The Quill: Member News

If you’ve got news, send it to us and we’ll add it to the list!

Member Liz Gilmore Williams has a book signing and talk at the State Library on Nov. 8 about her book, No Ordinary Soldier: My Father’s Two Wars. See information about the event here:


Bonnie Stanard’s two poems, “Bringing in the Cow” and “A Drought in the Shoes,” have been accepted for publication in County Lines: A Literary Journal 2019, an annual publication compiled by the Franklin County Arts Council Writers’ Guild. The Journal’s Launch Party will be held Nov. 29 at 7-9 PM at Vance Granville College, 8100 N. C. 56, Louisburg in building four. Upon publication, the 2019 issue of County Lines will be available on amazon.


Patty Wain Smith is pleased to announce that her book, A Letter to a Friend: The Story of Abuse in America, earned Finalist awards in the 2018 International Book Awards competition, in the categories of Best New Non-Fiction and Self-Help: Relationships.


Bob Strother’s third book in the Kindle to Be Fired series, Embers On the Wind, will be coming out in late October. He has scheduled a book launch at Fiction Addiction on Wednesday, Nov. 15 from 5:30-7:30.

Allen Guest’s poem “The Classroom of Great Currents” was accepted for publication by the online poetry journal Cathexis Northwest Press. AND, his poem “Friday Afternoon Requiem for Robert Zimmerman” from the Fall 2018 edition of The Esthetic Apostle has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize!

Toria Amarie Dale had two pieces place as semi-finalists in the Faulkner Wisdom Creative Writing Competition:  her YA Novel-in-Progress, entitled “Command,” and her poem, entitled “Strange.”

Also, Torie Amarie Dale announces the opening of her small press,V Press LC. They currently have two contests:  a Nonfiction Book Prize and a Chapbook Contest, In addition, they are open to submissions to an anthology.

She has been asked to teach “The Art of Writing the Sex Scene” for the Queens Alumni Professional Development weekend in October. She will also be part of a panel discussion on “Continuing Education: Alums offer their views on workshops, conferences, conventions, and residencies outside of the MFA program.”


Check out Matthew Foley’s Contribute Your Verse. He is currently teaching a writing workshop called 12 Weeks of Conscious Creativity. Check back in to see when his next series is.


Coming November 2018 from Yellow Wood Press: A Pocketwatch, Spray Paint, & Morphine is Kimberly Lynne’s quirky, soft science fiction debut fleshed out with Southern-flavored themes of kinship, tenacity, and the survive-at-all-costs spirit.

“A more enjoyable read than most survivalist literature… A kinder, gentler, post-apocalyptic novel.”

—Suanne Schafer, author A Different Kind of Fire

“A post-apocalyptic adventure with the smarts of Michael Crichton. An addictive read.”

—Scott Wilbanks, author of The Lemoncholy Life of Annie Aster

“Author Kimberly Lynne writes about a mysterious world-altering event with incredible compassion in a compelling debut that explores the connections between strangers, and the power of hope. A Pocket Watch, Spray Paint, and Morphine is a novel brimming with humanity.”

—Hayley Stone, author of Machinations and Counterpart

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Whether the Weather Influences Our Writing

Does weather influence our writing? Most of us would agree that just about everything in the universe influences our writing, but weather could be the box most checked. Would Ahab’s confrontation with a whale have taken place if not for a typhoon? A sun streaked afternoon turning into a windswept evening can quickly change your character’s attitude, attire, or agenda.

Having just observed the ravages of Hurricane Florence, as it made landfall in North Carolina before making its way to South Carolina, we know a very serious human and environmental impact was made. If we did not experience it first hand, we were able to read about it. Continue reading

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The Quill: News from Surfside

Meet an alien from a planet whose inhabitants come in three sexes, a Maryland ship-owner smuggling slaves to the north in the years before the American Civil War, or a young man searching for butterflies who discovers the mysteries of Asia. Hear about a bigamous scoundrel in a small Pennsylvania town at the start of the nineteenth century, love letters between a young couple separated in the years before and during World War II sharing their lives in ink, and a strong, sassy woman finding modern day love and a medieval princess surviving in a male-dominated society. Those characters mingle in the air of our conversations when their creators and writers get together at SCWA Surfside Chapter meetings. Oh, and let’s not forget the spiders who slip through a portal in Maine to devour human prey.

The Surfside Chapter is one of many writers’ groups dotting the state within the South Carolina Writers Association. We are small in numbers at Surfside, but big in imagination. We have writers at all stages of their writing journeys working in a variety of genres. Short stories, we have them. Long family sagas, yes, we have them as well. Some of our authors create a series of books because their characters have too much to say and do to be constrained to just 80,000 words. We share stories of horror, fantasy, fiction, and non-fiction. We support each other as caring people as well as imaginative writers.

The Surfside chapter is preparing to launch a series of public presentations entitled “Everybody has a story.” We welcome new members wherever they are along their writer journey. Are you just getting started? We can help guide you—if you have that great novel in mind, or wish to write about family legends to share only with your children and grandchildren. Further along on that journey? We are supportive cheerleaders and can offer advice from those among us farther down our shared path.

Anyone in the greater Myrtle Beach area wanting to know more about this writer’s group and the benefits of joining us in Surfside, please contact me or check out our Facebook page. We usually meet the first and third Saturday of each month, 10 am at the Surfside Library, as the library’s schedule allows.

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The Quill: Submission Opportunities and the Writing Life

Hi all,

I’m excited to bring The Quill to you in a new format. The newsletter was limiting because it never allowed me to dive into specific topics. I’d want to offer a slew of upcoming events or submission opportunities, but there was so much other information that it just wouldn’t fit. I’ll be sending out more Quill updates, but they’ll be more specific. This week’s topic is submission opportunities.


Many literary journals open in late summer and early fall for submissions, so I wanted to take the opportunity to tell you about some helpful sites which list submissions openings.

  • The Master’s Review is a great organization to get updates from. They’ve got great contests for emerging writers and send out a list of contests and submission opportunities every month.
  • One of my new favorite writer websites is CRAFT. Not only do they accept rolling fiction submissions, they also take articles about the writing craft. The stories they look for showcase an element of craft, whether it’s setting, point of view or structure. They’ve also got some upcoming contests, so check them out.
  • When I’m looking for submissions to send out to you, I also go to New Pages. What I like about New Pages, is that it includes journals that go beyond “literary” writing. For our SCWA members who are writing mystery, fantasy, horror, etc…, New Pages is a great website to search when you’re looking for places to send a finished piece.
  • Literistic offers a free list of places to submit to every month. They also offer a more extensive list to paid members. You can sign up for their monthly “shortlist” to get a taste of what they offer. I like that they offer fellowship and grant opportunities in addition to literary journals.
  • This gargantuan list from Entropy includes presses accepting full-length manuscripts as well as journals, grants, fellowships, etc… It’s pretty exhaustive and takes awhile to go through. I’ve also found some great journals to subscribe to through this list.
  • If you’re a visual person, you might like the submissions calendar provided by Poets and Writers. This shows submissions by deadline.


Some articles I’ve been reading about writing are below.

This short essay in CRAFT says a lot about a hook. When I was just starting to write, I thought a great hook could be encompassed in the opening line of a piece, but it’s so much more than that. Read more here:

Need writing advice? James Baldwin is here to help. There are some major gems here.

Ruminate’s blog this month has a great article about the narrator within us, which becomes the writer.

Member News and Upcoming Events will be posted next week. If you’ve got some news you’d like to share, please let your chapter leader know or email

Until then,


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