Thursday, November 6, 2014

THREE HEARTY CHEERS by Anusha Atukorala


Nola asked me a few weeks ago if Nov 6th would be a good date for me to blog on CWD. I said 'Yes' at once, thinking I'd have a lot to share. Usually my head buzzes with a million ideas (especially after a conference). But this time was different. Yes, I did have several ideas but none of them seemed right. So here I sit today, staring at a blank screen, fingers poised over the keyboard, on the day before my blog is to be posted. I have run out of time. I am pondering, asking, reflecting, wondering, thinking. Seeking God on what He wants me to share.

And…..Eureka. At last I know. At last I know.

I think it’s time to say THANK YOU to those who ran our recent Writer’s conference. It was a gigantic job with no remuneration and plenty of hard work. Susan Barnes and her able team of two – Heather Monro and Jenny Glazebrook came up trumps and delivered the goods. So here I am holding a banner up that says:
Congratulations Girls. Awesome Job
(Can you see it?). Because it sure was an amazing job.


As in previous years, I was very excited when the conference was announced earlier in the year. As in previous years, I was not disappointed. The location was more than I’d hoped for. Throw in a lake where I am, and I am in Writer’s Heaven. Throw in a crazy (ahem) bunch of writers into the mix and there you have it. My Paradise.

All the sessions I attended were informative and helpful. Well done to all the Presenters. I wish I could have attended every session. The food was delicious and abundant; the staff friendly and helpful. Connecting with others who loved God and were passionate about writing is always life giving. Conversations with many intelligent (even if a little unusual - we are all in the writing business - remember!) beings gave me much food for thought. Yes, I learnt lots.


The view from my room was perfect – and guess what. The river was right outside. Bliss! Even the weather had been especially ordered – my perfect weather (and I trust the others enjoyed it too). I loved the idea of having prayer on Saturday night – because after all, prayer should underpin all we do as Christian writers. The worship service on Sunday was well planned and very meaningful. Heather, Andrea and Nola’s musical skills enhanced our time of worship, didn’t it? Thanks girls. Jenny Glazebrook’s message was exactly what we needed to hear. A beautifully crafted message from God’s heart to ours. Bless you Jenny.

It was lovely to hear of and see the books our amazing authors have published over the past year. Well done Authors. The bookshop run by Rochelle Manners and her team drew us like bees to the honeypot and fed us well. Thanks Rochelle. I mustn't omit the hilarious game we played on Saturday night led by the capable Heather. I laughed a lot and it was good for my soul.

Perhaps you are wondering,…. was there any room for improvement? The one change I’d make (if I could) is having more time to connect with other writers. The days passed by in a happy blur – since it was full on, with insufficient time for connecting (as often happens at conferences). There is much to pack in, isn’t there? I keep thinking of those I wished I’d spent more time with. I’m not sure how that could be changed – perhaps 60 or 72 hours of conference rather than 48 hours?


I take my hat off to the team of three and to all others involved who gave us a "three days-to-remember" by the lovely Lake Dewar. It was an excellent conference and our biggest thanks go to Susan Barnes who took on the job willingly and did a wonderful job. I could see you were using your God given skills, Susan. God bless you for all you did.

And so I extend THREE HEARTY CHEERS for Susan Barnes, Heather Monro and Jenny Glazebrook. And also for many others who did their bit in diverse ways. Looking forward to the Conference in 2015 (Oct 23rd - Oct 25th 2015 at Lake Dewar Lodge) – and expecting to see you all there. If you’ve never been to a conference – now’s the time to start saving up. If you are an Australian or New Zealand Christian Writer – this is for you.



May God use the time we shared together – to grow us as Christian writers – to deepen our connections with one another – and to bring glory to Him as one voice that shares His amazing love with the world.




Anusha Atukorala is a writer who has been blessed. Blessed with many connections with an awesome group of Aussie and New Zealand writers. Please drop in to say G'day at my blog and website, Dancing in the Rain.

And while we are about it, a very special thanks to Nola Passmore who is doing a terrific job of running CWD. Thanks Nola.



28 comments:

  1. Thanks Anusha. I'm really glad you put up a conference post. It was great. And I certainly echo your thanks to Susan, Heather and Jenny who did a fantastic job and were always smiling. And I'm really grateful too that they've agreed to run it again next year on the weekend of 23-25 October. So start saving now. It would be great to see as many people there as possible.

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    1. Thanks Nola. It certainly was a weekend to remember wasn't it? I agree that the trio who ran the conference were always smiling. Amazing - seeing there must have been so much on your plate at the time. And yes, I forgot to add the dates of next year's conference so thanks for mentioning it Nola. Looking forward t having a looooong chat with you at that one! :)

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  2. Thanks Anusha. You have spoken eloquently on behalf of us all. I thought long and hard about the monetary and time investment before booking at the last minute. I reaped in learnings and relationships. The electives I chose were great, meals were wonderful, both with food and fellowship. My highlights this year were meetings with a publisher and editor, and a few divine appointments. Now it is up to me to get a good return from my investment.
    Thanks Susan, Heather and Jenny. Your abundance mentality is an inspiration to us all.

