May Newsletter | “Log of the Trail”

Meeting Announcement: Our May End-of-Year Party will be held on Tuesday, May 23, 2017, at the home of Gwynne Jamieson in Alpine. (See more information below.)

Writing Assignment: Picture Writing Prompt! See more info and this month’s prompt below…

Refreshments: It’s a Pot Luck!

May End-of-Year Party  Shouldn’t Be Missed!!

It’s time for all Texas Mountain Trail Writers to “round up” for our Annual End-of-Year Potluck and autograph party for the 2017 Chaos! Mark your calendar now and please plan to attend.

It’s been quite a year; we deserve to relax for a bit and enjoy a friendly, carefree, evening together.

We’ll share some laughs, memories, hopes, dreams, and summer plans. We’ll have a toast to Jackie and Sarah. We’ll eat, drink and make merry in this lovely month of May.

We’ll have copies of the latest TMTW publication Chaos West of the Pecos to give out. Eleanor will remind us that we are writers, with an inspiring prompt for good measure (see below).

Don’t forget to try out the May Writing Opportunity and bring what you have to read to us.

Date: May 23, 2017
Time: 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Place: Gwynne Jamieson’s house, 410 N. 3rd St. at the corner of Ave. B, Alpine, TX. Rain or shine. (Watch for Flags of the World on her fence-posts. Parking on the street.)
Potluck: Please RSVP to Gwynne at and let her know what you plan to bring. (Remember the year of the five potato salads???)

We hope all our members, including the many new TMTW members who joined at the recent Retreat, and significant others, will attend this happy event. Good friends, good food, good fun! See you soon!

PS: If you can’t attend, the 2017 Chaos will be mailed to you after the party. (Each member is entitled to one copy – mailed at no cost to you.) There are a few extra copies available. $12 if you buy them in person, $15 if they are mailed.

Texas Mountain Trail Writers 2017 Spring Retreat Wrap-Up

All evaluations prove the 25th annual Spring Retreat April 29, 2017, was an outstanding success. For the second year in a row the event was held at Indian Lodge in the Davis Mountain State Park, a beautiful, serene location. The weather was ideal on Friday and Sunday, but on Saturday a cold front moved through and it became cloudy and spitting rain. But attendees were warm and cozy inside, and in the evening the park staff built a huge fire in the fireplace in the gathering room and served popcorn. There were 26 participants registered from many cities in Texas and one from St. Petersburg, FL.

Kay Ellington and Dr. Barbara Brannon, two outstanding authors and publishers from Lubbock, were the dynamic keynote speakers. Their presentations were constructive, informative, and humorous. A workshop format was used in which attendees were able to immediately apply their new knowledge to their works in progress, rather than merely taking notes for future reference if that was their choice. A helpful booklet, Circles of Desire, and other handouts added to the practicality of the day. Their book series is called The Paragraph Ranch.

A lavish continental breakfast began the day, and lunch was served in the Brown Bear restaurant in the lodge. Dinner was enjoyed at Cuevo de Leon in Fort Davis at the conclusion of the retreat.

The steering committee of the 2017 retreat were hard working members Elaine Davenport, Eleanor Taylor, Gwynne Jamieson, webmaster Kip Piper, and Reba Cross Seals. They were greatly aided by Edy Elfring who stepped in to help. The working team missed and were hindered by the unexpected absences of two valuable members, Jackie Siglin and Darrell White, who were missed for their cooperative happy spirits and creative ideas, as well as their hard work.

Reba Cross Seals
TMTW Steering Committee Member

May Writing Opportunity

The May writing opportunity guidelines are: 500 words or less, Times New Roman 12 point font. May be read at the meeting on February 21, at the Alpine Public Library. You can also choose not to read, but whatever your choice you can always submit it for publication in The Chaos. Email it to Kip Piper at

Three writing prompts, should you like to use them, are:

Summers Are For . . .
A Plan Gone Awry
Looking With New Eyes

Use these as they are or use anything they might inspire in you. Just write and enjoy! And thanks for being part of our writing community.

Eleanor Taylor

Continue to Enjoy Kay Ellington and Dr. Barbara Brannon!

Subscribe to their email newsletter Lone Star Literary Review – full of fun literary information, author profiles, and so much more!

Learn more at

Pen 2 Paper 2017 is open!

We are pleased to announce that the 2017 Annual Pen 2 Paper (P2P) Writing Competition is now open! We are both amazed and proud that this is our 8th year.

As we launch into a new go-round, we’re reflecting on a few highlights from 2017:

  • We received entries from 15 different countries and every continent (except Antarctica. But we’ll give it a pass).
  • For the first time ever, we announced the final results of the contest in real time on Facebook Live during our Lion & Pirate Open Mic. Read finalist & winning entries.
  • P2P Finalists Krystal Cates and Kaye Love participated in a slam-style signing & reading with deaf, deaf-blind, and hearing writers at the 2016 Cinema Touching Disability Film Festival.

Tuesday, Sept. 5: P2P 2017 Deadline

For more info:

Special Announcement from the East Texas Writers Guild in Tyler, TX

Texas Mountain Trail Writers are invited to advertise their books FOR FREE on this website:

The Eyes of Texas Call for Submissions

Texas has it all, from bustling big cities to sleepy small towns, and law enforcement alone can’t solve every crime. That’s where private eyes come in. They take the cases law enforcement can’t—or won’t. Private eyes may walk the mean streets of Dallas and Houston, but they also stroll through small West Texas towns where the secrets are sometimes more dangerous. Whether driving a Mustang or riding a Mustang, a private eye in Texas is unlike any other in the world.

The editor seeks private eye stories that represent the diversity of the Lone Star State. Stories may be set in West Texas, East Texas, the Mexican border, the Gulf Coast, the Panhandle, or anywhere in-between, and should represent the cultural, ethnic, gender, and political differences found throughout the state.

Deadline: November 30, 2017. Though rejections may occur at any point during the process, do not expect acceptance and rejection decisions until February 2018.

For more information:

The Globe Pequot Press is pleased to announce a call for submissions for our Texas imprint Lone Star Books.

From nature to gardening to history to sports to lifestyle, Lone Star Books tells the stories of historic and contemporary Texas and Texans. Publishing ten to twelve titles per year, the imprint offers entertaining, informative, and celebratory books on the Lone Star State. Our authors know Texas, they are Texans, and they cover the stories of Texas and the interests of Texans. Cookbooks, books on festivals and rodeos, gardening books, Texas lifestyle titles, and histories of Texas heroes and strong women make up the core of the program.

Please review our website: for proposal details.

Aesthetica Creative Writing Award Call for Entries

the Aesthetica Creative Writing Award which is now open for entries for the 11th edition. This is a fantastic opportunity for writers in your network at Texas Mountain Trail Writers. Prizes include publication for 60 finalists in an outstanding anthology of poetry and short fiction.

The award is judged by literary experts, including Arifa Akbar, journalist, critic and former Literary Editor of The Independent.

Short Fiction entries should be no more than 2,000 words. Poetry entries should be no more than 40 lines. Works previously published are accepted.

Deadline for submissions is 31 August 2017. For full entry requirements and to submit, visit

Join or Renew Your TMTW Membership

Membership in the Texas Mountain Trail Writers can help you grow as a writer, whether you write purely for fun or for a living. AND we accept dues payments online at our website! For more information, click here.

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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