Announcing 2017 MSCWC Faculty

April Carpenter 01April Carpenter, Conference Director and President of Byhalia Christian Writers, is pleased to announce the workshop leaders for the 2017 Mid-South Christian Writers Conference.

hlayer_watkins-u3572Author and speaker James Watkins, who “writes for food,” is this year’s keynote speaker. Jim’s workshop, “Writing with Banana Peels,” provides practical strategies for communicating with humor. You might get a chuckle or two from our post introducing Jim.

Our other workshop leaders are:

hlayer_alexander-u3470Johnnie Alexander writes stories of heritage and hope while raccoons and foxes occasionally pass by her window. Where Treasure Hides, her CBA-bestselling debut novel, won the ACFW Genesis Contest (2011). Her first contemporary novel, Where She Belongs, was a Library Journal Pick of the Month. She treasures family memories, classic movies, road trips, and stacks of books. She lives near Memphis with Griff, her happy-go-lucky collie, and Rugby, the princely Papillon who trees those pesky raccoons whenever he gets the chance.

hlayer_bradley-u3482Patricia Bradley lives in North Mississippi and loves to write romance and suspense with a twist of romance. Her books include the Logan Point series. She has also written two sweet romances for Harlequin Heartwarming all available at Amazon. Her workshops on writing include two online courses with American Christian Fiction Writers and workshops at the Mid-South Christian Writer’s Conference in Collierville, TN. When she has time, she likes to throw mud on a wheel and see what happens.



Andrew Breeden is associate and acquisitions editor of the Upper Room Magazine in Nashville, TN. He is a graduate of Vanderbilt University Divinity School, and he lives in Charlotte, Tennessee.



hlayer_bridgemann-u3502Hallee Bridgeman is a best-selling Christian author who writes action-packed romantic suspense focusing on realistic characters who face real world problems. Her work has been described as everything from refreshing to heart-stopping exciting and edgy. Hallee loves coffee, campy action movies, and regular date nights with her husband. Above all else, she loves God with all of her heart, soul, mind, and strength; has been redeemed by the blood of Christ; and relies on the presence of the Holy Spirit to guide her.



John Burgette has worked and studied in several fields, including computer/technology, leadership, group fitness, and academic teaching/research.  When he’s not helping his wife, Sandra, raise chickens and goats, John enjoys creative writing, and he is an active teacher/speaker, leader, and musician for his church.



Nancy Kay Grace is a speaker and award-winning author who recently published her 200th blog. She has faced the fear of technology and overcame the panic of possibly crashing her website. Her devotional book, The Grace Impact, recently won the 2016 Next Generation Indie Book of the Year for Christian: Non-Fiction. Nancy hosts a weekly Internet radio show, “Living Life Unedited,” on the Christian Women Affiliate Radio Network.

hlayer_malone-u3542Deborah Malone’s first novel, Death in Dahlonega, finaled in the American Christian Fiction Writer’s Category Five writing contest. Deborah was nominated in 2012 and 2013 for the Georgia Author of the Year Award in the Novel category. She has worked as a freelance writer and photographer for the historic magazine Georgia Backroads. Deborah has been featured in Tales of the Rails, edited by Olin Jackson, as well as in the Christian Communicator and Southern Writers Magazine. She is a member of the Georgia Writers Association, Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, and American Christian Fiction Writers.

hlayer_richards-u3552Ramona Richards is a speaker, writer, and editor whose latest book, My Mother’s Quilts, is from Worthy Publishing. Ramona has been an editor for Abingdon Press, Thomas Nelson, Rutledge Hill Press, and Ideals magazine, and has freelanced for more than a dozen others. The author of seven novels, three books of devotions, and numerous magazine articles, she is a frequent speaker for women’s and writers’ groups and has presented at numerous conferences across the country.

hlayer_robbins-u3562Sandra Robbins, former teacher and principal, is the author of twenty-eight published novels. A native of Tennessee, she lives with her husband in the small college town where she grew up. They are the parents of four children and have five grandchildren. She is a two-time winner of the HOLT medallion given by the Virginia Romance Writers of America to honor outstanding literary talent and the winner of the Gayle Wilson Award given by the Birmingham Southern Magic Chapter of Romance Writers of America. Her books have also been finalists in the ACFW Carol Awards and the Daphne du Maurier Award given by the Kiss of Death Chapter of Romance Writers of America.




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