I have always enjoyed writing. In school and then at work as an accountant, I was the person who ended up with the writing jobs. If you leave me with no computer for more than about a day, I will somehow get hold of pen and paper and start writing stuff. But I didn’t necessarily think of myself as a writer. I didn’t know how to make the transition from “person who likes to write” to “writer.”
Obviously I’ve made that transition now, and the people responsible for making that change happen are the Catholic Writers Guild.
I attended my first CWG conference online, while my children ran around the house making and un-making things, and then got bored and went out into the backyard and dug a giant pit. Eventually, a few conferences later, we had to get the septic tank drain field replaced, and at that time the earth-moving guys filled in the pit; also, by then, I had learned how to be a writer.
I’ve attended several of the CWG’s live conferences, which are always held in conjunction with the giant trade show for all the Catholic book stores. It is a wonderland for a Catholic writer. The writer’s conference side of things is big enough to have good speakers and loads of useful information, but small enough that you can get to meet people, ask questions, and even talk to editors and publishers. The trade show has every cool new book, game, gift, or other nifty Catholic thing going. You can meet authors, get free books signed, and if you walk the trade show floor you’ll meet some of funnest, friendliest people in the Catholic world.
There are other larger Catholic press organizations. The Catholic Writers Guild is distinctive in that it is run by and for its members, and we are 100% committed to faithfulness to the Magisterium of the Catholic Church. Our members range from never-published aspiring writers to people making their full-time living in the field. We are authors, columnists, editors, illustrators, and publishers — if it has to do with publishing, it’s relevant. Some members write explicitly Catholic work, others are Catholics who write for secular venues.
This year’s Catholic Writers Conference will be just outside of Chicago, from July 18th – 21st. It promises to be an excellent event. If you were wondering whether you ought to give it a try, the answer is that yes, you should.
Artwork courtesy of the Catholic Writers Guild.