hope*writers workshop

hope*writers workshop

November 3-5, 2016

South Charlotte, North Carolina

Do you work hard as a writer but secretly wonder if you’re wasting your time on all the wrong things? You feel busy but not productive. You write plenty of words but you doubt their impact.

Wish someone would sit next to you and either assure you your efforts are worth it or give you clear steps on what to do instead?

That’s why we’ve created the hope*writers workshop.

Introducing the hope*writers workshop:

A three day hands-on gathering for writers of hope.

Your writing helps people.

We are here to help you.

Hi. We're the hope*writers.

Nice to meet you.

We know you have message to share and an audience to serve. 

But maybe you feel stuck. The Internet creates a false urgency, convincing us that if our writing goals aren’t accomplished yesternow then they don’t count. Everything feels short-term, right-now, and immediate. 

This is your chance to take the time you need to uncover the vision that’s been growing within you for your writing. It’s time to pull it out of the shadows and give it the attention it deserves. 

That’s no job to do alone. We’re here to help! 

We’ve created the hope*writers workshop as a practical, action-oriented setting. No more writing in circles. We want to help you move forward in the direction meant for you with confidence, purpose, and hope.


Brian Dixon is a tech, video, and marketing guru who wants to help you create and launch your first online product. He can’t wait to answer your technology questions.


Emily P. Freeman is the author of four books and has been blogging over ten years. A speaker and curious listener, she writes to create space for the soul to breathe. She loves talking to writers about writing and can’t wait to help cast a hopeful vision for your work.


Myquillyn Smith (The Nester) has been blogging for 9 years and is an author, entrepreneur and maker of pretty things. She loves hosting people and is looking forward to being your unofficial hostess for this workshop.  

Gary (Dad)

Gary knows the mighty courage it takes to let God use your soul to encourage others in your writing. Whether you’re a pro or beginner, he’s driven to inspire that courage in you. He’s dad of Myquillyn and Emily, and is writing his first book now at age 65.

The hope*writers workshop starts where most conferences leave off.

We help you DO THE WORK.

Bring your bullet journal, your laptop, or your vintage spiral notebook because you’ll be taking notes and creating your own personal writing plan as we go.

Join us in November at the hope*writers workshop and we’ll be your coaches for 3 days to help you discern the next step in your writing career.

We skip all the extra stuff.

  • no vendor tables to sell you trinkets and clothing.
  • no nonprofit missions to get you to support another cause.
  • no keynote speeches that will bring you to tears but leave you without practical next steps.


  • 6pm - "How to Establish a Bold Vision for Your Writing Career"
  • 8pm - Networking and Table Groups
  • 8am - Brian - "The Purpose of Your Blog: 3 Steps to Impact and Income"
  • 9am - Gary - "Your Calling Clarifier: Create a Plan Based on Your Writing Type"
  • 10am - Emily - "Wait Like a Pro: The Writing Secret No One Tells You"
  • 12pm - Extended lunch with new friends in Wesley Chapel
  • 2pm - Brian - "Recruiting, Training, and Trusting Your Team"
  • 3pm - Emily - "Identify Your Ideal Reader In Less Than An Hour"
  • 5pm - Sharing and Feedback
  • 6pm - Break and Drive Time
  • 7:30pm - Nester - VIP Reception at The White Barn for hope*writers members
  • 8am - Gary and Emily - "The Calling of a Full Time Author: Confronting Discouragement, Comparison, and the Imposter Syndrome"
  • 9am - Brian - "Applying the ADVANCE Method to Overcome Obstacles, Confront Setbacks, and Achieve Your Goals"
  • 11am - Team - "The Hope*Writers Podcast: LIVE!"
  • 12pm - Team - "Bringing It All Together and Making Your Commitments"

Reception at The White Barn

Members of the hope*writers community who attend the hope*writers workshop are invited to a special reception hosted by Myquillyn and Chad Smith at The White Barn on their property, located 40 minutes from Southbrook Church, in the farming community of Midland.

After a long day of vision-casting and career-planning, an evening filled with banjo music, bonfire conversations, and cupcakes might be just what you need.

This is a special time for hope*writers to relax in a cozy environment and make deeper connections as crickets chirp in the background. There'll be no awkward games or forced washing of feet -- it’s simply a time to slow down, laugh, listen and connect. Introverts need not dread this gathering.

Count on inspiring decor, dessert, music, a bonfire, twinkle lights, and laughter. You'll also tour Myquillyn's personal office space and be able to soak in some slowness on the imperfect property.

Be sure to sign the guest book (in the form of writing your name on a smooth rock) and join the growing list of writers, creatives, and friends who have visited The White Barn.

Not a member of hope*writers yet? No worries! You can join when we open up enrollment in the fall, so you won’t miss this special time together.


The hope*writers workshop is graciously hosted by Southbrook Church, located at 5607 Monroe-Weddington Rd, Weddington, NC 28104.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to be a member of hope*writers to attend the workshop?

