We help and encourage North Texas writers of all genres and experience levels to produce professional quality writing suitable for publication. We do this by providing read and critique sessions, educational activities, networking opportunities and a welcoming, inclusive atmosphere.
"What I Wish Someone Had Told Me" presented by HANK PHILLIPPI RYAN
Join bestselling, award-winning mystery author, Hank Phillippi Ryan, as she shares her experience on writing, reporting, and publishing, digging into all the things she wishes someone would have told her in the beginning. A bestselling author of eight mystery novels, with a ninth to be released in November, Ryan has won multiple prestigious awards, including the Mary Higgins Clark award for the novel, The Other Woman, the first in the Jane Ryland series. This is a do not miss meeting, with a once in a lifetime chance to ask questions of this Sisters in Crime dynamo!
Frisco Public Library — 4th Floor | McCallum Room
NE Arlington Writers' Critique Group critiques fiction and creative nonfiction on paper with the assumption that participants are interested in publication. We are a friendly group that meets twice a month from 6:30pm-9:00pm at the La Madeleine at 2101 N Collins St, Arlington, TX 76011. If you're interested in attending a meeting, please join our Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/NEarlingtonwriters/ to stay updated. In the event that we cancel/reschedule a meeting, our Facebook page will announce the change. Invitations for the next meeting go out to members about a week before the event. Please click on "Events" and RSVP. On meeting day, bring a colored pen (red, green, purple, blue, brown, etc.) and one copy of your book partial or short story of 1 to 5 pages, double-spaced, 12-point Times New Roman font with 1-inch margins. Your work will be passed around to be read silently. The group will write their names on top and their comments throughout using a (hopefully) uniquely colored pen. After the pass-around phase, you can read through the comments and ask the group any questions. I do not collect dues, but please buy a drink or pastry or entree to keep La Madeleine happy.
On September 22, over 2000 nonprofits in the North Texas area will join forces to raise both funds and awareness for their organizations. This year we are excited to announce that DFWWW will be participating for the very first time. As an organization, we're growing faster than ever and expanding our programming in exciting ways, and we need your help to fulfill our mission and reach new goals. You may be wondering: "Why donate to the DFW Writers Workshop?" Great question. Our answer: "Booklovers will go hungry without us." See, our mission is to help and encourage North Texas writers of all genres and experience levels to produce professional quality writing suitable for publication. We like to see books made, stories told, poems printed, and we do this by offering year-round programming and networking opportunities for authors. The core of the DFW Writers Workshop experience is our weekly read & critique sessions, and we've been doing it since 1977. We invite you to come visit any time to catch a slice of a story in the making. Since our humble beginnings, we've grown. Nowadays, we also host the largest writer's conference in Texas, DFW Writers Conference. We attract authors from all over the world by bringing in literary agents, editors, keynote speakers and best-selling authors to teach. Many an author has found representation at DFWCon, and many a book has been born as a result. But that's not all. We also host an annual, free DFW Teen Writers Workshop, to jump-start teens on their writing journey. We have a monthly Writer's Bloc program, giving attendees "conference-like" classes at no cost. And next year, we're kicking off our new Residency Program, giving an author the ability to focus completely on his work for two whole weeks without interuption. The experience will culminate with attendance to our 10th Anniversary DFWCon. So now you're probably thinking: “I'm a booklover or love someone who is, so I must donate! But why should I donate on this particular day? Can't I part with my hard-earned cash any old day?” Another excellent question. Our answer: "Your money is welcome any day, of course, but it's worth more on September 22nd." North Texas Giving Day is put on by the good folks over at the Communities Foundation of Texas. They organize this amazing day and also raise a separate stash of bonus funds that is later divided among the participating nonprofits. Like us! In other words, the more money you give on this day, the more extra money they give us in turn. They also offer an array of cash prizes throughout the day. The question that’s probably on your mind now is, “Well gosh, how can I help?” Another excellent question. You're on a roll. First and foremost, we'd love your generous donation. Donations must be made online on September 22. Donations anywhere from $25-50,000 are acceptable. If you can’t donate yourself, nudge your booklover friends and family, rich acquaintances, that guy who owes you a favor for slightly dubious reasons, anyone. We don’t discriminate. You can also help by promoting this event on social media. Aside from raising awareness, it also can land us with one of the coveted cash prizes for most retweets, so keep an eye on our feed that morning. Festivities have been planned all over the area for the 22nd; stay tuned to our website and social media channels for info on where you can find us! If nothing else, NTGD it’s a great way to learn about some of the amazing work that’s done by organizations right here where we live, so head over to the North Texas Giving Day website and check out some of the other participating nonprofits. Ben Marshall is the Secretary of the DFW Writers' Workshop. He has been a member since 2014.read