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March 2012

Upton Beall Sinclair Jr. (1878 – 1968) Whether writing fiction or nonfiction, Upton Sinclair documented his views on the injustices of capitalism and the overwhelming impact of poverty. His political and social activist campaigns during his many years in southern California included becoming a candidate for governor.

“Human beings suffer agonies, and their sad fates become legends; poets write verses about them and playwrights compose dramas, and the remembrance of past grief becomes a source of present pleasure—such is the strange alchemy of the spirit.”
–Upton Sinclair, Dragon's Teeth Pulitzer Prize for Novel, 1943

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March 2012 contents
President’s message Featured Speaker PR News Poetry Page Guest Column Volunteer Corner Literary Opportunities February Survey Results March Survey Board Meeting Highlights Hanging Out with Writers Tidbits About Patch 1 2 2 3 4 5 5 6 7 7 8 8 9

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President’s Message…

View from the Mountain Top
–Linda Brown

I devote this message to your Club’s Central Board (CB) and honor its 18 volunteers. At the January 29 CB meeting in Oakland, I had the opportunity to preview an advance copy of the CB’s newest publishing endeavor, the Literary Review. You will receive your inaugural and complementary issue soon. I hope you will share it with other writers, donate it to your library or literacy nonprofits, and then submit an article or short story for the next call for submissions. The CB also made plans to create a publicity plan to celebrate 10 years of California Writers Week (the third week in October 2013). I volunteered to join CB Public Relations Chair Donna McCrohan Rosenthal (East Sierra) and others on this effort. Please join us in creating educational and historical materials and writing query letters to national magazines and television stations for stories about our Club. Participating at the CB level includes learning more about what other branches are doing and leveraging the work of members throughout the state. Space precludes mentioning everyone. For now, thanks to these CB members for their contributions. The San Fernando Valley Branch, represented by Ray Malus, contributed monies to the Friends of Joaquin Miller Park (on which I represent the CB). Ray also designed a membership software program that is in beta test and that your BB board will learn about soon. Check out www.writingtoheal.com to find a list of paying markets for short stories (fiction) and articles and essays (nonfiction) kept by CB Vice President (and Orange County [OC] member) Carol Celeste. Allene Symons, www.allenesymons.com and dual member of Long Beach and OC, shared research from the community college where she is a part-time instructor in what used to be called the journalism department. Her school, one of the state’s 112 community colleges, changed its name to Communications & Media Studies after surveying all the state colleges and universities in the CSU and UC systems. The new words “… reflect a trend away from emphasis on the term journalism in higher education and the larger media world.” You can learn more about our CB, our branch and Club history, and all 18 branches at www.calwriters.org. Meanwhile, save Saturday, July 28, for the statewide picnic in Joaquin Miller Park, and consider becoming next year’s CB representative.
Oakland Main Library Bradley C. Walters Community Room 125 14th Street 94612 Entrance on Madison Street (wheelchair accessible)

Member News & Marketplace 9 March’s Literary Calendar The Last Word

5 Grade Story Contest Workshop flyer Speaker flyer

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upcoming events
3/2 NEA’s Read Across America 3/3 Workshop: Beth & Ezra Barany – “Social Media Branding for Authors” 3/15 Deadline: 5th Grade Story Contest 3/18 Speaker: Laurie McLean – “Writing Novels for the YA Market” 4/23 World Book Night Our monthly meetings are free and open to the public and feature a speaker, an author event, or both.

