My Chapter Meeting

I went to my chapter meeting last night for the first time since September. I had a TON of stuff to give to the new librarian (my closet is practically EMPTY now!) and Pamela Morsi was speaking.

I got a lot of hugs and a lot of people told me they read my blog! One member even made a point to come over and tell me she knew Jared Padalecki in high school (as his teacher)! What fun! (She said he's just a genuine guy - but we knew that, right?)

We had a huge turnout, surprising since the weather was so nasty, the biggest in a LONG time, double the size it usually is. One girl even drove up from Corpus - 2 1/2 hours each way! (One of our members offered to let her stay in her guest room - that was so sweet!) I found out two others in my cp group dropped out of the series, and a third is thinking about it. That was kind of reassuring.

But even with my shiny new attitude and seeing my friends, it was very hard to be there. I talked to Stacy afterwards and we thought maybe it's because I'm not involved, and to an extent, that's true, though I am a contest coordinator. I think it's that I feel like a dinosaur, the only person going the old route to publishing. I'm the only one entering contests, the only one not submitting to e-pubs, the only PRO member (but being liaison would be too depressing.)

The board has done an amazing job. They've revamped the website, they've planned this big mini-conference, they have so much enthusiasm. So do the new members, and I guess I miss having that bright-eyed hope. I don't know if I'll go to the next meeting, or the Super Saturday mini-conference. I will probably still go to the Plotting Bootcamp, and hope I like how I feel when I come home.

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MicheleKS said...

Mary, you said something about being the only going the 'old' route to publishing. Is there new route that I don't know about? And second, what about PRO? I've gotten tons of info from being PRO so I think it's a good thing to get into.

Anonymous said...

Mary, we do have a lot of new members, but some of us 'dinosaurs' are still around. LOL Even though I'm working with a small press and e-pub right now, I am still seeking publication with the bigger houses - and I continue to get rejected. But, I'll keep working on it.

You have such good ideas for your stories and I've read excerpts from some of them. Someday soon you'll get 'the call'. Just keep on truckin' (er... writin').

I always get so motivated when I attend the SARA meetings especially now when I don't like my job and I'm at a point where I need to make a change, and it's so scary since I've been with this company for 14 years!

Ellora's Cave and Trisk are very popular right now because readers want erotic romance/ erotica. And apparently that trend isn't changing
anytime soon. I know Pam said last night that writers can write anything, but they have to want to write it and I don't want to write erotic/ erotica.

I hope you do continue to come to meetings. Next month Betty Hanawa will talk about synopses. Fun, huh?

Why don't you be the next Board secretary? I'm about ready to hang up my pad and pen on that. :)


Anonymous said...

Glad you had fun. One of my friends in my group is one of our only multi-pubs and I think she feels the same way you do sometimes, just on the other side. I could NEVER make a meeting on a week night. No way. I barely make church. But I know a lot of people would rather have a weekend free. Most of the members in my group are teachers, so we've never even considered week nights. Could job exhaustion have something to do with it?
I LOVE Pamela. She is amazing.

Natalie J. Damschroder said...

Mary, I betcha a lot of the distance you feel is because you haven't gone to meetings for four months. Maybe if you go more often you'll connect again. You obviously have a lot of wisdom and experience to offer.

MJFredrick said...

Michele, so many SARAs are epubbed with Triskelion, I'm the only PRO member. I've been PRO since we used to meet at Maverick, how depressing is that? So I don't really get much out of it.

Lupe, it's terrible to hate your job. You know I've been there. When I was in that place, I lived for SARA meetings, too. I think a lot of my change, too, is that I'm more involved online in communities, and that's so much more comfortable for me. The SARA loops have fizzled, but maybe the new bulletin boards will be fun. I had the same reaction to Pam's words last night. I want to write what I want to write. Maybe I COULD write anything, but you're right - WANTING it is the important thing. And I've done my time on the board - almost three years straight. Thanks for the encouraging words.

Mary Beth, I'm practically positive it's job exhaustion, but I'm one who doesn't want to give up my weekends. We have at least one member who attends critique groups THREE weekends a month. GAH! But, you know, my attendance has gone down since I've been back in the classroom, which is much more taxing than being music teacher. Interesting perspective about your multipubbed friend.

Natalie, I was feeling the distance before, which is why I took a few months off. I was librarian for over 2 years, and on the board before that, so it was kind of becoming a job, you know? And a lot of the reason I stopped going was that I wasn't happy with where I was in my writing. I'm going to try another meeting with my new attitude, and see how well it holds up.

Natalie J. Damschroder said...

You know what else you could do? Join my chapter! We are more PRO-centered (just by virtue of how our membership breaks down), much more eclectic in our makeup (full range from never finished a book to multi-pubbed and everything in between) and we're incredibly supportive, rarely have problems, and are a HELLUVA lot of fun.

Of course...that means moving to central PA. :)

MJFredrick said...

I don't think I could get the dh to move to PA ;) I did consider joining West Houston. I had so much fun there last year!


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I'm a mom, a wife, a teacher and a writer. I have five cats and a dog to keep me company. I love bookstores and libraries and Netflix - movies are my greatest weakness.
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