The hope*writers workshop is open to anyone! Of course we’d love to have you join our community at hopewriters.com, but it isn’t a prerequisite for attending the workshop. However, we will have a special members only gathering at The Nester’s White Barn for current hope*writers, so if you want to attend that, you’ll need to be a member.

Will y’all read my writing and give me feedback and braid my hair?

While this will be a hands-on workshop, it’s not necessarily our hands on your writing (or your hair). Instead, this is a time for you to think about the direction of your own writing, to cast a hopeful vision for your work, and to understand the reader you want to serve. We’re here to help you do that! But we won’t be able to read your writing and offer specific feedback.

Oh, hey! I’m a hope*writer local to Charlotte but I can’t make it to the workshop. Can I still come The Nester’s White Barn on Saturday night? 

Hello fellow hope*writer! Unfortunately, the reception at the White Barn is only for hope*writers attending the workshop. I know! 

Are my meals included?

Meals are not included. In an effort to keep the price of the workshop as low as possible, meals, lodging, and transportation are not included.

What is the difference between a workshop and a conference?

We love conferences. They have great speakers, inspirational talks, and free stuff. But it’s easy to leave a conference without tangible action steps, so we decided to host a workshop instead. If you are searching for practical steps to move forward in your writing career, the hope*writers workshop is for you.

Tell me more about the location

The hope*writers workshop is graciously hosted by Southbrook Church in Wesley Chapel, North Carolina, located at 5607 Monroe-Weddington Rd, Weddington, NC 28104. There will be tables and chairs, restroom facilities, and presentations. We will have light refreshments, water, and coffee, but if you have any dietary restrictions, we recommend that you bring your own refreshments.

Tell me more about the cost

The price is $247. Additional options: If you’d like you can get access to the recordings from the hope*writers workshop for only $117. If you purchase the hope*writers workshop conference ticket and live recordings, you can save $67.

What about cancellations and refunds?

Once you purchase your ticket, we won’t be able to offer a refund. If you purchase a ticket and something changes, we will gladly transfer your registration to someone else for no fee until October 15. Purchases and registrations are final so make sure you check your calendar and your budget before purchasing. Again, there are no refunds, but you can offer your ticket to someone else.

Vendors, advertisers, and exhibitors.

There are a number of organizations we support and love but we want to focus on a workshop that helps you improve your writing career without distractions. There will be no swag bags with trinkets, what nots, wherefores, coupons, or advertisements.

Lodging and travel

The hope*writers workshop will be located at Southbrook Church in Wesley Chapel. This is about a 40 minute drive from the Charlotte international airport. We are not responsible for your transportation to and from the hope*writers workshop. You might consider flying to Charlotte, booking a hotel in the area, and renting a car. Others might choose to find a local friend and carpool. Anyway you get here is fine. We can’t wait to see you. The workshop will not take place at a hotel, so there is no discounted room rate available.

Are there scholarships available?

No. We don’t have scholarships available. The hope*writers workshop is for writers who are ready to take their writing career to the next level. You might not be at that point yet, and that’s okay! Perhaps you’ll consider buying a “Virtual Pass” which includes all of the recordings from the hope*writers workshop.

Carpool, roommates, share travel?

There are several related threads happening right now in the hope*writers private Facebook group. To get access, you need to be a member of hope*writers.

Are you accepting speaker applications?

Thank you so much for your interest. We will not be accepting any speaker applications for this workshop. 

Will there be breakout sessions?

Nope! We’re in this together, y’all. Your hope*writer co-founders will guide you through the weekend as a group, leaving space for table discussion and personal planning. 

What can I expect from the hope*writers workshop?

The hope*writers workshop is meant to be practical. Before you leave, you will have a:

  • Clear understanding of what kind of writer you are, the tools you need to fulfill your writing purpose, and the ones you can ignore
  • Detailed description of your reader (yes, yours!)
  • Confidence to create, build, and lead your team
  • Plan for how to position your blog for impact and income
  • Realistic + hopeful vision for your writing career that could include (but doesn’t depend on) getting a book published

There’ll be time to cast vision, plan, and act. You can check out the full schedule on this page.

What about childcare?

Sorry, no childcare is available. Please leave your kids at home. Seriously. But we still love you and your kids! We just don’t want to meet them at the workshop.

I'm just getting started. Is this for me?

We’re so glad you’re here! Basically the hope*writers workshop is for you if you a) want to come and b) are ready to invest both time and money for three days to focus on planning and growing your writing career. We believe that you have a message to share and an audience to serve. The hope*writers workshop is our best effort to offer to you what we wish we had when we first got started.

Will I be able to meet with editors, agents, and publishers?

We love our editors and agents! But they won’t be attending this workshop. This is a time craft your message, plan your career, and prepare to best serve your readers. Getting a book deal or meeting with an editor or an agent could be one step in the process. But this workshop will help you determine when, why, and if that’s the right next step for you.