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, November 23, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving & A new link!

Happy Thanksgiving Day to all of us at the Sarasota Chapter of FWA!

I apologize for being so slow in getting a recap up here of last week's special meeting! Our long-awaited meeting with Jack Wolf from San Diego, editor of The Fox and Quill our "West Coast Connection" was a great success! Personally, I was thrilled that it all finally came together and I thank Jack so much for making such a long journey to meet us!

We had a great turnout of twenty-five for the special event! Four members were out of town and did check in sending their regards. The Fire Chief was immensely helpful in providing Jack with the equipment to present his wonderful Power Point workshop and Linda White was kind enough to provide him with a guitar to seranade us with a special song adapted just for me! I was quite touched by that effort. Dahris Clair and her husband, Carl, traveled down from New Port Richey bringing us two "Dahris' Special Homemade Pumpkin pies for refreshments. What a gal!

For those interested in the 'future' of book publishing, Jack's workshop was a wealth of information about the many possibilities. It is the way the industry is going, so we have to learn it or be left in antiquity. I can already hear my bones creaking! Jack's enthusiasm is inspiring, though, and with some help I think we could all learn the basics. I hope he puts it all on a CD or something! Some of you, like Russ Heitz and Dahris Clair, are already on the 'move'. Russ' new series will all be presented in E-book format. I look forward to his formal announcement of available e-books. Dahris' E-zine, The Infinite Writer is our "Right Coast Connection!"

It was wonderful to have Gordon Tucker "Tuck" at the meeting and we all hope he continues to improve from his extended illness. I'm really thankful and proud of how our group has grown and developed such a sense of 'family' and enthusiasm. Thank you, all.

If you'll look to the left, I have added Kerri Dieffenweirth's link to our list. Kerri's site joins those of us who had our sites constructed by Kathy Killam out of Denver. She's been a boon to all of us less than electronically gifted and has the software to do it. Be sure to check out Kerri's new site and Jim Kelly's if you haven't already. Kris Palmer and Peter Frickle will be next, I believe. It's a great way to learn more about our 'writing family'.

Remember, too, that Kerri and Rod Digruttolo are launching an email critique program. You should all have their email addresses. I think some of you have already signed up. Ed Ellis is our new contact person and will be happy to answer any inquiries about our group. Schedules and events will be posted here.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday and I hope to see you all next week on December 1st. That will be our only meeting in December due to the Christmas Holiday. The next meeting will be the first Wednesday in January which is the 5th!


Tuesday, November 09, 2010


Hello Writers!

As you all know by now, Wednesday, November 17th, Jack Wolf of the "Fox and Quill" is coming to visit our group. He's eager to meet all you who've supported his efforts in providing a stage for new writers as well as seasoned writers. I know you are all grateful to him for the provision. I know I am!

Jack has a few things planned for us and asked me if anyone in the group could lend him a guitar. Jack is a musician as well as a writer and computer whiz. He would appreciate not having to lug a guitar from Sunny San Diego! If you can lend a guitar, please email me.
Also, I'm trying to run down one of those large coffee urns if anyone has one of those. If not, we just have to go BYOB of water. However, other refreshments are planned. Anyone who'd like to share, please feel free.

It's a busy week for me, so this will be a short post but I'll be looking forward to seeing you all next week. Thank you.


Thursday, November 04, 2010

Meeting Recap

Turn out was fair for our first November meeting. A few are still among the missing, Irv and Cecile had prior commitments, and some a bit under the weather, but I was happy to see two faces new to me. I'd like to personally welcome Phillip Waquespacic, who read a really neat Cajun poem for us, and Kathleen Russell who shared her adventure with TV Me. A great treat for everyone was the return of Sharon Baker after a several month absense. Sharon shared that she will be marrying her high school sweetheart on November 26th! Her new husband to be, Dick Lyon, has a home in Pennsacola and Sharon, here, so they'll be flitting back and forth. She promised to come to the meeting every chance she gets. Oh, the excitement was crackling in the air!

Kris Palmer returned to the group along with me. We were both gone the same amount of time and I was tickled to see her. She filled us in on her wonderful news discovered in Missouri. She IS a perfect candidate for the new implant for those suffering with Young-Onset Parkinson's Disease, met a 'hero' named Charlie who has already received the implant and assured her that his own is was a complete success. He's been able to cut his meds in half and is back out traveling with his wife in their RV. This, after having to give up traveling due to his tremors and anxiety attacks. Kris is thrilled and read a poem she'd written about her new 'hero', Charlie. Kris is the first one to say she has been blessed with many 'heroes' since her dance with the elephant began. The one thing we did forget to do was show the beautiful cover designed by our own Linda White for Kris's book, "Dancing With An Elephant". Linda was also present last night after a busy summer!

Kris will return to Missouri in February for the three-phase surgery and will have to leave her writing family for 6-8 months. But she will be with her own loving family. This was the ONLY downside, but well worth the detour. And, more good news! When Kris returned home from the meeting last night, she was greeted with the icing on the cake. After reporting to the group that she was still knocking on the third gatekeeper's gate, Michael J. Fox's personal editor had called and requested that Kris send her documents and book excerpts and she would deliver them to Mr. Fox's personal manager! Bingo! One more gate and Kris will be in the hands of Michael J. Fox, a fellow Young-Onset Parkinson's victim. She called me this morning and answered my curiosity as to the strange shouts of joy I swear I heard all the way in Nokomis! YOU GO, KRIS! No one deserves it more!

