One of the things that has really brought me and, I think, all of us, pleasure over the last few years is the way through circumstance three different writers groups have melded into one. Our FWA Group at the Nokomis Firehall, the Voices of Venice led by Linda White, and in recent years the addition of so many great writers and friends from the Suncoast Writers Guild.
It all started when Ann Favreau, then director of the Guild invited me to be the Reviewer for Poetry in their Annual Review. I was honored and delighted to accept. When, a couple of years later, they needed to fill the position of Reviewer for Prose, Russ Heitz was invited to fill that need. Russ and I got to know a bunch of wonderful people. Our own Joanne Phillips had originally taken me to meet the Guild at their Annual Christmas Party. There, I met Bernie and Phyllis Reading. I think Bernie and Phyllis were the special backbone of the Suncoast Writers Guild. Bernie served as Director in 2003 and 2004. Our groups have grown together since then. Now, Ed Ellis, Jim Kelly, Ann Favreau, Doc Phil Dobren attend our FWA Group regularly.
Bernie Reading has been ill the last couple of years and unable to get out and about much. I miss his presence when I go to the Poetry Reviews and Pod meetings. But, Phyllis is always there to carry on the Reading tradition.
Bernie loved writing and writers and he wrote great poetry about simple things. He grew up in Englewood when it was but a crick in the road. Bernie passed away last week and Englewood will miss him, the writers and artisits will miss him. Phyllis will miss him. But her heart is so big, she will always continue to share his memory with his friends. In Bernie's memory and to honor Phyllis and to thank the Suncoast Writers Guild for their additions to our group, and for Ed Ellis for all the help he's given me during some hard times . . . I post the following:
*A Celebration of Life for Bernie Reading*
Will be held on Sunday, October 2, 2011 from 2 - 5 p.m.
at the American Legion Hall in Rotunda
3436 Indiana Rd.
Rotunda West, Florida 33947
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: 8:00 pm Meeting Finishes at 9:00 pm