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, October 26, 2010

Meeting Minutes - June 10, 2010

Date: June 10, 2010
Start Time: 7:00 P.M.
End Time: 9:30 P.M.

Joan Bodefeld
Cathy Dziubla
Jackie Huppenthal
Luneil Morrow
Sharon Palmeri
Judy Whitcomb

Treasurer’s Report
New member dues paid: $20.00
Total in treasury: $140.00

New Business:
The group welcomed new member, Cathy Dziubla. Cathy, also a member of Write- on Hoosiers, has written children’s stories in the past but not yet published. She did have a piece published in Famous Poet Anthology. She is currently working on a book, Sean O’Hara and the Leprechaun. This book is for an adult audience since there are terrorists involved.

Those present in the group agreed to have Judy record the minutes to be transcribed. The minutes are erased as soon as the written minutes are posted.

Sharon discussed the WOH Christmas Party. It is a social event and everyone gets a gift. This year the party is expanded to include our group, Magic Hour Writers, and another group, Writers Expression.


Christmas Party
Where: The Lake of the Four Seasons Clubhouse
When: Wednesday December 1, 2010
Cost: $17.95 per person
For: Members of WHO, MHW, and Writer’s Expression and spouses, significant others, etc.

Since the clubhouse is asking for an early deposit, please submit your money ASAP. This will also help with getting an accurate account of the number of people coming.

Jackie brought up the possibility of having an illustrator come to talk to our group. She asked what a going rate would be. Joan said they paid a speaker for her reading group $25.00. Sharon said with a group as small as ours, they may be willing to speak for free or with the offer of dinner or something.

The group was asked if having speakers would be something we want to pursue. The group was unanimously in favor of it. Members of the groups have possible contacts for speakers. The plan was formed to have speakers in an order of the writing process. These sessions would be planned quarterly. Current plan:

September – Illustrator – contact person Sharon/Jackie
January – Publisher – contact person Judy
April – Library agent for purchasing books – contact person Luneil
July – Marketing: Kathy Flotz – contact person Sharon

Joan strongly suggests trying to submit your work to regular publishers first for the experience. Pursuing self-publishing should come after that. Sharon suggested that everyone make it a goal to submit something. Judy suggested as a project we combine submissions with choosing a particular publisher. Our report on publishers with a submission. Jackie suggested that while looking for a publisher if we come across a company that would be of interest to someone in the group. For example: looking for fantasy books – Pam; generation gap – Joan; etc. The group decided that this homework would motivate writing.

Project Homework: Everyone has something ready to submit and a publisher chosen by October.

Unfinished Business/Progress Report

Publishing reports:
Luneil had emailed information on Lulu and Xlibris because we ran out of time at the last meeting. For some reason it didn’t come through but she has subsequently resent it and it came through successfully. Thank you, Luneil.

Judy reported on two companies, Wheatmark and Dog Ear. Both companies only provide on-line information, no hard copies.

Wheatmark ( Very supportive on-line resources; delivers an on-line marketing guide for free that Judy found very helpful when she took Sharon’s marketing class. They provide on-line presentations . They stay in contact with you via email when you sign up with them. They are somewhat selective with accepting work. They do have color publications and they do children’s books. Judy purchased a copy of The Snow Lion a book recommended by her contact that would illustrate the type of work they can do. Their prices are higher than Dog Ear. Contact person was very helpful and willing to share information but somewhat aloof.

Dog Ear Publishing ( will publish anything, they are more flexible giving more range to the writer to determine prices. The company founded by people with long publishing backgrounds. You get to Alan, Miles, or Ray (no Mark). Alan was the one Judy spoke with and he was very willing to talk, more down to earth, and informative, feels like you are talking to on old pal. However, when asked to recommend a children’s book for Judy to purchase, he said,”I’m so glad you asked because we have a lot of junk.” The sample Judy had based on his recommendation was Even Superheroes Get Diabetes.

Judy also found a resource (to be passed out next meeting) that states standard publishing companies are now looking at the self publishing materials.

