Jan Ackerson is perhaps one of the best-known names at FaithWriters. Not only has she placed numerous times in the Writing Challenge editor’s choice, but she is a FaithWriters- approved editor, mentor to many, and provider of free weekly writing lessons for all FaithWriters members. And now, her fable for the “Candy” topic of the FaithWriter Writing Challenge, Salvo, has been recognized as Best of the Best for 2016 (her second time with this honor – not counting times she placed second or third in the competition). Join interviewer (and Jan friend/fan) Joanne Sher as she talks to her about her winning piece, her wishes for her writing lessons, and a bit about her life away from FaithWriters.
JOANNE SHER: Congratulations on your Best of the Best win. What was your reaction when you found out your piece was at the top?
JAN ACKERSON: I was incredibly excited!
JOANNE: I wish I could have seen your face. You were a regular challenge contributor for quite a while, but until recently, you hadn’t submitted a piece to the writing challenge in several years. What brought you back?
JAN: Well, I missed writing. I’d stopped for several reasons—busyness, family issues demanding my time and my energy, and a crisis of confidence, among others. But several months ago, I contributed to the KickStarter campaign of a writer whose work I admire, and the premium for my contribution was a few hours of one-on-one time with him, to critique my work and give me some direction for the future. He was very encouraging, and the spark to write again was ignited. But I’m still kind of shy about my writing, and I wanted to go back to a place where I felt comfortable before I branched out to other writing venues.