Thursday, December 27, 2007

January Meeting Announcement

Ready Writer's 2008

If you live in or near the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, you're invited to start the new year with DFW Ready Writers.

Our first meeting of the year will be Saturday, January 12.
We meet at La Hacienda Ranch restaurant in Colleyville. Take Highway 121 to Hall Johnson exit. The restaurant is on the west side of the freeway.
Meeting starts at 11:00 am to 1:00 PM.

In January, our new president Dawn Morton Nelson will share her vision for the year for our chapter.

The program will be presented by Lena Nelson Dooley on the topic, "Understanding the Father Heart of God and Applying It to our Writing."

You'll not want to miss out on this special treat if you can help it.

January Booksigning Event

Leanna Ellis will be having a book signing for her January 8th release, Elvis Takes a Back Seat.

Stop by Barnes and Noble in Southlake on Saturday, January 12th from 5-7pm.

"Elvis" will be there!

Fun prizes too.

Hope everyone can come.

Check out Leanna's website at

Introducing Our 2008 DFW Ready Writers Board

2008 Board (l to r): Betty Wood - Treasurer, Lena Nelson Dooley - Vice President, Dawn Morton- president, Patricia Carroll - Secretary, Janice Olson - Historian.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Character Quirks

This past Saturday at the DFW Ready Writer's monthly meeting, Margo Carmichael spoke about creating characters. Here are a few notes from her talk that hopefully you all can put to some use.

Margo Carmichael, who writes "Spirit-filled suspense that captures the heart," talked about Writing Personality Quirks for our Characters.

Not a counselor, Margo is "just a people person" and finds psychology fascinating. She took it as electives in high school and college, then some counseling courses a few years ago. Based on the theme of the book, Shadow Syndromes, by Ratey and Johnson, we probably all exhibit to some extent the traits of full-blown syndromes. These little traits could add interesting, challenging, even amusing layers to our characters. With this in mind, she shared resources and information about the full-blown syndromes from which to draw.

We treated the subject seriously and respectfully, aware that these syndromes can cause much suffering for the ones with them and their families. So, whether one wants to write about interesting character traits, ordeal with full-blown disorders, and God bless especially those who write from painful experience, the articles and resources we discussed could be helpful. They are posted on Margo's blog, "Margo's Moments," along with some confessions of her own~Writing about Psychological Traits (That Woman Unmasked!) at

Monday, October 8, 2007

Announcing the October 13 Meeting

Margo Carmichael will speak on giving our characters quirks that make them real.

Join us for a wonderful time of food, fellowship, and learning our craft.

From Margo:
"I will be teaching at next Ready Writers on some psychological quirks that could give our characters extras layers--and challenges--as well as those who live around them. ADHD, Bi-Polar Depression, Depression, Narcissism, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, and so on."

Come on the The La Hacienda Ranch Restaurant located on Hwy 121. The restaurant is located on the west side of the freeway between Hall Johnson and Glade.

Meeting begins at 11:00 am, but you can come a little early for fellowship time. We eat lunch together, conduct the business meeting, then have our guest speaker's presentation. Meetings end at 1pm.

Upcoming Meetings:
November - Writer Organization
Deborah Rather (Arlene James)

December - Christmas Party
Lena Nelson Dooley

Keep checking back for all the exciting speakers we'll have appearing next year.

Happy Writing.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

A Word From Our President

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President Marilyn Eudaly with guest speaker, Louise Gouge

There are many beneficial opportunities for writers are coming up at DFW Ready Writers.
Everyone will want to attend the last four meetings of the year. Please prayerfully consider your service to DFW Ready Writer for the remainder of this year and next.

MOST IMPORTANT: DFW Ready Writers as a group would like to donate a bag of goodies for the Silent Auction at the ACFW National Conference. Deb Rather has volunteered to decorate a tote, which will we fill to the brim with our contributions. Please bring to the September meeting or contact Mindy Obenhaus or myself regarding your contribution. Remember the person with the highest bid may have to take the prize home in their suitcase on a plane. Could you donate a book you have written, a gift card to a national chain store (considering the top bidder may be from another planet) snack items that could be consumed while at the conference? Please help us fill the bag. Proceeds from the auction will go toward scholarships for next year's conference.

September 8 -- Preparing for Conference -- Moderated by Lena Nelson Dooley
If you are attending the ACFW National Conference this is a must attend for you
If you are not planning on attending this year's conference, you will get much information on how to get published.

The conference and our meetings are all about you writing and being publishing.

