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Paid Critiques

For an additional fee of $40.00 (over and above Conference Registration Fees) you may opt to purchase critiques of your manuscript and/or synopsis and a fifteen-thirty minute critique session with the reviewer of your choice.

All submissions should follow standard manuscript formatting unless otherwise noted (Courier or Times New Roman font, 12 point font size, double spaced with 1-inch margins). You will be contacted and provided with instruction regarding your reviewer's preferred method of delivery. Submission must be received by the reviewer's deadline.

The Conference Appointment Coordinator, Casey Miller, will schedule your critique appointment. You will receive the date/time/location of your appointment in your registration packet you receive at the conference.

Adding a Paid Critique to your choice of additional options will be part of the Conference Registration process. Payment will be submitted along with Conference Registration Fees.

PLEASE NOTE: The Paid Critique service includes only ONE critique of the work submitted. Critiques of revised pages ARE NOT included and SHOULD NOT be requested from your reviewer.

Reviewers Available

Please read each reviewer's guidelines as they vary per submission length and entry deadline. On the Conference Registration Form, you will be asked to indicate a first and second choice, in the event your first choice is unavailable. Critiquers only have a limited number of slots available. Selection is done on a first come basis, so be sure to register early.

Jody Hedlund
Jody Hedlund
Deadline: 08/15/2014
Genre(s): Historical Romance
Submit Via: Email
Status: FILLED
Web Site: http://www.jodyhedlund.com

Bio: Award-winning and bestselling author Jody Hedlund writes historical romance for Bethany House Publishers. Her blog is listed as one of the "100 Best Websites for Writers in 2014" where she shares a plethora of writing and publishing related advice.

She loves books, chocolate, and coffee. Of course, she loves her busy family too. She's been married to her college sweetheart for over twenty years, and they have five children. When Jody's not teaching her kids or running them around to their many activities, you can usually find her in front of her lap top creating one of her page-turning stories or curled up on the couch reading a book.


What to Send: The first 20 pages.

For the past five years, I have been a judge for the Genesis contest, RITA, as well as other misc. chapter writing contests. I have also critiqued for several published authors.

DiAnn Mills
DiAnn Mills
Deadline: 09/01/2014
Genre(s): Contemporary Fiction, Mystery/Suspense/Thriller, Romantic Suspense, Women's Fiction
Submit Via: Email
Status: FILLED
Web Site: http://www.diannmills.com

Bio: DiAnn Mills is a bestselling author who believes her readers should expect an adventure. She currently has more than fifty-five books published.

Her titles have appeared on the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists and have won placements through the American Christian Fiction Writer’s Carol Awards and Inspirational Reader’s Choice awards. DiAnn won the Christy Award in 2010 and 2011.

DiAnn is a founding board member for American Christian Fiction Writers and a member of Inspirational Writers Alive, Romance Writers of America, Faith, Hope & Love, Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, and International Thriller Writers. She speaks to various groups and teaches writing workshops around the country. DiAnn is also a Craftsman mentor for the Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writers Guild and is the 2014 president of RWA’s Faith, Hope, & Love chapter.

She and her husband live in sunny Houston, Texas.

What to Send: First chapter and synopsis....20 pages maximum

Nicole O’Dell
Nicole O’Dell
Deadline: 08/01/2014
Genre(s): Contemporary Fiction, Contemporary Romance, Mystery/Suspense/Thriller, Romantic Suspense, Women's Fiction, Young Adult
Submit Via: Email
Status: open
Web Site: http://www.nicoleodell.com

Bio: Nicole O’Dell, author of 23 books since 2007, founder of Choose NOW Ministries, host of Choose NOW Radio: Parent Talk and Teen Talk, and a national Christian event speaker, brings messages of hope to women, parents, teens, and tweens. The mother of six, including pre-school triplets, writes issue-driven YA fiction, like her popular Diamond Estates Series and upcoming Drama Ensues series, and non-fiction for teens like Girl Talk, based on the popular advice column she writes with her two daughters.Hot Buttons, O’Dell’s Focus-on-the-Family approved non-fiction series for parents, pre-empts peer pressure by helping parents tackle tough issues. Visit http://www.nicoleodell.com for access to her bustling blog network and other resources.




What to Send: The first chapter & synopsis, 20 pages, or a proposal

This will be my 4th year doing critiques for ACFW. Authors I've critiqued have revised their work and then gone on to sign with agents and obtain book contracts.

John Otte
John Otte
Deadline: 08/31/2014
Genre(s): Speculative Fiction
Submit Via: Email
Status: open
Web Site:

Bio: John W. Otte leads a double life. By day, he’s a Lutheran minister, husband, and father of two. He graduated from Concordia University in St. Paul, Minnesota, with a theatre major, and then from Concordia Seminary in St. Louis, Missouri. By night, he writes unusual stories of geeky grace. He lives in South St. Paul, Minnesota, with his wife and two boys.

He’s published three novels with Marcher Lord Press: Failstate, Failstate: Legends, and Numb. His debut novel, Failstate, was a finalist for the 2013 Christy Awards.

