Midwest Fiction Writers meets on the
second Saturday of every month
Our typical schedule includes:
09:00 - 9:45 - Critique / Craft Session
9:50 - 10:30 - Journey of a Novel ($8-$11)
(If you have previously purchased the JoaN book, we invite you to bring it
along and join us as the author talks about their Journey of a Novel.) )))
10:30 - 11:20 - Business Meeting
11:30 - 12:30 - Program
We meet at the Edina Community Center.
December - No Meeting - Members Holiday Party
For more details, please refer to your December Midwest Muse newsletter and watch your email for a message from the MFW President.
JoaN: Southern Comforts by Nan Dixon
Program: Phillip Mohs
Phil grew up in the Central MN area and graduated from Paynesville Area High School in 2000. In his senior year of high school, he enlisted in the Army Reserves. Following graduation he attended Bemidji State University for a semester, but realized he wasn’t ready for college and lacked direction.
In February of 2001, he enlisted in the Active Army to be a Military Police Officer and headed to Fort Leonard Wood, MO for basic training. After basic training, he was stationed at Fort Riley, Kansas. Following 9-11, things changed rapidly. In 2002, Phil’s unit was sent to guard the Pentagon in Washington DC.
In March of 2003, Phil was deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi, where his unit conducted area security operations and combat patrols. In July of 2003, he was sent stateside to attend the Military Working Dog Handler course in San Antonio, TX, where he trained to be a K-9 Handler. He was then relocated to Ft Jackson, SC to be paired with a patrol/explosive detection dog named "Misti". He and Misti became the first certified K-9 team on Ft Jackson. The pair travelled the country providing explosive detection support for the US Secret Service during the 2004 election campaign, and they attended both the 2004 RNC and the Presidential Inauguration in 2005.
In May of 2006, Phil and his partner dog, Misti, were deployed to Iraq. They assisted many unit, providing K-9 support to them. Phil and his TEDD searched for explosives and weapon caches throughout Iraq. In May of 2007, Misti and Phil returned home to Ft Jackson. In December of 2007, Phil completed his enlistment and returned home to MN.
2014 Past Meetings
November 8, 2014 - Room 334
JoaN: Michele Prince's book Shared Redemption.
Former slave Nye ended his life in 1859 after losing his love. The angel Gabriel has offered Nye a chance at redemption by hunting demons as a member of the Frozen.
With less than seven years left until his salvation, Nye is staying on the straight and narrow until a woman gets caught in the crossfire during a demon hunt.
After receiving devastating news, Kiriana Kladshon moves across the country, only to get caught up in the world of The Frozen. Nye and Kiriana are pulled into an attraction neither can control.
Will it be their ultimate demise or their greatest salvation?
Damarion, is leading a group of female demons on a mission. During his punishment on Earth, Damarion learns of dangers within his coven trying to stop him from returning to his love, still trapped in Hell and A love he was so sure was true...
October 11, 2014 - Room 334
Craft: Writing Prompt: We’ll be doing a writing exercise. Breaking up into three groups and writing the same scene from three different P.O.V’s. Then we’ll discuss how changing the P.O.V. has changed the story.
JoaN: Naomi Stone will talk about the journey of her novella Shining Hope.
Tom Stanton is content in his usual role teleporting others on Team Guardian missions, but while the official Team Coordinator is away honeymooning, Tom takes on the authority and responsibilities of leading the Team – in time to join the FBI in tracking down a rogue Talent behind a string of killings they believe the work of a vigilante Talent bent on destroying sexual predators.
Program: Jennifer L. Selvig, DVM: Dr. Jennifer Selvig grew up in Webster, M innesota, and after learning to ride on her mom’s Arabian and her own rescued pinto pony, began competing in eventing, dressage and polocrosse. She was active in Pony Club, earning her HA rating, and spent several years in high school working at Equine Medical Center in Lakeville. She graduated from the University of Minnesota with a Bachelor of Science degree in Ecology, Evolution and Behavior in 2003, and with her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree in 2007. She joined Cleary Lake as a veterinarian in 2007 and worked several summers at Canterbury Park as a racetrack practitioner.
Her professional interests include equine sports medicine, chiropractic, rehabilitation, lameness, pet goats, pot-bellied pigs and alpacas. She enjoys riding and competing her own ex-racehorse, Chief Magistrate, in eventing. The rest of Dr. Jen's menagerie includes three more horses: (Spoofin, Hopscotch Ali, and Rex), four dogs (Ghost, Cricket, Willow, and Elton) and two cats (Serena and Frank), an off-the-track goat (Kelso), a rescued miniature horse (Gauge), a donkey (Ariel), a pot-bellied pig (Libby), a Suri alpaca (Bravo), his companion a Huacaya alpaca (Marco), a wallaby (Roo), and three rescued sugar gliders (Mad Max, Newbie, and Babs). In her "free" time, Dr. Jen enjoys boot camp fitness classes, yoga, and watching the races atCanterbury Park. She runs a nonprofit organization, CANTER Minnesota, which rehomes off-the-track horses, and owns a boarding/riding stable in Lakeville.
