Brainstorming with the Experts


Have you ever wished you could sit down with an expert—a mentor—for a half hour? Someone who has taken the time to look over your work carefully and who is willing to go over things like your hopes … your next career moves … what works and what doesn't within your work?

Now you can. FCWC offers you a list of mentors to choose from—one perfect for you and your genre. 

Look over the list below. Once you choose your ideal mentor, email them at the address provided. Follow any other instructions they give.

You will pay an additional $45 directly to them and will send them the work they specifically require. While at FCWC, they will set aside a half-hour to talk with you. To go over the work. To chat about your best next move, etc. 


Expert Mentor

Arnold, Shellie


Genre: Non-fiction, including devotionals and Bible studies (no children's). Fiction (no children's, no historical, YA is fine). 


I am happy to evaluate non-fiction projects for continuity and focus based on a full proposal, or synopsis and table of contents (if applicable), and first 20 pages. For fiction, I am happy to evaluate a full proposal including the first three chapters (up to 20 pages) for hook, story arc, and character arcs. When we meet, we'll discuss weaknesses and strengths in your project, how you can minimize the weaknesses and capitalize the strengths.

Mentor Email

[email protected]
Genre: Women's fiction, romance, and substantive fiction editing
Karin Beery has worked with Iron Stream Media/LPC as an author, general editor, and now as managing editor of Guiding Light Women’s Fiction. She is an active member of American Christian Writers, American Christian Fiction Writers, and the Christian Proofreaders and Editors Network, as well as a published novelist and owner of Write Now Editing where she specializes in big-picture fiction edits. To learn more, go to or
 [email protected]

Genre: Women’s fiction, historical and contemporary
Debra Butterfield has been freelancing editing for over 10 years. She joined CrossRiver Media as an editor in 2014 and is now their editorial director. I am happy to evaluate the first three chapters (up to 30 pages) for story hook and writing craft weaknesses and strengths. When we meet, we'll discuss weaknesses and strengths in your writing and how you can minimize the weaknesses and capitalize the strengths.


Genre: Fiction and nonfiction, book proposals, one-sheets, curriculum, scripts, and articles.
Kathy is a ghostwriter, although she has books under her own name. She is the founder/director of The Well Ministry for Creatives including its yearly conference. She also is the owner of The Well Publishers. Kathy coaches writers to find their writing path to success. To learn more, go to or

Genre: Children's books, non-fiction and fiction, and ministry or project-type books.
We work with authors to develop ideas into publishable books. We have developmental editors, illustrators, and marketing coaches. I love to work with authors to help make their publishing dreams come true.

Genre: Social Media/Online Platform, Nonfiction, Devotionals, Proposals
Victoria Duerstock is a multiple award-winning author with several titles, having built her large and well-networked online platform in just 5 years. She launched a systematic training system of coaching for authors and creatives, Building Platform 101, along with one on one training and now also runs End Game Press, a traditional publishing house where she is regularly reviewing queries and proposals. She is eager to use her experience and expertise to advise and encourage other authors in their journey! To learn more go to and
Genre:  Speeches, Presentations, Devotional Talks, Speaking Ministry Brainstorming as well as all things non-fiction

Lori Hatcher loves empowering reluctant and fearful speakers to share the messages God gives them with poise, skill, and confidence. Lori’s a women’s ministry speaker, author, and contest-winning Toastmasters International member. She’s served as a keynote speaker at retreats, church events, military wives gatherings, and homeschool events in the US and internationally. 

She’s available to evaluate your speech, presentation, workshop, or devotional. She can help you hone your message, polish your presentation, and deliver your message with professionalism and grace. Whether you’re delivering a 45-minute presentation or a 5-minute one, she’d be glad to take a look and make suggestions that will take it from okay to out-of-this-world. She’s also available to help you brainstorm how to jump start your speaking ministry and answer your speaking-related questions. As an author herself, she can also brainstorm with you how to use your speaking to promote your books.

Genre: Fiction: contemporary, historical, mystery, suspense, thriller. Nonfiction: Christian living, devotionals, humor, spiritual growth, women’s nonfiction. I’m an award-winning and best-selling author of 50 books, which include The Red Letter Life, The Bard and the Bible, and the children’s book, Don’t Close Your Eyes. I’ve also been an award-winning radio commentator and article-writer (in such publications as Family Circle, Guideposts, and Poets & Writers). I also serve as executive editor of the Christian Writers’ Institute and a literary agent with the Steve Laube Agency.