October 13 -- Margo Carmichael on Character Quirks
If your characters aren't real, they aren't going to sell. Margo can tell us ways in which we can make them real people.

November 10 -- DEB RATHER will present the program

December -- New officer take on their new positions and then we will party including a gift exchange.
The gift has a $15.00 limit. Should be something useful to a writer. Could be a book from your shelf that helped you in your quest for publication. We will number the gifts. Then each person attending will draw a number from a hat and get the matching numbered gift.

Next Year Lena already has many outstanding authors signed up for programs.
January -- Lena Nelson Dooley
February -- Sandy Glahn
And during the year -- Lenora Worth, Debra Compton, and Martha Rogers.

ELECTION OF OFFICERS --- Please consider these places of service --

Lena Nelson Dooley has voiced an interest in serving as Vice President for another year.
Dawn Morton Nelson is willing to continue as secretary or serve as president.

YOU could be our next president!

I have made the decision not to continue as president after this year. I have enjoyed serving in this capacity, however, I must make other things a higher priority. My intention is to be the best past president and volunteer that I can be.

Historian: All right you lovers of history, here is a new chance to serve. At September's meeting the group decided that a new position should be added to the board. The Historian would be responsible for keeping a paper trail of our organization, gathering the copies of the minutes, any pictures or news articles. As the first Historian, you will be able to work with the other board members to set the standards for this position.

Secretary -- If you are interested in this position, Dawn will be interested in moving on. She and Lena has everything set in place to make taking over an easy transition.

Treasurer -- Ed Bufkin has done a great job of establishing our financial records. He would like to turn these responsibilities over to someone else. Ed finds his retired life even more hectic than his professional life. Taking on this position required only a few hours each month.

I will be sending out, in another message, the responsibilities of these offices.
Marilyn Eudaly, 2007 DFW Ready Writer's President

Monday, August 27, 2007

Ready Writer's September Meeting

September DFW Ready Writers
will meet on Saturday the 8th at 11:00 am at LaHacienda Ranch in Grapevine off Hwy 121, between Glade rd and Hall Johnson.

This month's topic:

Will this year's national conference in Dallas be your first one? Do you have questions you'd like to have answered?

The September meeting of DFW Readywriters will supply the answers.

Do you wonder if your one-sheet will pass muster? Are you frightened by the thought of pitching to an agent or editor?

Let those who've gone before you help.

Lena Nelson Dooley lives in Texas with her husband James. They are active in several ministries of their church. Both she and James are interested in missions and have been on a number of mission trips. She speaks at retreats and conferences. A full-time author and editor, Lena holds a BA in Speech and Drama. She has had nine novels published by Heartsong Presents and been a part of nine trade paperback collections. Visit her web site at and her blog at

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Diving in deep -- Into POV, that is

Deep POV (Point of view) is getting so far into the POV character's head, it's almost like writing from their first-person perspective. Inevitably, a discussion of deep POV leads to italics. Deep POV is not italicized. Only direct thoughts are done in italics. This can raise a dozen more questions, but I prefer to just leave it there. Some people love italics, some hate them. Bottom line is, use them sparingly. An editor or agent is not going to reject you because you've italicized something that they don't think should be.

Here are some tips for deepening POV:

1) Get into character - Imagine what it's like to be that person. Then be sure to show, not tell, what it is they're feeling.

2) Think/tell the story in first person - This helps me a lot. I will tell the story as though I am the POV character. As if I was reading their journal. Your characters are not going to lie to themselves.

3) Remember that your characters' past experiences shape them. How do the things they see, hear, smell and touch affect them based on those experiences? Example: Two people can enter a blue room. The first person can think it's the most beautiful room they've ever seen. The second person, who perhaps grew up in a less-than-ideal home where all the walls were painted blue, is going to think it's the ugliest, most depressing room they've ever seen.

4) Use strong, descriptive word choices. There's a difference between walked, strolled, and trudged. Which one best suits the scene?

Above all, you have to know your characters to get into their heads. That means you have to dig. And as Liz Curtis Higgs shared last year at ACFW, digging isn't always fun. Matter of fact, it's hard. It may take you someplace you don't want to go. But to do justice to your characters, your story, and to touch your readers, you have to dig.

Presented by Mindy Obenhaus

Born in Indiana, raised in Michigan, Mindy got to Texas as fast as she could. With five children spanning sixteen years, life was never boring. Reading came in the form of magazines and writing was something she’d done in high school. But, by the time her youngest started kindergarten, reading consumed most of her time, and writing soon followed. Little did she know the path God had set before her.

Read more about Mindy and what she's doing at