Remember to check out our website: www.cwc-berkeley.com

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March Speaker

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–David Baker

How long has it been since you experienced something for the first time or stumbled into a situation that spiraled out of control? If you remember how you felt on those occasions, try aiming your next novel at readers in one of fiction’s fastest growing areas. The category is more experimental than any other, wide open to questions that stimulate concern. No, it isn’t science fiction, as in years gone by. It’s young adult. With YA, we have “everything from real life high school day-to-day drama to paranormal coming-of-age stories to novels told in verse,” says Laurie Mclean, in an interview with Kay Em Evans. McLean, our featured speaker for the March 18 meeting, is a literary agent with Larsen-Pomada. She’s “searching high and low for YA romance, anything post-apocalyptic or vampiric, dark fantasy (no sweet fairy tales), dark reality.” Cyber-bullying, suicide, drug abuse, pregnancy, parental violence, and gangs are part of the world that young adults inhabit. “It figures that they want to read about it, too.” In a YouTube feature titled “Breaking Down the Market,” Mclean outlines basics for the YA writer. Your manuscript will be 60,000-100,000 words in length, targeting readers from thirteen to eighteen years old. You’ll write from a teen perspective in language appropriate for the age group. The protagonist and antagonist will be teenagers. Parents might appear, but in the background, because your characters are “breaking away from the family and experiencing things for themselves.” They’ll be emotional. “Everything is new. Consequences aren’t important in the moment.” Above all, remember that YA is “not dumbed-down adult fiction.” It’s honest writing in a teen voice about issues important to young adults. Works by Stephanie Meyer and Scott Westerfield are excellent examples. Perhaps you’ve already read YA best-sellers and want to write one yourself. But you need professional guidance through the dos and don’ts? Come to the March meeting and listen to Laurie McLean.

PR News

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Publicity means getting the word out. Public image has to do with how the community and larger audience see your organization. January gave us an excellent idea for advancement in both arenas. This month brings another one. At the January Central Board meeting, Mt. Diablo representative Judith Marshall spoke about a program her branch presents locally at libraries and other venues. “So You Want To Write a Book” draws the perfect crowd to view as potential CWC members. Other branches might try this ingenious approach. This month, the inaugural issue of the California Writers Club Literary Review goes out to members. It looks awfully good and contains a wealth of fine writing. Read it for fun, of course, but also with a thought in the back of your head that “I can do better.” Great. What’s stopping you? Check out the submission guidelines in the magazine, create a work of deathless prose or poesy and send it off.

Publication means a prestigious credit for you, and passing the Literary Review around shows off the CWC. Both the program and the Literary Review call attention to our CWC fellowship of talent—getting the word out and enhancing our public image while let you receive personal publicity in the bargain. Incidentally, my last column suggested using Letters to the Editor to talk up issues of interest such as finding affordable meeting spaces for nonprofits. A reader subsequently reminded me to remind you that you can write about the CWC as a member of the CWC, but take care that you don’t represent yourself as a spokesperson for the CWC. Good luck and sail on! Donna McCrohan Rosenthal, PR chair pr@calwriters.org

Write Angles Poetry Page
Digging Between my finger and my thumb The squat pen rests; as snug as a gun. Under my window a clean rasping sound When the spade sinks into gravelly ground: My father, digging. I look down Till his straining rump among the flowerbeds Bends low, comes up twenty years away Stooping in rhythm through potato drills Where he was digging.

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Poet Profile

The coarse boot nestled on the lug, the shaft Against the inside knee was levered firmly. He rooted out tall tops, buried the bright edge deep To scatter new potatoes that we picked Loving their cool hardness in our hands. By God, the old man could handle a spade, Just like his old man. My grandfather could cut more turf in a day Than any other man on Toner's bog. Once I carried him milk in a bottle Corked sloppily with paper. He straightened up To drink it, then fell to right away Nicking and slicing neatly, heaving sods Over his shoulder, digging down and down For the good turf. Digging. The cold smell of potato mold, the squelch and slap Of soggy peat, the curt cuts of an edge Through living roots awaken in my head. But I've no spade to follow men like them. Between my finger and my thumb The squat pen rests. I'll dig with it. - from Death of a Naturalist (1966)

–Alyse Chadow

Seamus Heaney was born in Northern Ireland in 1939 and graduated from Queens University, Belfast, in 1961. His first collection, Death of a Naturalist, was published in 1966 and won the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize. Since then, he has won numerous awards, including the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1995. His 1999 translation of Beowulf won the Whitbread Prize and was a national best-seller; to date, Heaney is the only poet to have this distinction. He currently lives in Dublin with his wife, the writer Marie Devlin. Heaney, who is a translator and playwright as well, has been called “the most important Irish poet since William Butler Yeats” and is considered to be one of the greatest poets of the modern age. His lyrical style, vivid imagery, and attention to the everyday have endeared him to millions of readers the world over.

