December 8th 2002

Thanks to all who attended our meeting and Christmas Party on Dec. 8 at Beagle Books. We had a nice group of people, good wine, good food. Attendees: Sharon Harris, Tarah Wolff, Russ Jacobson, Tom Stetzler, Marion Holtey, LuAnne White, Angele Burlingame, Beth Walter, Jerry Mevissen, Kathy Connell.

Kathy Connell told us that she has a book website: customer.wcta.netredfernbooks

If you are interested in books on organic gardening and sustainable living, be sure to check with her. She would like to take some of each issue of the Talking Stick with her in her travels and see if she can sell some. She read a short story entitled Snow that we all enjoyed, especially the last line.

Jerry Mevissen has a very successful show of his photos and words in Wadena for the last month or two. It will soon be moving to New York Mills. Great job, Jerry!!

Tarah read a new poem that she wrote after seeing the movie Wit. Jerry and LuAnne read short stories, Russ read the first few pages of his novel Jewel, Marion read a poem, Beth read a humorous essay about online dating.


We have all agreed that we do want to see the Talking Stick continue. Angele has taken the information on grants and before the next meeting, she will do some research on what types of grants are available. We need to know their deadlines and criteria. That will help us to determine whether we want to continue the Talking Stick as we have been or if we want to publish one all on a certain topic, like animal stories, or farms, or rural women, etc. Pursuing the grant information will be our first step. We know that we need to have a well defined marketing plan very soon.

Beth said she would be happy to help with proof reading, etc., especially if things could be e-mailed to her. Sharon and Tarah both said they could do quite a lot of the work, especially e-mailing for submissions, etc. They would also probably tackle the layout.

We have been wanting to determine where each of the Talking Sticks are stored. Marion Holtey has volume 11. Florence has some and the rest are probably at Bronson Page Books.

Checking on the cost for a listing in the Writers’ Market was mentioned. Jerry had taken one issue to many bookstores from Walker to Little Falls. Some have sold at Royalton and New York Mills. These places would take more. We wish that bookstores would let us set up a special stand or display for our book, but they just don’t have room.

Submitting to a publisher instead of self-publishing was again mentioned, but we wanted to edit our own. We mentioned that we might not want to put a year on the cover. That might make a person think that it is dated and they would rather read a newer one. Was the mailing of post cards helpful or not? No one was certain of the answer to that question.

We all agreed again that workshops would be good for all of us and would help promote the book. Grants are generally easy to get for workshops. We mentioned again Faith Sullivan, Will Weaver, etc. Many of us would like guidance in writing query letters, submitting manuscripts, information on contracts, exactly what “first rights” entails, etc.

Arrow Printing did a good job for us last year. We also mentioned Loon Feather Press and St. Cloud North Star Press or North Star Publishing. Also McGregor publishing in Brainerd?

We wondered if we could get someone on an internship basis who is involved in marketing? It would be a lot of work, but someone should pick up the Minnesota Poetry Calendar and continue it. LuAnne White does know a person who does marketing.

We can see that it is tough to do two things at one meeting per month. We all like to read and critique each others’ work. We all want to be involved in the Talking Stick info too. It would be really helpful to probably have two meetings per month, one for readings and one for business. However, this did not seem popular at this time, so we will continue the way we are for the present and have extra meetings in the future when they become necessary.


Here are a couple of web sites to try for writing opportunities: and These both look great!! Thanks, Beth. LET’S ALL REMEMBER TO SHARE INFO LIKE THIS WHEN WE FIND IT.

Also: Minnesota Literature
1387 Berkeley Ave.
St. Cloud, MN 55105

Poets and Writers Magazine
PO Box 543
Mount Morris IL 61054-7463

Thanks again for all who attended. Be sure to give our website address to any writers that you know and encourage them to come to a meeting and meet us all! New writers welcome!!