Jackie reported on her companies that both sent her good information books, CDs, and pamphlets.
Self Publishing: Has a book on CD that is very informative. Book is very helpful.
Lumina: claim to be writers who started the company and to be very selective with the work they accept.

Joan went directly to a person, Mark, who ships directly to the printer. His wife edited, he reworked pagination. He doesn’t do color. He is very good to work with but slow.

We introduced ourselves to Cathy:

Luneil: Stated that she is happily retired. Her inspiration for her desire to write for children is the upcoming birth of her grandchild. She hopes to have a book ready when the baby is ready to be read to. She is also gardening.

Jackie: Is a member of WOH and has four boys who are keeping her out of trouble this summer. Jackie read Sally Mae to a second grade class. It was received well as evidenced by one little boy’s comment, “It should be in our school library.” Jackie felt she would have gotten more specific responses if her question, “How did you like the book?” wasn’t so general. Good job, Jackie!

Joan: Joan is retired. She has published a book, The Pause in My Life. Although sales have slowed down, she has met the goal she had in writing the book, which was to write the book basically for his friends. She hasn’t been writing but plans on doing a children’s book, Just Push a Button, Grandma. Her summer has been taken up with golf and learning to play bridge. She plans on getting back to writing.
Sharon: Has been busy painting her husband’s raised garden’s “Lincoln Logs”. She has been enjoying her successful gardening endeavors. Collard greens are not doing so well. Garlic, onion, two tablespoons of soap, and red canned pepper simmered together will get the critters who are getting the collards.
Judy: Judy is a member of WOH so Cathy knows her.

Book Reviews
Sharon read a book, Puppies for Sale by Dan Clark (a chicken soup contributor). The story was warm and charming real life issue. The book has a terrific moral without being “preachy”. The book showed lovely illustrations with appropriate white space.

She passed around another book that she thought would answer Pam’s question about her story poem being too short. A story about a dog (Do we see a theme here, Sharon?) that is eight rhyming stanzas long. A third book was written by a young man who gave the money profit from the book for cystic fibrous research.

Luneil : She is stuck on her current work with the question of what is going to be the special thing that happens in her chicken cereal work. Discussion in the group led to several ideas: using concept maps, she finds a jewel but where?, she finds something in a mall and gives it back. A favorite is to leave the book with open at the end for kids imagination.

She read fractured fairy tale, Rupunzel. This was written in Sharon’s Writing for Children’s class.

Reminder: The Northwest Indiana Poetry Society meets every 3rd Saturday of each month at the Lowell Public Library. The start time is 10:00 A.M and ends at 11:30 A.M. There is no fee to join, poetry only. Contact Tom Spencer at

Minutes respectfully submitted by Judy Whitcomb

Meeting Minutes - May 13, 2010

Date: May 13, 2010
Start time: 7:00 p.m.

Judy Whitcomb
Jackie Huppenthal
Joan Bodefeld
Pam Gonzalez
Luneil Morrow

Carol Rogers - speech pathologist, non-fiction writer, is planning to attend writers' conference in May entitled Write to Publish

Anthony Dixon - truck driver, went to Columbia/interested in film

Group voted to keep meeting during the summer.

Pam agreed to handle blog site updates and e-mail correspondences through the end of the year.

Judy will continue to do the minutes since there were no other volunteers.

Jackie will continue to moderate through the end of the year.

Group will continue research on self-publishing and will present their information next meeting.

Pam read her poem "Frannie the Frightened Faerie" which tells the tale of a faerie who finds the courage to let go of her insecurities and start enjoying the beauty around her.

Anthony read his short story "Let the Funk Flow" about a young man who is struggling to control an inner spirit who meddles in his affairs.

Information shared:
Always personalize back cover of your book or an advertisement will be placed there instead.

Upcomming Events:
The Indiana Federation of Poetry Clubs will be having an open microphone round robin and will present Emily Dickenson on June 14th in Hebron.