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Guest Column
–Susan Bearman

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Embracing the (Whole) Writing Process, Part I
Like third graders writing a report, beginning writers tend to believe that writing a first draft means their work is done. While completing the first draft of a manuscript, whether a short story or a full novel, is a huge accomplishment, writers are never “done.” There’s always a next step. But that’s OK. In fact, that’s great, because writing is a process, not a product. If you’re lucky, you will produce some finished products along the way, but the process is ongoing. And each step offers an opportunity to hone different writing skills. A great writer and teacher, Esther Herschenhorn, offers the best, most thrilling definition of revision I’ve ever heard. She even pronounces it differently: re-visioning. Revision is a chance to look at your story all over again from a different perspective. When you learn to see your story anew, with fresh eyes and vigor, each draft will take it to a higher level. This is also the time to bring in your critique group. It’s often helpful to ask beta readers to concentrate on specific areas for feedback, such as:  plot holes, inconsistencies, and point of view  scenes that drag or soar  things that confuse  clichés or lazy writing Remember what revision is not:  it is not a line edit.  it is not a final edit.  it is not something you will accomplish in one read through. The revision process can take a long time, often longer than the first draft. Give it the time it deserves. When you’re completely satisfied, then it’s time to polish and prepare your manuscript for submission.

We have Anne Lamott to thank for coining “sh$!!y first draft” (SFD) in her classic writing memoir, Bird by Bird. And we should thank her, because that’s what first drafts are. We squeeze our guts out onto the page (or screen) just so we have something—a bare beginning, a wonderful character, a glimmer of an idea—with which to work. This is the free-form part of the process. Enjoy every minute of it. Lock your inner editor in a closet and let your imagination run wild. Spend some time asking “What if …?” Then put every crazy notion you can think of in this SFD and give yourself permission to make mistakes.

First Draft—No Holds Barred -

When you’re finished, remember a first draft is just that — a first draft. Your final manuscript will go through many revisions (that’s revisions, plural). So, revel in finishing that first draft … for about five minutes. Then put it away to marinate, and get busy on another project.

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Final Edits—Making It Picture Perfect
If you tend to be a little OCD, this is the stage where you can pick nits to your heart’s content. Comb, trim, slash, polish, buff, and beautify until your words glow in the dark. Be ruthless.

Revision—Honing and Shaping
I personally love the revision process, but many writers loathe it. If you’re one of them, the first thing you need to revise is your thinking. Revision is where you hone and shape your masterpiece, a land of opportunity where you get to:  exercise your craft to the fullest.  ask your characters who they really are and what they really want.  throw in plot twists that will keep your readers on the edge of their seats.  weave subplots together into a rich tapestry of story.  explore all the possibilities your rough draft offered to discover the story you were meant to tell.

Even the best editors, however, have a hard time doing final edits on a manuscript they’ve lived with day in and day out through rough drafting and revisions. This is a good time to hire or beg an editor to help. You must have at least one fresh set of eyes proof your work.
This piece was written by freelance writer/editor Susan Bearman. You can find her on Facebook, Twitter and her blog, Two Kinds of People. It was originally published online on Write It Sideways: Writing advice from a fresh perspective. Look for Part II in the April issue of Write Angles.

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Volunteer Corner
–Madelen Lontiong

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to socialize. John Q. McDonald, who writes book reviews in Write Angles, gives insightful evaluations of books for members to read. Karren Elsbernd, who provides cover photos for Write Angles, researches distinguished California writers to introduce for each month’s issue. Kristen Caven, Tech Team Leader, who provides tech support to volunteers and keeps us abreast of insider tech news related to our website, social media, and administrative technology tools. Shelley Wagner, our raffle coordinator, solicits donations for our monthly raffle and minds the collection of books used for prizes. Shereen Rahman, member greeter, provides allaround hostessing, manning the front table at speaker meetings, greeting newcomers and welcoming members. Thomas Burchfield, who solicits member profiles for Write Angles, gathers information about members and sheds light on members’ creative endeavors. Our CWC machine works well because of the many people who contribute their part to make it so. They deserve to be acknowledged for their donation of time to the club. Let’s thank them for their assistance. Well done!

