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

Saturday, May 08, 2010

Great Meeting but Sad News

Wednesday was a great meeting. We had a small turn out but a lot of fun and some fabulous readings. Kris Palmer read another excerpt from "Dancing With an Elephant" and it was excellent. Two new folks came, Pat Cassidy and Kathy Marine, who is putting together a book and photos about Mote Marine. Howz that for your job matching your name! Tom Smith returned for his second meeting and brought his adorable mother, Selma. She was a dear and enjoyed her evening out so much. Rod and Russ both read one of Ed Lyman's funny stories and Ed Ellis read his best piece of writing yet! We all remarked on how he was improving! Joanne entertained with her usual humor and also read one of our traveling Sharon's poems that is a favorite of hers. Kerri returned and we were glad to see her back. We didn't get back from break until almost 8:30 so spent the last thirty minutes talking about anything and everything including the horrors of quitting smoking. Spurned, of course, by Ed Ellis teasing me about my seemingly continued failure to make the mark. Cecile shared Jim's two 'words' that she'd used in a short poem. The rest will be saved for the 19th as Jim is up in New York until the 9th.

The sad news is Bart Stamper's revealing that this would be his last meeting as he and his family are moving permanently to Orlando for his work. He promised he'd visit when possible and WOULD keep in touch with us on the status of his incredible story on Viet Nam. He read us one final excerpt which totally moved the group. I feel sure that when this book is released, he'll have his first big sale to all of us. Also, that he would remain active in FWA at a group up there. I think there are two in the area. I believe he will keep in touch or we'll all bombard him with emails until he feels guilty! :)) Following Bart's reading, Joanne asked me to read her poem that she'd read when she and Bart presented their duo illustrating the power of a poem to bring together the longer prose. It is an amazing phenomona, really.

Kerri shared an announcement of a one day workshop being put on by the Poynter Institute featuring Pulitzer Prize winning Thomas French who wrote, "Zoo Story" about life and death at the Lowry Park Zoo to be released in July. Mr. French will be teaching how to write a non-fiction book, including a winning proposal, in "Turn You Idea Into a Book." It's to be held in St. Petersburg on May 22. Kerri said she had attended one of the Poynter Institute workshops in the past and that they are fabulous. For more information, visit:

One of the first place winners of the "Do It Write" Literary Competition at the FWA Mini Conference in New Port Richey, Laura Aldir-Hernandez, has requested the help of fellow FWA members. Her short children's story,"The Cobra Dance" is entered in the International Competition run by Viewer votes determine the winner in each category. Here's how to help Laura. The story is in the form of a 61 second video and each viewing counts as a vote. You can vote as many times as you wish between now and May 31st. They will be busy so you may not get through on the first try. Laura asks that we try again.

Here's what to do: Go to

I don't know why these aren't making links so you may have to copy and paste. Russ?????? :) I did remind the group on Wednesday, "Remember FWA's Motto! Writers Helping Writers. Someday it may be you that will appreciate support from fellow members."

Steve Choby has missed a couple of meetings, but he's the one that was challenged to try a new look at the art of poetry. I've since learned that Rod, too, has gained an appreciation of the art. Previously, the group inquired if and when we'd do a poetry workshop. I explained that I was doing one at the NPR Conference and then, if all goes well, do if for our group. I wrote and Linda White approved the outline of the workshop itself for me, Our capable Jim Kelly added a teaching method and agreed to help me as co-presenter in Linda's absense. Jim did a great job and we've decided to do it on the 19th as Jim will be returning back north for an extended time after June. So put your poetic side in your hat and come prepared to have fun. People always enjoy these interactive workshops where the attendees can take part.

That's a wrap for this time. If I've forgotten anyone's notice please let me know. I see nothing else in my blog folder.