Friday, October 23, 2020

Don’t Forget this Most-important Conference Tip

by Lori Hatcher @LoriHatcher2

If you plan to attend a writers conference this fall (Florida Christian Writers Conference is happening RIGHT NOW) and Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference is only a month away, you’ve probably prepared your proposals, pitches, and personal appointments. Be sure, however, not to forget the most important “P” of all—prayer. 

Prayer paves the way for our writing projects, acknowledges God’s sovereignty over the results of our efforts, and brings peace to our anxious hearts. Please, please don’t attend a writers conference without bathing your efforts in prayer.

As you prepare for your next conference, consider these five prayer prompts:

1. Pray for divine appointments. 
Proverbs 16:9 reminds us, “A man's heart plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps.” As I prepare for a conference and study the faculty list, I ask God to help me know with whom I should request meetings. I acknowledge I need His help to secure the appointments. If their schedule fills up before I can sign up, I ask Him to provide other chances to meet with a particular person. Finally, I ask Him to help me connect with like-minded writers with whom I can share encouragement and support. 

2. Pray for eyes to see where God is at work and courage to come alongside Him. 
Jesus, in John 5:17, told his disciples His Father is always working. God is not only present at the conference, He’s active at the conference. As we pray for eyes to see where He’s at work, our spiritual senses heighten, and we become less likely to miss His presence. When we see that writer sitting alone at the lunch table, we realize she may be the new friend God brought to the conference so we can cross paths. When we hear that call for submissions in a genre we’ve been intrigued by but haven’t yet dabbled in, we recognize a chance for our next publishing credit. 

3. Pray for God’s will to be done.
One of my favorite passages of Scripture records a conversation between God and Moses as Moses prepared to lead the Israelites into the Promised Land. As much as Moses wanted the Israelites to live free in their own country, he wanted something more. He wanted to know they were in the center of God’s will, not lagging behind or running ahead. Moses said to God, “If Your Presence does not go with us, do not bring us up from here,” (Exodus 33:15). I pray this often for my writing journey. “Lord, if this invitation, opportunity, or contract isn’t your will for me, I don’t want to go there. Lead me in your paths. Open the doors you want me to walk through, close those that I shouldn’t, and give me the insight to know the difference.”

4. Pray for supernatural wisdom.
The publishing world is confusing. Navigating the superhighway of agents, editors, and publishers takes more than a Global Positioning System (GPS). It takes a God-given Positioning System (GGPS). James 1:5 shows us where to find the knowledge we need to travel the publishing road: “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.” Before, during, and after each conference, ask God to provide wisdom, insight, clarity, and discernment.

5. Pray for faith to trust God’s sovereignty.
Most conferences I’ve attended feel like a hybrid of pleasure and pain, of dreams realized and dreams dashed. Without the comforting embrace of God’s sovereignty, I could easily feel as though everything depends on me. If my one sheet is perfect, I’ll secure an invitation to submit. If I flawlessly execute my elevator pitch, I’ll attract an agent. Knowing God’s plans are never thwarted (Job 42:2) brings me valuable perspective. Knowing He will fulfill His purpose for me (Psalm 138:8) frees me to do my best and trust God for the results. 

Whether you attend a conference in person or virtually, be sure to refine your proposals, practice your pitches, and secure your personal appointments. Above all, pray for God’s gracious hand to guide and bless your writing journey. 


Lori Hatcher loves God even more than she loves chocolate—and that’s a lot. Since He rescued her at age 18, she’s been on a relentless journey to know and love Him more. Her deepest desire is for her reader friends to join her on the journey. As an author, blogger, and women’s ministry speaker, she writes for Our Daily Bread, Guideposts, Revive Our Hearts, and She’s written three devotional books, including Refresh Your Faith, Uncommon Devotions from Every Book of the Bible, and Hungry for God…Starving for Time, Five-Minute Devotions for Busy Women. Connect with her at or on Facebook, Twitter (@lorihatcher2) or Pinterest (Hungry for God).


  1. Very good. Thank you. I've been struggling to find where God is leading and where He's closing the door. Donevy

    1. I am praying James 1:5 for you today, asking God to give you wisdom and direction.

  2. You are so right! At the last conference I attended, I felt God nudging me to pray for everyone else as I walked to the opening assembly. I asked Him to show me how I could help someone each day and He definitely did -- multiple times! It was one of the most fulfilling conference experiences I've had.

  3. This is the one most important piece of advice we should always take with us not just at conferences but in every decision. What a wonderful reminder to "seek first His righteousness."

  4. I printed this baby off and placed it in my Bujo, lest I forget to prep with specific prayer. Thank you for this article.

  5. I printed this baby off and placed it in my Bujo, lest I forget to prep with specific prayer. Thank you for this article.

  6. These are great reminders for God-focused and trusting prayer before and at conferences. Thank you Lori!