Volunteers come in all shapes and sizes, meaning they range from members who conduct a one-time project to those who fill a need on a periodic or monthly basis to those who are officers and help oversee all aspects of the branch functioning. Similar to life in the business world, where all the workers help to keep the organization going, so do our volunteers each help to oil a part of the branch machine. All of the many parts have importance, and when all the parts are moving, the result is a humming piece of equipment. We have more than a few cogs that contribute to this harmonious humming. Presented here in alphabetical order are some of our helpful contributors: April Kutger, who conducts surveys in Write Angles, gives members opportunities to share their thoughts on writing resources, contests, and writing goals, among others. Charlie Russell, who schedules author talks, helps line up members to give promotions of their books at our monthly speaker meetings. David Baker, who writes speaker profiles in Write Angles, introduces us to our monthly speakers, their approach to writing, and gives us a taste of what to expect in their talks. Eva Merrick, our holiday party hostess, planned and executed our holiday gathering, which included a fun 15-minute writing exercise along with an opportunity

Literary Opportunities
Notre Dame de Namur University is offering a $20,000 creative writing scholarship to a California high school junior or senior who wins the San Mateo County Fair Literary Contest. To qualify, the student must have a 3.0 GPA or above, submit a poem, short story, or essay (limited to one entry per applicant) that has not been previously entered in a San Mateo County Fair competition, and enroll and be accepted to Notre Dame de Namur within one year of graduating from high school. The opportunity to become a published author by Sand Hill Review Press is also being offered by the San Mateo County Fair Literary Anthology 2012. Enter a short story, poetry, essay, and sponsored contest submissions. All entries must be submitted in .doc or .docx file. Every entrant will have at least one piece published, which will be available for purchase at the Fair June 9–17 and also on www.Amazon.com. For entry forms or more details about both literary opportunities, call 650-574-3247, visit www.sanmateocountyfair.com, or email literary@smeventcenter.com. Submission deadline for both is April 16.

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February Survey Results
–April Kutger

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Which Conferences and Workshops Are Worthwhile?
Due to the small number of responses, this month’s analysis is strictly narrative. Many thanks to members Ray Nelson, Jeff Kingman, Aline Soules, and Francine Howard for sharing their experiences. Ray Nelson reports that he has chaired and attended several writers' conferences, including ones sponsored by the CWC. Those he considers most worthwhile consisted of informal meetings at Science Fiction conventions aimed at readers. The most important thing he has taken away from writers' conferences was “a list of the names, addresses and phone numbers of people working in the fantasy field.” Ray has concluded that writers’ conferences are, “at best, a poor substitute” for regular meetings of writers working in the same genre. He hosts a weekly meeting at his house called "Cafe Boheme," which includes several published writers in the fantasy genre. Ray attended similar meetings in France, which took place in sidewalk cafes; every member of the group eventually got published. Over the last few years, Jeffrey Kingman has attended conferences four times, twice to the Nebraska Summer Writers’ Conference, which he recommends because they have a good mix of workshops and seminars. He writes, “If you want to concentrate on craft, there are workshops for the novel, short story, poetry, and memoir. If you want interaction with agents, editors, and publishers, there's plenty of opportunity, including pre-scheduled one-on-one meetings.” As for workshops, Jeffrey likes ones where participants read and critique each other's work with the guidance of an experienced instructor, such as the poetry workshop he attended that was taught by Stanford’s Bruce Snider. He prefers that the “manuscripts are sent around before the class so they can be evaluated ahead of time; the critiques are more thoughtful that way.” Aline Soules has an MFA in Creative Writing and believes she’s outgrown many workshops. She loves the people and camaraderie but wishes they had stronger critique sessions. She remarked that Breadloaf and the Squaw Valley Writers’ Workshops are “so competitive that one has minimal chance of acceptance.” She found a week-long workshop with Mark Doty at Cranbrook in 1999 to be very rewarding. When Francine Thomas Howard first became serious about writing in 2003, she recognized she had to “get up to speed in a hurry.” Besides joining the CWC-BB’s fivepage critique group, she realized she needed to attend writing conferences. “In my naiveté, I chose my first one because I liked the location—Maui. Little did I know that the Maui Writer's Conference was one of the most prestigious in the country.”

