Upcoming Events

   February 7 Deadline
Arizona Matsuri
submit up to 3 haiku free of charge (see more at HAIKU EXPO 2015)
Arizona Matsuri is scheduled for Feb 21-22, 2015 in downtown Phoenix

   February 14
Morning: Retired City Prosecutor Lin Scharbach, will give us the scoop on the duties of prosecuting attorneys in Tucson City Court.
Afternoon: Agent and editor Claire Gerus will present, "Shall I Self-Publish or Look for a Traditional Publisher?" At the Old Pueblo Grille, 60 N. Alvernon (just north of Broadway) from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
(more info: arizonamysterywriters.com)

   February 22
  (NOTE: 4th Sunday)

SSA Forum @ 11am—2pm
Tucson City Center InnSuites
Archie Hougland - "How to Make Characters Walk, Talk & Think"
(see article this page)

   March 22
  (NOTE: 4th Sunday)

SSA Forum @ 11am—2pm
Tucson City Center InnSuites
Mike Alvarez - "A Writer Never Quits: Adapting to Publishing in the Digital Age"
(see article this page)

   June 1 Deadline
Arizona Mystery Writers Jim Martin Memorial Story Contest
(see more at www.arizonamysterywriters.com)

To R.S.V.P. SSA Forum
Leave Phone Message
at 546-9382
or e-mail: ssabrunches@gmail.com WEDNESDAY before the Forum
$25 with reservation or
$30 paid at the door

   Archie is deeply interested in characters. When writing a novel, the author creates characters who perform for the reader—as actors in plays, motion pictures and television shows do for their audiences. Actors of stage and film come in all sizes, shapes and genders, as do characters in a book.

   On a stage or in projected images upon a screen, the actors can be presented exactly as their creator wishes them to be and gives the audience a huge free gift of understanding not available to the readers of a novel. The desired image is placed into the ir minds because they can see it. Without ever being told, they know a great deal about the character. Another free gift to the audience is the tone of voice. It instantly relays happiness, sadness, evil, etcetera. No less important is the freebie of expression. Fear, horror, delight, sadness, love, hate, understanding, misunderstanding and all manner of information is gleaned from the simple way the features are set.

   Auditory sense is the wonderful ability to hear in your mind the voice and music accompaniment, which can easily create sadness, happiness, terror or excitement. That's the reason why, in the early days of silent movies, the show was always accompanied by live piano music. You may hear the lonesome moan of a midnight train, the bustling sounds of traffic or the cry of gulls over a windswept ocean beach.

   Think of background scenery you see in a movie or on TV. If the scene is outdoors, you instantly know if you are in the mountains, at sea or on a busy city street. The scene is instantly brought to the audience.

   Three highly informative gifts are given to the audience of stage, motion picture and television shows. They are sight, sound and existing condition. They accompany and influence some event or activity. Sadly these gifts cannot be used by the author of a book. In a novel, vision, audio and condition must be produced by words. It is the expertise of the author that creates a perception in the mind of the reader, of sight, sound, and the set of facts or circumstances that surround a situation or event.

   How is that accomplished? Archie calls it "fleshing out"—think of it as putting flesh on bones. The human skeleton is not at all unique, other than size, until the flesh and experience is added—then each and every one of us becomes unique.

   Archie J. Hoagland is proud to have been raised a simple country boy and is proud of his time as a combat veteran in the Navy, but he has worn several other hats. As an author, he's had two poetry collections published—The Collection, a volume of over 500 pages, and a much shorter collection, Sartor's Poetry—plus his first crime mystery novel, The Mystery of Sorrows. He is a member of The Society of Southwestern Authors and was a two-year facilitator of the Green Valley Writers' Forum. Archie's also a retired business owner, a 44-year member of the BPOE (Elks) and a sculptor working in terra cotta. He's the father of six sons and has fourteen grandchildren and two great grandchildren.

   Most of us began our writing careers by writing poems and short stories. The problem is, most agents and publishers want writers who can pen blockbuster novels—the bigger the better.

   What if you could write whatever you desired and have it published a short time later? What if you could have your work available for worldwide sale and sell it alongside the biggest best-selling authors? Getting published in the digital age has opened doors that never previously existed.

   One way to accomplish this is by using the Kindle Direct Publishing platform offered by Amazon. You decide what the cover of your work will be, you determine how much to sell your work for, and you can even end up getting more royalties than with conventional publishers. Readers no longer have to read only what the major publishers decide to publish. Now, readers could pick and choose what they read from the new digital marketplace and also decide what to read it on.

   Mike Alvarez, longtime SSA member and PCC writing instructor, will reveal how all this is possible. If you are a writer and want to tap into the new global, digital publishing arena, you won't want to miss this presentation. Mike has written and published numerous short stories, essays, poems, and articles on writing. His work has appeared in The Arizona Daily Star and Writer's Digest. Several of his short stories have been included in anthologies.

   Mike has published two Nick Madrid mysteries: Deliver Us From Evil and The Last Place God Made. His other books include The Treasure of the Santa Ritas, Mamas, Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Writers, and the suspense thriller, Kino's Gold.


Jan Cleere announces the signing of not one but two book contracts with Globe Pequot Press, now a subsidiary of Rowman & Littlefield Publishers. The publisher is issuing a second edition of Jan's book, More Than Petticoats: Remarkable Nevada Women, which was first published in 2005, with Jan adding several new chapters. The second edition will undergo a name change to Nevada Women: Remarkable Women Who Shaped History, 2nd Edition, and will be released in October 2015.
Jan's other contract with Globe Pequot is a book she has been working on for the last two years. Never Don't Pay Attention: The Life Story of Rodeo Photographer Louise L. Serpa is also scheduled for released in the fall of 2015. Louise Serpa was an icon on the rodeo circuit. Her amazing story chronicles the life of a New York society woman who ended up out West with her nose buried in the dirt and her eye glued to a camera, loving every minute of becoming the first woman allowed to venture inside the arena and shoot some of the most exciting and incredible photographs of rodeo action. Jan will present Louise's story at the April 2015 Arizona History Convention.

