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Friday, May 30, 2008

WV Filmmakers Guild celebrates 25th anniversary

The West Virginia Filmmakers Guild is celebrating its 25th anniversary during the weekend of June 6-8 in Sutton, Braxton County (I-79, Exit 62) with an assortment of activities, including film screenings by WV filmmakers, recognition of founding members, workshops, and more. A welcome reception with wine and cheese kicks off the weekend on Friday, June 6 at 6:00 pm in the lobby of the Elk Hotel on Main Street.

Saturday events begin at 10:30 with the annual business meeting of the Guild at the Landmark Studio for the Arts on Main Street (pastries/coffee provided), followed by three workshops. One price gains admission to all three workshops — members pay $5.00 and non-members pay $10.00.

The first workshop on membership surveys is presented by Annie Harbison of the WVU College of Law, followed immediately by a workshop on the topic of intellectual property rights by attorney Kevin Levine of the firm Kay Casto & Chaney. Lunch is on your own, but the Guild encourages everyone to join together at La Dolca Vita, across the street from the theater.

After lunch, the last workshop will be presented by Pam Haynes and Jamie Cope of the West Virginia Film Office to discuss the recent amendments to the WV Film Industry Investment Act.

Film screenings at the theater begin at the conclusion of the last workshop and will continue until 6:00 pm. A cookout kicks off around 6:00 pm at Sutton Lake/Dam (bring your own beverages) and will include a recognition ceremony of the Guild's founding members. Film screenings will then continue throughout the evening in the lobby of the Elk Hotel.

The weekend concludes Sunday with more film screenings at the Elk Hotel lobby from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm. For more information about the festivities, contact the Guild's president, Terry Lively, at or the vice president, Jason Brown, at Visit the Guild's group message board at

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Love Poem Contest

(This news courtesy of WV Writers member Tammy Whisman)

“CALL to ALL who write LOVE POEMS”
(offering the largest prizes given by a CONCEIT MAGAZINE author)
Visit Oneal at: Oneal's love poems at Allpoetry! and Oneal's poetry book available at Myspace!

$110.00 - First Prize
$60.00 - Second Prize
$30.00 - Third Prize
(1st prize winner will receive a 1 year subscription to CONCEIT MAGAZINE)
$3.00 per poem
writers welcomed, unlimited entries

DEADLINE: June 06, 2008
Winners notified in July by the LOVE POET himself, Oneal Walters

Email entries and queries to:

PayPal users go to the CONCEIT MAGAZINE Website
Snail mail entries and reading fees to:
Perry Terrell, Editor
Oneal Walters’ Love Poem Contest
P. O. Box 8544
Emeryville, CA 94662 - USA

(Make payable to: PERRY TERRELL)

NOTE: $1.75 to Oneal Walters’ THE AGE BEGINS BOOKS and $1.25 to the $100.00 monthly stipend fund for CONCEIT MAGAZINE writers

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Conference Countdown: Program Ads Opportunity

Would you like your business to reach 150-200 writers and writing professionals? Would you like to advertise your book to potential readers? Would you like to advertise your editing or proofreading services to writers? Well, we're here to help.

West Virginia Writers, Inc, is offering low-price ads to be printed in this year’s Conference program. The program will be distributed to each attendee at the June 13-15 Annual Conference at Cedar Lakes Conference Center in Ripley, West Virginia. The ads that appear in the program will also be offered for a limited time on the WVW website ( The ads will be printed in black and white in the 8 ½ by 11 spiral-bound program. (Ads on the website can be in color.)
Ad rates and approximate sizes are:
Full page (8 ½ x 11) - $75
Half page (8 ½ x 5) - $40
Quarter page (4 x 5) - $20
Business Card size - $10
Ads may be submitted as either a camera-ready print or emailed as a high quality jpeg, .tif or Microsoft Word document. Ads may be emailed to Paper copy should be snail-mailed to: Eric Fritzius, 1014 Hemlock Lane, Princeton, WV 24740.

Checks should be made payable to West Virginia Writers, Inc. and mailed to WEST VIRGINIA WRITERS, INC. 202 North Lee Street, Lewisburg, WV 24901.

Don't have an ad all ready to go? Give us a shout and we can probably come up with a design you'll like.

Please be sure to include contact information with your ad copy. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us at

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Conference Countdown: Small Group Critique Sessions

This year WV Writers will be offering two small peer group critique sessions of fiction and nonfiction manuscripts. Each group critique session will be limited to 6 participants who must register in advance. There is no fee associated with these sessions provided the pre-conference manuscript critiquing process is done via email. For printed and snail mailed submissions there will be a $6.50 fee for postage.

George Lies is the moderator for the sessions. His style is a blend of hard-knocks experience and collaborations with many writers. He’s been at this sort of thing with the Morgantown Writers Group for over 10 years and has had tremendous success in peer-based critique groups.

