Our Sarasota Chapter of the Florida Writers Association was awarded "Group of the Year" last night! Who bestowed this award? Me, your somewhat president so Sharon can be vice president. Oh, and Russ was named CEO as he is the one with the power. :)
For those of you who had to miss last night's meeting, I read an excerpt from my column in the new "Florida Writer" magazine which should be in your mail box soon. I get my copies a few days before they are mailed to the general membership. So yes, this announcement is offical and published! Rebel, that I am, oh she, who assigns her own authority as well. However, I received no flak from the mighty parent organization, so that for sure makes it offical. They printed it! Congratulations to ALL of you. And kudos from me for being the talented special people you are!
We had a rather small turn out of fifteen but everyone left both touched and inspired albeit frozen to the bone once out of the warmth of the circle present. Another kudo in itself as it takes a huge impetus to get me away from a heater when it's below 70 degrees.
Brenda Clarice returned for her third meeting and Kerri Dieffenwierth came to her first and charmed everyone she was able to talk to. Kerri, if your last name is spelled wrong, it's Vice President Sharon's fault. :) See, Sharon! Titles are hell!
We had an hour or so of hearty discussion on questions and input, then closed for break with the heartfelt tribute to Kris Palmer by Irv Newman. Kris was having a bad night and was unable to be there but Joanne called her on the phone and she got the news. Irv assured us he would read it again when Kris is able to to hear it from him. Irv is a most charming and endearing man and all have come to anticipate his presence. Just his unassuming humility and sense of humor is a treasure, topped off by his wonderful way of using his pen to illustrate life.
After break and chasing Joanne with the bell, readings were resumed. We were treated to Joe Porter's poem coming from the bird's perspective in answer to Maya Angelou's well known bird in the guilded cage. A little different from Joe's usual longer style and thoroughly adorable. Jim Kelly, known for his imagry extrordinaire, offered his perspective of the 9/11 tragedy. No one can write imagry in quite the same way as can Jim Kelly. Be watching for the unveiling of his new website "Uncle Joe". It's going to be a winner!
Joanne showed her serious side and it's always rather overwhelming as we are so used to her comedic sense of humor. The girl is extremely talented and could easily be a 'stand up'. Her serious side, tho, is just as beautiful as is her heart. Those who've not read her compilation, "Short Takes on Life" are missing a treat as both sides of her shine in the 'takes'. Ed Ellis also read a new piece that was a new side to his writing. You folks never cease to amaze me.
Vice President Sharon gave us a sample of her limericks, and a good laugh hinting at the ones she didn't deem appropriate for mixed company. Enough was shared, however, that even a sleeping imagination could figure out the missing line. It is funny, I assure you! Peter was in 'enjoying everyone else' mode and didn't read but he sold his CD's for the "Roads" and received orders for two more. It should be understood, too, that Peter is generously donating half of his sales to our group. Russ and I will think about what to do with it. Input is welcome. We can save it for a special field trip, party or donate it to the firemen. Maybe even start thinking about a published anthology of our own! And before I forget, Rod brought his lovely wife, Betsy, who I'd bet was won over by the group. She told me she had a great time and I assured her she was welcome anytime. Betsy, too, had a wonderful sense of humor and fit right in instantly! All the spouses are welcome.
To close, I saved something special. Once again, we were blessed with another sharing from Bart Stamper. In such limited space, just the right words to describe the power in both Bart's writing and his story tax my knowledge of the language. It maneuvers somewhere between magnificent and wrenching. His story is one that really NEEDS to be told. On that note, Joanne and I both swipe at tears welling in eye corners.
I'm blessed by you all.
Schedule and Location
Welcome to the Sarasota Writers Group Blog. Meetings are held the first and third Wednesday of the month at the Nokomis Fire Station, located just a few blocks south of Albee Road (where Matthews-Currie Ford is located) at Pavonia Road. We are on the west, or bay side, of U.S. 41, by the Fire Station's flashing yellow caution traffic light. If you are coming from the south on US 41, we are just north of Dona Bay. Turn on Pavonia and pull to the far end, or west side, of the firehall. Please do not block the fire doors! We meet in the training room on the far side of the complex. Gathering time: 6:00 pm Meeting called to order: 6:30 pm Ten minute break: 7:50 pm Meeting Finishes at 9:00 pm