Newsletter and Great Writing Tips

The Writers Bloc Blast sept2016newsletter full newsletter here.

Next Month’s Meeting
Date: September 26, 2016
Time: 5:00 pm
Place: Lakestone Terrace, 3rd Floor Conference Room,
Granbury, TX
Agenda: Double critique, Mini session – Refresher on
passive vs. active voice by Brian Condike

Remember in September your annual membership fee of $20 is due.
S E P T E M B E R 2 0 1 6 Writer’s Tips
The reader needs someone/thing to root for, worry about, etc., in order to wonder if ” they’ll “make it.”
Your Character And this is what fuels a “page turner.”
1. Who’s story is it?
2. Could someone else carry the
story or the theme better?
3. What’s their relationship with
other characters? Positive or
4. Character’s attitude toward
place, work, family, society,
religion, upbringing
5. What’s their perspective?
6. What are their reactions?
Thoughts, words, deeds by
7. Customs, secrets, myths
8. Approach to difficulty
9. Handle success
10. Is your character worthy of the
rewards of winning?
Carmen Goldthwaite
Author, Storyteller, Writing Teacher Humor Corner

Second Writer’s Tip of the Month
Show or Tell
Go through your manuscript and highlight every timeyou see an adjective (beautiful, lazy, persistent), or a feeling (love, hate, frustrated). If you see too many highlighted words consider revising. Choose more specific nouns that work without the need for an adjective. Show the feeling through action, facial expressions, gestures, and body language. Quotable Quotes: An editor once said, “Isn’t it a shame that everyone who ever wanted to write a book
did.” —unknown

Winning Essay (Example)
Writing Persuasively
So, you want a puppy. Here’s a news bulletin. Puppies morph into full sized animals before your eyes. If you want something to cuddle, buy a stuffed toy. Dogs’ social graces are questionable at best. They’ll lick your face after spending hours cleaning their privates. They’ll snore, belch, and toot during the best part of a Netflix movie. They’ll eat disgusting things like poop, dead worms, frog pizza, or soiled pampers before you can stop them, and then throw up on your new
living room rug.
Dogs don’t just have body odor. They have rolled-on-dead-animal odor, dirty
earwax odor, bad breath (from frog pizza) odor, and sneaky gastric emissions odor.
They like swimming, but hate baths, especially if soap or shampoo is involved.
Dogs are soft and fuzzy because they have hair, hair that gets all over the furniture, all over the car seats, and all over the back of your best black blazer. They prefer to shed by running around the house dropping tufts of hair, or by rubbing against the back of the sofa. They identify combs and brushes as lethal weapons.
Dogs won’t poop on command. They drop the biggest loads on your neighbor’s lawns, and lift their legs on your best friends bookcase while you’re assuring him your dog is housebroken.
Sure puppies are cute, but they grow up into dogs and dogs are a lifetime commitment. So don’t get a puppy as an impulse purchase unless you’re ready for selfsacrifice, surprises along the way, and you thrive on routine – like a dog.
New Business: Officers and committees were nominated and elected by acclamation (and by Zombies).
Officers Elected:
Robert Taylor—President
Peggy Freeman—Vice-president
Beverly Harrison—Treasurer
Connie Leonard—Secretary
Hospitality—Elizabeth Sutton and Gwen Williams
Mary Lou and Brian Condike—Newsletter
Publicity—Holli Harrison
Social Media—Peggy and Blaze
Book Review Schedule—Peggy Freeman and Mary Lou Condike will set up at Lake Stone on the 2nd and 4th
Tuesdays of each month from 3:30-4:30.
Holli Harrison completed an illustrated encyclopedia for her new series.
On September 10, Charles Rodenberger will celebrate his 90th birthday. He has been writing a column since
1986, receiving only a few emails. He received three emails in one week.
Connie Leonard wrote two magazine articles in August.
Business Meeting adjourned at 8:40
Upcoming Area Writers Events
Sponsor: The Dallas Area Writers Group (DAWG)
Event: DAWG Writing Workshop. “Write to Publish: Climbing Toward
When: October 22, 2016
Where: Cedar Hill Library, 225 Cedar Street, Cedar Hill, TX
Time: 8:30 am to 4:00 pm
#Attendees: 80 maximum
Instructors: D.D. Ayres, Kendel Lynn, Michelle Stimpson, Taylor Stevens
Cost: $85 for full registration. Check website for early registration.
Contact: Patsy Summey, Writer
Dallas Area Writers Group
PO Box 1169
Cedar Hill, Texas 75106
Since: 2004

Contest 200 Word

Write no more than 200 words using the photograph below taken in Granbury as your inspiration. Please send only one entry each month. Winner’s article, essay or story gets published in next month’s newsletter. The best of the winners at the end of the year will receive a special prize at the December meeting. Use a confidential pen name so the attendees at the next meeting can guess who wrote the article.

Judging criteria:thumbnail_img_6611

1. Originality

2. Show versus tell

3. Active voice

4. POV character (if applies)

5. Mini plot (if applies)

6. Emotion (sad, funny, etc.) Send entries to: or Mary Lou Condike, 1528 Comanche Ct., Granbury, TX 76046 by the 10th of each month (for next


New Officers:

We so appreciate Katie Carpenter for her excellent work as newsletter editor in the mist of heart surgery and heart romance…😍. We will miss you being in our community as you move but you don’t have to leave us here. And thank you Lloyd Christensen for excellent programs all year. We will miss you, but hope you stay in touch here.

