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Posts Tagged ‘reading’

January Writers’ Meeting

Hi Everyone,

Today we held our January meeting, a week late due to the extreme cold last Sunday. The next meeting will be held on Sunday, February 17, 2013 from 12:30 to 3 PM at Bella Caffe in Park Rapids MN.

PRESENT: Sharon, Marlys, Jerry, LuAnne, Deb

TALKING STICK 22: We have sent out the call for submissions for TS22 and we are receiving them, both in the mail and electronically. The deadline is March 1, 2013. Full details and guidelines are found BY CLICKING HERE. We are still working on cover details, judges, grant, etc.

NEXT 20X20: We are considering doing another 20×20 book in 2014. This time we would like to do the writing first and then the art will be created from that. We have a list of writers that we will be contacting later in the year of 2013 to get that started. We will probably wait till after TS22 is mostly completed.

WRITERS’ GAMES: Sharon received from really fun games for Xmas that are especially fun for writers. Haikubes: This is a bunch of cubes like dice with words on each side. You use the words on these cubes to create Haiku poetry, with 5 syllables in the first line, 7 in the second, 5 in the third. This was really quite challenging. Try it!
Liebrary, The Game Where the First Line Speaks Volumes: This is a game using the first lines of books. One person will read the title and a description of a book. All players must write out what they think the first line of the book could be. Their answers, along with the real answer, are then read to all the players and they each must choose the one they think is the real one. What a great idea! Try it out too.

NANOWRIMO: Deb did her Nanowrimo class in November. She had 7 people, all new to the event. 5 of them completed the 50,000 words required. The writers appreciated Deb’s helpful feedback and what to do if you are stuck and what to do with your manuscript when you are done.

MISCELLANEOUS: Sharon is editing Elisa’s book and enjoying it immensely. Jerry’s book is still going through content editing by Deb. Niomi is working on her memoir and meanwhile nursing her husband back to health after an injury and surgery.

WRITING EVENTS: Marlys and Jerry attended Writers’ Boot Camp with Angela Foster and Candace Simar. This was not for first time writers. Topics included: point of view, tense, great handouts like a character inventory, etc.  They thought it was an excellent class and the time was very well managed.
From that, Jerry read Charlie Baxter’s book The Art of Subtext and he thinks it was life-changing. It is as important what you don’t say as what they do say.  Use senses and smells. Know what your character wants. You don’t always get what you want, but try giving the character all he wants and see what happens. What is the thing that no one knows about your character. Don’t make your characters all bad or all good. Let your characters yearn for something, be vulnerable to the point of destruction. Let them have a passion for things. Other good books include: The Emotion Thesaurus and Your Book Starts Here.
Marlys took a online class on Flash Fiction at the Loft with Rochelle Hurt and really enjoyed it. The class taught about white spaces and hinting at things, good critiques. It also mentioned Hint Fiction, telling a whole story in 25 words.
We mentioned Pam Houston’s books and how much we enjoyed them. Also Louise Erdrich’s books.

GREAT AMERICAN THINK-OFF: New York Mills Regional Cultural Center announces its 21st annual Great American Think-Off.  This years topic: Which  Is more ethical:  sticking to your principles or being willing to compromise?  Details, including due dates (April 1), word count (750), entry fee (none), and prizes ($500 to each of four winners) can be found on the NYMRCC website — kulcher.org.  Go to Arts and Culture on the main menu and select Great American Think-Off.

Good meeting today! We took turns reading things we were working on and gave each other helpful comments. Hope to see you next time! Don’t forget to send in your Talking Stick submissions!

March Writers’ Meeting

Hi Everyone,

Today we held our March meeting. The next meeting will be on April 15, 2012, at Bella Caffe in Park Rapids MN from 12:30 to 3PM.

Present: Jerry, Scott, Kathy, Deb, Betty, Marlys, Sandy, Sharon.

TALKING STICK 21:
We had our Editorial Board meeting on March 11 to choose which submissions will go in the book. Tarah is starting on the layout. Sharon is working on filling out the NO and YES letters and the contracts. They will go out in a few weeks. Sharon sent in the Region 2 grant paperwork and we will hope for the best. Walmart did not give us funds last year, but we will try again this year.