Here are the details.

Manuscript Critiques (Special Sessions Friday and Sunday)

Manuscript Submission Format – Submit fiction or non-fiction from 1,000 words to 4,000 words in a Word file. Use 1.5 line spacing and 12-point font size. Number pages. Write your name and email address on the first page. If submitting an “excerpt”, send a 1-paragraph summary of longer work. Email the document as an attachment to:

Hardcopy (paper) submissions will also be accepted. Attendees wishing to submit via “snail” mail should send 7 copies of their manuscript, plus $6.50 for postage to George Lies, 219 Kingwood Street, Morgantown, WV 26505.

The first 12 entrants to submit manuscripts for the sessions will be accepted. Deadline for submitting email manuscripts is Sunday, June 8th (June 1st for hardcopies).

How the Critique Session Works – West Virginia Writers has scheduled 2 peer-group critique session on Friday, June 13 at 3:30p; a second on Sunday, June 15 at 10a. Writers who submit early will have first choice of either date. Each session is limited to about 6 writers. The moderator will distribute manuscripts via email attachments. Each registrant will print, read submissions; and, critique works in advance, by writing notes on the hardcopy. The group will then discuss each manuscript at the conference session, by focusing on what the story is about; what are its strengths; and, what are suggested improvements. The moderator will email a useful Manuscript Critique Guide in advance to all participants. If you have questions, send an email to the moderator at

Monday, May 12, 2008

Conference Countdown: The Overview


RIPLEY— West Virginia Writers, Inc. will hold its annual Summer Writers’ Conference, June 13-15 at the Cedar Lakes Conference Center in Ripley. The 2008 conference is the 30th held by the WV Writers since 1978. The organization celebrated its own 30th anniversary last year

The conference will feature over 40 writing workshops and discussion panels on topics such as poetry, fiction and non-fiction, writing for children, screenwriting, romance writing, writing for radio, storytelling, grammar, memoir, comic book writing, and conventional and non-conventional publishing, among others.

Gretchen Moran Laskas, author of The Miner’s Daughter and The Midwife’s Tale, will lead a workshop on finding your voice as a writer, and one on editing your novel.

Charleston-based novelist Robert W. Walker will lead a two and a half hour intensive workshop on Execution and Craft, covering the basics of how to get a story in motion and keep it there, propelling readers to the end. The course will also cover ideas for fine-tuning as well as marketing and selling.

Christine Witthohn and Judith Ann Miramontez, literary agents with Charleston’s Book Cents Literary Agency, will be featured speakers. Their workshops will instruct attendees on the current state of the publishing industry, providing tips on the best ways to approach agents, editors and publishers, as well as providing a valuable workshop on query letters.

And in honor of the Romance Genre category from WV Writers’ Spring Writing Competition, this year, WV-based romance novelist Suzanne McMinn will be a featured presenter.

Other conference workshop presenters include: Marc Harshman, Dolly Withrow, Sandy Tritt, Robert Tinnell, Dr. John McKernan, Rich Knoblich, Jim Minick, Krista Fink, Llewellyn McKernan, Belinda Anderson, Cathy Pleska, Dr. Victor Depta, songwriter Pops Walker, Ethan Fischer, Carter Taylor Seaton, Bruce Cook, George Lies, and more.

The conference culminates June 14 with the organization’s annual awards banquet, announcing the winners of WV Writers spring contest. Gretchen Moran Laskas will be the keynote speaker for the banquet.

The price for the conference is $100 for all three days ($85 for members), $85 for two days ($70 for members), $45 for Friday only, $55 for Saturday only, $40 for Sunday only, and students receive 50 percent off adult prices. Membership for WV Writers Inc. is $20. Lodging is available both in Ripley and at the Cedar Lakes Conference Center, though early reservations are strongly recommended. Meals are also available on-site.

The latest information on the conference, including a full list of workshops and presenters as well as registration forms for both the conference and Cedar Lakes, can be found at the West Virginia Writers website, located at

WV Writers began in February of 1977, when a group of 25 writers gathered to discuss the need for a statewide collective of writers. The original purpose, as it has remained, is to assist communications between writers in the state and to promote not only writing in West Virginia but promote Appalachian writing in general. It has since grown into the state’s largest organization of writers, with over 350 active members.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Conference Countdown: Primer for First Time Conference Goers

As a service to first time attendees or potential attendees of WV Writers Summer Conference, this document is being provided as a guide to planning your conference experience. There are answers to frequently asked questions below...

