Schedule and Location

Welcome to the Sarasota Writers Group Blog. We meet the first and third Wednesday of each month at the Nokomis Fire Station. Coming from Sarasota or North, proceed a few blocks south of Albee Road on US 41 (past Matthews-Currie Ford) to Pavonia Road. Turn right (West, toward the bay) at the Fire Station's flashing yellow caution traffic light. If you are coming from the south on US 41, we are 2 blocks north of Dona Bay. Turn left onto Pavonia Road at the flashing yellow caution light. At the Fire Station, drive to the far end, or west side, of the firehall. Please do not block the fire doors! We meet in the training room at the far end of the complex. We Gather for a meet and greet at 6:00 pm Meeting called to order: 6:30 pm Ten-minute break: 7:50 pm Meeting Adjourned: 9:00 pm

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Brush-up Time?

From time to time, we all need to brush up on adverbs, adjectives, misplaced modifiers, and a whole bunch of other stuff that we may have forgotten from English 101. John McCafferty suggests a good place to start is Among other things, the site features eight lessons assembled by the grammar consultant for the Tallahassee Democrat Ron Hartung, assisted by Gerald Grow, professor of journalism at Florida A & M University.

The site also "offers more than 2,000 free, self-instructional exercises for journalists, writers, editors," and anyone else who wants to "review (or learn) journalistic language, as governed by the Associated Press Stylebook."

Check it out. It'll show you how much you've forgotten. The multiple choice questions will also help you become a better writer, regardless of your genre. All the lessons are free, too. All you have to do is sign in. Such a deal ...

Russ Heitz

Friday, January 09, 2009

Toot Your Own Horn

One of the nice things about having our own FWA local chapter BLOG is that it gives us all a chance to toot our own horns every now and then. And a good opportunity it is, since there aren't too many folks around who'll toot your horn FOR you. So whenever anything happens in your writing life that you're proud of, or want to share with the rest of us, send the info to Mike Durr at, Sue Haley at, or Russ Heitz at Any one of us will be DELIGHTED to post your good news for all to see.

And to show you how it works, I'll toot my own horn right now. BEEP-BEEP!

If any of you ever listen to Internet radio stations check out A local interviewer named Joe has been interviewing local writers and broadcasting the interviews WORLDWIDE via the Internet and Radioearnetwork. I was interviewed recently and the interview will be coming up online later this month. At first my interview was scheduled for January 20 at 11 a.m.!! And I thought, Oh, great. That's about the time everyone in the Western World and a good part of the Eastern World will be watching and/or listening to Obama's Inauguration. I'll be lucky if 2 people hear my interview. But then, thank goodness, my interview was moved to Tuesday, January 27th at 11 a.m., with a repeat on the 29th at 7 a.m. So if you're at your computer at either of those times go to That is, if you're interested. If not, forget I mentioned it. But don't ask me to listen to YOUR interview either!

The interview will also be available sometime soon on my website, thanks to Ray Ryder, another one of our local mystery writers. If you'd like to be interviewed and have that interview broadcast World Wide, contact Susan Klaus at Susan Klaus has published a couple fantasy books that especially appeal to the ladies. "I haven't met a woman yet who doesn't like my books," Susan says. Susan belongs to both the Authors Connection group and the Sarasota Fiction Writers, as does Ray Ryder. Ray, by the way, will be appearing at the St. Pete Book Fair later this month. For more info about that event, contact Ray at

Now, see how easy that was? I not only tooted my own horn, I tooted a couple other horns as well! And before I forget. Our own Writer Emeritus In Residence John McCafferty is the one who suggested we post some info about online writing courses. (See the previous article.) So let's hear it for John. BEEP-BEEP!

Russ Heitz