February 2010

Newsletter of the Denver Branch
National League of American Pen Women
February 2010
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MINUTES OF THE FEBRUARY 6TH BUSINESS MEETING:

President Paula Pahl CALLED THE MEETING TO ORDER at 10 a.m.

IN ATTENDANCE were Laurel Jean Becker, Jane Carpenter, Diane Chambers, Sandy Chapman, Florence Elliott, Joyce Evans (Guest), Laurian Harshman (Guest), Nancy Hegan, Pat Kennedy, Ann Klaiman, Marie Kriss, Sue Luxa, Pam Nowak (Guest), Paula Pahl, Nancy Peterson, Lorrie Reed, Ann Rosati (Guest, Holly Branch, DE), and Gwen Scott.

Lorrie offered an INSPIRATIONAL READING about Valentine’s Day which “never ends.” GUESTS were introduced, including Joyce Evans, Editor of the Lowry News and Ann Rosati, Editor of The Pen Woman magazine. January MINUTES WERE APPROVED. Gwen, as TREASURER REPORTED A BALANCE of $1924.57.

Kriss’ MEMBERSHIP REPORT announced four new members: Fay Coulouris, Patricia Cox, Sue Luxa, and Debbie McCulliss. WELCOME! Their dues will not be submitted until later in February so that their membership year will end April 30, 2011, as it does for other branch members. Our branch is continuing to partner with several organizations at the University of Denver. Discussions have included the possibility of a joint effort to offer a half-day workshop or guest speaker, etc. Any such plans, Kriss assured us, would not demand financial backing from the branch.

Nancy Hegan, as Programming Chair, briefly overviewed the SPRING MEETINGS: March, non-member critique session [See below]; April, former RMN cartoonist Ed Stein; May, children’s author Diane Blomberg; and June, planning meeting. [We do not meet in July or August. –Ed/]

Paula as Web Editor reported that our old WEBSITE appears to have been taken down, though it still comes up when accessed through the national NLAPW site! Go figure… Paula again CALLED FOR UPDATED BIOGRAPHIES AND PHOTOS to be posted under each member’s name on our new website. Check to see what various members have already posted to get ideas for your own section. Send copy or photos to Paula at PaulaPahl@q.com.

The SITE FOR OUR JUNE PLANNING MEETING needs to be decided within the next month. A couple members said their home might be available; Paula will follow up.

A NOMINATING COMMITTEE to assemble a slate of officers for the two-year term from 2010 to 2012 was called for by Paula. Kriss, Ann, and Nancy Hegan agreed to serve. Job descriptions for the officers will be e-mailed to all members next week. Members will vote on the slate at the March meeting. Committee Chairs for 2010-2012 will be discussed as part of our June planning meeting.

Sandy is looking for her copy of HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MR. LINCOLN, which she passed around at a meeting and did not get back.

Ann noted that the Pikes Peak Branch is again running their 100-word FLASH FICTION contest and offered the pros and cons of her past experience entering. The deadline is March 1st; entry form and information at www.ppb-NLAPW.org.

Diane is looking for someone with Mac expertise who might help her in MAKING A DVD.

Gwen will be a speaker at MIDLAND COLLEGE for BLACK HISTORY MONTH.

Nancy Hegan has an essay appearing in HAPPY TIMES NEWSPAPER (in LA).

Laurie has had a poem published in BIBLE ADVOCATE.

The business MEETING ADJOURNED at 10:44 a.m.
Respectfully submitted, Ann Klaiman, Co-Secretary

FEBRUARY PROGRAM: PAM NOWAK
AUTHOR OF HISTORICAL ROMANCE NOVELS

Pam is the author of CHANCES (2008) and CHOICES (2009). CHANCES earned Booklist’s rating as a Top Ten Romance of 2008. Though our group is not one primarily concerned with the writing of romances (2 or 3 members do), the entire group enjoyed Pam’s presentation on her writing process, doing readings/signings, and interacting with publishers. She fielded several dozen questions from the audience. A sampling from her talk:
• She spoke several times to the power of working with a peer critiquing group. Hers developed through Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers. She is committed to writing daily, in order to complete more than one book every three years– and keep them timely.
• Romances continue to be in demand. Some publishers have told her that hers are not “hot” enough, though when she asks what that means, exactly, they respond with lines like, “I know hot when I read it.” Current popular sub-genres are historical fiction, vampire, chick lit., and Regency (England, early 1800’s) romances.
• In discussing research for her books, Pam mentioned the tools of historical research but also touched on other research tools that authors use. She knows, for example, authors who have utilized Meyers-Briggs personality profiles for characterization or relied on Tarot cards to resolve plot details.
• Social networking (Facebook, Twitter, blogging) has become a major tool for marketing. The key, and legitimate use of this medium, appears to be to spread news about the issues and what’s of interest in your books, not to attempt to sell them. Well used, social networking will give you “spider webs” as information about you is FWDed and commented on.
• An interesting discussion also ensued over the use (for readers and writers) of iPad, Sony e-Books, B&N Nooks, Kindle, etc. Pam warned authors to be aware of who owns the digital rights to your books.

NEWS AND NOTES

1. Hey, Ladies, check out Bev Chico’s photo on this website under MEMBERS. It’s a hoot. And, hey, Gwen Scott has a nice photo, and she doesn’t even own a computer! Come on, Everyone, send Paula some good stuff about yourselves to post on our site! paulaPahl@q.com.

2. You might want to check out “JOURNAL TO THE SELF: The Wellness Edition, a 6-week, on-line journaling course, based on work by Kathleen Adams. www.raehight.com Dates TBA.

3. From Bev Chico: “Sorry I could not attend the services for [Emeritus Member] HELEN PHILLIPS. I begin my classes today [Jan. 12]. … I always appreciated meeting and sharing thoughts with her. Many years ago, she and I met several times at her home.”

4. In April, our guest speaker will be ED STEIN. cartoonist for the former Rocky Mountain News. Ed currently has an exhibit at KOHELET, 428 South Forest. You might want to see this before his presentation to Pen Women. For information, e-mail gkolber@mizelmuseum.org.

UPCOMING MARCH MEETING: SATURDAY, MARCH 6, 2010
SPECIAL CRITIQUE SESSION WITH INVITED GUEST PRESENTERS

TIME: 9:30, socializing and set up. 10 a.m., business meeting. 10:30, presentations begin. A light lunch follows at the library. Kriss will be asking you to RSVP (amkriss@msn.com).

WHERE: Virginian Village Branch of the Denver Public Library, located at 1500 South Dahlia Street. It is at the corner of S. Dahlia and E. Florida Ave. Dahlia is eight blocks east of Colorado Blvd.

PROGRAM: Six to eight guests have been invited. Each guest will have ten minutes to present a current project to our membership. A ten-minute critique will follow.

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Respectfully submitted, Ann Klaiman, Newsletter Editor