Genre: Children’s board books and picture books (both fiction and nonfiction) 
Jill is a multiple award-winning author of over twenty-five children’s books. She co-authored a book with the now late Reinhard Bonnke, an evangelist who helped bring over 80 million people to decisions for Christ. She also wrote a book for children undergoing cancer treatment to be used by The Happy Shoes Project. She enjoys encouraging others in their writing journeys and in pursuing their dreams of becoming published authors. Learn more about Jill at



Genre: Soul Care, Social Media, Blogging, Nonfiction, Devotional, Freelance and Speculative Fiction

As an award-winning author and industry professional for over 20 years, Edie Melson has the proven expertise to help writers navigate the multi-discipline world of publishing and ministry. The first part of her career was spent as a freelance writer, often publishing over 700 articles a year. She's been a professional blogger, copywriter, ghost writer, speaker, novelist and nonfiction author. Her reputation as an online expert is well-deserved. Her blog reaches thousands and has been consistently named a Writer’s Digest Top 101 Sites for Writers. She's the director of one of the largest Christian writers conferences in the nation and board member of the Advanced Writers and Speakers Association. She understands what it's like to hit detours and roadblocks along the publishing road. And she knows that many of the difficulties writers face can be overcome by drawing closer to God. Her passion is to encourage and equip other writers to follow the unique path God has for them and become ever more sensitive to the things He whispers into a writer's soul.


Genre: Fiction for Adult and Young Adult, Proposals, Synopsis

DiAnn Mills is a bestselling and award-winning author with over 85 published books. She believes and teaches every breath of life is someone’s story, so why not capture those moments and create a thrilling adventure? DiAnn is a founding board member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, Mystery Writers of America, the Jerry Jenkins Writers Guild, Sisters in Crime, and International Thriller Writers. She is the director of the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference and Mountainside Retreats: Marketing, Nonfiction, Novelists, and Speakers with social media specialist Edie Melson. To learn more about DiAnn go to and connect with her at [email protected]


Genre: self-publishing and book marketing
As a Certified AWSA Writer Coach, Susan Neal RN, MBA, MHS, desires to help others publish and sell their God-given message. She is the author of seven healthy living books. Her self-published number one Amazon best-seller, 7 Steps to Get Off Sugar and Carbohydrates, won the Selah award and sold over 17,000 copies in three years.

Susan won the 2020 Christian Author Network Crown Award for Outstanding Broadcast Media for her book marketing campaign. She is a trusted advisor for authors and helps many sell more books. Susan is the new Director of the Christian Indie Publishing Association (CIPA). CIPA teaches authors how to self-publish like a professional.

Susan can guide FCWC attendees about self-publishing and book marketing. Please email Susan at [email protected] if you are interested in meeting at the conference. After she receives your email, Susan will provide her address so you can mail the mentoring session fee, and she will send you a link to complete an online coaching form so she can be prepared to help you.


Genre: Contemporary Fiction, devotional, Sensitivity Reader for fiction and nonfiction

Edwina Perkins is a writer, freelance editor, writing mentor, and a sensitivity reader. She is the Managing Editor of Harambee Press—an imprint that seeks to publish ethnic writers—with Iron Stream Media/LPC. As the Mentoring Coordinator with Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference, Edwina loves to work with new writers and help them develop in their craft. She is a freelance writer for Guideposts Magazine and serves on the Word Weavers International Advisory Committee. Edwina offers a range of expertise on self-editing tips, first chapter review, sensitivity reading, and addressing questions/concerns for first-time attendees.

Genre: Children’s projects (fiction and nonfiction): board books, picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adults novels, magazine pieces, and query letters.

Leslie is a long-time journalist and editor with more than 200 pieces published in periodicals and hundreds of books and magazine pieces edited for individuals, businesses, ministries, publishers, and government agencies. As a specialist in children’s literature, she is in her final semester for a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing for Children (Spalding University). Her work for children has been published by Highlights, Spider, Pockets, Concordia Publishing House, and several family magazines. She coaches writers regularly and would love to help you with a specific project and/or mentor you in the craft and business of writing for kids. Please visit to learn more.

Genres: Devotions for all ages/types; children’s NF, women’s NF, Tween NF


Karen Whiting is a certified writing and marketing coach, author of 27 books, and hundreds of articles. She’s on the Board of Directors of Christian Authors Network for published authors. She teaches at many writers conferences and is an international speaker.

Her book awards include the Christian Retailer NF Children’s Book of the Year, ASWA”s Golden Scroll NF book of the year, and the Military Writer Society of America’s Gold Award. She writes about marketing for and a blogger for and 

I’m happy to help with proposals, marketing plans, and NF writing or devotions for women and children.


