Cec Murphey, Author and Mentor

Last Saturday I was in writer heaven. A first for me, I got to meet and sit under the teaching of a NY Times bestselling author. Cec Murphey, author of 90 Minutes in Heaven (with Don Piper), has written, co-written, or ghostwritten 110 books and is one of the most sought after writing instructors in the nation. You heard me right. And I got to hear him speak while he was in Tulsa last week.

Cec taught two writing workshops while I jotted down as many notes as possible in an attempt to capture his wisdom. His topics were geared towards fiction writers, and since I haven’t yet tried my hand at fiction, I gained lots of valuable new insight. Even now, I can see how I could implement the techniques he spoke about to improve my non-fiction writing.

Another reason I was especially excited to meet Cec is that he is one of the expert panelists on The Christian Writers View 2, an online writers group I joined a year and a half ago. Cec graciously mentors and encourages new writers through this group as well as through a variety of other means. Not only does he mentor through the advice he gives to the group, but he also takes the time to email personal congratulations when a member has work published. What a blessing and encouragement his notes have been to me. It’s also just downright fun to actually meet fellow writers I’ve gotten acquainted with online.

I’m so grateful for the chance to learn from Cec and others like him, those who have lived the writer’s life far longer than me and have learned the ropes of the publishing industry. I’ll be going to my first writers conference in September (North Texas Christian Writers Conference) and am sure I’ll experience writer heaven again :)

One more thing to note — Cec teaches more than writing skills. He models giving back and being a mentor. Each of us can do that in our own way. Each of us can teach what we have learned. Paul, Timothy’s mentor, told him, “And the things you have heard me say…entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others.” (2 Timothy 2:2 NIV).

How about you? Have you had a mentor who has been a big help to you? Or maybe you’re passing your knowledge and skills on to someone else? I’d love to hear your stories. C’mon and share!


  1. I absolutely adore Cec. I live less than an hour from Tulsa, but was in Denver all week so I had to miss this. I hated that!

  2. Cheryl, I was at Cec’s workshop–he did indeed have something to refine the writer in all of us. I wish we had met since I know you through TWV2 and you were a recent winner on my blog. Hmmmm . . . maybe next time. Our local WIN group has some excellent workshops besides our monthly meetings. Hope to see you at more of them. And maybe introduce ourselves.

  3. Thanks for sending us this post, it’s so exciting that you had fun, got tips and got to meet Cec. I’m part of TWV2, I’ve only posted once, I think that makes me what they call a “lurker,” but I learn so much from the group!

  4. Cheryl! I’ll be at the N. TX writers conference! We will get to meet! :-)


  5. Thank you so much for writing about Cec Murphey, my mentor and friend. He is the best writing teacher ever and the best friend a writer could have. If you have never been to one of his intensive mentoring clinics, you must go. Cec has a gift for drawing out the best in a writer.
    Love & Prayers,
    Yvonne Ortega

  6. Hey all you writer friends, thanks for all your comments! Carla, so sorry we didn’t end up meeting at the workshop. How crazy is that — both of us there & didn’t run across each other! And Renae, that’s so cool that we’ll both be at the same conference. Will be looking forward to meeting you!

  7. Cheryl,
    What an awesome experience! I can imagine it must have been incredible to sit at the feet of a master like Cec. I’m sure you’re filled with inspiration to write away! We’ll have to compare notes on our next steps after you attend your upcoming writers’ conference.

    Also, I enjoyed your last post about Creation. Very well done.


  8. Kelli, Cec is actually going to be one of the keynote speakers at the conference I’m going to so I’ll get the chance to hear him speak again soon. Pretty amazing to have those opportunities come so close together! And hey, thanks for letting me know that you enjoyed “Creation Speaks”!

  9. Jeneal Rogers says

    Hey Cheryl, if you’ll come to another WIN workshop with me, I’ll introduce you and Carla.

    What a great workshop it was!I can hardly wait to hear Cec again. He was a terrific speaker and seems to be the truly nice guy everyone tells me he is.

    Oh, one more thing. Happy 53rd birthday! Oops, I told.

  10. Jeneal, you ornery thing! You’ll catch up with me before long so enjoy 52 while you can :)

    I am pumped that you figured out how to leave a comment!! Thanks for chiming in!

  11. jeneal rogers says

    Good way to get even, Cheryl. Announce to the whole world I’m so bad with computers I can’t even figure out how to leave a comment.
    (As if they didn’t know. I’ve only been emailing for a couple of years now.)

    Seriously, my friend, there’s something I want you to always remember. No matter how old I get, you’ll always be older.

  12. Jeneal, I should have known I was setting myself up with that comment I made :) I better quit since I can’t possibly win this age game :)

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