Newsletter of the Society of Southwestern Authors           Vol. 37, No. 2 April/May '09


Upcoming Events

   April 6
Santa Cruz Valley Chapter @1-2:45PM
Conrad Joyner Library, Green Valley
Lynn Wiese Sneyd, "How to Promote Your Book"

   April 11
Arizona Mystery Writers @10-2PM
Hometown Buffet, 5101 N. Oracle Rd.
Features Elizabeth Gunn workshop on police procedurals, "The Homicide, the Hooks and the Helpers"
and speaker, Mike White, of Ghost River Images on self-publishing. $12, cash, checks, no credit cards.

   April 19
Forum @11:30-2PM
Four Points Sheraton
Jennifer Lee Carrell
"Place, Time, and Acts: Using Facts in Fiction"

   April 25
Saguaro Romance Writers @9-1PM
El Parador, 2744 E Broadway Blvd
features four-time Golden Heart finalist and Daphne du Maurier winner Karen Docter in a special, all-day workshop, "Plot: The Other White Meat for Plotters"
$20 members, $25 others. E-mail Crystal Marshall at

   May 2
Saturday Workshop @1-3PM
Four Points Sheraton
David Cuillier, the National Freedom of Information chairman for the Society of Professional Journalists and University of Arizona Journalism professor
"Effective Internet Research / Government Resources"
$15. Register by APRIL 29, 2009. Contact Jude Johnson ( for more information.

   May 4
Santa Cruz Valley Chapter @1-2:45PM
Conrad Joyner Library, Green Valley
Greg Scott, well-known cowboy poet, musician and historian.

   May 9
Arizona Mystery Writers @10-2PM
Hometown Buffet, 5101 N. Oracle Rd.
First Annual General Meeting/Elections; Speaker: Benjamin Jimenez, TPD Detective. $12, cash, checks, no credit cards.

   May 9
Saguaro Romance Writers @9:45-4PM
Sheraton Four Points Conference Center, 1900 E. Speedway
features Writer/Producer Howard Allan in a special, workshop, "Explaining is Evil: Dialogue has Text and Subtext"
$50 members, $60 others (included lunch & workshop materials) E-mail Linda Reed (

   May 17
Forum @11:30-2PM
Four Points Sheraton
David Ray
"Writing and the Search for Identity Through Memoir, Fiction, and Poetry"

   Future Forums:
June 21: Marilyn Pincus - "A Day in the Life of a Ghost Writer"

To R.S.V.P. Forum
Leave Phone Message
at 546-9382
or e-mail: WEDNESDAY before the Forum
$25 paid at the door

Place, Time, and Acts: Using Facts in Fiction

   Our April 19th Forum will feature New York Times Bestselling Author Jennifer Lee Carrell discussing the ways in which facts and real events establish credibility in fabricated stories through the process of writing historically inflected fiction, as well as the imaginative process of using place. She is the author of Interred With Their Bones, a Shakespearean thriller that hit the bestseller lists of both the New York Times and the Sunday Times of London, and published in 29 languages. A new Kate Stanley thriller titled Haunt Me Still is due out in October.

  Jennifer grew up here in Tucson, graduating from Rincon High School, and holds her Ph.D. in English and American Literature from Harvard University, as well as other degrees in English Literature from Oxford and Stanford Universities. She won three awards for distinction in undergraduate teaching at Harvard, where she taught in the History and Literature Program and directed Shakespeare for the Hyperion Theatre Company. Her first book, The Speckled Monster, is a thrillerlike work of historical nonfiction about battling smallpox at the beginning of the eighteenth century. Much more information is available on her web site: www.jenniferleecarrell. com.

  Be sure to reserve your seat by April 16th. Call 546-9382 or email

Writing and the Search for Identity Through
Memoir, Fiction, and Poetry

   Join us Sunday, May 17 for an informative forum by David Ray as he shares his life as a writer in several genres, and how a good relationship between writer and editor is vital to the author's work. David is author of 22 books, the most recent being After Tagore: Poems Inspired by Rabindranath Tagore. His book, The Endless Search, is a probing account of his early years and has been described as "Dickensian, full of abuse and tragedy," a study of personal history both clinical and mystical. David has been a professor at universities in the U.S., India, New Zealand, and Australia, and has presented numerous readings and lectures, including at The Library of Congress, B.B.C., N.P.R., Harvard, and The Folger Shakespeare Library.

   More information is at his website: Please make your reservations by May 14th; call 546-9382 or email forums

Note: Forum price is now $25!

The Art of Access
SSA Web Workshop - Saturday, May 2, 2009

   Research—every writer needs to find reliable information at one time or another. But where do you look? And how can you be sure it's accurate information? Join us from 1:00-3:00PM on Saturday, May 2nd, and learn the basics of acquiring government records in researching a book project. University of Arizona School of Journalism assistant professor David Cuillier, Ph.D. will show you how, including where to find documents online, and offer tips for hundreds of public records that can be useful in research and everyday life. David teaches public affairs reporting, database journalism, and access to government information. He is chairman of the Freedom of Information Committee for the Society of Professional Journalists and conducts research in access to government documents.

   Deadline to register is April 29. Cost for the workshop is $15 and includes beverages. Call the SSA reservation line at 546-9382 or email


Peter Bernhardt's thriller, The Stasi File, Opera and Espionage: A Deadly Combination, ranked as a bestseller on YouWriteOn. com, has just become available to readers through bookseller sites and The novel features a critical period in recent history: dust from the demolished Berlin Wall has barely settled, the East German police state is teetering on the edge of collapse, and Stasi General Holger Frantz will stop at nothing to save it. Further details, including the first chapter and reviews, may be found on the author's website:

Carol Costa's paranormal mystery, Invisible Force, has just been released as an e-book by Champagne books. The print edition will be out in June. You can view it at Click on the cover to read an excerpt.

