Upcoming Events

   April 4
SSA Santa Cruz Chapter @ 1—2:45pm
Joyner Library
Donna Dailey, journalist & author of numerous travel guides and inspirational travel books
(see article here)

   April 17
SSA Forum @ 11am—2pm
Tucson City Center InnSuites
Rebecca Seiferle, "Celebrating National Poetry Month With Tucson's Poet Laureate"
(see article this page)

   April 24
SSA Valley of the Sun Chapter @ 2:30—4:30pm
Tempe Public Library
Katherine Herbert "Turn Your Book Into a Screenplay"
(see article here)

   May 2
SSA Santa Cruz Chapter @ 1—2:45pm
Joyner Library
Gene Twaronite7—a writer of many genres will perform some of his zany essays.
(see article here)

   May 15
SSA Forum @ 11am—2pm
Tucson City Center InnSuites
Betty Webb, "Five Story Ideas a Day, Every Day"
(see article this page)

   May 29
SSA Valley of the Sun Chapter @ 2:30—4:30pm
Tempe Public Library
Judith Starkston "Writing Historicals"
(see article here)

   June 26
SSA Valley of the Sun Chapter @ 2:30—4:30pm
Tempe Public Library
discussion panel "Traditional Versus Self-Publishing: Which Is Best for You?"
(see article here)

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

   April is National Poetry Month and we are delighted to have the Tucson Poet Laureate, Rebecca Seiferle, as our speaker. She will be reading from her work and helping us celebrate the month and the concept of Poem in Your Pocket Day (April 21).

   Poet Rebecca Seiferle once said that "one should always read a poem as if it was a matter of life and death." Rebecca is the celebrated author of four collections of poetry, including Wild Tongue, which received the 2008 Grub Street National Book Prize in Poetry. Wild Tongue suggests a similar belief about writing poems as having high stakes.

   Her third collection of poems, Bitters, was awarded the Pushcart Prize and her second collection, The Music We Dance To, which won the 1998 Cecil Hemley Award from the Poetry Society of America and was nominated for the Pulitzer prize—poems from this volume are included in The Best American Poetry 2000. Her first book, The Ripped-Out Seam, won the Bogin Award from the Poetry Society of America, the Writers' Exchange Award from Poets & Writers, and the National Writers' Union Prize.

   Rebecca is also a noted translator. Her translation of Vallejo's The Black Heralds was published by Copper Canyon Press in 2003. Her translations of several Cuban poets were included in The Whole Island: Six Decades of Cuban Poetry, A Bilingual Anthology (University of California Press, 2008), and her translations of Alfonso D'Aquino and Ernesto Lumbreras appeared in Reversible Monuments: Contemporary Mexican Poetry (Copper Canyon 2002). Her translation of Vallejo's Trilce was a finalist for the 1992 PenWest Translation Award. Seiferle has also made the words of well-known Latin American poets accessible to new readers.

   According to the Tucson Pima Arts Council, the purpose of the Tucson Poet Laureate is to promote poetry, to foster its appreciation and to inspire a new generation of readers and writers.

   Appointed by the Mayor's Office, Rebecca Seiferle is a poet, editor, teacher and translator of distinction. As a teacher, Seiferle has led numerous local workshops for middle- and high-school students. She currently teaches at Southwest University of Visual Arts.

   Seiferle was inspired to move to Tucson in 2006 because of its extraordinary literary community. Since then, she has worked to foster collaboration between Tucson poets and artists and created new platforms for emerging writers. She is also the founding editor of the online poetry magazine, The Drunken Boat—the first issue was published in April 2000 with issues appearing regularly since.

   Don't forget to vote! April is the annual Election for our SSA Board. The ballot is the last page of The Write Word. If you want to run, please let Chris Stern know so he can announce that you will be a write-in candidate at April forum.

