This post was originally published in 2016.
It has been updated with links and information related to She Speaks 2017.
Hey Girlies! We are one month closer to She Speaks 2017 and I am super excited about that! How about you?
I am gonna tell you straight-up .. this post is jam-packed with info you need, and there are a ton of resources at the bottom, so be sure to make it all the way to the end! And even if you aren’t going to She Speaks, ALL of the resources I mention below can help in your writing and ministry journey.
The first Monday of every month, we are meeting up here to get ready for the conference together. Last month, we focused on some of the logistics like getting registered and making travel arrangements. Did you finish everything on the checklist for March?
If you have a confirmed registration, then pinch yourself, because
YOU ARE GOING TO SHE SPEAKS!!
If you are on the waiting list, there is still hope. A bunch of people will have to cancel for one reason or another and P31 will start contacting people on the waiting list to take those spots. So keep praying and preparing like you are going. God has a plan for all that work and even if you don’t get the call, that work will not be wasted!
This month, we start the hard work of preparing for networking groups and publisher appointments. So let’s get busy!!
Ah …. the words that can strike fear in the heart of an aspiring writer! An opportunity to get the words of your heart in front of someone who can open or close the door to your dream. But with the right preparation, you can walk confidently into your appointment and walk out with your spirit in tact, no matter what the response.
Proverbs 31 offers an amazing set of conference calls to help you prepare, hosted by two P31 speakers and authors. The first call offers some general advice for everyone from Glynnis Whitwer on making the most of the conference, preparing for the publisher appointment and creating a one-sheet (which is handy for both writers and speakers). In the second call, Karen Ehman will cover the main elements of a winning book proposal. Both calls come with examples and samples to help you create your own knock-their-socks-off book proposal. You can purchase the She Speaks pre-conference calls in the P31 bookstore. Even if you aren’t going to She Speaks or meeting with a publisher, the Book Proposal call is perfect for anyone dreaming of being published.
The calls are May 30 and June 6, but writing your first book proposal can take a lot of time, so it might be a good idea to get started sooner. Thankfully, there are some other publishing powerhouses who have generously shared what they know to help you.
Chad Allen is a writer, editor, speaker, entrepreneur, and creativity coach. He serves as editorial director for Baker Books, a division of Baker Publishing Group and is the creator of Book Proposal Academy. BPA is closed right now, but Chad has a ton of book proposal posts and resources on his site to help create a strong proposal. Chad has also stopped by here last year to give some tips on making the most of your meetings with acquisition editors.
Mary DeMuth is another best-selling author who is passionate about helping other writers. She has created an ebook and a template for Writing a Winning NonFiction Book Proposal.
Let me tell you a story about someone who used Mary’s template. This time two years ago, Shauna Shanks was the mom of three adorable little boys and a wife with a powerful story of, in her own words, “this great-big, amazing, life-changing God that loved me, and loved them too.” She had written her story but had no idea what to do with it. A friend of a friend suggested that she go to She Speaks.
Registration was closed and she ended up on the waiting list. By the time she was notified that a space was open for her, the publisher appointments were full. By the time she was notified that a publisher appointment spot was open for her, it was only three weeks before the conference! (Are you noticing a pattern here? God’s hand of provision is ALL OVER this girl’s story!)
Shauna grabbed a copy of Mary’s book and the template and got to work, literally copying and pasting straight into the template. At She Speaks, she met with the editor from Zondervan. She was asked to send her book proposal and after several months of getting the green light at each step, Shauna has a book coming out soon! I’d say that was a winning book proposal! Plus an obedient girl who pressed in to Jesus and let Him take charge of the results. You’ll hear more from Shauna next month, but stop by her site and connect with her. You will fall in love with Shauna, I promise!
Is it getting real yet??
Let me say one last word this month about business cards and one-sheets, because a couple of people asked me about them. It’s a good idea to have business cards and one-sheets at the conference. They make it easy to share your contact info and what you are about with all of your new friends. If you have been at this a while and are solid on your ministry branding (purpose statement, tagline, online presence, etc.) it is okay to go ahead and get those things out of the way.
I’ve put them near the end of the checklist because if you are new to all this stuff, it’s best to wait. As you work through your all of the other preparations, your view of your ministry may change or be clarified, so you’ll want to bake that into the things you hand out at the conference. I learned this the hard way my first year. Don’t rush it.
How are you preparations coming? Are you getting excited? Roommates picked? Book ideas churning? Let us know how it’s going and any questions you have!