Friday, July 8, 2011

The Wannabe’s Journal


June 2011

The Big Announcement:

I realize that last month’s meeting was held on June 17th. While my family and I were basking in the heat and refreshing waters of the swimming pool of the house were rented in Hilton Head, some of your fellow members didn’t miss the opportunity to meet and share their stories and accomplishments at Panera that Friday morning last month. For me that meeting was a defining moment. It meant that our group which had originally formed as a result of a common interest in writing and storytelling had a life of its own. The meeting and its two hours of sharing were cause for celebration.

Speaking of celebration we have great news for the group. I had begun to work on the logistics last month but could not finalize the arrangements until last week.

For the last three years we have been meeting at various places near UD and the McGinnis Center, the site of where the Wannabe’s first meet in the fall of 2008. We have held the majority of our meetings near UD since many of us take class from the LLI program at UD. Up until recently, Panera has provided space for our monthly meetings at no cost and even provided us with the ability to have a free cup of coffee. They informed me in May that the Community Room which we had been using was going to be renovated for dining space and we could no longer reserve a private meeting space. It would have to be a first come, first serve basis. Since then I have giving thought to where we could meet…a place that would encourage participation and learning and a place that was easy to get to from most parts of the city. That is when I thought of the idea of going back to our roots.

As most of you know the LLI classes that are part of the University of Dayton’s Osher Program at the University of Dayton are now going to be conducted at 1600 Paterson Blvd (NCR’s former World Headquarters) I inquired about the possibility of our group of writers using part of the facility for our monthly meetings and eventually expanded our offerings as a group to serve the needs of many of our new writers and story tellers. Thanks to the generosity and cooperation of Ms. Julie Mitchell, the Assistant Dean for Special Programs and Continuing Education for the University, we are now going to be able to have our meetings at the River Campus. The facility is close to Panera. Parking will also be easier. They have a number of classrooms, conference rooms and a spacious cafeteria where we could hold our members. The move to have our meeting at the River Campus is very positive.

Our next meeting on July 22nd will be held at the River Campus. We will have coffee available to those who will suffer the caffeine withdrawal, from not going to Panera that morning. I hope you all will agree that this move will enhance the contribution that the Wannabe’s can make to its members and the ever expanding community of writers and artists.

Now for summary of what transpired last month at the June meeting. William F was kind enough to take great notes about what everyone talked about:

Date of the Meeting: June 17th

Present: Don Hart, Ginger Evers, Don Peacock, Mary Lou, Tricia Calvert, Neona Eloy and William Forman.

Current Activities:

1. Don Hart - talked about the Memoir class with Judy Wheeley (UD Class). He is working on a book of his short stories (20), and read Rocking Chair surgery - and talked about a barefoot race as a kid (with calloused feet)

2. Ginger Evers - had letter to Editor in USA Today re the space shuttle. She is working on stories for her grandson - "Where's my Bear?"

3. Don Peacock - Talked about "legacy letters - Mom had saved all letters from his Dad during the war (WW2)

4. Bill Foreman - shared a few tidbits from Scott Boyd's book: Write & Sell EBooks... such as ISBN Codes (13 digit number - based on home address of author) - cost is 125.00 for ONE or get ten for 270.00) Author talks about wide variety of E-pub issues. - researching key words for use in subtitle and how to research most used words, importance of backing-up your work - and saving on flash drive, etc.

5. Mary Lou talked about things with her memoir about Slovak Roots and Candles.

6. Dan Edward (Channel 2 News) stopped in and shared this advice: "Write who you are" And think: "What does reader want to know" Economize on words (his radio background)

7. Tricia shared how things were coming with her memoir/book - almost done - about "recovery" and explained the title "Real Wood"

8. Neona shared some of her great poems. They rhyme, but are not "sing-song’s" She also talked about a family blog (family only access). Some of her poems related to the abuse kids she had worked with for 30+ years.


I never really learned to play

Marbles, hopscotch, street stick ball

The game I played was "runaway",

Hangout in the nearest mall

Cops don't like kids at the mall

Can't say I blame them, stole a lot

Outran them even though I'm small

Fast, though, most of them were not

Mom’s be home with her new "friend"

"Uncle" Harry, John or Joe

They'd start drinking until when

She’d make it clear that I must go

"Get yore fat ass out ‘a here,

An' don't come back again tonight!"

Was usually what my mom would say

When she wanted me out of sight

In freezing rain I've shook 'n shivered

Perched beneath the busted stairs

While frozen flowing tears co-mingled

With broken heart and childish fears

Lots of kids hang out in malls

Malls have been a friend to me

They're kinda' like a super mom

They feed and house and let you be

-Neona Eloy-

9. After Don Hart shared a limerick (about Clinton) that was posted on various sites, Neona said she would like equal time next time to do one on Sarah Palin.

10. Rosie H sent me the following posting for the Journal last month but because of my vacation I was not able to post the information in a timely fashion.

The Brandon Haskins Memorial Art Scholarship has been established at Sinclair in honor of a young artist who was cut short in his effort to make an impact on our world. Contact Rosie for additional information on how you can participate.

Even though I did not attend the meeting I will provide you with a few comments on my reading activities during the last few months. Vacations are a wonderful place to read a new book or finish one that you started when the snow was still flying. Here are a couple that I finished recently and that I would recommend:

The Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand, author of the best seller “Seabiscuit”. The Unbroken is a story of a famous Olympic runner who became a prisoner of war during WW II. This is a great book about human courage and spirit.

The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein is a unique book. Cleverly written with the voice of a dog, the novel provides the reader with the full spectrum of emotions and insights of human nature and maturity.

Hissy Fit by Mary Kay Andrews. Good summer reading for light hearted humor and southern charm. I have recommended this book to my bride and sister-in-law because of its story about a young interior designer’s quest to decorate a southern mansion in less than six months. The book was a bargain on Amazon for $ 1.99. Found the special offer on Zite, the new electronic magazine on my bride’s IPad. You will now pay $ 12.95 on Amazon for the same eBook now.

I will provide you all with a summary of the week long AWW in Yellow Springs which starts this coming week in the next issue of the Journal. If any of you want to provide me with a summary of your summer adventures from a literary sense, please email me your text and I will include in the next issue.

Hope to see you all at our next meeting on July 22nd at our new meeting location at UD’s River Campus. I will provide you maps and directions in my next Wannabe’s meeting notification. Have a great weekend.