The Electronic Write Stuff
Writing News for the Sunshine State & the Solar System

The Electronic Write Stuff
Writing News for the Sunshine State & the Solar System
North Florida Writers  December 2005
 

In this issue:

Kent Campus to Host Talk Dec. 10 by Author of Banned in Boston: Memoirs of a Stripper

Still Time to Enter Novel Manuscripts in Writers' Festival Contest

The Wrong Stuff

Writers Born in December

Quote from a Writer's Quill -- Sinclair Lewis

Calendar of Events

KENT CAMPUS TO HOST TALK DEC. 10 BY AUTHOR OF BANNED IN BOSTON: MEMOIRS OF A STRIPPER

The North Florida Writers will hear from a writer who almost bares all, when Lillian Kiernan Brown discusses her book, Banned in Boston: Memoirs of a Stripper. The talk will be at 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 10, in Room F128 B of Kent Campus (3939 Roosevelt Blvd., Jax 32205).

The public is welcome to attend the free event.

When she was fourteen years old, she used the pseudonym of Lily Ann Rose to followed her mother and three aunts into burlesque. She learned to twirl tassels like Sally Keith, envied Sally Rand's famous feathers, and emulated Ann Corio, Boston's most beloved stripper. Totie Fields introduced her with body beautiful jokes, and she worked with some of the most famous baggy pants comics of the day.

Besides being befriended by mob bosses, champion boxers, Jack Kennedy and other politicians, she was also held captive by the Chicago Mafia. Although she was loved by many, she reports she had been raped by a childhood friend.

She paraded and stripped to the songs of boy tenors, including Robert Goulet. However, she was banned in Boston when she mistakenly bared her breasts on-stage under the watchful eyes of Boston's Watch and Ward Society, and was imprisoned by an overzealous State Trooper - all before she turned eighteen.

Although the book may read like fiction, it is the true story of her years as a stripper and follows the careers of her mother and aunts in vaudeville and burlesque from the excitement of the "Roaring Twenties" through the "Great Depression."

Burlesque was for many years a phenomenon of theatrical entertainment, unlike anything that had ever existed in show business. Stripping was an art form. The burlesque stripper was not just a sex symbol. She was a consummate artist. A true strip tease artist knew the secret of capturing a man's attention. In this book the era is looked upon with nostalgic interest. The book touches on the legends of burlesque and shatters the mystique.

The author now lives in Fleming Island Plantation, where she writes for several publications. As a writer, a journalist, and a radio show host for Armed Forces Radio, she has traveled around the world. Her work has won many awards, but she never lost her love for Boston, burlesque, vaudeville and show business. In 1996 she was awarded the Best Actress Award for her portrayal of Flo in The New Girl. Although many of her stories and photos have won many awards, her heart remains at home with Jim Brown, her husband of 25 years. Together they have raised a family of five children. She says her greatest accomplishment is being grandmother to seven children.



STILL TIME TO ENTER NOVEL MANUSCRIPTS

IN WRITERS' FESTIVAL CONTEST

There is still time to enter novel manuscripts in the annual contest of the Florida First Coast Writers' Festival. The novel contest deadline has been extended to Friday, Dec. 16.

The deadlines for poetry, short fiction, and plays will be Jan. 3.

NOVELS ($40 each entry): The first prize is worth $500, and the winner has his or her manuscript considered by a major publishing house. Novel entries have no minimum or maximum length, and the writer may leave his or her name on the manuscript. Entrants will need to include a "bio" page and contact information, a TV Guide-style one- or two-sentence summary, and a chapter-by-chapter summary. The contest wants the entire manuscript. The final-round judges will be novelists Lenore Hart and David Poyer.

Brian Jay Corrigan of Dahlonega, Ga. won first place with his manuscript, The Poet of Loch Ness, which has been published by Thomas Dunne Books/St. Martin's). Steve Berry of St. Marys, Ga. has had impressive success at Ballantine, and his third novel, The Third Secret, recently made The New York Times best-seller list.

All entry checks or money orders should be made out to "Writers" and mailed to Contests, FCCJ North, 4501 Capper Rd., Jacksonville, FL 32218.

POETRY ($5 each entry): The Festival has two poetry contests: the Douglas Freels Poetry Prize and the Robert Grimes "Good Earth" Poetry Prize. Poetry in the Freels category will focus on the traditional themes of poetry (love, rejection, death, etc.), while the "Good Earth" category will focus on poetry involving ecology, love of nature, etc.

In either poetry category, each entry should be no longer than 30 lines and each entry should be printed on one sheet of paper. One version should have the poet's name, address, phone number, and e-mail address (if available), while no identification should be on the other version. There is no limit on the number of poems that may be submitted, but the contest officials recommend that an entrant select his or her three or four best poems.