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Surrounded by 800 seasoned writing veterans who offered tremendous feedback and support, she learned a lot about the craft of writing. She also participated in a speed-dating agent conference, which she describes as “a very nerve-wracking event.” The Maui Writer's Conference also sponsored the Rupert Hughes Prose Writing contest, and Francine’s first novel, Page from a Tennessee Journal, was a finalist. She credits that event as “a psychological turning point on [her] writing journey.” Francine’s advice on writing conferences? “Just pick a big one.” I attended both the 2007 and 2009 East of Eden Conferences, sponsored by the California Writers Club’s Central Coast Branch. I had no idea what to expect the first time I went. I signed up for a variety of workshops, some on very basic subjects, such as how
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Jeffrey attended the San Francisco Writers Conference a few years ago but did not like its emphasis on “how to make a buck, how to be a salesperson—and not much about craft.” There was "speed dating with an agent," but Jeffrey thought the “speed” aspect was not helpful. He preferred the more relaxed one-on-ones in Nebraska. Jeffrey does recommend the Napa Valley Writers Conference, where he participated in a poetry workshop with D.A. Powell. “The caliber of writing was tremendous,” he reports, and added, “It was very focused and intense—focused on writing.”

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March Survey

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What Writers’ Journals Do You Read?
–April Kutger

Do you subscribe to any periodicals for writers? Or do you check them out of your local library or buy them from your local newsstand? After reading issues of The Writer at my local library for several months, I decided to subscribe, and I’ve been a subscriber for two years. My only problem—finding time to read them. In this month’s survey, we want to solicit your feedback on periodicals for writers that you read on a regular basis and how they are helpful to your writing experience.  Do they publish articles that help you improve your writing?  Do they help you understand the world of publishing and what publishers are looking for?  Do you enjoy the articles and interviews with successful authors?  Do you enter their contests? Has anything you’ve written been published in one of them?  Do you read these periodicals for information about conferences, writing programs, agents and publishers, and contest announcements from other publications?  Which periodicals do you most enjoy/learn from?  Which would you recommend to new writers? Please send me an email @ akutger@berkeley.edu before March 10 to let me know what you think. I know Write Angles readers enjoy learning about members’ experiences and opinions on many subjects. Thanks.

Board Meeting Highlights

–Barry Boland, CWC-BB Secretary

The Berkeley Branch of CWC met on Saturday, January 28. Here are a few of the topics discussed.

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Critique Groups: Sixteen Eyes has consolidated with Rockridge Writers Group. The fee for CWC members to attend a workshop had been raised to $13.00 as of March, 2012.

Paypal will be implemented in 2012, allowing payments by members to be made through the Internet. PayPal serves as a guarantor of your payments. www.paypal.com In future, all volunteers and donors will be recognized in the June issue of Write Angles and in our public meetings.

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to format a manuscript for submission to an agent. I was a “writer,” but I knew nothing about the business of writing. I learned a lot at the 2007 conference. When the 2009 conference was announced, I felt a bit more prepared. I took advantage of the opportunity to have a twenty-minute session with an author who read the first chapter of my novel and offered excellent feedback. It was well worth the extra cost. I also submitted a short story and 20 pages of my novel to contests for participants. To my utter surprise, I won first prize in the novel-writing contest. As a “new” writer already in her 60s, my

reaction was similar to Ruth Gordon’s when she received an Academy Award after sixty years in films, “I can’t tell you how encouraging this is.” In 2011, I was accepted by the Squaw Valley Writers’ Workshop. It was an extraordinary experience: critique sessions; a one-on-one with an author/ professor about my submitted writing; talks and panel discussions by famous and respected authors, agents, and publishers; and personal interactions with everyone. I recommend this experience to all writers. It is competitive, but it’s worth putting yourself out there to see if you’re good enough. And if you aren’t accepted the first time, keep trying.