COMING EVENTS:
The meeting at the Park Rapids Armory will be held tomorrow at 8AM. Jerry plans to go to represent us. We are hoping that there will be meeting space, workshop space, rooms for classes, etc.

Winter Retreat for Writers, this coming Saturday March 14 from 9 to 5 at Headwaters School of Music and the Arts in Bemidji. CarolAnn Russell. Call 218-444-5606 with questions. $75.00.

Many good classes at the Loft. Deb is taking an online Loft writing class with Mary Caroll Moore.

First Saturday in October at Lake Region. Scott and his wife will put on a class called Cross-Wires. This will deal with creating realistic characters using the traits of personality disorders.

WRITING TIPS:
Something that is very helpful is free flow writing. Get it all down fast while it is in your mind–the you will have something to work with later.

Jerry reminded us again of writing Glimmers–just a brief description of a scene, an occurrence, an AHA moment, etc.

MISCELLANEOUS:
Congrats to Marlys for her honorable mention in the Writers’ Digest Poetry competition with her poem In Vogue. Great poem.

WRITING OPPORTUNITIES:
Remember NANOWRIMO, writing a 50,000 word novel in the month of November? Now we have the opportunity to write a 100 page screen play in the month of April. See below at the bottom of this email for more details. Scriptfrenzy.org.

Good meeting today. Hope to see you all next time.

February Writers’ Meeting

Hi Everyone,

Today we held our February meeting. The next meeting will be held on March 18, 2012, from 12:30 to 3PM at Bella Caffe in Park Rapids MN.

PRESENT TODAY:

Sharon, Jerry, Deb, LuAnne, Marlys

TALKING STICK SUBMISSIONS:

The submissions are coming in for TS21. Unfortunately, we have been having trouble with our electronic submissions. We sent out an email asking everyone who had used our electronic method to send me an email stating what they had sent. I have heard from many of you, but certainly not all. Please send any remaining submissions to sharrick1(a)wcta.net as an attachment. Be sure to also send your name, mailing address, bio, etc. in the email. Sorry for the inconvenience.

BOOK RELEASE PARTY:

We are making plans for our Book Release Party in September 2012. Tentative plans are that we will hold it at Blueberry Pines this year on Saturday Sept. 15. We are planning to have a workshop from 9 to 12, then lunch, then the Book Party from 1 to 5, approximately. Information will be sent out when things are finalized.

KAXE RADIO/KBXE RADIO:

Jerry attended a meeting in Bemidji recently. This was the KBXE Community Meeting. This is a new radio station. The two stations will share the same program content. The programming will have a large art/culture component. We look forward to future possibilities.

NEW BOOKS:

Tarah Wolff has now completed her book Embraced by Darkness, a fantasy novel. Sharon Harris has completed her poetry book Unspoken. Last Thursday, Feb. 16, 2012, they did readings and signings at Beagle Books as part of the third Thursday Art Series in downtown Park Rapids. They had a great time and a nice turnout. Both books are available on Amazon.com. Embraced by Darkness is also available as an e-book.

WRITING EVENTS:

In January, Jerry had a small group of writers at his home for a retreat for several days. They all had projects they were working on. They spent time writing, reading, and critiquing. It was a great time.

WRITING TIPS:

When writing stories or novels, as you are creating your characters, ask yourself: What does this character want?

We enjoyed meeting Marlys today. We hope to see her again at the next meeting!

November Writers’ Meeting

Hi Everyone,

Today we held our November JWB meeting at Bella Caffe. Our next meeting will be held on Dec. 18, 2011 from 12:30 to 3PM at Bella Caffe in Park Rapids MN.

Present: Tarah, Niomi, Scott, Jerry, LuAnne, Sharon

TALKING STICK:

We plan to do TS21 a little early for next year. We hope to send out the call for submissions early in December 2011 and have the deadline on Feb. 20, 2012, instead of March 1. We will have a board meeting soon to work on that along with our next book release party. We are considering having a two day event in Sept. 2012 instead of one day.

