Thursday, September 29, 2016

It's Conference Time

With over 70 workshops, panels and other sessions, keynoter John Gilstrap, the Royal Palm Literary Awards Banquet, and much more, this is one FWA Conference not to be missed. Check out the list of faculty members, including agents, editors and publishers waiting to hear your pitch, then click here to register for the 15th annual FWA Conference. You won't be disappointed.

And because we want as many NE Florida writers as possible to attend the conference, both the Ponte Vedra Writers and Writers by the Sea groups will not have meetings this month. I'll be at the conference presenting two workshop sessions. I hope to see you there. Here's what the other area writers groups have planned for this month.

  • The River City Writers will meet on Tuesday, October 11 at 7:00 p.m. in Room D of the SE Branch Library. Group leader Gregg Golson will present "The Ten Commandments of Self Editing," how to ensure your writing is ready to be submitted to an agent or publisher.
  • The Ancient City Chapter welcomes Marge Smith, who writes as Elizabeth Sinclair, on Saturday, October 15 at St. Augustine's Main Library. Her topic is "First Chapters Count" and she will explore all the facets of a dynamic beginning that will keep the reader turning pages. It will answer the burning question of "Where do you begin?" Library doors open at 10:00 a.m. and the meeting begins at 10:15 a.m.
  • The Clay County Writers have a fun and helpful session planned for the Wednesday, October 19 meeting at the Orange Park Library, 2054 Plainfield Avenue. In "The Heart of the Story," writers are invited to pitch their story to the group in 50 words or less. They'll receive valuable feedback to help them hone their messages to readers. Group leader Maureen Jung reports the group is also holding a book sale on Saturday, October 15 from 1:30 to 4:00 p.m. at the Community Commons Classroom in Penney Farms. She invites everyone attending the meetings to donate their gently used books on writing, editing, reading or speaking. Proceeds will go toward the group's Embedded in Clay anthology project. For more information, contact Maureen.
  • FWA affiliate First Coast Christian Writers meets each Thursday at 6:45 p.m. at the Oakleaf Christian Fellowship on Lake Gray Boulevard.
  • There will be no meeting of Writers by the Sea in October so that everyone is able to attend the FWA Annual Conference in Altamonte Springs that week. In November, the group meets at the normal time on the third Thursday, at the Amelia Island Museum of History.
  • Again, the Ponte Vedra Writers are also taking a break this month, but will return on Saturday, November 12 with a workshop on how to break in to the publishing scene by novelist and short story writer Laura Lee Smith.
Around the area
  • Florida Sisters in Crime meets Saturday, October 1 at 10:15 a.m. at the Bartram Trail Library, 60 Davis Pond Boulevard, to hear from private investigator Steven Brown. Visit the website for more information.
  • Don't forget to register for the FWA Foundation's Celebrity Workshop with bestselling author Tosca Lee. Or select a separate Foundation workshop with author John Rehg. Both full day workshops precede the annual Conference on Thursday, October 20. You'll want to arrive early anyway since the conference kicks off Thursday evening with five outstanding sessions.
  • A Gathering of Poets meets on the first and third Thursdays at 2:00 p.m. at the Ponte Vedra Library. This is a working group of poets, so bring four extra copies of your poems.
  • Speaking of the Ponte Vedra Library, the library's Book Talk Cafe program will feature noir novelist Michael Wiley discussing his latest Daniel Turner thriller, Black Hammock on Monday, October 17 at 6:30 p.m.
And that's all the latest in the neighborhood until next month. Don't forget the FWA Conference, October 20 - 23, and for those of you who are finalists in the RPLAs, I wish you the best of luck. If you're not sure who the finalists are, you can see them here.


Vic DiGenti
FWA Regional Director
2017 Conference Chair
October 19 - 22, 2017

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