moreDon’t let anyone tell you that writer’s block isn’t a thing. Writer’s block is a lot of things. For some people it’s an excuse not to write. But sitting in front of the computer with a mind as blank as the page…that’s the real deal. There are legitimate reasons you may be struggling to write. Some are logistical—kids, day jobs, school, all of the above. Some are psychological—fear, self-doubt, self-criticism (do you see a theme here?), and even stress and depression. This doesn't even account for actual problems in your scene or plot that are making roadblocks. These are genuine issues, and “just suck it up and write” is not always the best advice. So, I polled some of the members of the DFW Writers Workshop with the question, “What do you do when your mind goes blank while you’re staring at the blank screen?” and got some great, practical advice on ways to address the underlying problems of this mythical thing call “writer’s block.” • I talk out the story with actual human beings. I don’t actually need or want their input, I just need a friendly face to nod while I think out loud. • There are two kinds of writer’s block—the lazy kind and the creative kind. For the lazy kind, there’s no solution but to stop making excuses and get to work. With the creative kind, I’ll talk a break from it and do something else for a while, or talk about the story with someone.• I take a shower. Something about the white noise, I guess, but I get great ideas in the shower. Also, I think it’s helpful to go back and read something I wrote before and remind myself while I love to write in the first place. An editorial interjection here: I think this is a really good point. Frustration and self-doubt is a vicious cycle, and when you’re slogging through the endless middle of your manuscript, it is important rediscover the joy of it, whether it’s by reading old stuff you wrote that you love, or indulging in a day of writing something no one will every see but you. More advice: • I go for a walk. Change the scenery and clear my head. • I write to soundtracks, and I have one for each project, so I’ll put the music on and get into the soundtrack zone. I like movie soundtracks. Anything with lyrics is distracting.• I also go for a walk—outside. The treadmill doesn’t work. Got to get out of the house.• (In response to the above) I like to stay at my computer so I’m ready for when I hit the zone, and I can get typing right away. • I also write to soundtracks, and I once I get the right one picked out for the book, I just play it on repeat. Eventually I can put it on and it’s like a conditioned response—boom, in the zone. This was interesting to me: everyone I polled was quick to answer, and knew what worked for them, but some people were much more analytical than others. • I go back to my reference and planning material. I tend to plan out the whole book, but improvise at the scene level. If I’m stuck in a scene, I realize I may need to plan or analyze the next step a little more before I go on. • I write the first sentence of the next chapter. Knowing it needs to set up the scene and immediately draw the reader in, I make myself do that much before I can stop. Usually by the time I’ve put the work in to make it a good first sentence, I’m warmed up and just keep going. • I start by typing the question “What do I want to get out of the scene?” and then type the answer—what needs to happen, what mood I want to set, how I want the reader to feel at the end of the scene, want do I want to accomplish. Like someone said, once I’ve started typing and thinking, I’ve gotten into it and can keep going. I hit return a couple of times and go right into writing the scene. • I do something similar. I write “I am having trouble with…” and write out where I’m getting stuck. It makes it into a problem to be solved, and within a couple of paragraphs, I can see the solution. Also, I have to do it by hand. I associate the computer screen with editing, and so I feel more creative when writing by hand. And writing in pencil signals to me that I can erase anything that I don’t like and I’m free to make mistakes, and the words just start to flow. This pencil thing made my night, just knowing that someone else has this irrational fear of doing it “wrong.” (Like I’m not going to rewrite the scene five times anyway.) No matter how it feels when you’re beating your head against the computer screen, there are no unique problems—even the ones that sound completely crazy. To all these great tips, I want to add this: when you’re stuck, cut yourself some slack. Sometimes what you need to "break a block" is a Murder She Wrote marathon on the Movies and Mysteries Channel. The scene will still need writing tomorrow. It’s important not to judge yourself by anyone else’s standards. Everyone writes differently. Some people plot, some people freewheel. Some write fast, some write slow. Some write everyday, some write in blocks on the weekends. Some write through blocks, some analyze through them, some clear the decks and come back fresh. Remember there are reasons for being stuck, and there are excuses for being stuck. The difference lies in whether we keep trying things until we’re unstuck, or let the excuse become the only story we tell. (Special thanks to Jenny Martin, Sally Hamilton, Kristin Breckenridge, A. Lee Martinez, Sasha Lenaburg, Charles Breckenridge, Daryle McGinnis, LeAnn Robinson, and Alan Crowley for their input.) Rosemary Clement is a lifetime member of the DFW Writers' Workshop. Her current obsessions change frequently, but this never does: She loves coffee, dogs, history, Jane Austen, archaeology, fantasy novels, comic books, Gilbert and Sullivan, BBC America, Star Wars, books with kissing and movies with lots of explosions. She lives in Texas but her dream is to move to a cottage. Or maybe a castle. It doesn’t have to be fancy, as long as it has wi-fi.read more