Sandra Farris' third book, Lady Ace, has just been released and can be ordered through, amazon. com, or iUniverse. com.
On a charter flight with a passenger on board to Oregon's Briar Meadows Ranch, the left engine of Cimmaron Air's Beech Baron freezes on final approach. Kasey O'Brien has to set the plane down without the aide of emergency services, thus earning her the nickname, Lady Ace.
During the inspection of the engine, she discovers an oil line has been purposely cut and is forced to stay at the ranch until a replacement can be flown in. Since he failed, would the saboteur make another attempt on her life̢ or was her passenger the target?

Karen V. Kibler's The Second Chasm was released January 7th (Wyatt-MacKenzie Publishing, Inc). Written by an average person who experiences grief not unlike so many others, The Second Chasm is not a story of the greatest tragedy or the most difficult challenge; rather, it is the story of a common tragedy and an all-too familiar challenge. It is unique because it bridges two of the most common losses faced in this world: divorce and widowhood. The two separate chasms that resulted not from grief, but from depression, were born of the same illness. The recoveries offer a message of hope, as Karen Kibler describes her journey from despair to healing. The book is available through Amazon, Ingram, and Baker and Taylor. More information is available on the website: $15 Trade Paperback, ISBN 978-1-932279-31-3.

Frederick J. Masterman's The Jewels of Stonehenge, published in January 2009, is the second novel in the action-adventure series entitled The PlanetCare Discoveries. The series is published by Orchard House Press, a medium sized traditional press located in Seattle, Washington. As with the first book, Season of the Plant, released in late 2007, the story focuses on a scientific expedition, in the course of which bizarre and deadly discoveries take place. The core of The Jewels of Stonehenge is a set of otherworldly gems originating in the ancient monument, which when assembled will create a device of alien power. The publisher provides an author webpage, through which the books may be ordered (orchardhousepress. com/frederickjmasterman) or you may contact the author directly ( or 818- 9124).

Sheri McGuinn's new YA novel, Michael Dolan McCarthy, has been selected as a quarter finalist in the Amazon Breakout Novel Awards (abna). That means a short excerpt is online, available for public reading and review. There's no cost to download the review or leave your comments.
"I figure the more positive reviews it gets, the more likely it will end up with a traditional publishing contract. Please, check it out and leave a review & pass the link on to all of your friends to do the same. THANK YOU!" or and choose thriller/ suspense, then skim through the entries for Michael Dolan McCarthy by Sheri McGuinn.
Sheri's first novel, Running Away, got an honorable mention in Writer's Digest International Self-Published Novel Awards. Check out p.45 of Writer's Digest March/April 2008 issue.

Ashleen O'Gaea's short story, "The Chicken Race," will be included in the 2009 WOW [Wizards of Words] Anthology, to be released in June. In Ashleen's tale, the protagonist is resigned to attending another of his company's annual retreats. But his car breaks down near the very small town of Descuido, stranding him there just in time for the annual Chicken Race, and the three-foot tall racing roosters and their quirky fans help him put his life in perspective. Visit her website!

Bob Rogers has published The Return of No. 44 through New Bohemians Press. In honor of the upcoming centennial of Mark Twain's death and as a tribute to his last work, No. 44, the Mysterious Stranger, The Return of No. 44 is an homage to Twain's ability to use picaresque characters and outrageous tales to forge substantial, frequently dark, social commentary. The backdrop for the novel's climax is Old Town Portland, while other scenes draw from Fields, Oregon and the Olympic Peninsula of Washington. Rogers' research led him to live homeless on the streets of Portland for authentic detail. Rogers worked in television news and as a print photojournalist before earning an MFA in the visual arts. He published short stories in literary magazines and taught art. After a period in business, he resumed creative writing and returned to journalism. He is a featured contributor to He and his wife Claire tour the world on a tandem bicycle, 39,000 miles and counting. Their travels are documented at www. The Return of No. 44 is available through

Barbara Stahura is co-authoring with Susan B. Schuster M.A., CCC-SLP a journaling workbook for brain-injury survivors, titled After Brain Injury: Telling Your Story, for Lash & Associates, the top publisher of materials for people with brain injuries and their families. To be released later this summer, After Brain Injury: Telling Your Story will provide dozens of journaling exercises designed to help brain-injury survivors cope with the realities of their new life and continue their emotional healing and recovery process. Twice yearly, Barbara and Susan facilitate the six-session workshop from which this book was developed at Tucson's HealthSouth Rehabilitation Hospital of Southern Arizona, and their next project is a journaling workshop and workbook book for the spouses and partners of brain-injury survivors. Barbara's husband, Ken Willingham, sustained a traumatic brain injury in December 2003, and their experience of going through this ordeal led to the creation of the workshops and the books. Susan was Ken's speech therapist, and she continues to offer skilled therapy to other clients of HealthSouth.

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

Chris Stern:

Jude Johnson:

Carol Costa:

Recording Secretary
Carroll Rinehart:

Member Chair
Penny Porter:

Corresponding Secretary
Jane Eppinga:

Conference Consultant
Penny Porter:

Writer's Contest
Ashleen O-Gaea:

Forum Program Chair
Jude Johnson:

Members at Large
Dewanne Hopson:
Mary Ann Hutchison:

Mentoring Groups
Sam Turner:

Write Word Editor
Mike Rom: (520) 410-1294 (beep)

SSA Home Page:

Mike Rom: (520) 410-1294 (beep)

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