September 13, 2014 - Room 351
Critique: Tina Ellery has volunteered to share her work in a critique session.
Program: Officer Thomas Menton
Officer Menton received his associate degree from Inver Hills Community Western District. Officer Menton has been an active member of the Saint Paul Police Department SWAT (Special Weapons and Tactics) Team for the past three years in addition to his patrol duties. Officer Menton also regularly instructs new recruits both in the academy and on the street, specializing in advanced hand-to-hand combat techniques and mixed martial arts. He currently resides in the city of St. Paul with his wife Laurel and their dog Allie. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
JoaN: Lyra Totten-Naylor will talk about the journey of Bad Traveler.
Finding a happily ever after in spite of roadblocks, detours, queasiness and bumpy road to becoming a
August 9, 2014 - Room
JoaN: Michelle Hauf discussing her latest releases.
Program: RWA Conference and Pot Luck
Were you unable to attend the RWA National Conference? Would you like to hear all the juicy details of what happened before, during and after the conference? Join us as fellow members share their stories about the conference.
July 12, 2014 - Room 351
CRAFT: Small Group Writing Exercise
Come and mingle with fellow writers and friends while we get those mental juices flowing for productive writing. We’ll break into small groups. Each person will get a picture of a hunky guy. You’ll be give fifteen to twenty minutes to write a small story or scene from a story based on the picture you’re given. We’ll spend the rest of the time sharing our story with the small group. Did I mention they’re all pictures of hunks?
Program: First Page Critique
The first page of your novel can be one of the hardest things to write and also one of the most important for grabbing a reader’s attention. We will break into small groups and work on critiquing those first pages to bring out the best in your writing. We’ve all struggled with those first few lines and each of us has our own take on how to hook the reader. Share your experience and techniques and learn new ones. It’s a great way to learn in a low stress environment.
JoaN: $8 Barbara Longley: The Highlander's Bargain (The Novels of Loch Moigh)
Before he can settle down, blond-haired, blue-eyed Robley of clan MacKintosh needs to taste true adventure. So when the faerie Madame Giselle asks him to retrieve her stolen property in exchange for two enchanted tokens that will whisk him across the centuries, he jumps at the chance.
Nurse and future midwife Erin Durie is broke and alone, thanks to a roommate who skipped town and the psychic gifts that make relationships too intense and painful to bear. Then a kilted man magically drops into her arms, looking for a guide to the twenty-first century, and she can’t deny the attraction. But magical treachery soon throws open time’s portal once more—and puts a blade to Robley’s throat. Now Erin must decide where—or when—her healing powers can do themost good…and whether she can live without her handsome Highlander.
June 14, 2014 - Room 351
Program: Janet Waller, Community Relations Manager, Barnes and Nobel
“How Authors and their local booksellers can work together to reach readers”
A native of Minnesota, Janet worked as a trial lawyer and mediator for twenty-five years before retiring in 2005. After eighteen months of retirement she grew bored and decided to work as a part time bookseller at Barnes and Nobel, the place she spent all her discretionary time and income. Within a year, she went back full time as the community relations manager and feels like she has the best job in town. Come join Janet, as she discusses how authors and their local booksellers can work together to reach readers.
May 10, 2014 - Room 334
Craft: For this month’s craft session we’ll have a panel on how to use Twitter.
JoaN: Barb Longley - True to the Highlander
Alethia Goodsky has met all kinds working at the New York Renaissance Festival, but no one like the fortune-teller who tasks her with a cryptic life-saving mission and flings her into the fifteenth century. Now Alethia must rely on her wits to unravel the mystery in this violent land.
Malcolm has sworn to protect her, but her gifts may soon make her his protector. With enemies closing in, Alethia must choose between finding a way home…and remaining true to her Highlander.
Program: "Pitchfest" Speed Pitching: Learn to pitch like a champ!
Come and practice those book pitches on your fellow authors. This is a great low stress way to refine and develop a dynamite pitch. I will split the room up into small groups; each one will have an author standing in as an agent. You will have two minutes to pitch your book to your designated “agent.” Said agent will then have a few minutes to critique that pitch. After wards I will have each group rotate to a new “agent” and the process will continue again. It will be fast paced and fun and it will help you when you need to deliver that pitch to a real agent or editor.
