Friday, May 30, 2014


by Sue Boltz

I sit down to write this blog, my husband calls to me. 

"Honey, I'm leaving now." 

How sweet. He's giving me time to write by leaving the house. He'll be gone about an hour, and in that time I should be able to produce something worth reading about the St. David's Christian Writers Conference.
But I hear a knock at the back door. It is four of the six boys from the family that lives next door. They want to borrow our air pump for bike tires. These guys shoveled our driveway for us this winter—the worst winter in more than a decade. They are amazing, and I cannot do enough for them, so I skip out to the garage for the pump.
Back at my computer, I gather my thoughts, and the phone rings. It's Mom. She's turning 80 this year and decided that I should take over some of her financial work. Her memory is not as good as it used to be, so sometimes she calls about something that I already told her I took care of. It takes a while to reassure and calm her. 
Ah, the blog. Now, it's the doorbell at the front door. AT&T wants me to buy U-verse. Not today, thank you very much.
I need a break and a drink of water.  Where was I?  Oh yes, St. David's.   
I go every year to this four-day conference the third week in June. It's a place where I can immerse myself in writing. The workshops get my creative juices flowing, and new ideas form. My goals become clear, and I write. I know I can take workshops and classes on-line, but it wouldn't be as good. This conference is an oasis of sweet concentration.
Like-minded and talented people catch me on fire in face-to-face dialogue. Critiques show me my weaknesses and make me stronger. Writing is solitary, but at the conference there is strength in numbers. I've made friends there who will look things over in a manuscript before I send them to an editor. That way, I'm not embarrassed by obvious typos and errors that I can't see, even though, I've read it out loud and meticulously proofread several times. I gratefully do the same for them. After returning home, the drive and passion continue. It's easier to write and keep writing no matter the distractions.

And now, here comes my husband home from the store.
Sue Boltz is a longtime friend of St. Davids and is also a member of its board of directors.

Friday, May 23, 2014

First Spark

by Vickie Price Taylor

That first spark of excitement for any new adventure is always the sweetest. Don’t you agree? Remember the elation of your first solo drive? How about the tingle of anticipation for your first college class? Ah, and the unrivaled thrill of that first kiss…unforgettable.  The events of the past several weeks have me thinking of the first moment I realized I was a writer.

My journey into the writing world did not follow the usual path. My love for the written word didn’t begin with a favorite childhood storybook, nor did it ignite through the daily chronicling of the passions and travails of adolescence. There was no teacher along the way who inspired me to pursue that particular path.

No. The first moment my desire to write flared to life was at our own St. Davids Writer’s Conference.  It was there that the leader of the fiction critique group told me my writing was good, a confirmation that fanned the flame. It was there I met two of my favorite authors, one of whom read my work and encouraged me to continue, an endorsement that fed the fire. It was there that I received three first place awards for my various contest entries, producing a warm glow inside that made me believe in the impossible.

St. Davids introduced me to the writing life, instructed me in how to hone my craft, and embraced me with a respect not often found in so competitive a business.  I will forever be grateful to those many professionals for taking the time to teach, to shepherd, and to encourage.

Are you looking for a place to fan your creative flame?  Why not start where I did?  St. Davids Writers’ Conference. This year’s conference will be held at beautiful Grove City College in Grove City, Pennsylvania, from June 17-21.  It’s not too late to register. Simply follow the above link to find out more information and come find your spark.


Vickie Price Taylor has a bachelor’s degree in English Education and has spent the better part of the last decade sharing her passion for writing with high school students. A lover of fiction, she is most often either reading a good book or working on writing one of her own. Her stories have earned finalist positions in both the 2007 Molly Contest and the 2011 TARA Contest. She has served on the St. Davids’ board for three years and is currently the conference director.  When she’s not hanging out with her family or jogging the trails in her home state of West Virginia, you can find her on her blog at