Marylou Condike & Brian Condike, thank you for taking on the difficult job of being Newsletter editors for the next year.

New officers for 2016-2017 are:
President-Robert Taylor
Vice President-Peggy Purser Freeman
Secretary- Connie Lewis Leonard
Treasure- Beverly Harrison
Hospital Team – Elizabeth Sutton, Victoria Calder, and Gwen Williams
Media Team – Newsletter- Mary Lou and Brian Condike, Newpaper – Holli Harrison, social media- Catherine West, website- Peggy Freeman

“Fast Track to Writing a Book” March Meeting

Writers’ Bloc meets on the 4th Monday each month, in the 3rd floor game room of Lakestone Terrace with critique at 5 pm and program at 7pm. March program by Pegg Purser Freeman will be a “Fast Track to Writing a Book.” Peggy will share tips and an overview of a couple of on line courses being offered for writers.

Author – First novel – The Coldest Day in Texas, (TCU Press) one of three finalists for The Texas League of Writers Teddy Book Award, presented by First Lady Laura Bush. She is author of Cruisin’ Through Life-Dip Street and Other Miracle, Spy Cam One and Swept Back to a Texas Future – a historical play for children, depicting an overview Texas history. (Hendrick-Long)

Peggy’s latest book – Dip Street and Other Miracles Celebrates the 50s and 60s, inspires family values and transports the reader back to home and heart in a Lewis Gizzard fashion.

Speaker – Peggy speaks on: her own work, the writing process, Texas history, responsible behavior, values and finding your own family history.

Student Writing Workshops – Students of all ages love writing when they participate in Peggy’s workshops. Centered on games and fun activities even writing becomes an enjoyable adventure.

Editor – Peggy served for the past 10 years as Editor for Granbury/Glen Rose Showcase Magazine.

Freelance Writer – Peggy writes for 7 major magazines across Texas. She has written columns for newspapers and Radio Disney public affairs shows 620AM.

Teacher – Peggy has taught writing classes at University of Texas at Arlington and Texas A&M Tarleton’s Langdon Center in Granbury.

Texas Independence Day Student History Fair – A 2014 Volunteer of the Year for the Texas Heroes Foundation, Peggy serves to promote Texas History and the freedom and liberty we enjoy as Texans as she facilitates the TID Student History fair in North Texas.

Creator and Chairman of the Elizabeth Crockett DAR Constitution Camp for Kids – Peggy dreamed of hosting a camp for kids to promote the study of the US Constitution for the children of Hood County. Thanks to her fellow patriots in the Daughters of the American Revolution the first camp took place in June of 2015 and plans are underway for a camp each summer. Peggy gladly shares resources with other communities who want to host a Constitution Camp.

Curvy and Confident Call Out


Chicken Soup for the Soul: Curvy & Confident
101 Stories about Loving Yourself and Your Body

Chicken Soup for the Soul: Curvy & Confident

Women come in all shapes and sizes. We’re all beautiful and the key is to be fit and healthy within the body type that we were issued at birth. Our new book is all about body image, self-esteem, and feeling comfortable within our own skins. We want to stress the mind + body + spirit connection, the rational consumption of foods that we like (no stringent dieting) and the pursuit of exercise that makes us feel happy and connected to the wonderful machines that are our bodies.

We want to be fit and healthy, but that doesn’t mean we have to look like a traditional model, although these days that’s changing too! Look at the new Barbie dolls, which come in tall, petite, thin and curvy! Or the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue, featuring women of all shapes and sizes.

Society is changing and we want to be part of it. Curvy and confident — let’s share our stories. We want your stories about loving your look and feeling beautiful. How did you develop confidence? Have you helped girls and other women get confident? How do you stay fit? What do you eat? How have you gotten to know your body? Tell us about how you became curvy and confident or stay curvy and confident. What advice do you have for other women? How did you learn to deal with the pressures society and the media put on women to be thin? What lifestyle changes did you make? What attitude adjustments did you make? And when you did decide to accept and love yourself just the way you are, how did that make you feel?

If you are a man, tell us what you think of the curvy and confident women in your life. Do you have your own story about your own body image or self-esteem? Does the curvy movement help you too?

We’re excited to have the world’s first curvy supermodel, EMME, joining us as coauthor of this book. She is an advocate for women to find happiness within the skin they’re in — for women to nourish themselves emotionally, physically and spiritually by learning to eat nutrient-dense foods, get their bodies moving, choose friends and lovers wisely, carve out silence within their busy day to just be, and for once and for all to enjoy the diversity of their body types.

Please remember, we no longer publish “as told to” stories. Write your story or poem in the first person. Do not ghostwrite a story for someone else unless you list that person as the author. If a story was previously published, we will probably not use it unless it ran in a small circulation venue. Let us know where the story was previously published in the “Comments” section of the submission form.

All stories should be true — we do not publish fiction — and should be no longer than 1,200 words. If your story was already published in a past Chicken Soup for the Soul book, please do not submit it. We will not publish it again. If you submitted a story for one of our previous books and we did not publish it, please feel free to submit it to this book if you think will fit. That way we will be sure it is considered for this new edition.

If your story is chosen, you will be a published author and your bio will be printed in the book if you so choose. You will also receive a check for $200 and 10 free copies of your book, worth more than $100. You will retain the copyright for your story and you will retain the right to resell it or self-publish it.

SUBMISSIONS GO TO OUR WEBSITE. Select the Submit Your Story link at the bottom of the page and follow the directions.


Submission site

Writers’ workshop and writing group