Magic Hour Writers

Our Mission: To encourage and promote excellence in writing for children through
friendship, education, and peer support to writing colleagues.

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Sunday, June 12, 2011

Meeting Minutes - June 9, 2011

Date: June 9, 2011

Time: 6:30 to 9:00 p.m.

In Attendance:
Paul Benninghoff
Joan Bodefeld
Cathy Dzuibla
Pam Gonzalez
Jackie Huppenthal
Luneil Morrow
Judy Whitcomb

Judy passed out handouts on contests, workshop opportunities, and articles about what publishers are looking for. One was about the art of omission - knowing what to leave out and how to be concise in your writing. Much of her information comes from Children's Book Insider and Writing and Illustrating.

Paul is continuing to spend much of his time writing for Region Rambler. He encouraged others to enter the Photo of the Month contest and notified members that outside writers are welcome. He is currently researching the 1918 circus train wreck in Hammond. The group discussed marketing strategies for the website. Joan offered to help Paul get the word out about Region Rambler.

Jackie announced the Indiana Writers' Consortium Picnic is June 25th at Tom Spencer's house in Lowell at 1:30 p.m.. Writers, friends, and children are invited to attend. You do not need to be a member. Please spread the word. We are asking for a $5 donation for non-members and $3 for members.

Luneil reported she got a rejection from Pelican June 3rd. She had submitted Barty.

Cathy is in the process of editing her book Sean O'Hara and the Leprechauns. Cathy then shared a poem entitled My Life by A. Banana. The group encouraged her to submit it to Highlights Magazine for Children.

Pam is still waiting to hear from seven publishers that she sent Frannie the Frightened Faerie to in January. She is contemplating self-publishing and has been in touch with an illustrator who does some graphics for digital scrapbooks. Pam may also need to get a commercial license to use the art as part of her book. Pam then showed members a quarterly newsletter she designed and developed for Chapel Lawn. Both Magic Hour Writers and Write-On Hoosiers are mentioned in the newsletter as we have been holding our meetings in the banquet room. She said other groups are welcome to use the space as well. Paul mentioned this meeting space may be of interest to local historical societies.

Members discussed starting up a website for Magic Hour Writers. Pam and Judy discussed the benefits of a website over a blog. Information could be easily transferred from our blog and Pam knows how to use tags and keywords within the text so browsers can find it easily. The group will look at other children's writers websites to get ideas. Pam and Judy will choose a server. A website will be easier to navigate, be more visually appealing, and is a more professional way to share information and promote our group. Yearly fees are minimal and would come out of the MHW fund.

Paul volunteered to set up a Facebook page for MHW.

Jackie announced she has been busy with photography. Several of her photos will be featured in the 2012 local Town Calendars.

Judy brought in a contract from Tate Publishing. She discussed their responsibilities and the one-time fee for a publicist. Members discussed where to find legal counsel for these types of contracts. Judy then shared the first few pages of her latest story Ariabelle and Guenever.

Next Meeting with be July 14, 2011 at 6:30 Chapel Lawn Banquet Room