OTHER BOOKS:

Tarah and Sharon are working on Tarah’s big fantasy novel and hope to have it out by the end of the year. Check it out on Tarah’s website www.embracedbydarkness.com. Sharon’s third poetry book is also almost done. She hopes to get a few copies from lulu before the end of the year and do a larger printing later on.

DONATIONS AND BOOK SALES:

We are still getting in donations along with book sales from the website. We plan to email out our donation friendraiser letter to all our email address soon.

20×20:

Blank Canvas wants to order some of our 20×20 books to sell for the holidays. They should be ordered through Tarah to get the wholesale price. We will look for specials. Sharon and Scott and Tarah will work on this.

RECENT WRITING EVENTS:

Jerry attended a fiction writers event at the loft. There was some interesting information on publishers and agents. Gray Wolf and Milkweed get 300 manuscripts a year. They maybe publish 12 of those. 70% are agented. Agents save you time and they know which publisher to send your book to.

UPCOMING WRITING EVENTS:

AWP Annual Conference and Book Fair in Chicago is coming up in March. Authors, publishing houses, agents, publicists.

WRITING DEADLINES:

Narrative and Glimmer Train both have November 30, 2011, deadline.

MISC. WRITING:

Jerry mentioned Glimmers. These are short writings, a page or less. They are a moment in time, a glimpse of life, a detailed description of a scene or a feeling or a brief happening. They are almost poetic. They can be taken from journals or just used as an exercise. Maybe they can be used in some future longer writing. These are also called Snapshots or Vignettes.

Niomi and Jerry spoke of writing in long hand versus writing on the computer. They like to do their first drafts in long hand. It slows you down so you can think. You can rework it and digest it and live with it as you write it out in script. It seems like if you do your first draft on the computer, you don’t have time to really live with it until later on.

Tarah spoke of describing something. When you see something beautiful that you want to describe–if you can’t come up with a way to describe what you see, perhaps try describing how it makes you feel, how it changes you, how it affects you.

Hope to see you next time!

October Writer’s Meeting

Hi Everyone,

Today we held our October 16, 2011, Jackpine Writers’ Bloc meeting. Our next meeting will be on November 20, 2011, at Bella Caffe in Park Rapids MN from 12:30 to 3 PM.

PRESENT:
Jerry, Scott, Niomi, Deb, Bridgette, Sharon.

TALKING STICK BOOKS:
TS20 is done and sales are going well. The book party was a great success. Between book sales and donations, we are in better shape financially and looking forward to the next book. Thanks to all who donated to our group. We deeply appreciate your support. We will still need to work on a grant for additional funds but at least we can now get started!

We are looking ahead to TS21. We are considering a slightly earlier date for the next book. We plan to put the call for submissions on the website in early December instead of late December. Instead of a March 1 deadline we might try for February 20 or even a bit earlier. This should allow us to finish the book a bit earlier and allow us more free time to attend writing events. Scott suggested perhaps Valentine’s Day or President’s Day for the deadline.

We are also considering a two day weekend event next year for the book release party. We might schedule a workshop on one day (taught by one of our celebrity judges) and then have the actual book release party and refreshments on the second day. We also are considering a larger location for next year. We would like to be able to include more booksellers. We may have to start charging a small amount per table for booksellers–especially if we have to go to a larger place where we will have to pay a rental fee.

COMING EVENT:
Nanowrimo is the next event. Deb will again be holding a class. More information will be available very soon. This is the National Novel Writing in a Month that takes place every November. You write a novel in 30 days.

WRITING EVENTS:
Jerry attended both the Lake Region Writers event on October 1 and the Sinclair Lewis event on October 8. Both were excellent events. Jerry brought some helpful handouts and sold a few TS books.

MISCELLANEOUS:
Sharon received an email from the Park Rapids library about some reading events. We will pursue that. Many of us would like more chances to read our work.

After these discussions, we then listened to readings by the writers present. We all enjoy listening and giving back helpful comments. It was one of those meetings where we hated to quit talking and go home. Hope to see you next time!