Jake Jacobs' first mystery, The Battered Butterfly, was recently published and is available on Amazon.com and BarnesandNoble.com. Reader feedback has been enthusiastic.
Who or What is The Battered Butterfly? What do you get if you cross Mike Hammer with Ignatius Reilly? Meet Lefty Markowitz! Lefty, an ex-New York cop turned professional gambler, is 280 pounds of misanthropy on the prowl in Manila. All he wants is to be left alone. But when a bar girl is murdered Lefty becomes the prime suspect, and everyone is after him. Pursued by Chinese triads, Japanese Yakuza, a Filipino sparrow squad, a corrupt senator and his bodyguards, an overeager reporter and a psychotic police captain, Lefty must find the real killer before his pursuers find him. Aided by his girlfriend, Hyacinth Chin, and her protégé, Gladiola Laboong, Lefty explores the places the Bureau of Tourism leaves off its maps. He'll look for the killer, but all he really wants to find is a decent slice of pizza.
While Jake lives in Singapore these days, he maintains his membership in SSA, Arizona Mystery Writers, and Mystery Writers of America. Jake wanted SSA to know: "I wrote the original draft for Butterfly while living in Tucson."

Bob Natiello's nonfiction short story, "How Jiminy Cricket Helped Me Even the Score with the Dodgers," was judged a finalist in The Brooklyn Film and Arts Festival. Readers will find it at www.filmbrooklyn.org. Bob is one of a selected group of Wharton alumni requested to submit articles for the Wharton Magazine Online. His most recent piece, a 500-word blog on tattoos and their effect on income, can be found at http://whartonmagazine.com/blogs/the-clean-cut-way-to-boost-income-potential.

Mike Rom did color correction, some camera work and sound and helped create the blu-ray, Best of the World Hockey Association Hall of Fame, with more than 5 hours of documentaries, films, rare footage and features. The World Hockey Association was a professional ice hockey major league that operated in North America from 1972 to 1979. There is even a team film from the WHA Phoenix Roadrunners. More information at www.whahof.com.

Special Success Story Hatched by Quail Run Writers is an anthology written by one of SSA's nine active writing groups. This delightful book can reside on your bedside table waiting for the one who has finally found time to relax, and can now drift into choice pages of childhood antics, mystery, history, wartime experiences, life in the Southwest, and glorious flights of fantasy in both poetry and prose. Hatched by Quail Run Writers, formatted and published by Debra Lewis of St. David, Arizona (arenapublishing.com), is available through Amazon in both e-book and print formats. Autographed copies will be available from the following Quail members at any SSA Forum, and at The Tucson Book Festival: Jeanne Glasgow, Sharon Landeen, Beverly Malnar, Florence Marks, Penny Porter, Roberta Schlesinger, and Sam Turner. (Contributor Ben Williams, Jr is deceased.)
Excerpts from Reviews from back of book:
"Through the years I have come to know the writers and writings of Quail Run. They represent a true cross section of America. Their stories reflect their differing backgrounds and voices. You will find this anthology to not only be informative but highly entertaining."
~Danny Zuker, Winner of 4 Emmys, Executive Producer/writer of Modern Family "... it is a book that makes me want to hug each of the authors for their writing and sense of commitment to offering readers a chance to cry and smile, imagine and reflect, in other words, to flex the muscles of their own humanity." ~ Sheila Bender, 2013 Guest Lecturer at Seattle University and author of Creative Writing DeMystified, and Sorrow's Words: Writing Exercise to Heal Grief, among other titles.
Reviews from Amazon:
By Darcy Tom on November 26, 2014
This is a wonderful book! There is such a wide variety of stories and poetry. It's a great book to share with your family and friends. I take care of an elderly man and he just loves it when I read him one of the short stories—he can't wait to hear how the story ends. The stories carry you away into a land of imagination and escape. I recommend this book to anyone.
By P. M. Crane on July 4, 2014
This book has a lot of unusual stories, and I like the format of each writer using the same prompt for the subject matter in the different sections. I especially enjoyed the emotionally powerful WWII stories. Each writer has their own style. This group is obviously talented, and they enjoy their craft.

The Write Word
published bi-monthly by the Board of Directors
of The Society of Southwestern Authors
P.O. Box 30355, Tucson, AZ 85751

Board of Dirctors

Chris Stern:

Vice President
Donna Young: karmamiranda@aol.com

Jay McCall: jmccall415@msn.com

Recording Secretary
Jean Young: migralaws@aol.com

Corresponding Secretary

Membership & Forum Programs Chair
Penny Porter: wporter202@aol.com

Forum Reservations Chair
Duke Southard: dukesout@dukesouthard.com
Reservations: 546-9382 or
E-mail: ssabrunches@gmail.com

Members at Large
Dan Baldwin: baldco@msn.com

Bob Hunton: rlh10@cox.net

Sharon Lashinger: srlashinger@hotmail.com

Rajendra Srivastava: rajendrasrivastava@outlook.com

Danette Young: dmyoung3@gmail.com


Conference Co-Chair

Writing Contest Chair
Robert Hunton: rlh10@cox.net
contest page

Speaker's Bureau Coordinator

Writing Group Coordinator
Write Word Editor
Mike Rom: writeword@ssa-az.org

SSA Home Page:


Mike Rom: writeword@ssa-az.org

NOTE: Deadline for next issue is the 15th day of March