April 12, 2014 - Room 351
Critique: Jody Vitek
JoaN: Mary Strand - Cooper's Folly
Program: Joan Holeman: Book Marketing Diva
Nationally acclaimed as one of America's top online marketing experts, Joan Holman is an Internet Marketing Guru and Book Marketing Diva and Chief Enlightenment Officer of Joan Holman Productions, a Minneapolis, Minnesota-based company specializing in book development, self-publishing, book marketing, online marketing, website development, naming and branding, and domain name research and development.
Joan has also been an EXPERT WITNESS in the area of online marketing. Joan has worked in all aspects of publishing including writing, ghostwriting, editing, book title creation, book cover and book interior design and book production and distribution.
With 17+ years of experience in all aspects of online marketing, Joan has developed and executed online marketing strategies for a variety of businesses and organizations and has educated thousands of people about the use of the Internet for business success through her numerous speaking engagements and media interviews.
Joan has direct hands-on online experience and extensive knowledge in online business strategies, web design, web usability, web analytics, web copywriting, online branding, online reputation management, online PR, search engine optimization, e-business, online communications, and social media marketing.
March 8, 2014 - Room 332
CRAFT: Nancy Evertz Elevator Pitches
If your dream agent or editor gets in the elevator with you, are you ready to describe your novel in 25 words or less? This craft session will provide tools to help create your 30-second winning pitch.
JoaN: Tamara Hughes - Once Upon a Masquerade
♥ There will not be a speaker in March. We'll be giving extra time during the business meeting to deal with our proposed Bylaws. The remainder of the meeting will be dedicated to writing prompts and getting to know each other.
February 8, 2014 - Room 332
For this month’s Craft session we’ll have a discussion of the results of our recent survey on what you need to bring your career to the next level. Our new VP of Programming, Kathryn will be going over what the board learned from the survey results.
JoaN: Tamara Hogan - Tempt Me - $11
A sex demon and a preacher's kid? Heaven forbid!
Technology whizBailey Brown is one of two humans alive who knows a very important secret: that humanity has shared their planet with paranormals for millennia. When an obsessed hacker from her past threatens to expose the secret, Bailey and her Sebastiani Security colleagues must use every weapon at their disposal to stop him. The stakes couldn't be higher, and she can't let herself be distracted by her boss's gorgeous brother, even if he is temptation incarnate.
Incubus sculptor Rafe Sebastiani hasn't produced a decent nude in over a year, since he made the most selfish mistake of his life: sleeping with Bailey Brown. Now, with a deadline looming, his cranky muse has finally allowed him to express his memories of that incendiary night in clay. But when his brother asks him to pose as Bailey's lover to provoke her dangerous ex, he jumps at the chance.to sculpt her, to protect her, and to earn the right to tempt her-and only her-for the rest of their lives.
♥ This month’s program will consist of a brainstorming session on what the group wants to see in our programs through the next year. This is your chance to let us know what topics you’ll find interesting and helpful in building your career as a writer. Please bring your ideas and your enthusiasm. Let's make this year a great one for MFW!
January 11, 2014 - Room 351
Craft: Vocab Building
To help you with your New Year’s Resolution to increase your vocabulary (that is one of your resolutions, right?) we will play a vocabulary building game made for writers. Beyond the intrinsic value of learning new words there will be prizes.
JoaN: Rescued by a Stranger by Lizbeth Selvig
She’s a woman full of dreams
When a stranger arrives in town on a vintage motorcycle, Jill Carpenter has no idea her life is about to change forever. She never expected her own personal knight in shining armor would be an incredibly charming and handsome southern man—but one with a deep secret.
He’s a man hoping to outrun a tragedy
When Chase Preston jumped on his motorcycle to escape his wounded life, he didn't expect the perfect woman to fall into his arms... literally! But though he can’t deny his feelings for the sweet and beautiful Jill, he doesn’t see any way he and his mistake-filled past will fit into her bright future.
Falling in love may require more than either can give
The longer Chase stays in Kennison Falls, the more deeply Jill and the people of her home town pull him in. The more Jill discovers heroic qualities in Chase, the more she wants to find a home in his arms—if only he would trust her with the truth. But will truth tear them apart when Jill’s dreams start coming true and Chase’s past finally returns to haunt him? Or, can they get beyond dreams to find the love that will rescue their two hearts?
Program: Brenda Magnes - Dog Whisperer & Animal Trainer
Brenda Magnes is a Certified Animal Trainer or dog whisperer. She is a lifelong dog lover and owner who is committed to providing quality obedience training with understanding and heart for dogs of varied histories and backgrounds. Brenda believes it’s never too late to train your dog and no problem is unsolvable. Her work with her people clients is as important to her as her work with her canine clients.
Part of her mission statement says:
By using the most compassionate, modern methods and tools available, I help create and develop canine/human relationships for my clients that are lasting, loving and often profoundly life changing for both dog and owner. Brenda will share her experience as a professional dog whisperer and some of the challenges she has faced in her cases.