We believe writing is one of the most important things a Christian can do. It not only helps you to think clearly but it allows others to benefit from your thoughts and experiences and reach a massive audience quickly and easily with the gospel of Jesus.

So we want to encourage Christian writing by training you whether you consider yourself a writer or not. We're not particularly good writers but we don't think you need to be in order to help others.

Besides giving you the opportunity to write and be published here we also run training groups in Sydney, Australia. If you're around, we'd love you to come. Here are the dates for this year (2008):

DateTimeLocation
Saturday 23 February9:30 am-3:30 pmMatthias Media
Saturday 12 April9:30 am-3:30 pmMatthias Media
Saturday 17 May9:30 am-3:30 pmMatthias Media
Saturday 5 July9:30 am-3:30 pmMatthias Media
Saturday 2 August
(The Faithful Writer conference)
8:30 am-6:30 pmNew College
Saturday 13 September
(new date)
9:30 am-3:30 pmMatthias Media
Saturday 1 November9:30 am-3:30 pmWriting adventure: contact Karen for details.
Saturday 27 December
(Big read)
CANCELLEDBen and Karen's

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We also have a Google Group for members (discussions only; the announcement list is separate. Please contact me if you wish to join the announcement list):

Google Groups
Subscribe to WBW (Word by Word)
Email: Visit this group

The normal structure of a Word by Word meeting is as follows:

9:30Arrival
10:00Devotion and writing exercise
11:00Training topic
12:00Writing time
1:00Lunch
2:00Workshopping
3:30Finish

Cost is $5 for the year (to be paid at your first meeting). We normally go out for lunch around Kingsford so bring an extra $7-8.

All are welcome. RSVPs are appreciated. Contact Karen.

What's a “Big Read”?

When Karen was at university, studying Creative Writing, once a semester the Creative Writing Deparmtnet would host the Big Read. It was usually held in the Performance Space and all creative writing students were expected to attend. All creative writing students were also expected to read. There was a 3-minute time limit, and one by one over the course of the evening, each of the students would get up to read to an audience of their peers. It was a good exercise because not only did it force students to actually write something and get a piece of writing to the stage where it was ready to be read to others, it also forced students to muster up the courage to put it out there and “perform”. Another bonus was that students got a taste of what their peers were working on.

In the later years of Karen's undergraduate degree, the character of the Big Read changed, with only the senior students being allowed to read and guest speakers making up the rest of the program. In a way it was a shame because it meant that other Creative Writing students didn't gain the benefits from the Big Read experience which would have helped them in their creative development.

We have tried to bring some of these things back through Word by Word Big Reads. It is our hope that the experience of gathering together to read each other's writing will not only help us grow as writers, it will also help us to spur each other on in the whole business of writing and maybe encourage others to also take up their pens and create.

History

In 2001, we were amongst a number of people at the University of New South Wales who were encouraged to think about writing and were trained by Tony Payne and Greg Clarke of Matthias Media. We learnt so much from them that we felt compelled to continue what they had started with us.

The group was called Word by Word and included a number of the people who have written for this site so far including Haoran Un, Guan Un, Haydn Sennitt, Maheesha and Arnjali Sabapathy and the instigator of it all: Glenn Hohnberg.