The rain did not prevent a wonderful meeting of the Hill Country Women of Words in March. We stayed dry and warmed to each others stories.
Valerie Gaumont has done a great job setting up a blog for us so our responses to the timed writings can be posted online. If you haven’t seen it yet, take a look: Better yet, read a few and leave a comment. Valerie couldn’t be with us for the meeting, but she sent a timely prompt: “Rain forced us inside...” If you came to the meeting and wrote something you would like to see posted to the blog, email it to Valerie at If you didn’t come to the meeting, but would like to participate, write for 10 minutes on the prompt “Rain forced us inside...” and email it to Val. You don’t have to have been at the meeting to post your writings and you can write in any genre that you like.
Valerie also has other news to share – she has started posting her longer stories (Valerie mostly writes novel-length fiction) at a site called FastPencil, which enables writers to post their stories, regardless of length, and only people the author has approved can read and comment on them. Val has the first 9 chapters of one of her books she is writing, The Odd Ones, on the site now. If you want to read it and comment, just drop Valerie an email at and let her know. She will approve you for the site and send you an invitation to read her work.
Vici Wray was at our meeting this month and I felt so badly that we ran out of time at the February meeting, but Vici didn’t bring anything to share with us this month. L . Bummer. Maybe next month we’ll get to enjoy a story from Vici.
Paula Bramlett, a new member, has been coming to our TWiG group and we’ve been enjoying her writing there. Paula and her husband have lived in Fbg. for about a year. Before moving here, Paula was the Christian Education Director for her Catholic church in Elgin. She and her husband are building a house on some property they own in the Enchanted Vista development out by Enchanted Rock. Paula is working on a spunky nonfiction book called Sassy Cowgirls. Tonight, she brought us the chapter about “Annie Oakley” and we loved it! Paula has done extensive research on this project and done a wonderful job creating Annie’s voice. I learned so much. Great job, Paula. I hope you will bring us more!
Barbara Loyd  brought two pieces of memoir – “A Slice of Paradise” about eating her grandmother’s cherry pies, and “Girl Scout Cookies” about the time her son placed an order for 16 boxes of his favorite cookie – Thin Mints – without telling her. Poor kid – Barbara made him wait until Christmas to eat them! Barbara worked on this piece after our meeting on Monday night and brought a revised version to read at TWiG the next day which had a lot more detail since she had called her son to hear what he remembered. Barbara also posts regularly to her blog, so you can keep up with her writing there, too.
Sheila Kale is working on some very short pieces to send out to her email subscribers. She brought us one called “Presence.” Sheila is right – there are some things that science cannot explain and one of those experiences is God. Thank goodness! Sheila writes: “The closer He is, the more alive we are.”
Anna Mendeke brought us a memoir, a continuation really, of the story she wrote last month about the hermit crabs. Anna is planning to write her autobiography using the hermit crab’s shells as an analogy of the various homes she has had and how they affected her. I like the idea of writing via houses you’ve lived in. It gives your biography a sense of continuity. Good job, Anna. Please bring us more.
Sally Clark showed everybody her copy of the anthology, Blood on the Floor: How Writers Survive Rejections, featuring her story “Can You Compete With This?” on page 114. I had fun writing that one! Then I asked everybody for help planning the speech I will give at Abilene Writers Guild on March 21st in Abilene, Texas. Thank you all so much for your advice! You really helped me get it clear in my mind what I need to cover.
From WOWs who were MIA ---
Ann Shafer wrote: “I cannot make it. My husband is recovering from pneumonia. Sorry to miss it!”
Betty Murphy emailed: “I will not be there as I must clean our b & b that evening for guests coming in the next day.  Monday afternoon, I will be serving as a docent at Pioneer Museum for Rheingold Country School.  Tuesday, several women from church will come to my house to pack health care kits for Lutheran World Relief.  Maybe next month.  I do hate to miss because you are all so inspiring.”
Karen Vanek  said: “I will have my mom and sis from Arizona here that week, so I cannon attend. Beverly (Naumann) wants to come, but chooses to wait until I can bring her. She just feels more comfortable that way.”
Linda Christensen had their grandson visiting that night and the next day so she didn’t come. Linda posts on her blog every day, so keep up with her there.
Liz Eberle has been posting on her blog site:
Mary Eckert wrote: “Just wanted to let you know I will probably not be at the next few meetings. I have set a goal for myself to get a completed manuscript (Wounded Sisters) by summer.  So I am really concentrating on doing that. When I do...then I will come to the meetings to share and get feed-back for re-writing. Blessings to all.”
Valerie Gaumont emailed: “Due to the weather I am not going to be able to make it tonight.  Plus this whole daylight savings threw me for a loop today. My internal clock is not happy about adjusting.  Oh and as I am getting the final crown done on my tooth tomorrow (Thank the lord it is finally almost done).”
One birthday – Betty Mucha on April 7th.
Until next month, keep writing!! Sally

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