Next Meeting

June 20th~
Hook Your Readers with Effective World-Building
Speaker: Bria Burton

Saturday, December 15, 2018

January 10th ~

If You Think Writing Is Hard, You’re Not Doing It Right

Speaker: Tom Cuba

Tom discusses the many ways to make writing easy and fun.  Having heard time and again, how so many writers find writing hard, Tom found himself perplexed.  Writing is easy and entertaining.  In his talk, Tom presents his own special way of making it, and keeping it, a pleasant experience.

Tom is a former Naval Intelligence Officer, Professional Consulting Ecologist, adjunct professor at St. Pete College, firearms instructor, SCUBA instructor, and wilderness survival instructor.  Currently Tom is an essayist, political consultant, poet, novelist, and the managing director of Dark Horse Florida Publishing, LLC.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Please join us for our FWA St. Pete Holiday Party! 

When: Thursday, December 13, 2018, 5:30 to 8:30 PM

Where: Panera, in the Community Room
Starkey Road and Bryan Dairy intersection
(shopping center on SE corner;
10801 Starkey Road, Seminole, 33777)

Who: You and friends who like to talk about writing

The cost of reserving and using the room is that we spend at least $75.00 in sales. If you buy food or drink, please put your receipt in the Receipt Box provided.

We’ll be having our book swap, as always, so please bring a gently used book to swap!

We will be holding a raffle for two $10 Starbucks gift cards. The way you get raffle tickets is by bringing donations for FWA's auction baskets to promote literacy among children in Florida. Good items to donate new would be books you've written, candles, like-new books, new DVD's, wine stoppers, wine glasses or poolside wine glasses, wine openers, French presses, or coffee grinders. Each donation receives one entry, but EACH BOTTLE OF WINE DONATED WILL RECEIVE FOUR TICKETS!

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

November 8~
The Poetry of Art/The Art of Poetry: The Methodology of Ekphrastic Writing

Speaker: Rob McCabe

The workshop will be part lecture, part experiential, so please bring paper and writing tools. After a brief introduction on the nature of ekphrastic writing, Rob will have art cards to pass around from which people can choose to write something based on their visual prompt either using flash fiction or poetry (ekphrastic writing is in response to a particular piece of visual art).
Queer-identified writer Rob McCabe writes in many different forms: poetry, fiction, plays, and screenplays. In June 2016, Mr. McCabe received an MFA in the Creative Writing low-residency program at the University of Tampa, in Tampa, Florida.  His poems, Memento Mori; Hymn to Adonis; Summer Symphony; and Hymn to Pan were published in RFD magazine, while his poem Junky was published in the chapbook, “Sunny Side Down: A Charles Bukowski Tribute” by Patchouli Press in November 2017. Two of his fiction pieces were also published: one, Revelation, in “Discovery: GSF’S Second Annual Flash Fiction Contest” published by Mischief Corner Books in 2015; the other, Gotterdammerung in “Dawn of the Donald: Tampa Bay Writers on an Imaginary Presidency,” a book of dystopian fiction, was published by Tiffany Razzano and Wordier Than Thou, and released in April 2018. He has performed at several open mics including The Studio@620, the First Stop Poetry Fusion Open Mic, The Hive, and The Steep Station in St. Petersburg, Florida, and at The Blueberry Patch in Gulfport, Florida. In June 2018 he had his first collection of poetry published by Dark Horse Florida Publishing. Mr. McCabe has also taught playwriting for Keep St. Pete Lit, and two ekphrastic poetry workshops for Wordier Than Thou. He loves to listen to Goth music and loves watching and reading horror and fantasy.

Friday, September 14, 2018

October 11~

How to Prepare for Pitching to an Agent

Speaker: Sharon Belcastro

Sharon Belcastro was born and raised in Northeastern Ohio. It only took her 37 years to get sick of the snow, cracked fingers and chapped lips before she picked up and moved to the much warmer and sunnier Tampa Bay area. Her love of books goes back to early childhood where some of her fondest memories were spent with Gulliver in Lilliput and Ishmael and his voyage on the Pequod. She has had a book in her hand and her nose in a book ever since. Forced to grow up and face the real world, Sharon earned her Engineering degree from Youngstown State University and her master’s in business from Case Western Reserve University. She spent several years in product development, sales and the development and streamlining of key business processes before she returned to her passion for books attended classes in publishing at NYU and applied her experience to the founding of Belcastro Agency.

Monday, August 13, 2018

September 13th~
Ten Steps to Author Collaboration

Speaker: Bria Burton

Have you ever considered taking on a writing project with other authors? Find out the many ways in which authors can collaborate, including some tried and true tips from a member of the Alvarium Experiment, a consortium of accomplished and award-winning authors.

