Writers Guild May 2017 Meeting Recap

By Linda Donaldson

Spring brings a burst of activities to our varied calendars often overlapping and causing difficult choices. This was the case for many Guild members this month yielding but a half dozen participants on Sunday to join me and Anne at our meeting.

We each introduced ourselves, welcoming two new members, and caught up on what everyone is working on at present. Then we began with the four writing selections that were brought to share. Continue reading “Writers Guild May 2017 Meeting Recap”

April Guild Meets in 2017

By Linda Donaldson

Spring has arrived in full bloom at Green Hills Farm. A host of daffodils lining the driveway greets visitors. Amidst this splendor, our Writing Center was hosting two groups, so the Guild met downstairs this Sunday in the lounge, where all attendees could sit in comfortable high-backed swivel chairs.

Reminder to all that the PSB Literary Journal’s Spring 2017 issue’s deadline has been extended to May 15. A link to the Submission Guidelines can be found here. The theme of this issue is Renewal or Re-birth. Continue reading “April Guild Meets in 2017”

Important Guild News

First, please note the April Writers Guild meeting will take place at 1:30pm on Sunday, April 23rd downstairs in the Cultural Center (Red Barn building), Green Hills Farm, 520 Dublin Road, Perkasie, PA.

Departing from our usual third Sunday meeting date, to avoid the Easter holiday, has necessitated a location change, due to an earlier event booking upstairs at the barn. Please enter the building from the lower level off the walkway on the side of the barn facing the house.

Next, we remind all authors of the deadline of April 15th for our Pearl S. Buck Short Story contest. Here is a link to the details of the contest.

Finally, don’t forget to send in submissions to our Literary Journal – Issue 3, Spring 2017. You’ll find a link to the Submission Guidelines here. The deadline has been extended to May 15th. Any questions, please contact Cindy Louden, clouden@pearlsbuck.org.

Looking forward to seeing you at the April meeting, and remember to bring at least 10 copies of any writing selection – of up to 3 or 4 pages – that you would like to share.

Puzzles and Writing and the Human Mind

By Anne K. Kaler

Puzzle DoneIt is finished. The puzzle, that is. The writing is never finished.

The writing is truly never finished, never polished enough, never edited sufficiently because the story never fully ends in my mind. The characters and events continue to exist in my internal universe. I am never satisfied because I feel as if I have abandoned my created children on an alien planet without a working spaceship.

That’s why I do puzzles when I write. I need the constant encouragement that there is an end in sight — that there actually is a last puzzle piece to plunk into place, the only place in the material universe that it will fit.

So why do I persist in both endeavors? Continue reading “Puzzles and Writing and the Human Mind”

Spring Writer’s Conference ~ ‘Ready! Set! WRITE!’

By Cynthia L. Louden

Come WRITE!

at our Spring Writer’s Conference

Saturday, April 8, 2017         9 – 3 pm

at the Pearl S. Buck
National Historic Landmark House

At 9:15, Orlando R. Barone, noted op-ed writer, script writer, poet, and author of well-regarded college texts will open the Writers Conference. Lonnie’s op-ed pieces appear regularly in The Philadelphia Inquirer. He wrote the best-selling text, Your Voice Is Your Business. Lonnie is also the author of two novels, one published online and two additional books awaiting publication with the Pearl S. Buck Writing Center Press.IMG_lonnie barone

Lonnie’s original script, and lyrics to the original musical play A Musing Tale, were performed in 2016 by the Performing Arts Training Academy in Dallas, PA.  His articles have also appeared in such publications as Momentum Magazine, The Bible Today, and Human Resources.  On the graduate faculty of the Fox School of Business, Lonnie teaches effective writing in his course on business skills. He is also a leadership coach at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. Lonnie wrote, developed, produced, and is featured in video-assisted training packages used by such companies as Johnson & Johnson, Merck, Exxon Mobil. He is a sought-after lecturer who has conducted creative writing seminars for executive groups and community leaders throughout the USA and abroad and has appeared on radio and TV talk shows. Orlando Barone received his BA from Villanova University and his master’s degree was awarded at the University of Delaware.