SHORT FICTION ($10 each entry)-Each short story should be no longer than 6,000 words. One copy should have the author's name, address, phone number, and any e-mail address; the other copy should only have the text and the title. Again, there is no limit to the number of stories that may be submitted, but the contest officials suggest each entrant submit his or her best entries. The final-round judge is Sohrab Homi Fracis, an Iowa Short Fiction Collection winner for Ticket to Minto: Stories of India and America.

PLAYS ($20 each entry): The Festival is also sponsoring its second annual full-length play contest (usually at least two acts or enough for an evening's entertainment. The winning entry will at least have a staged reading. Entrants should include biographical and information.

POSTAGE & RETURN/NON-RETURN OF MANUSCRIPTS: Entries in the poetry and short fiction contests will NOT be returned, so entrants should not submit their only copies. Adequate first-class postage should be included for novels so that these may be returned.

PRIZES: In poetry, identical amounts will be given to the winners of the Douglas Freels and Robert Grimes prizes: first prize, a $110; second, $75; third, $60; in short fiction, first prize, $200; second, $100; third, $100. The North Florida Writers will give $500 to the first prize novel winner, with the second- and third-place winners receiving $200 and $100 respectively.

In all categories, entries should be original and unpublished.

THE WRONG STUFF

Scott Oden, Men of Bronze (Medallion 2004):

. . . The soldier tried to bring his spear back into play, it's head skittering on the stones. (p. 216)

Without a word, Barca lead them out through the northern entrance. (219)

Chassis of wood and bronze split apart, tumbling end over end to crush friend and foe without prejudice. (219)

W.S. SAYS: In this otherwise interesting historical novel about ancient Egypt, Persians, Phoenicians, and Greeks, you find occasional incorrect usages of lie and lay. Above, you don't need the apostrophe in the possessive form; the past tense of lead is led, while chassis is like crisis, with the plural ending in -es.

QUOTE FROM A WRITER'S QUILL

When audiences come to see us authors, it is largely in the hope that we'll be funnier to look at than to read.

--Sinclair Lewis

WRITERS BORN IN DECEMBER

1--Rex Stout (1886) and Woody Allen (1935); 2--Robert Bloomfield (1766), Nikos Kazantzákis (1885), Jon Silkin (1930), and T. Coraghessan Boyle (1948); 3--Joseph Conrad (1857) and Hermann Heijermans (1864); 4--Jean Chapelain (1595), Frances Power Cobbe (1822), Samuel Butler (1835), Rainer Maria Rilke (1875) and Cornell Woodrich (1903);

5--Christina Rossetti (1830), Walt Disney (1901), Joan A. Williams (1925), Joan Dideon (1934), Hanif Kureishi (1954); 6--Elizabeth Carter (1717), Thomas Ingoldsby (Richard Harris Barham) (1788), Joyce Kilmer (1886), and Peter Handke (1942); 7--Paul Adam (1862), Joyce Cary (1888), and Willa Cather (1873); 8--Bjřrnstjerne Bjřrnson (1832), James Thurber (1894), Delmore Schwartz (1913), and James Tate (1943); 9--John Milton (1608);

10--William Plomer (1903); 11--Naguib Mahfouz (1911), Grace Paley (1922), Jim Harrison (1937), Tom McGuane (1939); 12--Gustave Flaubert (1821) and Arthur Brisbane (1864); 13--Heinrich Heine (1797), Drew Pearson (1896), Kenneth Patchen (1911), and James Wright (1927); 14--Nostradamus (1503) and Shirley Jackson (1916);

15--Maxwell Anderson (1888) and Muriel Rukeyser (1913); 16--Jane Austen (1775), Noel Coward (1899), Theodore Weiss (1916), Arthur C. Clarke (1917), and Philip K. Dick (1928); 17--John Almon (1737), Rose Terry Cook (1827), Ford Madox Ford (1873) and Erskine Caldwell (1903); 18--Saki (1870) and Steven Spielberg (1947); 19--Manuel Bretón de los Herreros (1796), Emily Dickinson (1830), Italo Svevo (1861) and Jean Genet (1910);

20--Sandra Cisneros (1954); 21--Benjamin Disraeli (1804), James Lane Allen (1849), Albert Payson Terhune (1872), and Heinrich Böll (1917); 22--Charles Stuart Calverley (1831), Edwin Arlington Robinson (1869) and Kenneth Rexroth (1905); 23--Robert Bly (1926); 24--George Crabbe (1754) and Matthew Arnold (1822);

25--Lady Grizel Baillie (1665), Fernán Caballero (Cecilia Francisca Josefa de Arrom) (1796), Rod Serling (1924); 26--Dion Boucicault (1822?), René Bazin (1853), Henry Miller (1891), Jean Toomer (1894), and Steve Allen (1921); 27--François Hemsterhuis (1721) and Charles Olson (1910); 28--Manuel Puig (1932), Alasdair Gray (1934), and Theodore Dreiser (1945); 29--William Gaddis (1922) and Peter Meinke (1932);

30--Rudyard Kipling (1865), Paul Bowles (1910), and A. W. Purdy (1918); 31--G. A. Burger (1747), José Mariá de Heredia y Campuzano (1803), Frances Steloff (1887), and Patti Smith (1946).

