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The Ventura County Writers Club was founded in 1933 by four writers in the Ojai, California area. Since then the club has grown to more than 150 members and holds regular monthly general membership meetings. In these meetings persons prominent in all areas and genres of the literary field speak on sources for ideas, enhancing creativity, and getting your work published. Click here for Membership Information...

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June 2017 Meeting

How to Get the Dang Thing Written

by Connie Mukherjee


The number one excuse for not writing is lack of time. Horse feathers says N.Y. Times bestselling author Margaret Brownley. An author of more than forty books, she should know. She wrote four books in three years while caring for three children, an elderly relative, and working full time. “You don’t find time for writing,” she says. “You make time.” During the June meeting, Margaret will share her hard-earned secrets on how to unleash your creativity and turn a lack of time into writing time.

 

Her forty novels and novellas are mostly set in the 1800s and have won numerous awards, including the National Readers' Choice, and Romantic Times Pioneer awards. She's a two-time Romance Writers of American RITA® finalist, has written for a TV soap, and authored over four hundred magazine articles. She is a popular speaker and has spoken to women's’ groups, religious and charitable organizations, and national conferences across the country.

 

Left at the Altar (2016), the first book of the series, A Match Made in Texas, is a current finalist for the RITA award. Winners will be announced at the Orlando conference in July. The second book of the series carries the same name as the series itself, A Match Made in Texas, and will be released on June 6, 2017. Not bad for someone who flunked eighth grade English. Just don't ask her to diagram a sentence.

May 2017 Meeting Info

Laughter is the Best Medicine

By Connie Mukherjee

 

“Wait ‘til you hear this, Edith. They decided not to will Joey to anyone, and you know why? ‘Cause they decided they ain’t never gonna die.” -- Archie Bunker.

The All in the Family episode from which Archie’s quote is taken was written by our May speaker, Gene Perret. In the episode, Mike and Gloria prepare a will and discuss possible candidates to raise their one-year-old son, Joey. They immediately exclude Archie and Edith because Mike doesn’t want Joey to grow up learning all of his grandfather’s unhealthy stereotypes.

Gene Perret infused this serious and uncomfortable subject with touching humor and made America laugh. He did so, not in one episode of one show, but over fifty years of comedy writing and producing for an impressive array of comedians and top-rated television shows.

He started writing stand-up comedy in the 1960’s for Phyllis Diller. As part of the writing staff of the The Carol Burnett Show, he won three Emmys and a Writer’s Guild award. He was the head writer and producer for Welcome Back, Kotter, Three’s Company and The Tim Conway Show and was a staff writer for such shows as Laugh-In and Mama’s Family. He wrote or co-wrote episodes of many classic TV hits including All in the Family and Love, American Style.

Gene joined Bob Hope’s writing staff in 1969. He was Hope’s head writer for the last twelve years of Hope’s career and traveled with his troupe for many of the famous military Christmas shows. Gene was the only writer to travel to the war zones of Beirut, the Persian Gulf, Saudi Arabia, and on a peace time military jaunt around the world that featured stops at the Berlin Wall and in Moscow.

Have you caught your breath yet? Gene has written more than forty books and published humorous articles in Reader’s Digest, McCall’s, Good Housekeeping, and wrote a monthly humor column for Arizona Highways for over nine years. Gene’s latest books on writing are Comedy Writing Self-Taught and Comedy Writing Self-Taught Workbook (co-written with his daughter, Linda Perret). Besides his humorous books and how-to books on the craft of comedy, Gene teaches comedy writing through various avenues.

The topic of Gene’s presentation for our May meeting is: “Advice for Aspiring Writers,”(It works for experienced writers, too). He is often asked for advice he would offer to people interested in writing. In this talk, Perret will offer the two suggestions he always includes in responding to this question, along with specific advice on how to implement these recommendations. These suggestions are not only helpful in getting a writing career started, but are beneficial throughout one’s writing career. We I hope he gives all of us a prescription for laughter!

Support Our Website Project!

Ventura County Writers is going to update their website! We're asking our members and friends to donate to this effort, and are offering two special raffles:

·         We will draw four winners among those donating $20: a VCWC book bag, two writing books, and a VCWC pen.

·         We will draw one winner among our $50 donors. This lucky winner will receive: a free VCWC membership for 2018, a $75 gift certificate, a book of writing prompts, and a VCWC book bag and pen.

You can donate at the meeting or mail a check or money order to:Ventura County Writers Club, c/o Website Project,  P.O. Box 3373, Thousand Oaks, CA 91359

You can also use the donate button below to donate via paypal:

 

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