October Newsletter | “Log of the Trail”

Meeting Announcement: Our October meeting will be held on Tuesday, October 20, 2009, at the Fort Davis Public Library in Fort Davis, TX, from 7:00 – 9:00 pm. If you wish to carpool from Alpine, meet us in the Big Bend Telephone parking lot before we depart at 6:30 pm.

Refreshments will be provided by Sharon Oates.
Writing Assignment by Darrell White: Encounters with Ghosts. All of us have a ghost in our past or someone in the family has seen one, or a friend. Like this story: a customer in the paint department told me that her first encounter with a ghost was one night when she woke and someone or something was sitting on her bed. She couldn’t see anything but she felt its presence. That gave me the shivers. So no making it up. It must be something that you seen or felt. Have fun!

From the Atelier of Our Prez:

Happy Pumpkin Season!

I’m enjoying our rains, but am looking forward to frost on the pumpkin.  Good hiking weather!

During our last meeting Reba Cross Seals presented a talk to us on her journeys to China this past summer.  She was thrilled to go; and we were thrilled to get her back.

We were glad to have visitors at our September meeting and look forward to seeing other new faces.  One of the visitors, Sharon Oates, jumped right in and volunteered to bring the refreshments for our next meeting, Oct. 20, in Fort Davis.  Please remember to invite your neighbors or new acquaintances; joining a group is a good way… for new people in town to meet others.

Of course we will soon be organizing for our spring conference.  Do you have suggestions for presenters?  Be thinking about how you would like to contribute to the conference as a worker.

Darrell White is our program chairman.  If you have an idea for a program presentation during our monthly meetings, please contact Darrell.

In anticipation of many good things this year…


HELLO EVERYONE! Looking forward to seeing you at the November 14th event “POETRY in the BASIN” @ UTPB.

The Permian Basin Chapter, Poetry Society of Texas announces:

Saturday, November 14, 2009, 1:00-5:00 P.M.
Click here for more info.
For those who want to attend and have not had a chance to reply, if possible, could you please let us know by October 15th?
Dr. Russell Goodyear’s COWBOY POETRY WORKSHOP, UTPB Mesa Bldg., Room MB 4113 ______ (l:00-2:30 P.M.)
Texas Poet Laureate Larry D. Thomas’ ANY FORM/ANY SUBJECT CRITIQUE FORUM, UTPB Mesa Bldg., Room MB 4147_____ (l:00-2:30 P.M.) – Poems accepted for critique through EXTENDED DATE of October 15th

Name ____________________________   Phone #________________________________
*Please reply to: or 432-697-4205

See you on November 14th @ UTPB!

Braggin’ Rights

Edy Elfring
Edy Elfring

Meet Edy Elfring, resident of the Big Bend, and  author of a wonderful memoir called Faraway, the Candle Softly Flickers.

FRONT STREET BOOKS will host a reading and reception for Edy  on Friday, Oct. 23, 7 to 8:30 p.m., in the Reading Room.

A social hour begins at 7 p.m., the reading at 7:30, and afterward there will be time for visiting and more refreshments while Edy signs books.

Edy gives us a glimpse of her story this way:

“I grew up on a small, forgotten island in the Baltic Sea without all of the luxuries of today’s world. We were poor and mostly hungry, but wild and free. Our only man of the law settled disputes with his fists, and we buried the small, innocent children at sea so they could be born again.

“Our powerful, respected and feared witch took me under her wings to teach me the art of witchery. People whispered that she danced with the devil at Sinners’ Row. I had to find out. . . .

“Forced by poverty, mothers often gave away their infants to people in Denmark.. .

“One old, mean ghost still fiercely guarded the mountain graves.

“Once the powerful current of the sea took my friends and me into the forbidden Russian territory.

“Without any medical help available, illnesses raged over our island. And one time when the devil’s fingers (a tornado) devastated our island, I wondered where God was.

“My sweet Grandma gave birth to 24 children. She brewed liquor and a strange healing concoction in her earthen cellar, and she smoked eel in her backyard.

“The day our island witch and the whole ocean disappeared together, we believed doomsday was upon us.”

Edy Elfring

Please join us!
Visit us online at  www.fsbooks.com

Trail Bits

Gathering with Lubbock Writers Group – Keep Saturday, October 31, Open! The Lubbock Writers Group is planning a trip to “do Marfa” and would like to meet with us TMTW members. They are looking at October 31, so keep Oct. 31 open in case we manage to meet up with them.  Our president, Donna Greene, suggests that we all read something…maybe about a page each so we’ll all be able to share our style of writing.  We’ll probably pick a restaurant and eat and read or something along that line.  Or, if the weather holds up, we could share a picnic spot.

Front Street Books:

of the
1960s and 1970s

Photographed by Blair Pittman
Opening reception: Oct. 15, 2009
Book Signing 4pm, Artist Talk 5:15pm
On display through Dec. 31, 2009
Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library
Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas
Click Here to view invitation.

From Reba Cross Seals:

An author friend just alerted me to this great need/opportunity to help our troops by “adopting” one military person and sending him/her a book plus establishing a relationship. It has incredible possibilities.  It is called Operation Desert Swap. As described by L-M Owens of ODS:

We formerly were for authors only, however we received many non authors wanting to participate so we have opened up to them as well.  The membership requirements are the same.  We ask that they send the title & genre of the book they will be sending so we can post it for others to know not to send the same book.  If everyone was to send “Twilight”, then we wouldn’t have a swap! LOL.

We greatly appreciate the support & press you are giving us.  We still need at this time, 45 more supporters to cover all of Charlie Company.
Thank you again, we hope to see you join 🙂

L-M Owens
Operation Desert Swap

Minutes from the TMTW September meeting: Download here

Demystifying Writers’ Demons One at a Time    by Joan Upton Hall

Beginning sentences with and/ but

  • Don’t believe the myth that it’s incorrect to begin sentences with coordinating conjunctions. And this isn’t just a modern trend. Bryan Garner tells us that years ago a researcher found 8.75% of the sentences by first-rate writers do begin with and or but.
    In fact, but is preferable to however (which requires a comma) to start a sentence. In agreement with this practice, Garner cites several authorities, such as the following:
    “If you want to begin a sentence with and or but (and you should occasionally), [you can] speed up your prose…” (John Trimble, Writing with Style, 1975)
    But is for the quick turn; the inlaid however for the more elegant sweep.” (Sheridan Baker, The Practical Stylist, 1962)
    However… induces sleep.” (Alexander Fardon, “Writing to Persuade,” Barrister Mag., 1994).
  • Please do this judiciously. (8.75% of the time?) When you do use however, imbed it in a sentence. NOT “However, he will call you back.” BUT “He will, however, call you back.” OR “But he will call you back.”

Do demons bedevil your writing? Similar, confusing words? Grammar, punctuation, or capitalization rules? “The Demystifier” will clear up the mystery (primary reference unless otherwise noted: Garner, Bryan A. Dictionary of Modern American Usage. N.Y.: Oxford University Press). Address questions and comments to freelance editor, Joan Upton Hall at: . More problems like the above are demystified in the booklet, 50 Writers’ Tips. Find more at http://www.JoanUptonHall.com/books.htm.

Final Note from the Editor:

Have news? Toot your horn, clang your bell, raise your roof! Tell us your news and stories – or writing news in general, such as publications you would recommend, contests, book events, etc. Send your Braggin’ Rights and Trail Bits to .

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