After all this excitement, I reiterated the 'retirement' of Russ Heitz as of January 2011 and my plea for others to step up and help fill his and one of my shoes. We have all put too much into this group not to ensure it continues on course. I'm grateful to announce that Ed Ellis, after presenting his writing model workshop, volunteered to be the 'contact person' to field the Group mail for me. Thank you, ED! I will be taking care of having your name and email added to FWA's main website: as a contact person for the Sarasota Chapter of FWA. This is in addition to his taking over for Ann Favreau as director of the Suncoast Writers Guild in Englewood. Ed's enthusiasm for the writers is in full bloom! Perhaps, now, we can borrow Ann more! Ann, too, is a member of FWA as well as a world traveler who has just returned from Italy! Welcome home, Ann!

Secondly, I'd like to announce that Linda Malloy talked to me on break and has volunteered to be our treasurer to handle and keep records of our Fire Department donations. Russ will turn over all his paperwork and we will give this year's collection to the Firemen at Christmastime. This is a one-time per year donation of $5.00 from attendees specifically for the use of the Fire Department training facility for our meetings. It has nothing to do with your FWA Membership fee which is paid to the Board of Directors of the FWA. Linda is an accountant by profession so I'm sure our funds will be good hands! She may even find us a good investment! Or is that animal extinct? I kid. Thank you, Linda. Your willingness to stand up and help the group is appreciated. I'm still in need of someone to attempt filling Russ's shoes and suggested the possibility of an events coordinator.

Speaking of events! Does everyone have their calendar circled for our second November meeting? That's on the 17th! That is the evening our west coast connection will 'appear' from California to meet our Group! Jack Wolf has provided so many of us with a stage upon which to share our wares for national publication. I'm expecting a good turn out as I know you are all eager to meet Jack. I wish Bart Stamper could be here to meet him. Bart has been featured in the Fox and Quill more than once. Some of the poets who've not yet met Dahris Clair, founder and editor of The Infinite Writer where our poets grab the stage in the Poet's Nook section, will also be able to meet her, as Dahris is coming down from New Port Richey to meet her California counterpart. We will have refreshments for this 'party'. I'll be reminding you again as the days go by!

That's a wrap, folks. (Who did I steal that from?) Be watching the blog for further event notices in a couple of days. One, I do have now is the appearance Saturday of Melanie Bowles at Borders at Bee Ridge and US41. Melanie and her husband, Jim, both former Sarasota County firefighters, are the founders of Proud Spirit Horse Sanctuary now located in Mena, Arkansas. Mel will be signing her new book, "The Dogs of Proud Spirit". Mel was a guest speaker at our group in the fall of 2008. Her stories about Proud Spirit are compelling. What many don't know is that they also rescue dogs! This book is the dog's turn! They will tell their stories. I hope to see some of you there. It's Saturday, the 6th, from 1-4. Let's support a 'home town' writer. Melanie is also the person who first introduced me to the FWA five years ago and I'm fortunate enough to be able to call her 'family'. She is my cousin and her mom and my dad were extremely close siblings. Little bit of history there.

Rainbows are on the horizon!!

Susan - And, I've probably forgotten something! Forgive me, that's why I need HELP! :)

Monday, November 01, 2010

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Hello All

I have returned to my Florida abode and don't want to look at a suitcase, or an airport, for at least six months! Yet again, I find myself thanking Russ for keeping the blog up and holding down the fort while I'm off galavanting around the country. Actually, I refer to it as 'research' for further works, sounds more professional. In addition to the local FWA coverage, Russ and his dear wife, Lee, also provided me pick-up and return and pick up again for all my expeditions including a late night arrival home from Alaska. Had Russ not been making the original flight to Philadelphia with me on this last excursion, I may have not made the trip at all. But that's another story. Suffice it to say here, I was personally able to experience the full force of TSA's airport security measures and EMT response time. Amazing how disaster can evolve into humor, a good thought to always keep in mind.

Believe it or not, yes today is November 1st. I'm anticipating a good turn out at the meeting on Wednesday the 3rd. I'm excited to see you all and Kris and Rod are back, too. Plus, I hear our long, lost Sharon is lurking around town. And, on the 17th we'll be invaded by Mr. California himself, Jack Wolf of the Fox and Quill which has accomodated so many of us with a stage to expose our works. Jack is so pleased with the support his publication has received from our FWA group, he's making the cross-country trip to meet everyone. Although, I've been working with Jack for five years, it will be a joy for me, too, to finally meet him in the flesh. He is planning a super presentation for us so please make yourself a reminder note now! Jack's talents in the electronic world are enviable. Also be sure to check out the new edition of Fox & Quill where Ed Ellis is November's featured author. Russ's continuing mystery workshop is there as well. All past issues are archived, so if you missed October be sure to check that out, too, where Ann Favreau was featured with appearences from Russ, Jim Kelly and my article on our group. Those of you who have not submitted work, it's worth your time to check out the opportunity.

I do believe everyone is home now, with the exception of Cecile who has gone to Hawaii for her daughter's wedding. She will return in time to meet Jack. The rest of you and all who may be reading this, I hope to see you there!