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December Newsletter | “Log of the Trail”

Meeting Announcement: Our December CHRISTMAS PARTY POTLUCK will be held on Tuesday, December 13, 2011, at the home of Daileen in Limpia Crossing (north of Fort Davis) at 6:30 pm.

Writing “Opportunity”: The word limit is 500 words.  Choose from

  • Christmases I’ve Loved (or not!)
  • Winter Solstice
  • This Has Been a Year Full of _______(fill in the blank)

Celebrate Christmas with the Trail Writers

Our Christmas party will be at my house (Daileen) in Limpia Crossing north of Fort Davis on Tuesday  evening, December 13th  at 6:30 PM.

For those who wish to arrive in the daylight, you are welcome to come at 6 PM.

Rene Parsons has graciously consented to play Christmas carols for us and will be at the piano by 6:05, for those who wish to sing or listen.

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November Newsletter | “Log of the Trail”

Meeting Announcement: Our November meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 15, 2011, from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. in the Fiesta Room of the Hallmark Apartments in Alpine.

Program: “In Search of Your Right Brain” by Eleanor Taylor.

Writing “Opportunity”: The word limit is 500 words.  Choose from

  • Taking a Chance
  • Thanksgiving: Past, Present or Whenever
  • Pick a cliche (your favorite or just any one will do) and build a story around it

Refreshments: Delicious treats from Phyllis Musgrove.


President Ramblings

The sunlight rolled into my bedroom about seven this morning. What a glorious thing – the end of daylight savings time.  I sip my coffee, watch the red tinge the horizon, enjoy the quiet before time to walk the dog.  Wait – am I supposed to be writing my president’s column for the Texas Mountain Trail Writer’s November newsletter?  Why, yes I am.

Pardon my slip into interior dialogue.  Elaine Davenport’s program for our October meeting has me trying my hand at it.  I’m starting a new mystery novel and already her tips are making my characters more lively.

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October Newsletter | “Log of the Trail”

Meeting Announcement: Our October meeting will be held on Tuesday, October 25, 2011, (Note NEW date for this month!) from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. at the Fort Davis Public Library in Fort Davis, TX. If you wish to carpool from Alpine, meet us in the Big Bend Telephone parking lot before we depart at 6:30 pm.

Program: Internal Dialogue presented by Elaine Davenport.

Writing “Opportunity”: The word limit is 500 words.  Choose one of the following titles:  “The Fruits of Our Labors”, “Bringing in the Harvest,” or “Dancing with the Moon.”

Refreshments: Delicious treats from Elizabeth.


President Ramblings

Fall is here in far west Texas which means the Texas Mountain Trail Writers are back to meeting.  Our first gathering of the year was held at Reba and David Seal’s house.  Afternoon showers had cooled the air and caused a bit of a panic for the Seals, but by meeting time all was well, and we had a wonderful time in their beautiful backyard.  Reba’s program challenged us to get out of our comfort zones and try new genres.  Who knew we could write sci-fi, romance, southwest, and mystery in one evening?  And that it would be so much fun?

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September Newsletter | “Log of the Trail”

Meeting Announcement: Our September meeting (and first meeting after the summer break) will be held on Tuesday, September 20, 2011, from 6:30 – 9:00 p.m. at the home of Reba and David Seals in Sunny Glen, west of Alpine. (See more information below.)

Program: Fun and Exciting Writing Exercise to Streeeetch Your Writing Chops presented by Reba Seals

Refreshments: Delicious treats from Eleanor and Jackie.


President Ramblings

It has been a hot, dry, summer in west Texas.  To keep my garden alive, I’ve had to do more watering than usual, and even with my best efforts, some of my plants did not make it.  The double whammy of below zero weather during winter and the lack of moisture this spring weakened them and they died.

It seems to me ideas are like that, too.  Some spring into my head and flourish through the first five hundred words on the page, then somehow can’t be encouraged to go any further.  Others don’t make it past the note I make on the yellow pad I keep in the car, and I find them months later, scribbles without substance.

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July Newsletter | “Log of the Trail”

Note from the new President, who was the old Secretary -

We had a wonderful potluck end of the year meeting at my house this June 21. The weather was hot – too hot really, but everyone rolled with it and we were rewarded with a spattering of rain and a lightning fireworks show at the end. (Fortunately none of that caused a fire.) The food was delicious and the free writing assignment showed the talent of our members.

