Westport Writers' Rendezvous – June update

Another great group of people showed up at Barnes & Noble in Westport today, and we had a good time, encouraging each other, and generally making the writing happen. Several people had things published, some rather unexpectedly. Kathryn Mayer had a piece she’d forgotten about published here, and if you have something to brag about, add it to the comments, so people can find it!
WWR member Robert Steven Williams (author of My Year As a Clown) is one of the two creators of the film: Gatsby in Connecticut: The Untold Story, which will be shown on Thurs. June 21, 7pm at the Pequot Library in Southport. The filmmakers in this 2018 documentary argue that Long Island’s fabled West and East Egg in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby are, actually, based on…Westport, CT. After the film, enjoy a discussion with the filmmakers, as well as a book signing.
This weekend, June 23 and 24, you can hear readings on The Poets, Writers & Storytellers Stage at the Norwalk Art Festival, located at Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum in Norwalk, CT.  This is the second year that the poet Jerry T. Johnson has put together this event, and it promises to be a wonderful weekend.  For those of you who would like to take the stage, there will also be an open mic time. Members Alison McBain, Ed Ahern, Leslie Chess Feller, Mary Grace Dembeck and Barbara (Steph) Dixon will be reading from their work. Full details of times on Alison’s web page. Please go and support them!
Also on Saturday, June 23, there’s CrimeCONN, a one-day workshop for those of you who love reading mysteries or want to write one. Details in last month’s update here. Member Sheryl Kayne will be a panelist and has written about it here.
mrs parrishLocal authors Lynne and Valerie – known as Liv – Constantine will be hosting a social event to launch the paperback edition of The Last Mrs. Parrish on Wednesday, July 18 from 5:30pm-7:30pm at Artisan Restaurant in Southport, CT. Mingle with Authors Lynne and Valerie Constantine on the outdoor patio and enjoy complimentary specialty cocktails, hors-d’oeuvres, music, book signing, surprise gifts and much more.
In addition to our own monthly WritersMic night, singer/pianist Kenneth Gartman hosts another at the Unity Center of Norwalk, in Norwalk, CT. on the 3rd Saturday of the month, so the next one is on July 21, 7:00-9:00 pm, $10 Cover. Doors open at 6:30 pm, when you can sign up to read. You must sign up by 6:55 to perform.  Comedians, poets, writers and musicians are all welcome.
The Connecticut chapter of the Romance Writers of America is holding its Connecticut Fiction Fest 2018 at the Norwalk Inn & Conference Center, Norwalk, CT on September 7, 8, 9, 2018 Agents, editors, 20 workshops, networking, cocktails… General admission: $239 (after July 1) or $219 Early Bird!
Via local author RJ Theodore Patreon is a membership platform that provides business tools for creators to run a subscription content service, as well as ways for artists to build relationships and provide exclusive experiences to their subscribers, or “patrons.” It’s popular among YouTube videographers, webcomic artists, writers, podcasters, musicians, and other categories of creators who post regularly online. It allows artists to receive funding directly from their fans on a recurring basis or per work of art. Check it out.
For those interested in publishing and the various ways of doing it, Alex McNab suggests taking a look at Jane Friedman’s annual chart about the path to publication. See her mention of the hybrid route in the article below the chart. And sign up for her email newsletter.
Read 650’s mission is to promote writers and writing through live performances that celebrate the spoken word. It’s a literary forum for true personal stories—two pages and 650 words long, read aloud by the writer before an audience. Click here to check the topics coming up soon, including holidays (October 21, New Rochelle) and cars. Check out their website to see if you have 650 words that might fit.
A number of associations and societies exist to help writers. Among them are The National Society of Newspaper Columnists (NSNC), PEN America, which advocates for writers around the world, and the Authors’ Guild, the largest of the three, which offers free legal advice for writers and help with setting up a web site, among other things. The The also have annual conferences. Worth taking a look.
Until next time, keep writing!

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