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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Tuesday, March 26, 2024

Winter Meetings Recap


Meeting was cancelled



Members Present:  Alan, Debbie, Jackie, Pete

Pete searched for Poe related groups and wrote "Poem 166" which was inspired by "The Raven". He now has written 33 riddles. I would like his work to be featured in Junior Scholastic.

Alan read The Farmer and The Bull which was written for The Pioneer Spirit book.



Members Present:  Karen, Jackie, Patty, Pete, Ruthann

Members decided to change the meeting day so it does not interfere with Write-On Hoosier meetings which are the 2nd and 4th Thursday of the month.

Patty has decided to self-publish The Iron Ladies.

Karen discussed Picture Book Party and later sent us a link.


Members Present:  Debbie, Jackie, Karen, Patty

Meetings are now changed to the 3rd Thursday of the month.

Karen reported she was not a finalist in the Picture Book Party which received over 1,100 entries. There are 50 agents and 20 editors involved in the contest and 50 submissions were picked to be featured.

Patty read "Chapter One, Stupid Girl" in her revised novel The Iron Ladies which now fits in the magical realism genre.

Wednesday, November 22, 2023

Fall Meeting Highlights

Meeting Highlights -September 14, 2023

Members Present: Alan, Debbie, Jackie, Karen, Patty, Suzy, Valia

Patty brought up blue zones and living to 100. There are five places on Earth where people live a long healthy life and they have things in common regarding diet, exercise, and religion.

Valia has re-worked his book “Bill Quartz” and read the synopsis to the group. He has resorted to a Sci-Fi Fantasy approach to teach children about the different geologic periods. His book has 15 chapters.

Members discussed their favorite books which included Alan’s pick, “The Little Prince” by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, and Debbie’s choice, “See You in the Cosmos” by Jack Cheng.

Alan said the book he is publishing with Pete and his blacksmith friend, entitled "The Pioneer Spirit," will have about 36 poems, about 20 of which are his. He then read a poem about wolves to the group.

Jackie read The Corpse Café, a poem she wrote a few years ago about a gruesome spread at a creepy diner.


Meeting Highlights – October 12, 2023

Attendees: Valia, Karen, Alan, Patty and later joined by Ruthann.

Valia read a very moving poem composed for a dear friend, Rangan, who had just passed away. It was called Magical Hands.

Alan read a poem with the working title of: The Legend of Artis McGee which is the longest poem he's ever written. It took him 1-1/2 years to write. He also read Cactus Wood.

Ruthann arrived at 8:30 and we visited. By popular demand, Alan read his famous In Defense of the Male Wolf, which sent us all into fits of laughter.


Meeting Highlights – November 9, 2023

Jackie and Alan were the only members that were able to meet this month at Rosati’s. Alan read The Legend of Artis McGee, a very long poem about a sailor and his love for the sea. Jackie talked to Alan about getting his poems down on paper and backed up in a safe place.


Sunday, August 20, 2023

Meeting Highlights for August 10, 2023

Attendees: Pete, Suzy, Valia, Alan and Patty

Valia read his new poem, 'Supermoon Rising' It was sent to the Rattle via Submittable. Poem was written while Valia was in New York on the event of the August super moon on Aug 8. Valia also shared information about India, its many languages and customs.

Pete delighted us with two more of his riddle poems: First one was about the Statue of Liberty, the second, all about Babe Ruth. We discussed artwork regarding his poems and how it would give hints for answers with pictures. He has nearly 35 poems about things and 15 about people.

Alan read two poems in his 'Retribution Poetry' series. First title: The Woeful Tale of Eli Jones, to become part of his newly formed Pioneer Series. The second one, and it was the funniest, and personally, the best poem I think Allan has written. The work, 'Defending the Male Wolf' was written especially for Karen Kulinski. He has taken fairy tales to a new height.

Suzy read the delightful, magical continuing short story tale of Mrs. Walters. In this chapter Mrs. Walters enchants a car that can drive itself. :)

Patty read Chapter Eight of the never-ending saga of Vienne. The members gave many great suggestions for changes.

Our goal was to end by 8:30, so the discussions began as soon as we ordered. We accomplished a lot, laughed even more, and the meeting promptly ended by 8:28.

Next Meeting: September 14, 2023 at 6:30 at Rosati’s.


Monday, July 24, 2023

Meeting Highlights for July 19, 2023

Members Present: Alan, Jackie, Judy, Karen Patty, Pete, Valia

Members decided to move the meeting day to the second Thursday of the month.

Valia read his poem “Lovebirds” about two chickens, written in 2010 and published in Literary Veganism: An Online Journal He then read another poem entitled “November 1984 in Delhi” about the violent attacks and murders of nearly 4,000 Sikhs after Indira Gandhi was killed by two of her Sikh guards 39 years ago.

Pete read two riddles and members guessed the answers. PenIt publishers would like him to send in 40 poems for consideration which, ironically, is the amount of poems he has ready. Pete then reported a Lowell art teacher has agreed to illustrate his poem about the grave yard.