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Hanging Out with Writers
–Sasha Futran

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This is what happens when you participate in a CWC survey: Thirty or so people get a chance to win a toilet seat. No, I dissemble. For that we need another event. And some glue. It all started on a Sunday afternoon in November. I don’t remember what the weather was like that day because I was home nursing a recent torn rotator cuff surgery and feeling sorry for myself. But I digress. Since we haven’t had a lot of rain, let’s say it was cool but sunny. Hot and steamy would be better, but I haven’t made the transition from journalism to fiction yet, so I’m stuck with still approximating the truth. At the CWC November meeting there was a survey called “Hangin’ Out With Writers,” with various options for our socializing proposed. This idea from our Membership Committee hard at work. “A majority of the respondents said they wanted a casual gathering with a writerly event,” said Membership Chair Cliff Hui. “And voilà! The Event was planned.” We gathered together for conversation and nibbling in a room with a view of the bay at the Berkeley Marina. That was on a sunny and pleasant, soon-to-become-steamy, Sunday in February. The 11th. So far so good. Cliff takes full responsibility for what happened next: A writer’s contest and The Prize. Four of our members— Tanya Grove, Alon Shalev, Kristen Caven, and Cliff Hui – produced a paragraph contributing two sentences each for the start of a story. The gist of this marvel is that the residents of a boarding house, the Venus Hotel, often discuss the difference between love and in love, but on this particular day the conversation rather quickly bogs down to a balding man licking his lips and admiring poor Velma’s pants hugging the firm roundness of her hips. Lest I forget, also observing the straining buttons on her blouse. We were to come up with a title. (FULL DISCLOSURE: I contributed an idea that didn’t get even one vote, so perhaps I am bitter.) Mary Luersen took first place with “Hot Booties at the Venus” and received a large box with a bow on top . . . and half a toilet seat inside. We all autographed that half-seat in bright indelible markers. When asked if the prize was all she imagined and where she was going to hang it, Mary’s response was, “I never could imagine receiving such a prize” and, to put it euphemistically, she said that she hadn’t yet determined its final resting place. Me, now, I would hang on to that toilet seat. Just think what it will be worth if just one of us hits number one or number two (sorry, I couldn’t resist) on the NYT best-seller list and gets a movie deal! In other words, a good time was had by all. Cliff is ready for another gathering and reports, “That other half of the toilet seat is waiting.” And I’m still wondering if he sawed it by hand, electric, or asked someone at Home Depot to do the honors…

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Write Angles welcomes Alysa Chadow to our newsletter family. Alysa is taking over the Poetry Page, which Barbara Ruffner generously offered to handle temporarily but ended up doing for two years. Thank you, Barbara! At our holiday luncheon in December, Eva Merrick, who planned the special event, sponsored an on-the-spot flash-fiction competition. Using characters from Francine Howard’s latest book, Paris Noire, attendees wrote a short story in fifteen minutes. The two winners were announced at our February meeting: Mary Luersen and Tanya Grove. Both received gift bags, with signed copies of Paris Noire, maps of Paris and the metro, and a lovely souvenir sticker from Hotel Métropole in Nice.

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Do You Know about Patch?
–Tanya Grove

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The tagline for this online newsletter reads, “Hi there, we're Patch, your source for local knowledge you can't live without.” This is where you find out about the farmers’ market in Kensington, the new ice cream parlor on Solano Ave., and the progress in construction on Albany’s swimming pool. There’s a place to post events in your area, share photos of interest to the community (wild turkey sightings around Albany!), and comment on any of the articles or opinion pieces. Patch.org was founded in 2010 and currently hosts hundreds of daily online local newsletters in 23 different states. There are more than 100 in California alone. Each Patch serves an area of 15,000 to 100,000 residents. In the East Bay, Patches are in Albany, Alameda, Berkeley, El Cerrito, Piedmont, Pinole, and many other cities. Each Patch has one paid editor who runs his or her Patch, although neighboring Patches often share news stories that would be of interest to more than one city. Each Patch has a virtual corral of nonpaid bloggers who are dubbed “local voices.” I write for the Albany Patch, whose editor is Emilie Raguso, a wonderful community builder who makes great efforts to reach out to Patch readers. We recently passed our benchmark of 500 blog posts, all written by people who live in Albany or nearby. I’ve found it to be a great opportunity to reach readers, practice my craft, and engage with other members in my community. My humorous series on the Albany Police Blotter even landed me a speaking engagement at the Hillside Club. If you’re interested in writing for your local Patch, first subscribe to it so you get a feel for the kinds of stories it publishes. Then write something that people in your area would find interesting and submit it online. It’s easy!

