March 2018 News & Events

Book Birthdays

San Antonio Romance Authors are celebrating the release of these books this month:

  • Sweet Siren by Cerise DeLand
  • Resisting the Doctor by Patricia Walters Fischer:
  • Shamrocks, Shillelaghs & Shenanigans: A Sexy St. Patrick’s Day Collection by Maida Malby

RWA Annual Convention

Registration is now open.

Kharities 1 March

On-line critique group. Instructions are on SARA BIZ Facebook page

1st Saturday Write-In on 03 March

9:00 AM Panera’s 1604 and Blanco

SARA Face to Face on 11 March

In person critique/plot discussion group, hosted at Willa Blair’s highland keep.

Details on SARA BIZ Facebook page

Kharities on 15 March

On-line critique group. Instructions are on SARA BIZ Facebook page

SARA Meeting on 17 March

1030 at the John Igo Library. Your Best Face Forward: How to face your public with the real you! Cerise DeLand. The finest tools of public relations can be yours for the investment of time and an analysis of who you are, how you present yourself and what you say to your readers in person and on radio, tv and online.

Jo-Ann Power, who has worked with dozens of PR professionals in Washington D.C., owned her own PR firm for 20 years. In this workshop, she presents the tricks of the PR trade that pros use every day to meet their publics and keep them enchanted.

PROPulsion on 24 March

2:00 PM at C.A. Speakman’s house. For PROs, those working towards PRO, and PANs who miss being PRO.

March and Early April Contests

Coming in April

The Blackshop / Writerstactical.com present Writing Real SEALs Kendra Middleton Williams and one of the instructors from WritersTactical.com will present on getting important details right when writing about the military special forces and police.

Extra Events

SARA’s Fiesta Anthology is getting organized, watch Facebook/Twitter for information.

SARA Fiesta Medals will be ready by the April Meeting if not sooner.

On Wednesdays Cerise DeLand has Tea Time with Cerise on Facebook

On Thursday is Patricia W Fischer’s Reader’s Entertainment Radio

Igo Library hosts the Romance Readers Book Club. 13 March 2:00 PM If you want to know what readers are thinking, this is the place. March’s book is Mercury Striking by Rebekah Zanetti.

In June: West Texas Writer’s Academy

July: RWA Convention

February 2018 News & Events

Book Birthdays

San Antonio Romance Authors are celebrating the release of these books in February:

  • Violet, The Smokey Blues-Book 7 by Emily Mills
  • Playboy Boss by Roe Valentine
  • Purse Dog Rescue by Erin J. Ljundahl
  • Trending Troubles, Book 6 of Lockets and Lace, (Dorado, Tx) by Linda Carroll-Bradd

RWA Convention Registration Opens 6 February

SARA Face to Face 11 February
In person critique/plot discussion group, hosted at Willa Blair’s highland keep. Details on SARA BIZ Facebook page.

San Antonio Living 14 February
SARA’s Patricia W Fischer will be on the show.

Kharities 15 February
On-line critique group. Instructions are on SARA BIZ Facebook page.

Fiesta Medal Design 15 February!
Design the SARA Fiesta Medal: limited to 6 colors and must be SARA focused. Send your entry to Madame President Teri Wilson by the 15th of February. No late entries will be accepted.

SARA MEETNG 17 February
1030 at the John Igo Library. After a quick business meeting we’ll have award winning Damon Suede teaching two workshops. Due to the limited space this is ONLY for paid members. We have reached the max number of attendees but have a waiting list. Please email: sanantonioromanceauthors@yahoo.com to be on stand-by.

PROPulsion 24 February
2:00 PM at CA Speakman’s home For PROs, those working towards PRO, and PANs who miss being PRO.

2018 SARA Synopsis Slayer Contest
Meghan Farrell, Managing Editor of Tule Publishing, has provided her rankings of the three finalist synopses. The rankings are:

  1. The Arrangement by C.K. MacKenzie
  2. To Love and Protect by Lori Radulovich
  3. Heart on Hold by Makenna Lee [REQUEST]

Coming in March

1st Saturday Write In 3 March
9:00 AM Local Coffee Shavano Park 1604 and NW Military

March SARA Meeting 17 March
Jo-Ann Power / Cerise DeLand presents Personal PR for Authors

Igo Library hosts the Romance Readers Book Club. 10 February
2:00 PM If you want to know what readers are thinking-we have it. February’s book: Moon Called by Patricia Briggs Come discuss books and there will be chocolate.