   Betty Webb is the author of the popular Lena Jones mystery series and a new mystery series (with more humor) set in the Gunn Zoo, a fictional California zoo. Betty's work at the Phoenix Zoo was the inspiration for this series. She still volunteers at the Phoenix Zoo, and has not given up her habit of talking to the animals—especially Jezabel, the banana-loving giant anteater who was the inspiration for The Anteater of Death.

   She will be presenting to SSA "Five Story Ideas a Day, Every Day." This forum will help beginning and experienced writers who sometimes struggle with the actual creative process and need to get a jump start from time to time. There WILL be writing during this workshop—and Betty will be supplying handouts, too!

   Before Betty wrote mysteries she was a journalist and wrote hard news and features. She interviewed astronauts, Nobel Prize winners, the homeless and U.S. presidents. Her Lena Jones mysteries are based on stories she covered as a reporter. Currently a creative writing teacher at Phoenix College, she is a member of National Federation of Press Women, Mystery Writers of America, and the Authors Guild.

   One of Betty's hobbies is genealogy. She is descended from Scottish Barons, but there is a bit of mystery on her father's side. Genealogy and bloodlines are a part of the intrigue in her Lena Jones mystery series: Desert Rage, Desert Wind, Desert Cut, Desert Run, Desert Shadows, Desert Wives, and Desert Noir.

   The first book in the Gunn Zoo series is The Anteater of Death, followed by The Koala of Death, The Llama of Death and now, The Puffin of Death.

   To find out more about Betty's ancestors and especially the Lena Jones books, check her web site at www.bettywebb-mystery.com. The website also links to her appearances and signings.


Dave Heacock published New Witch of Oz, the second novel in his OZ series, in 2015. Having saved her granddaughter from the new Witch of the East, Dorothy returns to Oz to replace the good witch of the Munchkins. But before she can, she has to confront "the fiercest beast to ever come to Oz." If they cannot solve a mystery together, the Munchkins are in mortal danger. New Witch of Oz is available at amazon.com, Barnes & Noble, and in multiple electronic formats.

Ken Iserson is writing the 9th edition of Iserson's Getting Into a Residency: A Guide for Medical Students (Tucson, Galen Press). But, since the 2nd edition of his book, Improvised Medicine: Providing Care in Extreme Environments (NY: McGraw-Hill) came out in January, he is appropriately spending most of the year working as the U.S. Antarctic Program's Lead Physician at McMurdo Station, Antarctica.
"For fellow SSA members who are interested in more details about my (second, but first Winter) tour on "the Ice," they can view my just published article in ACEP Now (the newsletter of the American College of Emergency Physicians) at http://www.acepnow.com/article/emergency-physician-embarks-on-second-medical-expedition-to-antarctica/ "

Constance Richardson's Swimming Upstream: A Memoir has been named a finalist in “The Annual Beverly Hills Book Awards.” It is also a finalist in the “Eric Hoffer's da Vinci Eye” award for its cover. Both are national awards.

Mike Rom is just following up on his success from the last issue—his art is in the free version of Pima College's Cababi Art & Literary Magazine, now online at https://pima.edu/faculty-staff/cababi/docs/2015-16%20cababi-Fall-Winter%20Edition.pdf

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
Rajendra (Raj) Srivastava: rajendrasrivastava@outlook.com

Jay McCall: jmccall415@msn.com

Recording Secretary

Corresponding Secretary

Membership & Forum Programs & Reservations Chair
Sharon Lashinger: srlashinger@hotmail.com
Reservations: 546-9382 or
E-mail: ssabrunches@gmail.com

Members at Large
Dan Baldwin: baldco@msn.com

Bob Hunton: rlh10@cox.net

Debora Lewis: deboraklewis@yahoo.com

Penny Porter: wporter202@aol.com

Jim Snedden: jimsnedden@comcast.net

Danette Young: dmyoung3@gmail.com


Conference Co-Chair

Writing Contest
Bob Hunton: info@ssa-az.org
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