Date: March 10, 2011
Time: 6:30 - 9:00 p.m.
Judy informed the group about Story Week at Columbia College in Chicago. Anyone can attend free writer workshops. Event will be March 13-18. http://www.colum.edu/specialevents/story_week/
Submissions of poems, short stories, and pictures to Prairie Writers Guild for the 2011 edition of From the Edge of the Prairie are due April 1, 2011.
Jackie is entering several poems in the National Federation of State Poetry Societies (NFSPS) Spring Poetry Contests. Deadline is March 15, 2011. You do not need to be a member to enter most contests. http://www.nfsps.com/links.htm
Joan began writing a biography about a personal friend and former politician. Members discussed various ways to gather factual information and acquire further support.
Paul is interested in donating some of the future proceeds of his book to charity. The group discussed possible ways to designate funds to specific non-profit groups. Jackie will forward an example of a book that designated a percentage of sales to children and environmental charities.
Pam submitted one of her short stories and received her first rejection letter. Pam has done extensive research on publishers and cover letters. She read her most recent cover letter to the group and recommended The Marshall Plan for Writing and the Marshall Workbook as a good resource. The book explains that cover letters should be in courier font and should capture the reader's attention. The author should also mention group affiliations and give a short synopsis without giving away the ending. Pam decided not to respond to any offers until she hears back from everyone.
Judy suggested members report on who they submitted to and why at each meeting.
Judy discussed ways to check your document's readability. With the Fleichman tool, authors can check their work to make sure they are staying at the intended reading level. (The link follows:)
Cathy submitted Becca The Bat to Albert Whitman and Co.
Jackie passed around the updated group submission/results log.
Luneil read her poem Obama. Paul encouraged her to write a series of poems on inspirational characters. George Washington Carver's life as well as his accomplishments and inventions were discussed.
Cathy read her short story Carlisle and Cassie. Judy suggested this be part of a book with several chapters and adventures.
Jackie read two versions of a poem Treasures in Our Tree and asked for input and suggestions. Judy recommended she include her feelings when viewing the baby robins.