Saturday, March 14, 2015

Write-to-Publish Faculty Interview: Susan King, Continuing Class Teacher and Upper Room Devotional Rep

Susan King will be teaching the It's All About Style: Achieving Excellence in Writing Continuing Class at Write-to-Publish (June 3-6) and having appointments with conferees interested in writing for The Upper Room, a daily devotional.

Susan King has been with The Upper Room magazine for 20 years. She has also taught English at Lipscomb University (Nashville, TN) for 20 years and functions as a seminar facilitator in leadership and group dynamics. Formerly, she taught English and feature-writing classes at Biola University and Abilene Christian University, served as book editor and radio-program producer/on-air talent for The Institute of Scriptural Psychology, and wrote magazine features as a freelance writer.

Give a brief description of your continuing class.

This class is a crash course in crafting your writing to be tight, clear, and direct—a pleasure to read.  Beyond that, in the span of the class each attendee will apply those techniques to producing a meditation to submit to The Upper Room magazine.

How can someone best prepare to attend your class?

Attendees can best prepare by bringing with them any hard-copy or electronic devotionals, short blogs, or journaling-on-scripture that they've written and get ready to listen FAST.

Upper Room Publications

The Upper Room:

The only type of writing that The Upper Room magazine publishes is devotionals.

I don't officially represent any magazine except for The Upper Room. However, I can answer limited general questions about our other magazines—and I know where to direct writers for more information.

Brief descriptions of our other publications:

Alive Now:

a thematic, bi-monthly magazine that seeks to nourish people who are hungry for a sacred way of living. This four-color, 48-page publication of The Upper Room speaks to the opportunities and challenges of following Christ in the modern world. Scripture and prayer are two foundational cornerstones of content. They accept freelance theme-based writing that is submitted either by mail or electronically and strive to represent the widest possible diversity (theological, geographical, denominational, racial, cultural) among their writers.


a thematic, 48-page devotional magazine for children ages 6-12, published by The Upper Room®. The magazine is published 11 times per year (January/February being a combined issue) and includes short stories, non-fiction articles, puzzles, games, poems, recipes, etc.


devotional lifestyle magazine designed just for youth. It is written by teenagers and by adults who work with and care about teens. devozine's purpose is to help young people 14-19 years old develop a lifelong practice of spending time with God and of reflecting on what God is doing in their lives.


a thematic, quarterly journal. Its mission is to promote informed, committed spiritual growth by exploring how God’s life and human lives are being woven together in the world. Weavings seeks to thread together some of the unraveled ends of Christian life—personal formation and social transformation, individual renewal and church renewal, prayer and ministry, contemplation and mission. Only a small percentage of this magazine is freelance written.

How can a person best prepare for an appointment with you or appointments in general?

Fifteen minutes is very short so the conferees need to make the best possible use of their time.  For our magazine, this means that the conferee needs to bring an actual devotional.  Even one that was submitted to us and was rejected can result in helpful feedback. Just be sure the writer reads it over beforehand so it's still fresh in his/her mind.

What to NOT do in an appointment:  

1. Recounting to me a summary of your writing background or the genesis of a particular devotional.  Let the particular devotional(s) speak for itself.

2. Showing me something that illustrates your writing but isn't a devotional (and is 4 or 5 times longer than a devotional so we wouldn't even have time to cut it down).

Upper Room Publications:

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