February 15th Meeting – Romance and more

The program for February will have two focuses: Romance and Tips for writers using Microsoft Word and Excel.

We will have handouts and discussions about:

  • Range of Romantic Fiction
  • Adding Romantic Elements to Other Genres
  • Romantic Plot Structures
  • Basic Romantic Elements
  • Showing Body Language
  • Seduction
  • Tips for writers using Microsoft Word and Excel
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February 15th Writing Prompts

Last month we had a few members who took up the writing challenges. Let’s see if more of you try them this month.

February Writing Prompts, Words, and Exercises:


  1. With respect to love, there is one thing I will never do again
  2. Two coffee shop regulars frequent the same store at the same time. One day they finally meet and share a table. What starts off as a casual conversation turns into much more.
  3. Clarence the Candymaker rubbed his hands gleefully. On February 14, he would introduce the world to a whole new kind of Valentine’s Candy.
  4. End your story with these words: I turned around and shrugged. There was nothing left to do, and besides, I had to go to work in the morning.
  5. Genre/Person/Problem prompt:  Your genre:  hardboiled crime / Your person: a fetish model  / The problem: Time-travelers from the future have arrived, and they’re not very nice.


Deprive  –   virtue  –  linger –  goofy  –  sample

Writing Exercise:

Showing Emotions through the Action/Reaction Cycle (C. S. Lakin)

Try using the action/reaction cycle to express your character’s behaviors and feelings in a story of your own choosing or using one of the prompts above.

The action/reaction cycle in writing follows a realistic flow of behavior.

Action > Reaction > Process > Decision

Here’s an example:

Joan hears a crash. (action)

She turns around to see what happened. (reaction)

She sees her favorite bowl lying on the floor and her cat sitting on the table where the bowl used to be. (process)

Joan cursed and put the chipped bowl further back on the table so it couldn’t fall again. (decision)

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Academy Award Shorts Film Festival

The Wichita Public Library hosts an annual film festival showcasing the short films nominated for an Academy Award in the animation, live action and documentary categories.

Check out the locations and times at wichitalibrary.org

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January 2020 Handouts

Click to download the pdf file.

Basic Formatting

Basic Word and Page Counts

Basic Genres

Fiction Themes

Where and When to Write

What to Write

Taxes and the Writer

Websites to Announce Your Book and Promote

Goal Setting


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January 18th – Basics and Goals

A new year is upon us. Time to get moving forward on a project you’ve started and maybe got stalled on. Or time to move past the thought of “I’ll write a book (or whatever) someday” and get started.

Maybe you need a refresher on some of the basics, or need to learn them to begin with. Those will be the focus of the January meeting. There will be handouts on some of the basics discussed so you can refer back to them when needed in your personal writing life.

To Be Discussed:

  • Personal writing goals
  • Writing basics: formatting, word count, genres
  • Writing preparation: where, when, what
  • Project organization methods

As always, the most important thing is that ALL of us share in the discussions. Each writer has different experiences or helpful hints about how to do something. Share, share, share. Learn, learn, learn.

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January 18th Writing Prompts

It’s a new year and we should be off and running, excited about writing. To start this venture, here are some Prompts, Words, and Exercises.


  • He’d never been in her bathroom before. As he turned on the hot water to wash his hands, the mirror, which was prone to fogging, fogged. And he saw what was written there.
  • After decades of friendship, it doesn’t seem possible, but she realizes she won’t ever speak to her best friend again. Explain why.
  • You’re at the airport waiting for your plane. You overhear a conversation that concerns you. Describe.
  • What do you need to do by the end of the year to make this year meaningful?

Words: Promote – Clothes – Hide – Wild – Slime


Mike Klaassen, in his book “Fiction Writing Modes,” says that there are eight methods of expressing emotion in your writing:

  1. Narration-narrator tells the emotion
    1. Ex:  Harry felt a growing sense of concern as he approached the house.
  2. Exposition – a more detailed explanation of an emotion;
    1. Ex: Harry felt a growing sense of concern because innocent people could get hurt.
  3. Conversation or dialogue;
    1. Ex: “I’m worried. Innocent people could get hurt,” Harry said.
  4. Introspection or thoughts;
    1. Ex:  Harry realized that people could get hurt.
  5. Recollection – a memory;
    1. Ex:  As he approached the house, he remembered that people had been hurt here.
  6. Reaction – physical reaction to an emotion
    1. Ex: Harry’s heart began to pound as he approached the house.
  7. Action – a physical response;
    1. Harry clenched his fists as he approached the house.
  8. Abstention- leaving emotion out of a passage where it should be included.
    1. Ex: Harry approached the house where people had died.

Using as many of those techniques as you can, write a scene of your own choosing, or use the techniques in one of the prompts above to describe emotions that your characters are feeling.

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More December 21st Writing Prompts

This will be my last writing prompts, as it is time to turn this enjoyable task over to someone else. I have enjoyed doing these. It is fun to see how talented our KWA members are. Merry Christmas and a Happy Safe New Year. Louise

  1. Thinking in time, what is the most wonderful Christmas holiday you remember? Tell us what made it so special and why you remember it.
  2. Do you think girls are raised differently from boys? If so, in what ways?
  3. Write a physical description of your mother. Write as if you were looking at a movie rather than a photograph.
  4. Imagine yourself as a teacher. What type of student would you like to teach, and why?

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Dec 21st Writing Prompts

The December meeting is the “party” meeting. It isn’t required, but you are invited to bring something finger-food wise to share with everyone. There will also be a gift exchange for anyone wanting to take part in that. Bring something of $10 value approximately that is related somehow to writing: a new or gently-used book, pens, paper, etc.

I don’t know if there will be a time to share your writing prompt exercise, but in case there is or you just want to do a challenge, here are some prompts.

Words: heaven – bicycle – cradle – fox – wheelbarrow

Prompt: Write about someone interesting from your past.

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KWA November 16th Meeting

The November 16th meeting was a great one with lots of enthusiasm and excitement about writing, sharing and caring about each other. It is always wonderful to be part of such an experience.

More and more people are sharing their hand at doing one of the writing challenges. It is fun to hear the different takes on using the challenge words or trying one of the writing prompts.

We discussed the idea of doing another KWA anthology in 2020, after having not done one in 2019. There was a lot of interest in the project. Sonny Collins said he would publish it, as he has done for us for many years. We will have a small committee to help with this project. Guidelines will be passed out in January and on the website. They will be pretty much like they were in the past, with a deadline for submissions of August 31, 2020.

Starla Criser presented dual programs on explaining Metadata and dealing with Sagging Middles. Handouts are available on request.

The 2020 Board of Directors/Officers were elected as follows:

President – David Heffelfinger

Vice President – Starla Criser

Recording Secretary – Wendell and Clystia Skinner

Treasurer – Chris Davies

Members at Large – Dustin Boetcher and Nicole Valek

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More November 16th Writing Prompts

As always, we have additional writing prompt choices to offer those of you interested in a challenge.

These are from Louise Pelzl.

  1. Everyone needs to learn to do an elevator pitch. What is it, you ask? Pretend you are on an elevator, and you have seconds to interest someone; editor, agent or anyone in your story. It should only be two to three sentences and should give a description of your novel or short story.
  2. Who is the person from history that you would most like to meet and talk to? Why? What would you like to ask?
  3. I had never seen it used as a weapon before, but when he tried to attack me with a _______, I couldn’t help but laugh. I wasn’t going to let him take the treasure from me-I needed to save a life. (Write a story that follows these lines.)
  4. Describe the one thing that gives you the most comfort.

This is a photo postcard from Jim Potter to be used as a prompt idea.

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