By Kelly Wise Valdes

Florida Christian Writers Conference Coming to Leesburg in February

The Florida Christian Writers Conference is holding its annual workshop beginning Wednesday, February 21 to Sunday, February 25 in Leesburg, FL. It’s a fantastic week to meet agents and editors, award-winning writers and others who have heard the same call to write. Come attend workshops and continuing classes that will sharpen your pen, develop your platform and strengthen your resolve. Critique groups, meetings with agents and editors, writing contests and camaraderie with fellow writers make this week one to remember. If you have a book inside of you, if you have the dream to publish that book, and you don’t know where to begin, come learn more at this year’s Florida Christian Writers Conference. For more information, location and cost, visit

Anticipated Film, I Can Only Imagine, Opening in Theatres In March

I Can Only Imagine brings to life the true story behind the song of ultimate hope. A transformed relationship with his troubled father inspired Bart Millard, the lead singer of the Christian band MercyMe, to write what is now the most-played radio single in Christian music history.  Based on his incredible true-life story, Millard’s song brings ultimate hope to so many, often in the midst of life’s most challenging moments. Amazingly, the song was written in mere minutes, but the lyrics took a lifetime to craft.

I Can Only Imagine features an all-star cast of Golden-Globe nominee Dennis Quaid, Oscar-winner Cloris Leachman and platinum-selling country music legend Trace Adkins. The film will be released in North American theaters on Friday, March 16. For more information, visit

Michael W. Smith Releases New Single, Crashing Waves

Multi-Platinum artist, best-selling author and acclaimed actor Michael W. Smith reveals new music today from his studio album, A Million Lights, releasing Friday, February 16. Crashing Waves is the third digital single from the album. All three tracks are available now at digital retail and streaming outlets everywhere, including iTunes, Spotify and

Listeners can take advantage of the first-ever opportunity to automatically add all four new singles highlighted above to their Spotify accounts and be informed as new music from A Million Lights by visiting Special, limited edition autographed versions of both albums are available for preorder now from

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Kelly Wise Valdes has been writing for the Osprey Observer since 2008. She graduated in 1989 from Florida Southern College with a B.S. in Communications and enjoys writing and traveling. She currently resides in northern Hillsborough County with her husband, David. When not traveling and writing, Kelly and her husband enjoy spending time with their five grown children (as well as their grandchildren) that still keep them very busy.