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    1. Thanks Jo. I'm moved to hear how blessed you were too. That's awesome to hear about the divine appointments you had apart from everything else. It was lovely connecting with you. Glad to hear of your meetings with a publisher and editor - something I didn't get around to this year. And I love your words of the 'abundance mentality' of Susan, Heather and Jenny. I do agree.

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  3. I feel blessed just hearing how you all were blessed! Thanks for sharing the experience Anusha.

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    1. Thanks Rita. We missed you but hope we will see you next year. Blessings on your trip to Thailand. May it bear much fruit.

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  4. Thanks Anusha, really appreciate your comments. Yes I think the only way to create more time to connect with others is to make the conference twice as long!

    And I love the photos you have posted is it ok if I use some on the conference website? Also if anyone else has photos from the conference (general ones, not individuals) that you would be happy for me to use on the website please inbox me so I can give you an email address where you can send them. Thanks.

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    1. Yes, Susan. I know there was so much to pack in - and you did an amazing job organising everything. And yes, making it longer is the only solution I agree. :)

      Glad you liked the pictures. You are most welcome to use any of them or all of them on the website. I can send them all to you Susan.

      Thanks again for all you did and the willing sacrifice of your time for the greater good. Bless you.

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    2. I've copied the photos in the post, Anusha as I don't need them to be big. If you have others please email them to me, thanks.

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    3. I will have a look Susan. I had a few more taken outdoors but the sun wasn't out at the time - so they weren't as good as they could have been. Will check and send them through. Glad you've got these.

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  5. Thank you for your post, Anusha. I was really blessed by your gift of encouragement during the conference (actually, ever since I met you at last year's conference) and I especially enjoyed your workshop on making writer's lemonade. I love the way you see everything from God's perspective.

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    1. Thanks so much Jenny. Bless you for your encouraging words. It was so good to catch up with you again. And you blessed me too. Thanks for your kind words about my session as well which makes it all worth it. Thanks heaps for a job well done dear friend. :)

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  6. I endorse all you have written, Anusha--thanks for putting it so well. I too keep thinking of all the other lovely authors I didn't get time to chat to, so hopefully we can catch up next year. Still haven't worked out why my ppt presentation didn't work for my workshop, but never mind. All good experience!

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    1. Thanks Jo-Anne. I loved your session - thanks so much for sharing as you did. I am so sorry that the power point didn't work. Must have been so frustrating after all the time and energy you spent on it. Hope you can use the talk elsewhere with the ppt again. Your husband too would have been very disappointed that it didn't work. You did very well without it though. Bless you.

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  7. Thanks Anusha. It was a fantastic conference and I really appreciate all the work everyone put in, especially the committee (Susan, Heather and Jenny). Looking forward the conference next year.

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  8. Thanks Jenny. Yes, it sure was a fantastic conference. You were one of those I couldn't connect sufficiently with. I look forward to having a good chat with you at the next one! :)

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  9. Yes it was definitely a weekend to remember; great presentations, yummy food, loads of books to buy! And, of course, rich fellowship. Thank you to everyone who helped put it together.

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    1. Well expressed Susanne. Thank you.

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  10. A well-deserved shout out, and great weekend :)

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    1. Thanks Paula - yes, it surely was a weekend to remember! :)

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  11. How I wish I could have been there. Can someone give me the URL for the conference website Susan mentioned? Maybe next year... have put the dates in my diary. By the way, you have a real eye for photography, Anusha, and your posts are always representative of the encourager that you are, surely a gift from the Lord.

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    1. Thanks so much Margaret for your warm words. Bless you. We missed you and do hope you will be able to make it next year. I don't think the conference website is up yet - if I remember right - it will be on Jan 15th 2015. There should be some information coming up by and by. Really appreciated your encouragement Margaret. Thank you. :)

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  12. Sounds like a great experience. I think it's great that you devoted your article to thanking those who obviously put in a lot of effort for the benefit of others.

    It would be great to be able to make it next year. I'll just have to see what happens with my job in 2015. These are uncertain times.

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    1. Thanks very much Adam. I do hope you will be able to make it next year. The dates are already set - so hopefully you will be able to work it around your job. Thanks for your warm comments.

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  13. Couldn't have said it better myself, Anusha. Thanks Susan, Heather and Jenny! (And of course, all those delectably madcap writers. :) )

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    1. Thanks Adele. Yes, those delectably madcap writers were the writing on the cake weren't they? You included of course! :)

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  14. As always, conference was a terrific time to reconnect with old friends and connect with new ones. Huge thanks to Susan, Jenny and Heather for all their hard work, and to Anusha for this article. Yes, I'd have liked conference to be longer as well!

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  15. Many thanks Iola. Couldn't have a proper chat with you at this one unfortunately but hoping to do so next time. :) I did enjoy and learn from your session for which many thanks.

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