how to be your own best editor. We’ll cover general principles of self-editing and tips on how to avoid the most common weaknesses of first drafts. You’ll leave with 10 practical steps you can take after your first draft is finished to improve the impact of your storytelling and the quality of your writing, whether you’re a veteran novelist or a novice.


Erin Healy is an award-winning fiction editor who has worked with talented novelists such as James Scott Bell, Melody Carlson, Colleen Coble, Brandilyn Collins, Traci DePree, L. B. Graham, Rene Gutteridge, Michelle McKinney Hammond, Robin Lee Hatcher, Denise Hildreth, Denise Hunter, Randy Ingermanson, Jane Kirkpatrick, Bryan Litfin, Frank Peretti, Lisa Samson, Randy Singer, Robert Whitlow, and many others.

She began working with Ted Dekker in 2002 and edited twelve of his heart-pounding storiesbefore their collaboration on Kiss, the first novel to seat her on “the other side of the desk.”

Erin has been editing for over 20 years and is the owner of WordWright Editorial Services, a consulting firm specializing in fiction book development. She is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers and the Academy of Christian Editors. She lives with her family in Colorado.

Visit Erin’s website at www.erinhealy.com


d04d3b9f-d3b1-4e93-97c4-164f859538caSeptember 12th*


Topic: Advice from a Virtual Assistant

Are you bogged down by your endless to-do list that keeps you away from writing? Both pre-published and published authors need to network and promote their work. How does a virtual assistant (VA) help with that? And what can you do if you can’t afford to pay for the “luxury” of a VA? When does a VA become a necessity? Utilizing her experience as a VA for several published authors, Casey will share tips to help you prioritize your commitments to maximize your time, as you prepare for the day you hire a VA.

BIO:  Casey Herringshaw is a homeschool graduate and has been writing since high school. She is a rural Eastern Oregon transplant to Colorado Springs, employed by Wordserve Literary and FaithHappenings.com. Taking the words and stories God has placed on her heart and putting them on paper is one of her greatest passions in life. Supporting authors and writers is another which has culminated largely into Casey’s virtual assistant (VA) work for several multi-published authors. Casey is a member of ACFW and their Carol Award Coordinator. You can connect with her through her personal blog, Writing for Christ and her writing related group blog, The Writer’s Alley.


ronie-kendigOctober 3rd

Speaker: RONIE KENDIG (Via Skype)

Topic: The Elements of Suspense

“I’m mad at you—I got no sleep last night reading your book!” These are painful words for the reader but music to the ears of the author. Ronie will share elements of suspense and some simple tips to give your reader sweaty palms and force them into the “one more chapter” compulsion. Also find out how suspense transcends genre to make a killer story!

BIO: Ronie Kendig is an award-winning, bestselling author who grew up an Army brat. After twenty-plus years of marriage, she and her hunky hero husband have a full life with four children, a Maltese Menace, and a retired military working dog named Vvolt N629 in Northern Virginia.


559948_10152262480903695_1322113252_nNovember 14th*


Topic: How to be a Hybrid Author

Christian publishing continues to produce awesome material for the marketplace, but going “trad” isn’t the only way to get your book in front of readers. Lisa T. Bergren will be sharing what she’s learned about indie publishing over the last few years, and why she’s decided to go all-indie with her fiction in 2016. (Since her knowledge is based solely on her own experience, she’s also asked expert Randy Ingermanson for his input for new writers in the market—she’ll be sharing his notes too.) We’ll cover editorial, graphics, prep for e and paper, and marketing, and wind up the time with Q&A.

Lisa T. Bergren (LisaTBergren.com) has been writing and publishing in the Christian marketplace for over twenty years, but in 2016, she’s going all-indie with her fiction. Lisa has published over 50 books of all sorts—children’s picture books, nonfiction, gift books and fiction in many genres (Marketing Note: Not a Good Idea). She lives in Colorado Springs with her hubby, three kids, a fluffy, white dog that makes her get out and walk, and a bazillion ducks in progress (RMrustic.com).


December 5th, 10am – 12pm

ACFW Colorado Springs

at the home of
(details TBA)

*These month’s meeting dates were changed to the 2nd Saturday of the month.