Alan read “Angel and the Magic Badger”. Alan is interested in self-publishing Poems of the Pioneer Spirt (a collection of poems he wrote as well as other poets) and another book of poems for children. Members then discussed illustrations in childrens’ books and their cost and impact.

Karen read Chapter 2 of Haunting Mom. She said an agent who loves ghost stories is interested. The book is complete and ready to go. Karen and Patty discussed the percentage of profit writers and illustrators generally split, the illustrator taking a bigger cut if they are well known.

Patty read Chapter 7 of The Iron Ladies and the query letter she has been working on. She actually took a class on submissions and query letters. Members offered some editing suggestions.

Jackie will send two versions of her fractured fairy tale picture book to Alan, both with and without her illustrations. She started the book over a decade ago and never finished the artwork.

Judy passed out copies of the article she wrote on Uncle Sam for her residential community’s July newsletter. Members can offer critique via email since we ran out of time.

Next Meeting: August 10, 2023 at 6:30 at Rosati’s.


Friday, July 7, 2023

Meeting Highlights - June 21, 2023

Attendees: Karen, Pete, Ruthann, Debbie, Alan and Patty

Readers: Alan, Pete, Patty

Pete started off meeting requesting info on self-publishing. He has an illustrator for his story, about the Gypsy Cemetery in Lowell. Karen, Debbie, and Alan all had excellent suggestions and ideas.  Alan recommends 48 Hour Self-publishing. Karen mentioned Kindle Direct. Debbie spoke about hybrid publishers.  Pete also talked about PENIT, which has published several of his stories, but has been bought out by another company.

Alan read, "Angel and the Magic Badger," "The Encounter," and "The Soul of the Wooden Indian," all outstanding poems to a vigorous round of applause.

Pete read poems "157" and "158", which are rhyming poems historical in nature that ends with a question to identify who the poems were about. Group had fun guessing the answers.

Patty read Chapter Six – “Wedding Day” of the never-ending Vienne saga.

Meeting ended at 8:35


Wednesday, June 14, 2023

Spring Meeting Highlights


Members Present: Debbie, Jackie, Judy, Karen, Patty, Ruthann, Suzi, Valia

Patty read Chapter 4 of The Iron Ladies entitled “A Real Family Home.”

Judy shared “Kickin’ It, Getting Along on Our Aging Legs” an article she wrote about senior citizens and venous disease. In it she discussed her personal experience and how she consulted her doctor to make sure she was passing on the right information to her peers.

Suzy read an excerpt from her fantasy story about continuing troubles in a trinity of witches.

Debbie submitted her story and discussed Word on Fire publishing.

Karen read her poem “The Best in the Breadbox” which included 5 fun facts about cockatiels.

Valia read three poems that he wrote years ago: "Eclipse," "One Feathered Dove," and "Beggar's Sleeves." He wrote them in Hindi but discussed how to write in his language and included the translation of each line.



Members Present: Alan, Debbie, Jackie, Karen, Patty, Ruthann

Jackie passed out Kirkus Reviews to members of the group. She got them from the librarian at her high school.

Karen said Create Space is now called Kindle Direct.

Alan read two poems – “Nature’s Way” and “The Ballad of Dick and Rusty.” Members discussed places he should consider submitting to including Ideals Books, Reminiscence, Chicken Soup for the Soul, and Reader’s Digest.

Karen reported SCBWI is trying to connect members to agents and editors.

Patty read Chapter 5 from her novel The Iron Ladies. Members discussed dialogue and identifiers.

Debbie received a rejection letter but but the publisher wished her luck and included some recommendations of where else to submit to.

Karen will send the group a list of 80 publishers that are accepting submissions.

Jackie read the presentation speech she wrote for her high school's awards assembly. Her family sponsored a memorial scholarship the last two years.

Members discussed their favorite books from their childhood.

Next Meeting:  June 21st at Rosati’s in Schererville.

Wednesday, February 22, 2023

January and February Meeting Recap, 2023

 1-11-23 Zoom meeting

Members Present:  Jackie, Judy, Karen, Luneil, Patty, Suzy

Members caught up with each other after the holidays. They also discussed authors Caleb Carr and Erik Larson.

Patty read her revised version of Chapter 1 of The Iron Ladies. Vienne has “gifts’ that she doesn’t understand and doesn’t know how to use yet. Members discussed Vienne's subtle and uncontrollable intuitions / feelings and how often they should appear in the manuscript.

2-8-23 Zoom meeting

Members Present: Jackie, Judy, Karen, Patty

Members decided to change meeting to 3rd Wednesday of the month.

Karen read The Beast in the Breadbox, a poem about her pet cockatiel. She plans to submit it to Cricket, a children’s magazine. Karen reported she finished Ivy and reached out to an old acquaintance who ended up encouraging her to send her manuscript in again, now that her story has been revised several times and has evolved over the years.

Patty read Chapter 3 of The Iron Ladies and will send out Chapter 2 to the group.

Judy participated in a workshop about how novels are born. She confessed she gets wrapped up with the characters and is fine up to a certain point but then has problems developing the rest of the story. Members plan to help her brainstorm to get over her writer’s block.

Next Meeting: March 15, 2023 at Rosati's in Schererville at 6:30pm