Bria Burton lives in St. Petersburg with her wonderful husband, darling son, and two wild pets. Her fiction has appeared in over twenty anthologies and magazines. As a member of the Alvarium Experiment, her short stories have appeared in The Prometheus Saga Volumes 1 & 2, Return to Earth, and The Masters Reimagined. Her novella, Little Angel Helper, won a 2016 Royal Palm Literary Award. Other indie publications include The Running Girls and Lance & Ringo Tails. She’s a blogger and customer service manager at St. Pete Running Company, and she’s an active member of the Florida Writers Association.
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Friday, July 20, 2018

August 9thThe Evolution of Genres (And Why it Matters): A Kind of Sideways Look at Literature

Speaker:  Ken Pelham

KEN PELHAM lives and writes in Maitland, Florida. His debut thriller, Brigands Key, won first place in the Florida Writers Association's Royal Palm Literary Awards and was published in hardcover in 2012 by Cengage/Five Star Mystery. The ebook edition was released in 2013. His BK prequel, Place of Fear, also a first place winner of the Royal Palm Literary Award, hit the electronic shelves as an ebook in 2013, and the wood shelves in softcover in 2014. Short stories by Ken, available for e-readers on, include: "Tales of Old Brigands Key," three short stories about the sordid and unseemly past of little Brigands Key; "Treacherous Bastards: Stories of Suspense, Deceit, and Skullduggery," three stories in the Hitchcock tradition, including one about Brigands Key; "A Double Shot of Fright: Two Stories of Horror," two chilling short stories guaranteed to cause loss of sleep. Ken has penned two nonfiction books on the craft of writing: Out of Sight, Out of Mind: A Writer’s Guide to Mastering Viewpoint, and Great Danger: A Writer’s Guide to Building Suspense.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

July 12thFrom Novel to Cocoon to Screenwriting

Speaker: Barbara Harrington

BARBARA CRONIN HARRINGTON is a novelist, a screenwriter, and a producer. She worked as Assistant Casting Director in several feature films with Beverly McDermitt (Cocoon, Absence of Malice, Stick) and still cast for Indie Productions. She has conducted many writing/publishing workshops, and formed FSAC, the Florida Screenwriters & Actors Connection about 15 years ago. She has written seven short films and produced five of them. They can be seen on YouTube. She had a short lived radio show, Take One Talk. She's earned several awards, such as the Florida State Group Merit Award for the filming production of the International Association of Personnel. For fun, she went on Safari in Africa and was almost thrown in jail by Idi Amin.

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

May 10th~ Free Marketing Tools for Book Marketing

Speaker: Shannon Bell
SHANNON BELL lives in Riverview, Florida with her husband and daughter. She has a BA in English from the University of Central Florida. She has loved vampires for as long as she can remember and has been inspired by the likes of Anne Rice and Laurell K. Hamilton. To date, Shannon has published 5 novels, 2 novellas, 3 marketing books, and a cookbook. She serves on the board of the Florida Writers Association and is also the Marketing Chair. Shannon loves to help new authors as well as authors and writers of all levels.

Saturday, March 10, 2018

April 12th~ Deep Editing: Going from Good to Great

Speaker: John Hope
JOHN HOPE was born and raised in St. Petersburg, Florida. John earned his BS in Computer Engineering from the University of Central Florida (UCF) and since 1999 has developed and designed software for simulators, websites, traveler information systems, and numerous other technical widgets. All the while, he has quenched his creative hunger with writing a few novels, hundreds of poems and short stories, several short plays many of which he's acted and/or directed, puppeteered in countless skits, and built a number of toy train layouts. To keep a steady rhythm in his life, John has run over 30,000 miles in various road and trail races and training runs through the years, including captaining the UCF Men's Cross Country team, achieving TAAC all conference, managing 5k races, and at times traversing entire states in relay teams and triathlons.
John is married and the proud father of two.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

For our Thursday, March 8th, meeting, radio talk show host Patzi Gil will be speaking. We'll meet at the Main Branch St. Pete Library at 6:00 PM. Networking/mingling begins at 5:30 PM. This meeting is open to the public--please join us!

March 8thLoving Every Minute - Finding the Joy Behind the Books: Or, What I Learned from Lee Child and the Other 200 Authors I Have Interviewed in Less Than Three Years

Speaker: Patzi Gil
PATZI GIL is the host of a talk radio program called Joy on Paper – a program for writers and those who dream of writing. Patzi has interviewed some of the most prestigious writers and bestselling authors in the world, including Sue Grafton, Brad Meltzer, Robin Cook, Eloisa James, Douglas Brunt, and Ann B. Ross. During the past few months she has formed a close working relationship with many major publicists and agents. Three of her film scripts have been optioned by Hollywood and have appeared in the Hollywood Reporter. She also wrote the screenplay for The All American Boys based on Apollo 7 Astronaut, Walt Cunningham’s book. In addition to her work on Joy on Paper, she is developing two television projects: History? It’s Food ( and Forgotten F-105 Warriors ( http://www.forgottenf- Patzi is a proud Yooper – which means she was born in Michigan’s Northern Peninsula.

Friday, January 12, 2018

For our Thursday, February 8th, Meeting, former engineer and current writer and glass artist Cheryl Hollon will be speaking. We'll meet at the Main Branch St. Pete Library at 6:00 PM. Networking/mingling begins at 5:30 PM. This meeting is open to the public.

February 8thTime Management For Writers

Speaker: Cheryl Hollon

CHERYL HOLLON writes full time after leaving an engineering career of designing and building military flight simulators in amazing countries such as England, Wales, Australia, Singapore, Taiwan and India. Fulfilling a lifetime dream, she combines her love of writing with a passion for creating glass art. In the small glass studio behind the house, Cheryl and her husband design, create, and produce fused glass, stained glass and painted glass artworks. Cheryl is an officer of the Florida Gulf Coast Sisters in Crime, and a member of Mystery Writers of America and Romance Writers of America. A mystery conference addict, she regularly attends SleuthFest in Florida, Malice Domestic in DC, Thrillerfest in NYC, and Magna Cum Murder in Indianapolis, IN. You will also find her at Left Coast Crime and Bouchercon, wherever they are being held. Cheryl and her husband live in St. Petersburg, FL in a 1920’s Craftsman Bungalow.