Member News

Tanya Grove contributes regularly to the Albany Patch as one of their "local voices." She often mines the Albany police blotter for humor and shares her thoughts on local events. Read her on albany.patch.com.

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Alysa Chadow’s article, “Red Wolf Recovery in North Carolina,” was published in the February issue of the California Wolf Center’s February newsletter The Red Wolf and Mexican Gray Wolf: Parallel Paths to Near Extinction and Back. Available at www.californiawolfcenter.org. Charlotte Cook and Jon James Miller are now members of the F+W Media family (Writer’s Digest, The Writers Store). See www.adaptingsideways.com about the availability of their book. The first webinar of Cook and Miller, “Script to Novel—Double Your Odds of a Sale,” was produced Wednesday, February 22, 2012, with further events to come.

Colleen Rae’s third book, written with Jerry Hill, Shiloh Speaks; A Therapy Dog's Memoir of Unconditional Love, the first-person story of a therapy dog visiting people at the end of their lives, was released November 2011. It is available on Amazon.com and the websites www.colleenraesnovels.com and www.shilohspeaksthebook.com/

Write Angles welcomes letters to the editor, book reviews, and articles of interest to writers. Submit to writeangles@gmail.com. If you are a member and want to share news, please write “Member News” in the subject line. Deadline is the 15th of the month.

Member Marketplace
CWC-Berkeley member Thomas Burchfield offers editing and proofreading services for nonfiction books by CWCBerkeley members. Contact him for details at tbdeluxe@sbcglobal.net or call 510-817-4432.
If you have a publishing service to offer, you can send a business card to writeangles@gmail.com.

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March Literary Birthdays
Mar 1 Mar 16 Mar 18 Mar 19 Mar 20

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So many talented writers were born in March. Here’s a chance to learn more about them. Just click on a name to link to a site about that author. Have fun! Information collected from http://librarybooklists.org/literarybirths/bmar.htm o Oklahoman, novelist, essayist, and short-story writer Ralph Ellison (1914; d.1994) o U.S. poet Robert Lowell Jr. (1917; d.1977) o Dr. Seuss alter ego Theodor Geisel (1904; d.1991) o journalist and novelist Tom Wolfe (1931) o writer John Irving (1942), born Exeter, N.H. Mar 3 o poet James Merrill (1926; d.1995), who won the 1976 Pulitzer Prize o Wyoming-born children's writer Patricia MacLachlan (1938) Sarah Plain and Tall o New Hampshire writer Constance Fenimore Woolson (1840; d.1894) o Chicago-born naturalist writer Frank Norris (1870; d.1902) o Philadelphia playwright Charles H. Fuller, Jr. (1939), won a Pulitzer for A Soldier's Play o NYC-born children's writer Sid Fleischman (1920) o Pennsylvania-born novelist and poet John Updike (1932; the 'Rabbit' series) o New Jersey-born novelist Philip Roth (1933) o Henrik Ibsen, Norwegian playwright (1828; d. 1906) o Roman poet and writer Ovid (43 B.C.; d.17 A.D.) o children's author Lois Lowry (1937) o English illustrator and medal namesake Randolph Caldecott (1846; d.1886) o North Dakota writer of westerns Louis L'Amour (1908; d.1988) o beat poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti (1919) o Georgia novelist Flannery O'Connor (1925; d.1964) o New England poet (San Francisco-born) Robert Frost (1874; d. 1963) o Mississippi-born playwright Tennesee Williams (1911; d.1983) o beat poet Gregory Corso (1930; d.2001) o NYC novelist Erica Jong (1942) o German novelist and essayist Heinrich Mann (1871; d. 1950) o Mario Vargas Llosa (1936), Peruvian novelist and politician o German novelist and essayist Ernst Junger (1895; d.1998) o English writer Anna Sewell (1820; d.1878), author of Black Beauty o Russian realist writer Nikolai Vasilievich Gogol (1809; d.1852) o Mexican writer and diplomat Octavio Paz (1914; d.1998) o English novelist John Fowles (1926; d.2005) o U.S. novelist Marge Piercy (1936)

