Saturday, June 06, 2009


FWA Ancient City Chapter Newsletter for June

Hello Ancient City Writers,

Saturday, June 20, 2009 at 10:15

The CHIA Plot by Nancy Haddock

Plot is what makes the reader keep turning the pages. It is the backbone of all books. Nancy Haddock will address this vital topic with a method she calls the CHIA Plot -- or -- “Growing a Plot from a Simple Sentence.”

This is an interactive program designed to help writers dive from initial concept into full story development. The technique encompasses aspects of characterization as well as plotting. Haddock created Chia Plot to illustrate story building to a creative writing class she taught in Dallas, and since then has presented the program to professional writing organizations.

Nancy Haddock’s debut book, La Vida Vampire, launched a new series from Berkley Publishing Group in April 2008, garnering rave reviews, including a 4 1/2 star Top Pick from Romantic Times BookReviews magazine. Her second book, Last Vampire Standing was released in May 2009.

In writing paranormal romantic mystery, Haddock drew on her long experience with things-that-go-bump, on her love of the mystery genre, and on the historic wealth of St. Augustine, Florida. She writes full-time, and is a dedicated resident-tourist who never gets tired of exploring the sights of her new hometown.

Upcoming Events / Contests

March 1st – July 13th

From now until July 13th is the window available to submit your entries into the 2009 Royal Palm Literary Awards Competition. This is the FWA’s members-only annual writing competition. For details visit:

Monday, June 15th

On Monday, June 15th at 6:00 p.m., Elaine Viets talks about Dead-End Jobs at the Ponte Vedra Library as part of the Book Talk Café program:

Elaine Viets says she was taught the virtues of hard work as a young girl growing up in St. Louis. But she managed to forget everything she learned, which is why she turned to mystery writing. The bestselling author of the Dead-End Job Mystery series will talk about those dead-end jobs and her latest book, Killer Cuts, at the next Book Talk Café program on Monday, June 15 at 6:30 p.m. at the Ponte Vedra Library.

Viets now lives in South Florida, and like her amateur detective protagonist, Helen Hawthorne, she actually works those rotten jobs she writes about in her long-running series. To research her novels, Viets has been everything from a hotel maid to a telemarketer. Killer Cuts finds Helen Hawthorne working at Miguel Angel’s high-end beauty salon in Fort Lauderdale. Because beauty is a high-risk business, it’s no surprise that Miguel is mixed up in a murder—and so is Helen.

Her second series features Josie Marcus, a mystery shopper and single mom. Viets says she didn’t work as a mystery shopper but her mother did. She served on the national boards of the Mystery Writers of America and Sisters in Crime. She lives in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, with her husband, actor Don Crinklaw, where they collect speeding tickets.

Viets will talk about those rotten jobs and answer questions before signing books. Sponsored by the Ponte Vedra Friends of the Library, Book Talk Café is free and open to the public and offers refreshments as well as the opportunity to purchase the author’s books.

Saturday, June 20th

Ancient City member and author of The Hive, Chris Berman, will be signing books at the Daytona Beach Barnes & Noble located on W. Speedway. He will be there from 2:00 to 4:30.

July 29th - August 1st

The Anhinga Writers' Studio is hosting the Anhinga Writers' Studio Summer Workshops July 29-August 1 in Gainesville, Florida. Five genre tracks. Manuscript consultations. Editors, publishers, agents. Conference anchored by Charlaine Harris, NYT bestselling author of Southern Vampire series (True Blood -- HBO weekly drama).

For more information, visit:

October 23rd - October 25th

The 8th Annual Florida Writers Conference will be held October 23 – 25, 2009 at the Orlando Marriott of Lake Mary.

More information will be available soon at:

Good luck with you writing projects and see you at the next meeting,

Jeff Swesky

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