Meeting was called to order at 7:00 p.m. by Moderator Lorie Getz with 13 people attending: John Bickers, Tom Crawford, Lorie Getz, Bobbi Hahn, Norm Levy, Sansing McPherson, Dee Merian, Janet Morris, Jim Novak, Greg Smorol, Mel Witmer; guest Lynda Bouchard; program presenter Tim Johnson.
Program: Tim Johnston, founder and editor of Short Story America in Beaufort, spoke about his company, a weekly e-publisher of short stories. He called the short story “the purest form of literature” that has been “shoved to the margins like dirty snow” by electronic media. He told members what he and his co-editor look for in selecting one story from the 75 or so submissions they receive per week.
1. Must entertain from the first page; must engage the reader from page 1 2. Must have conflict, not a vignette 3. Needs to leave a lasting effect (E.A. Poe: “A good short story has a singular effect.”) 4. Needs to move the reader emotionally and/or intellectually 5. Must not have gratuitous violence; minimal profanity, as appropriate to character 6. Be mainstream literary fiction 7. Can be one of a variety of genres on any topic as long as it is well told 8. Scope: 500 to 12,000 words. Less than 1,000 words is in his “flash fiction” category 9. Must be fiction or historical fiction 10. Must submit electronically to www.shortstoryamerica.com. Format on website. 11. IWN members who want to submit and go to “the top of the pile” should, in addition to sending to the site above, also send the manuscript directly to him at email@example.com.
Tim sold and signed his books at the end at a discount price of $25. Any IWN members who want to purchase the hard cover anthology of the first 56 published short stories may email him and get the $25 IWN rate. Tim concluded by reading from his own short story, “The Interruption of Thomas Darrow,” which is in the anthology.
Secretary: Minutes of the Sept. 12 meeting were approved as submitted electronically.
Treasurer: Greg Smorol reported a balance of $2,372.02 which reflects dues from 24 members and payments for anthologies sold various places.
Book Sales: Charlie Thorn reported inventory of Hilton Headings of --. Sansing McPherson reported inventory of HHI: Unpacked & Staying of 63 books.
Ad hoc Cultural Arts Committee – Lorie has been meeting monthly with an ad hoc arts group. Consensus is the participants are better off planning events on their own than going through Chamber of Commerce. They will seek 501(c)(3) status.
Open Mike will be held Monday, Oct. 17, 7:00 p.m. in the Heritage Library. Third Anthology – The following things were agreed on by consensus: • A Hilton Head-connected theme is our strongest draw • We can do this in 12 months, debuting in the fall of 2012; with fall/holiday season being our best market time, we’ll lose momentum if we wait another year • Working title for now will be Hilton Head Lore; final decision not necessary now. • Sansing will forward a compilation of members’ suggested titles and cover art • Deadline for first-draft submissions is February 6 meeting • As before, only dues-paid members are eligible to submit • [Note: not discussed at meeting, but manuscripts should be submitted electronically; guidelines TBA.]
PR notices: Norma VanAmberg and Tom Crawford will handle submissions to area print media.
Programs – Members expressed consensus to have one program meeting and one writing craft meeting between now and the Feb. 6 manuscript deadline. December is our traditional holiday party.
Announcements – Jane Hill will sell our anthologies at the Moss Creek Arts and Crafts Sale on Sat. Nov. 12, 9 to 3; contact Jane to get you a pass if you want to attend.
Next meeting: Monday, November 7, 7:00 p.m. Program to be announced.