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o Ring Lardner, Sr. (1885; d.1933), satirical writer of the Jazz Age o Gabriel Garcia Márquez (1928), Colombian novelist and 1982 Nobelist o U.S. postmodernist writer Donald Barthelme (1931; d.1989) o Scottish writer Kenneth Grahame (1859; d.1932) The Wind in the Willows (1908) o New Jersey-born writer John McPhee (1931), winner of 1999 Pulitzer Prize o U.S. detective novelist and Mike Hammer creator Mickey Spillane (1918) o poet, librarian, and first California poet laureate Ina Donna Coolbrith (1842; d.1928) o British sci-fi satirist Douglas Adams (1952; d.2001; Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy) o Jack Kerouac, American beat writer (1922; d. 1969) o playwright Edward Albee (1928) o Children's author and novelist Virginia Hamilton (1936; d.2002), winner of Newbery Medal and the National Book Award

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Mar 9 Mar 10 Mar 11 Mar 12

Write Angles
The Last Word
–Tanya Grove After our last CWC-BB board meeting, seven of us chatted over lunch. We left behind the nitty-gritty details of club business and allowed ourselves to speak of our hopes and dreams for the club. We discussed what types of workshops and speakers we like. We shared what kinds of resources we’d find helpful. Between snatches of more writerly topics, we also managed to talk about problem pets and marveled at one member’s ability to eat key lime pie without gaining weight. While it’s true that CWC members all write, writing encompasses a long list of distinctive genres. In just our little group, we covered business, magazine articles, children’s poetry, science fiction, memoirs, blogs, and humor. With such a diversity of writers—each with individual needs and interests within the larger topic of writing—can one club be everything to everyone? Maybe not. But the more people who are involved in running the club, the more likely it is that the club will suit the needs of its members. It really comes down to individuals. Have you secretly wished that CWC would find more speakers who interest you? Do you quietly sit in the back of meetings and think, if I were in charge of (critique groups, workshops, speakers, meetings, special events, etc.) I would…? Volunteer organizations are only as good as their volunteers. There are numerous tasks of all sizes. You don’t have to offer 30 hours a week and your

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first born. Take a self-inventory: are you gregarious but mathphobic? You’re an unlikely candidate for treasurer, but you could be a greeter at meetings. Do you have small kids and no childcare but have a home with a large meeting room? Host a critique group or a special event. Are you shy but computer savvy? Offer to spend an hour or two hour a month maintaining a web page or updating the calendar on our website. Ask yourself: if you don’t do it, who will? Narrowing that focus to an aspect of the club close to my heart, I am asking for help with Write Angles. Producing a monthly newsletter takes a village. (Okay, maybe not a whole village, but it does require several people.) Do you have a keen interest or knowledge of markets for writing? Maybe you’d like to write a monthly article on marketing. Are you a voracious reader with opinions on books? Write a book review and send it in.

Write Anges Write Anges

Remember that Write Angles is here for the benefit of its members. So make it work for you. Send us news on your latest accomplishments, book deals, articles published, speaking engagements, and awards so we can put them in Member News. If you offer a service in the field of publishing, write up a brief ad for yourself or send us your business card for Member Marketplace. The club is what volunteers make it, and so is Write Angles. So make it!

Write Angles
Editor Copyeditor/Member News/Tidbits Cover Author Contributor President’s Message Speaker Profile Poetry Page Editor Member Profiles Survey Analyst/Reporter Tanya Grove Anne Fox Karren Elsbernd Linda Brown David Baker Alyse Chadow Thomas Burchfield April Kutger

Write Angles

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