Thursday, September 27, 2012

Tolosa Press and SLO NightWriters

SLO NightWriters has a terrific collaborative relationship with San Luis Obispo’s Tolosa Press.  Tolosa publishes 3 newspapers, hardcopy and electronic - SLO City News, Coast News, and Bay News.  

Tolosa generously supports local writers by selecting from screened NightWriter submissions to share the talent with the SLO Community.  

Short, 700-word excerpts from my novels in progress have appeared in all three Tolosa publications.

This week, September 27-October 3, 2012,  SLO City News published an excerpt from my novel, In Your Dreams.  You can read that selection by visiting Tolosa this week at

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Central Coast Writers Conference - 2012

Another fantastic Writer’s Conference this year at Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo.  (  I’m a huge fan!

Conference Volunteers
The amazing Anna Unkovich, is our intrepid leader.
Photo by Dennis Eamon Young (

This is my 5th year volunteering for support/logistics.  I love this conference.  I always come away hopeful, educated and inspired.

Hats off to Judy Salamacha the Conference Director and all the Cuesta College support staff.  Judy is here with Book Reviewer Blogger Danielle Smith (

As always, a wide variety of writing topics were covered— Genres, Crafting Suspense, Memoir, Poetry, Critiquing, Character, Kid Lit, Travel Writing, Editing, Fantasy, Screen Adaptation, and much more.  And, some especially great information about being a writer in this avalanche of electronic and self publishing options.

Jack Grapes ( gave the keynote opening words— a soulful, funny, and moving session.    

The conference has a Teen Program that warms my heart!  Look at all these young writers at the table on the right!  Victoria Heckman ( nurtures these budding scriveners through the conference. 

Lillian Dean Contest
Page-1, Poetry, & Query Letter 

Again our local SLO NightWriter members have a solid presence among the Lillian Dean winners, 6! took 7 out of 13 awards this year if I’m counting correctly.  

Anna Unkovich, Paul Fahey, Susan Tuttle, Judy Guarnera, Adrienne Harris, and Becca Wadell (Becca won twice!!)

Here’s a picture of Susan Tuttle winning the ‘The Perfect Query Letter’ award.  

We should all be so lucky to craft such a query! 

I can’t help thinking these successes mean that fine writers gravitate toward SLO NightWriters and/or NW services might have some positive effects on skill and talent.  

NightWriters has multiple critique group options, informative speakers at our monthly meetings, and a fantastic supportive writing community here in San Luis Obispo.  

Check us out!   
We have a new e-Line Edit Exchange program 
that is PERFECT for out of town members!

Conference volunteering is fun and comes with a special invitation to the faculty & staff party afterward, held again this year at the beautiful Morro Bay Coalesce Book Store and Garden Chapel.  

Incredible food and wine!  A relaxing breather and a chance to schmooze and chat after two intense days of conference.

Sometimes agents can present as inaccessible and a bit intimidating.  NOT so with Laurie McLean ( literary agent with Larson Pomada and one of my favorite speakers— dynamic, enthusiastic, savvy and innovative in the e-self-publishing age, personable and VERY approachable.   

Catherine Ryan, Pay it Forward and many more novels, ( and Anne R. Allen, novelist and e-publishing blogger extraordinaire ( provide a lovely backdrop for this incredible Paella.  

Those two wrote the book, 'How to be a Writer in the E-Age' and held a great session on that topic.    

3 blogger/book reviewers gave important advice on how to, and how NOT to, approach a book reviewer.  Amy Riley (, Danielle Smith ( and not pictured here Pam van Hylckama Vlieg (  On the left in this photo is Carrissa Kluver, another blogger/book reviewer (