  • We recommend that you register in advance by completing the forms on our web site at (5/9/08 NOTE: PRE-REGISTRATION IS CLOSED, BUT YOU MAY REGISTER AT THE CONFERENCE WITH NO PROBLEM.)
  • If you plan to stay overnight or dine in the cafeteria, be sure to fill out the separate Cedar Lakes form, as well. Be sure to note your choice of meal for the Awards Banquet, should you wish to attend.
  • You don't have to register for the individual workshops in advance. Just pick them as you go. Some people find that it's easier to print out the schedule (or use the one given to you at registration, which will be the most accurate) and then highlight two classes each session that you're interested in. Then, when the time arrives, you can pick between the two. Some people like to have a "back up class" in case one is overcrowded, or in case you find yourself enjoying a particular track so much that you want to stick with it (poetry vs. non-fiction, for example). We would recommend that you take at least one class outside of your chosen genre; not just for the broadened experience, but because you might find inspiration or a particular nugget of writing wisdom that you can apply to what you're working on. For example, if you write fiction, take a poetry workshop or a nonfiction editing workshop, which can help with your craft.
  • Be sure to dress light because the classrooms can get warm. However, bring a sweater, cause it can get chilly, particularly at night.
  • Bring an umbrella. One of our annual traditions at the WVWriters Conference is to host a vertical torrential downpour, usually on Saturday. Last year, it knocked out the air-conditioning in the cafeteria.
  • Bring shoes that are comfortable for walking, not only for walking to and from the dining hall but for taking strolls around the grounds of Cedar Lakes. However, don’t bring shoes you’re not willing to have soiled by Goose Poo, as there’s a lot of it around.
  • We also hope you're planning to attend the banquet and stick around for entertainment, as Pops Walker and Keith & Joan Pitzer are going to be amazing.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Cat Pleska in Mother's Day Concert

WV Writers own Cathy Pleska will be appearing in The Mother's Day Centennial Concert on WV Public Broadcasting. She appears as Anna Jarvis, founder of Mother's Day.

It will run on the following WV channels at the following times

WTRF & WVNS on Saturday 5/10 from 7-8p

WOWK & WBOY on Saturday 5/10 from 8-9p

WTRF, WVNS, & WOWK Sunday 5/11 from 2-3p

WBOY Sunday 5/11 from 1-2p

Friday, May 02, 2008

Poetry & Politics: Protest in Verse

Charleston , WV - Poetry & Politics: The liveliest open mic in Charleston featuring some of the highest caliber Kanawha Valley emerging poets, singers, musicians, and spoken word artists.

First up, we’ll hear from six gifted, young Spoken Word poets who speak from the heart about love, dreams, self-respect, politics and everything that makes today's world a fascinating, complex place. “True artists, writers and performers,” describes Covenant House Director, Amy Weintraub. “They are the voices of the next generation: If Langston Hughes or Virginia Woolf was alive today... this is what they'd sound like.” Already slated to perform: Tuesday Taylor, Holly Cross, Elliott Roseberry, Patience Deweese, and MiC Group members John James and Dave Roberts.

A local celebrity Political Haiku Slam is also in the works. Hear some of your favorite Charleston personalities compete for top honors in this haiku poetry contest.

Hosting the event will be Covenant House Assistant Director, Crystal Good, a well-known poetry organizer, and Randy Elsea, Drop In Center Coordinator and notorious comic. They are the go-to folks if you want an event that is not only hype, but conscious and spirited. Mixing hip hop and spoken word, with soulful rhythms, they will keep the audience stimulated and entertained. Come join Good, Elsea, and other poets and artists, for a night of the best Spoken Word around the state.

Experience a casual atmosphere with refreshments.

Grace the mic yourself (sign in 30 minutes before event or by email to cgood@wvcovenanthouse. org) or simply enjoy the poetry, deejaying, and fun-loving atmosphere.

This is definitely a food-for-your- soul event of the year, so get your fill now!
Sponsored by Covenant House, the West Virginia Poetry Society, the Keep Your Faith Corporation, the West Virginia Mental Health Consumers Association, and the MiC Group.

Thursday, May 8
6:30-8:30 PM | Laundry soap powder collected to benefit the Covenant House Drop In Center.

Covenant House, 600 Shrewsbury Street (parking in rear of building)

For more information, contact Covenant House Assistant Director and Event Host Crystal
Good at cgood@wvcovenanthouse. org

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Warning to all writers

WV Writers has been alerted by William Haydon of Mountain State Press that there is a so-called literary agent out of Michigan named Michelle Glance Rooney who has corresponded with at least one prospective client in our state and misrepresented herself as an agent of Mountain State Press. Having no agents in their employ, Mountain State Press wanted to alert writers to Ms. Rooney's false claims so that no one else is deceived.

Thinking perhaps there was a misunderstanding, I've done some digging and have located an article about Ms. Rooney and some of her other less than ethical practices, straight from the Writer Beware blog. You can see for yourself at the link below.

And just a further note, Writer Beware's home site is an excellent source for scam avoidance techniques.