Rubbing Elbows with Writers



I attended the Kansas Writers Association's Scene Conference at the Airport Hilton in Wichita on Saturday. This was my first chance to attend the biannual event since joining the group last April. There were workshops and lectures on parts of speech, dialogue techniques and revision and editing skills. Why would I spend a whole Saturday listening to that? Because that's all the stuff a writer nerd loves!

My favorite sessions were the ones led by Kirt Hickman, science fiction author and writing mechanics whiz. I learned a ton about making dialogue sound natural and not stilted. He also gave a lecture on self-editing that was incredibly helpful and clear. The keynote speaker during lunch was Lt. Ken Landwehr, Wichita Police Department homicide commander, who brought down the BTK Killer. It was fascinating to hear about his work and relationship with the media.

(Pictured above left are Janet Bahl, KWA Scene Conference Chair and B.D. Tharp, KWA past president and friend of Blogger Carol; above right is Blogger Carol sporting her official "I'm a Writer Nerd" neckwear!)

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Local high school instrumental music students are preparing for Spring Festival and Contest time, so they hosted their annual Prism Concert tonight. The full orchestra, concert band and jazz band performed, along with a plethora of ensembles. My favorites were Vivaldi's delicious Allegro in D by the orchestra, a very peppy Haitian Fight Song by the Jazz Band and the Concert Band's percussion-rich Festivo by Vaclav Nelhybel. My student bff's Alexis Coldwell, Conner Coldwell and Cameron Crabtree gave stellar performances. Tomorrow night...the choir!

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I can't believe that Easter is this coming Sunday. When did the time fly by? I am enjoying the weather warm-up. It took a while, but Spring is finally happening. Our church is planning some really fun and treasured Easter activities. Sunrise Service will begin at 7 a.m. by the tree in the field outside our building, followed by breakfast in our new, bright and spiffy fellowship hall. Regular Sunday School and Worship service times are 9:45 a.m. and 11 a.m., with special music provided. If you don't have a home church, you are welcome to join the family in the celebration of Christ's resurrection at Missionary Baptist Church.

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My first issue of Writer's Digest arrived last week. The magazine subscription was given to me as a birthday gift from my daughter, Sarah, and her handsome man, Derek. I was really blown away by their thoughtfulness. It's so fun to see my children supporting their old mom in her silly new "hobby." The March/April issue has an in-depth interview with author Elizabeth Berg, whose "Open House" was an Oprah Book Club selection. I am savoring each page like a silky Ghirardelli gourmet chocolate square.

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"Feisty Family Values," the hen-lit freshman novel by B.D. Tharp (pictured above), was recently named #1 on the Watermark Books Best Seller List for March. Congratulations, Bonnie! It's available at Wichita bookstores or Amazon.com for $20.76. If you need to borrow a copy, I will loan you mine. It's autographed by the author herself. Makes a great Mother's Day gift...

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Notable Quote:

"Freedom lies in being bold."--Robert Frost, American poet
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