West Texas Writers Academy. 10 4-8 June
SARA’s Jolene Navarro will be teaching: Expanding Your Creativity: Writing Deeper

RWA Convention in Denver. 18-21 July

Congratulations to all those who wrote a book!

January 2018 News & Events

Book Birthdays

San Antonio Romance Authors are celebrating the release of three books in January:

  • Jolene Navarro: The Texan’s Twins (Lone Star Legacy (Love Inspired)
  • Sasha Summers: Cowboy Lullaby (The Boones of Texas)
  • Laurie LeClair: Princess in Hiding (Once Upon A Romance)

Kharities 4 January
On-line critique group. Instructions are on SARA BIZ Facebook page

1st Saturday Write In 6 January
9:00 AM at Local Coffee Shavano Park 1604 and NW Military

SARA Face to Face 7 January
In person critique/plot discussion group, hosted at Willa Blair highland keep. Details on SARA BIZ Facebook page

Kharities 18 January
On-line critique group. Instructions are on SARA BIZ Facebook page

SARA MEETING: 20 January
10:30 AM at the John Igo Library. After a quick business meeting we’ll have synopsis training by NYT Bestselling author Tracy Wolff presents How to Write a Synopsis that Sells. New York Times bestselling author Tracy Wolff shares her expertise with writing the dreaded synopsis. No writers enjoys boiling down their beautiful, poignant, touching manuscript into three pages, but Tracy will teach us how to do it with flair.

PROPulsion 27 January
2:00 PM at Revoluccion Coffee (Sunset and Broadway) for PROs, those working towards PRO, and PANs who miss being PRO.

Contest
SARA Synopsis Slayer
We can help you slay that synopsis! Get feedback from three fellow writers and the chance to get in front of Meghan Farrell, Managing Editor at Tule Publishing Group!

RWA Golden Heart: Go to www.rwa.com
Golden Heart is still open, but entries must be in by Jan 11, 2018. Each entry must be an original work of Romance Fiction, which means the work must contain a central love story, and the resolution of the romance must be emotionally satisfying and optimistic. The work must be at least 40,000 words, determined by computer word count.

Coming in February
All Day Workshop with Damon Suede
The Damon Suede will be leading an all-day workshop. We will provide more details to come but he is an excellent instructor for all writers. This is the place to be.

Extra Events
Igo Library hosts the Romance Readers Book Club. 13 January
2:00 PM If you want to know what readers are thinking-we have it. January’s book is Straight Up by Diedre Martin. Come discuss books and there will be chocolate.

Congratulations to all those who wrote a book!

SARA Cafe Welcomes Frances Kiani

How did you learn about SARA and what made you want to join?

I found SARA on meetup.com and attended my first meeting in January 2014. At the time, I wanted to join a writing group and SARA was a perfect fit.

What sub-genre(s) of romance stories do you write?

I write young adult.

What made you decide to write romance?

That’s a tough question. I didn’t set out writing romance. I wanted to write mysteries and true crime novels. But every single story I wrote turned into a romance.

What’s the best advice you’ve been given or read about writing?

Listen to critique but go with your gut. Know your characters. Believe in yourself. Don’t give up. Write every day. Read a lot (I’m always surprised when I meet aspiring authors who don’t read).

What is the best book you’ve ever read about the craft of writing?

I’ve read a lot of craft books but my favorite is On Writing by Stephen King. I’ve read it three times and every single time, I learn something new. It’s now my “go to” book when I get lost or discouraged.

Are you a pantser or are you an outliner? Why?

I started as a pantser which turned my first YA novel into a mess. Now I start with a few scenes and write. Most of the other scenes come to me as I write so technically, I’m still pantsing. And when I get stuck (because it does happen around the 30K mark), I take my scenes and plot them on a board. This way I can see what’s missing.

What is the hardest part of writing for you? Starting? Creating a scene? Dialog? Tension, etc?

Deleting scenes I love. It’s why I try not to pants as much as I used to. Because trying to keep scenes you love can mess with the flow of your story.

Is there a genre you wish you could write in, but never will? Which one?

Probably horror. I love horror books but I can’t imagine writing one.

What would happen if you didn’t write?

I can’t imagine not writing but if I couldn’t write, I’d definitely volunteer more. Maybe even go back to work for Corporate America either in disaster recovery or something IT related. I used to be a computer nerd where I’d wake up thinking about SQL statements and Visual Basic. I guess in many ways, I still am because I get excited about Amazon’s algorithms. I can’t wait to publish several books so I can analyze the data and write code to automate weekly reports.

What do you see as your writing goals 5 years from now?

