Recent Meetings

DATE: August 19, 2017 Florida Chapter, Mystery Writers of America Luncheon Meeting

GUEST SPEAKERS:  Michael L Joy, Deborah Sharp, and Diane A.S. Stuckart

PROGRAM:  The Art of the Critique: Editing for Yourself and Others 

Wondering if a critique group is for you? Been told that your 500 page opus needs to be cut by at least 100 pages, but you have no clue where to start? Tempted to enter a writing contest, but you’re not sure what that entails, or what you’ll get out of it? Then join our panel that includes a former US Today reporter turned popular cozy mystery author; a NYT bestselling author of cat mysteries; and a creative writing professor as they dissect and explain the art of the critique. The publishing landscape has changed, and being a great storyteller is no longer enough. The burden is now on the new author to submit a manuscript as close to print-ready as possible. Distinguish yourself from the amateur scribe — learn the tips, tricks, and pitfalls of editing that give a manuscript that professional shine.

Speakers:  

Deborah SharpA former USA Today reporter, Deborah Sharp traded sad news for funny fiction with her Southern-fried Mace Bauer Mysteries. Think Janet Evanovich, if Stephanie Plum had a couple cousins named Bubba. Deborah learned to self-edit as a defense against the chainsaw tendencies of her newsroom bosses. As an author, she rode horseback across Florida for research, and chatted with Al Roker on the Today show. The horse was less scary. Deborah lives with her husband, Kerry Sanders, in south Florida, where she spends her time chasing iguanas from the hibiscus. Mama Gets Trashed is the fifth book in her series. Visit online at www.DeborahSharp.com

Mama Gets Trashed

Deborah StuckartDiane A.S. Stuckart is the NYT bestselling author of the Black Cat Bookshop Mystery series (written as Ali Brandon), as well as the upcoming Tarot Cat Mystery series from Midnight Ink. With a degree in Journalism from the University of Oklahoma, Diane began her writing career by reaching the finals of the Romance Writers of America Golden Heart Award contest. Her finalist manuscript sold to a major New York publisher soon after—that is, after she cut 100 pages from it. Over the years, Diane has judged numerous writing contests, including twice chairing the Freddie Award for Writing Excellence competition sponsored by the MWA Florida Chapter. She’s currently FMWA Chapter Vice-President. Visit her website www.dianestuckart.com

Twice Told Tail

Michael JoyWith an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Southern Maine, Michael L. Joy is an adjunct professor at Florida SouthWestern State College in Ft. Myers. There, he whips would-be writers into shape, and only rarely makes his students cry. Michael has been in and around critique groups for years and has seen the good, bad, and ugly of them. Currently a member of the MWA Florida Chapter Board, he’s also Co-chair of SleuthFest 2018.

DATE:  SATURDAY, August 19, 2017

TIME: 11:30: Mingling; 12:00: Lunch; 12:30: Business Meeting; 1:00: Presentation 

PLACE: Embassy Suites by Hilton Boca Raton, 661 NW 53rd Street, Boca Raton, Florida, 33487; Get Directions Here 

COST:  $25 for MWA members; $30 for non-members. To guarantee a spot, prepayment by August 16 is strongly urged.

RESERVATIONS/PREPAYMENT:   For PayPal, scroll down to the “Sign up for Luncheon Meeting” box and fill in your information, then click the “Pay Now” button and follow the instructions.

To reserve and pay via mail: Step 1–Email Harriet at harriet@ottenheimer.com with the subject line “FMWA Meeting” to reserve a spot.  In the body of the email, please include your name, the name of any guest you have invited, your email address, and telephone number. Step 2– Write your check or money order payable to “Mystery Writers of America/Florida Chapter.” Step 3–Mail your payment to Harriet Ottenheimer, at 2301 S. Ocean Dr., #2005, Hollywood, FL 33019.

Please make your reservation by August 16 so that we can provide the hotel with an accurate headcount! Walk-ins are accommodated only if space allows.

Next Meeting Date: SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2017

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DATE: July 15, 2017 Florida Chapter, Mystery Writers of America Luncheon Meeting
GUEST SPEAKER: Patrick Kendrick
PROGRAM: Behind the Scenes: National Preparedness For Disasters and Domestic Terror

Basing your latest novel on a terrorist attack or natural disaster? Here’s your chance to learn the ins and outs of terrorist weaponry, first response tactics, and national disaster preparedness from a retired fire chief turned Department of Defense trainer. Before retiring to write full-time, award-winning author Patrick Kendrick spent much of his 30-year firefighting career as a special rescue and hazardous materials technician and trainer. Now, when he’s not busy penning thrillers, the founder of Fire O.W.L. (Objectives for World Leaders) LLC travels the country instructing Armed Forces units in specialized disaster tactics.

According to Kendrick, this training has been funded vigorously and has grown significantly since 9/11, and even more so as ISIS has spread. It marries the capabilities of the Armed Forces with that of first responders—fire fighters trained in technical rescue disciplines to facilitate saving as many victims as possible from disasters and, specifically, domestic terrorist events. Kendrick will discuss the various equipment used by armed forces, the training they have to endure, the weapons terrorists use, the blend of NIMS (National Incident Management System), and the Department of Defense’s projected casualties of a nuclear holocaust. If you want your disaster-themed thriller to ring with chilling authenticity, you can’t afford to miss this program.

Patrick KendrickSpeaker: Patrick Kendrick is a former fire fighter and an award-winning author of several thrillers. His latest novel, Acoustic Shadows, was published by HarperCollins and was a Royal Palm Literary Award Finalist. The Savants, a techno-political thriller, was published in 2015 and was his first YA novel. It won the Florida Book Award last April and was a Royal Palm Literary Finalist. When speaking of his literary successes, Kendrick says, “I love writing, but few things in life have given me as much satisfaction as working with our nation’s soldiers, and it’s my honor to be able to do so.”

The Savants

DATE: SATURDAY, JULY 15, 2017

TIME: 11:30: Mingling; 12:00: Lunch; 12:30: Business Meeting; 1:00: Presentation

PLACE: Embassy Suites by Hilton Boca Raton, 661 NW 53rd Street, Boca Raton, Florida, 33487; Get Directions Here

COST: $25 for MWA members; $30 for non-members. To guarantee a spot, prepayment by July 12 is strongly urged.

RESERVATIONS/PREPAYMENT: To reserve and pay online: Scroll down to the “Sign up for Luncheon Meeting” box and fill in your information, then click the “Pay Now” button and follow the instructions.

To reserve and pay via mail: Step 1–Email Harriet at harriet@ottenheimer.com with the subject line “FMWA Meeting” to reserve a spot. In the body of the email, please include your name, the name of any guest you have invited, your email address, and telephone number. Step 2– Write your check or money order payable to “Mystery Writers of America/Florida Chapter.” Step 3–Mail your payment to Harriet Ottenheimer, at 2301 S. Ocean Dr., #2005, Hollywood, FL 33019.

Please make your reservation by July 12 so that we can provide the hotel with an accurate headcount! Walk-ins are accommodated only if space allows.

Next Meeting Date: SATURDAY, AUGUST 19, 2017

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