Genre: nonfiction, devotionals, speculative fiction, podcasting, video content creation, and psychological manuscript reviews


Tina Yeager is an award-winning author, podcast host, virtual event coordinator, and publisher of Inkspirations Online, a weekly devotional publication by writers for writers. She writes nonfiction and speculative fiction while serving as head mentor for Word Weavers International and public relations officer on the board for the Christian Authors Network. Tina hosts the Flourish-Meant podcast and creates online virtual courses. She has created her own virtual events and served on the conference planning team with the Advanced Writers and Speakers Association. As a licensed therapist and life coach, Yeager has supported best-selling authors by reviewing manuscripts for psychological authenticity. She loves supporting others to optimize their potential through video courses and in-person workshops. For life coaching, podcast episodes, speaking services, or full manuscript reviews, visit


Genre: Children’s board books and picture books (both fiction and nonfiction), Magazine queries and articles. 

Michelle Medlock Adams is a New York Times bestselling ghostwriter and the author of over 100 multiple-award-winning books. Over the course of her career, she has written more than 1500 articles for print and online magazines as well as acted as a newspaper reporter, and she has written dozens of nonfiction books for women and many children’s board books and picture books. In her role as president of Platinum Literary, she coaches other writers to realize their dreams of publishing as well as strategizes best practices for gaining publicity for past and current projects.  To learn more, go to online.


Genre: nonfiction book proposals and one sheets


Kim de Blecourt has been professionally writing since the 1990's, and writing books since 2011. Kim is represented by Steve Laube, and has two published books, "Until We All Come Home" and "I Call You Mine."


Genre: non-fiction books (devotions, leadership, travel, humor, inspiration, Christian living) as well as how to get started in the writing industry in both Christian and general market


Del Duduit is an award-winning author and freelance writer. Some of his recognitions include a Selah Award from the Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers Conference for first place in devotions with First Down Devotions, and Writer of the Year at the Ohio Christian Writes Conference. His work has been published by Focus on the Family (Clubhouse Magazine) and Sports Spectrum as well as

Del is also a junior literary agent with C.Y.L.E. and will be happy to discuss non-fiction books (devotions, leadership, travel, humor, inspiration, Christian living) as well as how to get started in the writing industry in both Christian and general market.


Genres: YA fiction, MG fiction, and teen non-fiction


As a literary agent, YA author of award-winning fiction and non-fiction, and managing editor for Illuminate YA (imprint of Iron Stream Media/LPC), Tessa is familiar with what it takes to bring a project from amateur to professional. She is passionate about helping writers reach for their publication dreams and encouraging them to strive for their best. Her previous clients have praised her editing services, claiming the edits to be “above and beyond” what they had asked and helping them to “embrace the inner artist within.” A few of the published works she has had the honor of editing include “Are You Getting This?” by Hillsong teaching pastor, Robert Fergusson, as well as “The Stars in April” by Peggy Wirgau and “Navigating Minefields” by Victoria Duerstock and Bethany Jett. 


Tessa is willing to look over sample chapters, proposals, devotions, and query letters.


Genre: Almost anything except poetry, picture books, or screenplays.

Steven Hutson has sixteen years of experience in the book business: First as a freelance editor, then a conference director, then a public library trustee, and (today) as a literary agent representing many award-winning authors. He knows what publishers want to see, and (very importantly) how they want to be approached. 

Steve can review your manuscript (up to 20 pages) or your book proposal. Or, you can just sit and talk about your general career plans and goals.

Genre: Fiction and non-fiction, including devotionals. Book proposals, one sheets, articles. YA yes, but no children’s.

Rhonda Rhea is a publishing consultant and an acquisitions and administrative team member at Bold Vision Books. She is a multi-award-winning writer, a humor columnist for many great magazines, and author of 19 books. She often acts as liaison between authors, agents, and publishing house, and coaches/consults in titling and various aspects of marketing.


Genre: Fiction, Devotional Books, Single Devotions


I will work with you on fiction and the development of the plot and characters. We will look at the hook and be sure it is in the appropriate place and we will address emotion in the content. Send the first chapter. For devotional books, we will be sure the application is present and that a take away is present. We will be sure the theme of the book is not forced into the work but rather that it flows smoothly. Send one chapter or 4 devotions in succession. With individual devotions we will address the elements necessary to be in an devotion and be sure they are clear. Send up to 4 devotions.

I am published in fiction and in devotionals. I serve as a managing editor for Straight Street Books and SonRise Devotionals, both imprints of Ironstream Media (past imprints of LPC  publishing).