Five years from now, I’d love to work with an illustrator in creating a manga series. I think it’d be cool to sell those books at anime conventions and see fans dressed in cosplay costumes. No matter where I am in my writing career, I know I’ll still be writing and having fun!

Any other tips or words you’d like to share about writing?

Write and read every day – no excuses. And remember to take care of yourself by getting out of the writing chair. Go for a walk, visit a state park, or take a yoga class.

SARA Cafe Welcomes Carol Kilgore

How did you learn about SARA and what made you want to join?

I knew there was an RWA chapter in San Antonio, and I joined a few months after we moved here several years ago. It’s a great chapter filled with fantastic writers.

What sub-genre(s) of romance stories do you write?

Romantic Suspense for the most part; however, to be honest, mostly my stories are mystery and/or suspense with romantic elements. My storylines are usually heavier on the mystery and suspense side but there’s always a love story to go along with it. My tag line is Crime Fiction with a Kiss. I recently completed a trilogy that also dips into the paranormal in a few different ways. Those books were really fun to write!

What made you decide to write romance?

The HEA and the strong connections between characters. The funny thing is that I didn’t intend to write romance. When I started writing fiction, I wrote mystery short stories. Very dark noir-ish stories. Novels were different. Not only could I not maintain that level and type of tension for the length of a novel, I didn’t want to be at that place in my head for months. Besides, I kept finding places that needed a little humor.

What do you think is the most misconceived idea readers have about romance writers?

Probably that we live the exciting lives we write about.

What’s the best advice you’ve been given or read about writing?

Along the way, a lot of quotes have provided inspiration I don’t remember who said it originally, but someone said something like don’t be a writer if you don’t have to be. Writing chose me, I think. I get really cranky and short-tempered if I don’t write for a while. Meaning a few days or so. Stories and characters have always been in my head. I thought they were a by-product of being a rabid reader, so I didn’t realize I was supposed to write them down for a while.

To be a writer you have to actually write. Talking, studying, and reading all play a part, but many of us learn the most by writing, critiquing, and making a lot of mistakes along the way. None of us ever knows all there is to know.

What writer(s) inspired you to try your hand at writing as well?

For me, it wasn’t just one or two but probably every author I’d ever read. Starting with Dr. Seuss. I started reading early and moved to reading adult books by my early teen years.

I write short chapters, and I’m sure the reason is directly related to James Patterson.

What is the best book you’ve ever read about the craft of writing?

On Writing by Stephen King.

Are you a pantser or are you an outliner? Why?

I’m a time-liner. I very loosely plot a story with only a vague idea of what will tie those points together. The loose plot then acts as the framework. I figure out the order of the high points. I usually know the ending first, then the beginning. Before I start writing, I know the beginning, important points in the middle, the ending. I also try to know the pinch points. I nearly always know the first, but often I don’t know the second until I’m there and have to figure it out.

The story develops organically once the characters get together. Sometimes they follow my plan as if they were reading a script and life is rainbows. Most of the time, they have their own way with my plans and surprise me at every turn. Even so, most books turn out pretty close to how I envisioned them going in.

What is the hardest part of writing for you? Starting? Creating a scene? Dialog? Tension, etc?

Two things are equally hard for me. The beginning. I probably rewrite this more than anything else. The second is getting deep enough into the heads of the viewpoint characters. Thankfully, my editor finds every place I failed to do this and makes sure I get it done.

What is the biggest surprise and/or frustration you’ve learned in the writing/publishing process?

How supportive most writers are to each other. It doesn’t matter where you are on your journey. This support is wonderful!

Is there a genre you wish you could write in, but never will? Which one?

I stick pretty much with a broad definition of romantic suspense. That’s where my interest lies. I love reading time travel, but I don’t think I’ll ever write that. If I could ever figure out a unique angle, though… maybe.

What would happen if you didn’t write?

I’d probably need to drink more wine.

We have all experienced rejection. Give me an example of how you have worked past it.

Someone told me early on that I’d get a lot of rejections and to find a way to deal with them. She suggested letting all that sorrow and agony roll on over me for five minutes. Then go for a walk or watch something that would make me laugh and then get back to work. I followed her advice and it’s served me well.

I’m generally a positive and optimistic person. Plus I’m persistent and stubborn. This advice has worked well for me even on the rejections that really stung.

What do you see as your writing goals 5 years from now?

Write better every day. Keep smiling. I’d love to be able to fully support myself from my writing, but all I have control over is the quality of the books I produce.

Any other tips or words you’d like to share about writing?

Write for yourself. Edit for your readers, so they can see what you see in your head.