Another good turnout with 22 in attendance, 3 of whom are FWA members. We had three new guests as Jack Wetherson, Ron Babcock, and David Lackey joined us for the first time. George Mindling opened the meeting with several FWA announcements and comments, and since no speakers were scheduled, we began with our first reader, Rod DiGruttolo. Rod doubled as first reader as well as being the Master of Ceremonies of the meeting.
Rod opened by reading an excerpt from “The Red Stain,” a novel in progress by new member Jung Sok Yo. A good discussion followed with positive feedback for Jung's writing. Next was Ed Ellis's story “Digital Technology,” about digital technology used as a diagnostic device for a prostate exam. Well written, it caught the audience off guard as intended. Be glad he didn't ask the proctologist for a second opinion.
We heard more adventures of Gracie, the dwarf kangaroo from the 36th dimension as Linda Shell read yet another chapter of her YA adventure, followed by Nancy O'Grady's Portrait of a Friend, renamed to Portrait of an Acquaintance, and after hearing the story, we know why. Don Westerfield read Matilda, a short story about a ruthless, young female corporate ladder-climber, and waited until the last sentence to set the hook.
George Collias brought his wry humor to the forefront with a “letter” written to the Czech Minister of Tourism regarding his recent trip to the Czech Republic. Of course, he also read the “rebuttal” letter as well, once again showing George's ability to make the audience laugh. Last night was a tough crowd, but he pulled it off, anyway. Great writing.
New-comer David lackey read two pieces, the first was a one page dialog, taken from “Facebook,” followed by a well received short piece called the The Drawing Session, again based on art. Tasteful nudity always catches our ears. Returning guest, and we hope new member, Ernie Ovitz read from his up coming historical novel, The Seventh King. Opening in the year 302 in the Roman frontier with Germania, the work is well written and well researched with a nice mix of narrative and dialog. We look forward to more of Ernie's writing.
We took a ten minute break and resumed with Ron Babcock's first reading, “A Letter to George Washington.” With his background in audio books, we now have two “FM” voices as Susan Davis now has a male counterpart to smooth, effective reading. Jim Kelly once again enthralled the group with his award winning poetry. (He took second place in the recent Poetry Ensemble of Orlando contest with his poem, Smoke and Ashes) and read his latest poem, “Space,” printed at the end of this blog. Congratulations to Jim on the award.
Andrew Parker read his piece, The Ugly Girl, and once again kept the group's rapt attention with his politically incorrect style that never fails to entertain and engage. Andrew will have his material e-published by Pankhearst, an independent writers collective. Good work, and great writing.
Newcomer Beth Rice read from her novel-in-progress, “Paw Prints Are Forever,” beginning with the introduction and first chapter. Good writing, and during the feed back, brought up a question about use of trademark names in a novel. The answer is generally, “no problem,” when writing fiction, but when in doubt, ask your editor. There are several references, such as
Non fiction work will probably require the trademark symbol, but generally not fiction. Again, when in doubt, ask your editor.
Kit Crescendo brought us up to speed with her latest chapter of Three For All, -after a quick poem about self-discovery- and reminded us all about having a favorite subject celebration month. You know, like National Ice Cream Month, or something along those lines. This month is apparently in full swing.
Patricia La Barbera will teach another class at Selby Library on May 18 from 2 pm to 4 pm. She's written an amusing short story that highlights what to avoid in genre writing and includes new information. She'll cover the alternatives so authors can get past a publisher's gatekeeper. Patricia encourages discussions and questions. Show up to laugh and learn.
A sign on the lawn
reads "Space for Sale."
It does not say to whom it belongs.
I cannot touch it, push it aside, or tie it to a tree.
I do not know if I am stepping on it, wading through it,
leaning against it or altering its intentions.
Does it contain sharp corners to snag one's coat
or black holes that swallow errant footsteps?
Are there lines or walls that separate intrusions?
Can I take it and return the unused portion?
Is it "one size fits all"?
Will it leak through a tear in my pocket?
Space for sale.
I wonder if it's mine.
James O. Kelly
See everyone June 5 th ,