CALENDAR OF EVENTS

Meetings of NFW are held on the second Saturday of the month at 2 p.m. on the Kent Campus of Florida Community College of Jacksonville. We generally meet in F128B (auditorium conference room).

You may receive feedback from specific individuals by mailing the manuscript and return postage to the above address.

Dec. 10: Lillian Brown, Banned in Boston

Past speakers have included novelists Jack Hunter, David

Poyer, Page Edwards, Ruth Coe Chambers, William Kerr, Tom Lashley; poets, William Slaughter, Mary Baron, Mary Sue Koeppel, Dorothy Fletcher, George Gilpatrick; columnists Vic Smith, Tom Ivines, and Robert Blade; editors Buford Brinlee and Nan Ramey; agent Debbie Fine; magazine editor Sara Summers; medical writers Elizabeth Tate and Michael Pranzatelli; oral historian Robert Gentry; plus many others.

"WE ASPIRE TO CREATE

WITH WORDS."

The Write Staff

Carrol Wolverton, President (carrolwolve@hotmail.com)

Richard Levine, Vice President (richie@rocketmail.com)

Joyce Davidson, Secretary (Davent2005@comcast.net)

Howard Denson, Treasurer and newsletter editor (hdenson@fccj.edu)

Joel Young, Public Relations (joshua7786@aol.com)

Doris Cass, Hospitality (ostie46@aol.com)

Presidents Emeritus:

Frank Green, Dan Murphy, Howard Denson,

Nate Tolar, Joyce Davidson,

Margaret Gloag (haggisgal@juno.com),

Richard Levine, Bob Alexander, Jo Ann Harter

Newsletter address

The Write Stuff

FCCJ Kent, Box 109

3939 Roosevelt Blvd.

Jacksonville, FL 32205

Homepage address

http://www.northfloridawriters.org

Homepage editor

Richard Levine

Submissions to the newsletter should generally be about writing or publishing. If possible, please submit mss. on IBM diskette in either WordPerfect, Word, or RTF format. We pay in copies to the contributors, with modest compensation for postage and copying. We pay $5 for pieces of 500-599 words.

MEMBERSHIP IN THE NFW

If you are writing a story or poem, you will need some expert feedback - the sort that you will receive at a meeting of the North Florida Writers.

You won't profit from automatic praise that a close friend or relative might give or jealous criticism from others who may feel threatened by your writing.

The NFW specializes in CONSTRUCTIVE feedback that will enable your manuscript to stand on its own two feet and demand that it be accepted by an editor or agent. Hence, you need the NFW.

The North Florida Writers is a writer's best friend because we help members to rid manuscripts of defects and to identify when a work is exciting and captivating.

Membership is $15 for students, $25 for individuals, and $40 for a family. (Make out checks to WRITERS.)

Is your membership current? To find out, check the mailing label. If it says "0104" next to your last name, your membership

expired in January 2004. You do not have to pay back dues to activate your members, so, if you last paid in 1992 or 2002, don't worry about the months you were inactive.

Won't you join today?

The following is an application. Mail your check to WRITERS, Box 109, FCCJ Kent, 3939 Roosevelt Blvd., Jacksonville, FL 32205.

Name___________________________________________

St. address____________________________________

Apt. No. ______________________________________

City ________________State _____ Zip __________

E-mail address(es) ___________________________________

HOW DOES CRITIQUING WORK?

When you attend a meeting of the North Florida Writers, you eventually discover that NO ONE has ever died while his or her manuscript was being read and critiqued. You may be ready to face the ordeal yourself. . .or, reading this, you may wonder what exactly takes place during a critiquing.

First, you pitch your manuscript into a stack with others' works-in-progress. Then one of the NFW members hands out each piece to volunteer readers, taking care NOT to give you back your own manuscript to read.

Second, as the reading begins, each author is instructed NOT to identify himself or herself and especially NOT to explain or defend the work. The writer may never have heard the piece read aloud by another's voice, so the writer needs to focus on the sound of his or her sentences.

Third, at the finish of each selection, the NFW members try to offer constructive advice about how to make the story better. If a section was confusing or boring, that information may be helpful to the author.

The NFW will listen to 10 pages (double-spaced) of prose (usually a short story or a chapter).

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