After a break for lunch and an Author’s House Tour, at 12:30 our second presenter, Jennifer Lin, will discuss her recent book writing and publishing process.  Famed TV journalist, Connie Chung says, “Only an experienced and dogged journalist like Jennifer could possibly investigate and write such a thoroughly gripping historical personal narrative.  I was with her every step of the way — not just because my parents were born in the Shanghai area but because I shared with her so very much.  You must join her for this worthwhile journey!”jennifer-lin

Jennifer Lin was an investigative reporter for The Philadelphia Inquirer, including stints as a correspondent in China, New York and Washington, D.C. She left the paper in 2014 to finish writing her family memoir, Shanghai Faithful: Betrayal and Forgiveness in a Chinese Christian Family. Her father, Dr. Paul Lin, a Philadelphia neurosurgeon, left Shanghai in 1949 and took Jennifer and two sisters back to China for a family reunion thirty years later in June 1979. Hours after arriving, an uncle pulled Dr. Lin aside and whispered, “Do you have any idea what happened to us after you left?” This memoir is Jennifer’s attempt to answer that question and more. She weaves oral history with archival research to tell the complicated history of the Lin family going back 150 years. Jennifer will share with writers how she took interviews, letters, diaries, archival materials, newspaper accounts, church reports, diplomatic dispatches, genealogical records, and other primary source materials and turned them into a story about her Chinese family. Shanghai Faithful is a multigenerational saga of the Lin family, serving as a brisk history of Christianity in China. From 19th-century missions to the churches of war-torn Shanghai and today’s thriving house churches, Lin’s book vividly brings to life a country’s turbulent history and a family’s poignant struggles. When the Cultural Revolution appears to tear the family apart, forgiveness and understanding prevail, setting the stage for a new beginning. A native of Philadelphia, Jennifer lives in Doylestown with her husband, Bill Stieg, an editor at Men’s Health magazine. Her children are bicoastal with Karl Stieg working on documentary films in Los Angeles and Cory Stieg writing for the New York-based Refinery 29 women’s lifestyle website.

From 2 – 3pm, the Pearl Buck Writing Center staff will offer a Q&A panel which will offer additional writing suggestions to interested participants.

Register for the Spring Writing Conference at www.pearlsbuck.org/writingworkshops  Handicap accessible – ample free parking. includes an abbreviated Writers Tour of the Pearl S. Buck’s National Historic Landmark House. Presenters will also read from their works, and have books to sell. Bring a bag lunch. Coffee, tea, water will be provided. A 10% Discount on Gift Shop purchases is also included.

Sponsored by the Pearl S. Buck Volunteer Association, all proceeds benefit Pearl S. Buck International, 520 Dublin Rd, Perkasie 18944.

Directions: (from Doylestown) Route 313 & Maple Ave, Dublin; (from Montgomeryville) Route 309 North to Hilltown Pike and Dublin Road.

For more information, contact Cynthia L. Louden, Chr., Pearl S. Buck Writing Center, 267-421-6203 – clouden@pearlsbuck.org

Plot Lines and Puzzles: How to Master the Craft of Writing

Anne Kaler Head ShotBy Anne K. Kaler

My plot line, you ask. No, no, I say, I wouldn’t want to spoil the ending for you.

What I am really saying is that I have no plot and possibly no ending and very possibly no novel at all. . . on paper. What serves me as a plot is like an elusive butterfly floating somewhere in my mind waiting to settle down so that I can capture it. Quick, hand me that butterfly net, please.

The mind of a writer seldom determines the entire plot of a piece of prose before the actual writing begins. While the brain may be able to retain knowledge by repetition – think nursery rhymes or familiar songs – the mind does not work that way. Think of the familiar drawing of the brain as a series of connecting dots and lines. Each dot is a separate experience which must reach out and touch another experience to become active and solidified. Continue reading “Plot Lines and Puzzles: How to Master the Craft of Writing”

Jigsaw Puzzles as Writing Strategies

By Anne K. Kaler

How can a jigsaw puzzle help you with your writing?

Let’s start with the metaphor of your writing as a boxed jigsaw puzzle.Anne Kaler Head Shot

You already have everything you need to complete the puzzle picture on the box because no puzzle maker would stay in business long if he left out some pieces. Those writing pieces are lodged securely in the storehouse of your brain, just waiting for your agile mind to activate them. So you already have all the pieces within your life experiences.

Just like the jigsaw puzzle box your mind contains all the “pieces” necessary to re-create “the picture on the box.”

But there’s the problem, isn’t it. After you open the box, spill the pieces out on the table, shuffle through them, just where do you start the re-creation process? Continue reading “Jigsaw Puzzles as Writing Strategies”