What to Send: First 20 pages and synopsis

Deborah Raney
Deborah Raney
Deadline: 09/01/2014
Genre(s): Contemporary Fiction, Contemporary Romance, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, Women's Fiction
Submit Via: Email
Status: FILLED
Web Site: http://www.deborahraney.com

Bio: DEBORAH RANEY's first novel, A Vow to Cherish, inspired the World Wide Pictures film of the same title and launched her writing career after 20 happy years as a stay-at-home mom. Since then, her books have won numerous awards including the RITA, National Readers Choice Award, HOLT Medallion, the Carol Award, and have twice been Christy Award finalists. Deb's newest novel, Home to Chicory Lane, released in August as the first book in The Chicory Inn Novels series for Abingdon Press Fiction. Deb enjoys teaching at writers' conferences across the country. She and her husband, Ken Raney, recently traded small-town life in Kansas ––the setting of many of Deb's novels––for life in the (relatively) big city of Wichita where they enjoy gardening, antiquing, movies, and traveling to visit four children and a growing brood of grandchildren who all live much too far away. Visit Deb on the Web at http://www.deborahraney.com.

What to Send: First 20 pages of the manuscript (author may include brief synopsis, but it will not be critiqued)

Jordyn Redwood
Jordyn Redwood
Deadline: 08/01/2014
Genre(s): Mystery/Suspense/Thriller, Romantic Suspense, Speculative Fiction
Submit Via: Email
Status: open
Web Site: http://www.jordynredwood.com

Bio: Jordyn Redwood is a pediatric ER nurse by day, suspense novelist by night. She hosts Redwood’s Medical Edge, a blog devoted to helping contemporary and historical authors write medically accurate fiction. Her first two novels, Proof and Poison, garnered starred reviews from Library Journal and have been endorsed by the likes of Dr. Richard Mabry, Lynette Eason, and Julie Cantrell to name a few. Proof was shortlisted for the 2012 ForeWord Review’s BOTY Award, 2013 INSPY Award and the 2013 Carol Award. You can connect with Jordyn via her website at http://www.jordynredwood.com .

What to Send: Up to 20 pages, double spaced. Either the first 20 pages or up to 20 pages of medical scene in any part of the book.

A medical scene could be any part of the book for a max of twenty, double-spaced pages.

Carrie Turansky
Carrie Turansky
Deadline: 08/25/2014
Genre(s): Contemporary Fiction, Contemporary Romance, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, Romantic Suspense, Women's Fiction, Young Adult
Submit Via: Email
Status: FILLED
Web Site: http://www.carrieturansky.com

Bio: Bestselling author, Carrie Turansky, writes historical and contemporary romance for WaterBrook Multnomah, Love Inspired, and Barbour. She is the winner of the ACFW Carol Award and the International Digital Award, and has had 14 novels and novellas published since 2005. She enjoys traveling for research, working in her flower gardens, making healthy meals for family and friends, and pinning on Pinterest. Learn more about Carrie and her books at: http://carrieturansky.com.

What to Send: First 20 pages, plus a 1-3 page synopsis

I love to encourage aspiring authors and help them move toward publication. I will give encouraging feedback and show you how to improve and polish your manuscript.

Shannon Vannatter
Shannon Vannatter
Deadline: 08/15/2014
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance
Submit Via: Email
Status: open
Web Site: http://www.shannonvannatter.com

Bio: Central Arkansas author, Shannon Taylor Vannatter is a stay-at-home mom/pastor’s wife. Her debut novel won the 2011 Inspirational Readers’ Choice Award. She’s had 8 contemporary romances released through Love Inspired Heartsong Presents since 2010 and is contracted for 7 more titles through 2016.
Vannatter has taught an adult continuing education course on novel writing at Arkansas State University and fiction workshops at writer’s conferences including: American Christian Fiction Writers National in St. Louis, MO, Ozark Romance Writers Conference in Springfield, MO, Life Press Christian Writers’ Conference in Memphis, TN, the Ozark Creative Writers’ Conference in Eureka Springs, AR, Arkansas Writers Conference in Little Rock, AR, and theWhite County Creative Writers Conference in Searcy, AR.

What to Send: First 30 pages and synopsis

I do in depth critiques - page by page, line by line.

Jill Williamson
Jill Williamson
Deadline: 08/25/2014
Genre(s): Speculative Fiction, Young Adult
Submit Via: Email
Status: open
Web Site: http://www.jillwilliamson.com

Bio: Jill Williamson is a chocolate loving, daydreaming, creator of kingdoms. Growing up in Alaska led to a love of books, and in 2010 her first novel, By Darkness Hid, won the Christy Award. Jill writes fantasy and science fiction for teens and adults. She loves working with teenagers and giving writing workshops, and she blogs for teen writers at http://www.GoTeenWriters.com Jill .is also a Whovian, a Photoshop addict, and a recovering fashion design assistant. She now lives in Oregon with her husband, two children, and a whole lot of deer. Visit her online at http://www.jillwilliamson.com where, adventure comes to life.

What to Send: First twenty pages and synopsis

Karen Witemeyer
Karen Witemeyer
Deadline: 08/15/2014
Genre(s): Historical Romance
Submit Via: Email
Status: open
Web Site: http://www.karenwitemeyer.com

Bio: Two-time RITA® Finalist and winner of the coveted HOLT Medallion and ACFW Carol Award, CBA bestselling author, Karen Witemeyer, writes historical romance fiction for Bethany House, believing that the world needs more happily-ever-afters. She is an avid cross-stitcher, shower singer, and bakes a mean apple cobbler. Karen makes her home in Abilene, TX with her husband and three children. Learn more about Karen and her books at: http://www.karenwitemeyer.com .


What to Send: First fifteen pages and synopsis



You must be at least 18 years old to attend conference without a parent/guardian present with you at all times.

Participation of an individual presenter, agent, editor, or publisher in the ACFW conference does not constitute endorsement by ACFW. Conference attendees are advised to use due diligence and take personal responsibility when choosing industry professionals with whom to schedule appointments or enter into agreement.



August 20, 2015: Late Registration rates in effect. - September 1, 2015: Walk-in registration rates go into effect.