Since our last meeting of the year is a party, there are no official minutes. We did elect a new slate of officers:

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June Newsletter | “Log of the Trail”

Meeting Announcement: Our June “End of Year Party” will be held on Tuesday, June 21, 2011, at the home of Jackie Siglin, south of Alpine. (See more information below.)

Writing Assignment: Something you have written that you would like to read to us. 250-500 word limit. Something you have written that you would like to read to us.

Refreshments: It’s a Pot Luck!


TMTW “End of Year Party

Has it been hot enough for you?  Do you feel the edges of your brain begin to curdle as soon as you leave the circle of the fan zone?  Then having a gathering with your fellow TMTW friends might be just the thing to perk you up.

We are having our end of the year party on June 21 at my house.  It will start at 6:30 and go until we are ready to leave.  It is a potluck and if people will let me know what they plan to bring, I can coordinate it a bit.  (I still remember the year with 5 potato salads – all delicious, but hey ??)

To RSVP and for directions, please email gro.s1408793103retir1408793103wliar1408793103tniat1408793103nuoms1408793103axet@1408793103wtmtk1408793103sa1408793103 and let us know what you are bringing!

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April Newsletter | “Log of the Trail”

Meeting Announcement: Our April meeting will be held on Tuesday, April 19, 2011, in the Fiesta Room of the Hallmark Apartments in Alpine.

Writing Assignment: Under Texas Skies, 250-500 word limit. This is the same assignment as was for the conference. Any members who don’t have a chance to read at the conference may read at the meeting.

Refreshments: Elaine Davenport will provide refreshments for the April meeting.


From the Desk of our President

What a great retreat! We enjoyed hearing Texas Poet Laureate Larry Thomas talk about the path to becoming one. He challenged TMTW poets to have confidence in our creativity and used readings from his work to discuss different forms we can use.

Multi-talented Andy Wilkinson described how curiosity about his famous relative, Charles Goodnight, awakened his interest in historical research which he has used in poetry, books, articles, music and stage plays. He also recited poems and accompanied himself singing his lyrics to demonstrate the difference between poetry and song.

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March Newsletter :: “Log of the Trail”

Meeting Announcement: Our March meeting will be held on Tuesday, March 15, 2011, 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.

Speaker: Barbara Blake – “The Character Arc: A Journey of Change”
Refreshments: (You know who you are, we hope!)
Writing Assignment: Something Irish (500 words or less)

From the desk of our president:

March winds and April showers? Don’t we wish? Wild fires? Brave pilots and big yellow helicopters that drop retardants on them? Skunks and their early morning perfume? A morning with one percent humidity? Vertigo and my sympathy to fellow sufferers?

Take your pick or think of a better one. Perhaps you can turn it into a poem or story.

Happy days, restful nights and productive writing to each of you.

Phyllis Musgrove


Barbara Blake’s Presentation at the March TMTW Meeting

Author Barbara Blake will present a short program entitled “The Character Arc: A Journey of Change” at the March 15 meeting of the Texas Mountain Trail Writers.  Barbara is the author of the book A Guide to Children’s Books about Asian Americans (England: Ashgate Publishing Co.,

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February Newsletter | “Log of the Trail”

Meeting Announcement: Our February meeting will be held on Tuesday, February 15, 2011, in the Fiesta Room of the Hallmark Apartments in Alpine.

Writing Assignment: Love Lost, Then Found Again, 250-500 word limit.

Speaker: Phyllis Musgrove will speak about “Who Says Writers Heads are Blocked?”

Refreshments: Petei Guth will provide refreshments for the February meeting.


From the Desk of our President

Our new year got off to a great start, and we welcomed several newcomers and visitors to our January meeting in Fort Davis. We enjoyed an outstanding program from Jackie Siglin.

Despite February’s roaring in like a lion, our spring retreat planning committee finalized plans for what I think will be an outstanding 20th anniversary conference. I hope many of you can attend.

Phyllis Musgrove

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January Newsletter :: “Log of the Trail”

Meeting Announcement: Our January meeting will be held on Tuesday, January 18, 2011, 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.

Speaker: Jackie Siglin – Can You Write It Better?

Jackie’s Presentation at the January TMTW Meeting

Jackie Siglin will present a program, Can You Write It Better?, at the TMTW meeting on January 18, 7 pm at the Fort Davis Public Library.  The presentation will be on how to self-edit your writing, make it tighter and clearer.  The information will be based on what she learned this summer in a Writers’ League of Texas session presented by author, Carol Dawson.


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