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

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Wednesday Feb 15, 2012

A warm, beautiful sunset welcomed the latest meeting of the Sarasota chapter of the FWA, followed by another entertaining evening listening to a wide variety of writings by an eclectic group of writers.

We welcomed back Kris Palmer, author of “Dancing With An Elephant,” ( and newcomer Lori Davis of Dayton, Ohio. Lori is currently in Englewood and looking for a publisher for her first book. She has already started her second, also in the Young Adult Fantasy genre.

After the usual, congenial half hour “Catch-Up” session, Rod DiGruttolo started the meeting with announcements by Lois Stern and Bill Elam. Lois mentioned her website, ( has a problem but will be restored in the next day or two. The Tales 2 Inspire contest will be extended to compensate for the inconvenience of the web site being unavailable. Bill mentioned an article in USA Today by Jefferson Graham about ebooks. The article is available at
"" at least for the time being. And that segued perfectly into Russ Heitz's presentation about e-publishing.

Russ shared his wealth of experience and savvy about e-publishing which is fast becoming the defacto method of getting new writer's material into the marketplace. He covered the different formats and how to approach both Amazon (Kindle) at, and with Smashword at A quick list of e-publishing websites are included at the end of this blog.

George started the evening's reading with “What,” his 250 word exercise of Rod's writing challenge to use only dialogue to tell a short story, followed by Rod's reading of our soon-to-be-Centenarian Ed Lyman's work, “Amazing! Well, Not Exactly!” Barbara Frickell read her delightful interpretation of Rod's dialogue challenge titled “Tete-a-Tete,” obviously set in Paris. Lee Taylor completely engrossed the group with her gripping story “Easy Prey With Decals,” which everyone took as a factual story rather than the fiction it actually was.

Bill Elam read his great piece about pilots and airplanes too old to be useful, evoking memories about scrapbooks and memories. Cecile returned, reading her short, delightful one-act play about two baby girls wrapped in blankets in a nursery. Light hearted fun seen from a certainly different perspective. Lois Stern then read her piece for Rod's challenge, adapted from one of her inspiring tales. Amazing fluidity in compressing time using only dialogue.

Susan Davis read two great short pieces from her favorite poets. “The Silent Articulation of a Face” by the 13th century mystic poet Rumi, was followed by a poem by Pablo Neruda dedicated to his love Matilda. Susan has had the pleasure of visiting Neruda's house in Chile. Both great poems, and of course, well read as always.

Kris Palmer celebrated her return with two poems, the very beautiful “Wind,” and a limerick entitled “Lot Lizard.” Glad to have Kris back, even for a short while.

After a relaxing break, we resumed with the inimitable Joanne Phillips. Joanne came through as anticipated with “Rojo Mojo,” an ingenious poem about her last week's encounter with a red headed fireman. “I'm a Little. You're a Lot,” was followed by “Magic Moment,” a tender poem with a soft touch. Nicely done. Ed Ellis read part of a story under development, and under a cloud of secrecy, apparently, about personal confrontation between nuclear holocaust survivors, Great so far, we want to hear more.

Susan Haley was finally coerced into reading a great paragraph resulting from a challenge she received at a different writing group. Her challenge was to write a paragraph based on a single word. Her word was Karma and no one is better suited than Susan to write that paragraph. Nicely done!

We had a few minutes to go, so Kris graciously read her great piece, “My Escort,” and Bill wrapped up the evening's readings with a follow-up story about the lovers he introduced last meeting. Another enjoyable, entertaining, and informative night.

Next meeting will be on March 7th, see everyone then!


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What, When & Where:

Mr. Philip Levine
United States Poet Laureate 2011-2012
Reading and Book Signing
7 p.m., Monday, April 9, 2012
Saint Leo University
Greenfelder-Denlinger Boardroom
Student Community Center
Saint Leo, FL 33574

Come and celebrate Poetry Month with the Poet Laureate of the United States! Mr. Philip Levine is the eighteenth United States Poet Laureate. His works of poetry include the 1991 National Book Award-winning "What Work Is," the 1995 Pulitzer Prize-winning "The Simple Truth," and his most recent "News of the World (2009)."

In the August 2011 announcement, the Librarian of Congress James H. Billington remarked, "Philip Levine is one of America's great narrative poets. His plainspoken lyricism has, for half a century, championed the art of telling 'The Simple Truth'...."

The event is co-sponsored by the Daniel A. Cannon Memorial Library, the English, Fine Arts, and Humanities Department, and Student Services. It is free and open to the public. Seating is first come, first served, however, for seating requests of 10 or more, and for directions and parking information, please call Ms. Tammy Hunt, 352-588-8294.

St. Leo, FL is approximately 90 miles north of Sarasota, east of I-75

Thank you, Kerri for the information, and thank you Ms. Hunt for your kind assistance

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