February and other bits

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Hi, everyone! Here’s what’s coming up this month and a recap of January…

Thanks to everyone who came to see our new home! We received a lot of positive feedback on the venue, our new author support group, and our ever popular marketing group. I want to say thank you to Tim Jollymore and Alon Shalev for leading the two groups, and a shout out to Kristen Caven and Michael Larsen for their great presentations. I also would like to acknowledge past President and current Write Angles editor Tanya Grove. Every month she puts together our newsletter and this month was an abundant issue – it’s so fun to see all of the contributions!

This month, we have our featured member James Wiseman, and the fabulous Scott James, who also writes under the name Kemble Scott. He has a lot to say about the industry and has a diverse body of work. He also knows the importance of community and support in the literary world. You can read all about it here:


Also, there will be a Board of Directors meeting this coming Monday, February 8th at 11 a.m. at Café Leila in Berkeley (1724 San Pablo Ave). All members are always welcome to attend. Just please RSVP to this address ahead by Sunday at 5pm if you intend to come so that we can let the restaurant know how much space we need. It’s a great chance to see how the club works and to lend your voice.

We will be reaching out soon to fill in key volunteer and board positions for the coming year. It may seem early to be talking about it, but it does take time. Most immediately, we are still in need of a Secretary and a Treasurer.

Joanna Phoenix has gotten our annual 5th Grade Writing Contest off and running, she’ll be looking for help; we’ll need readers/judges and people to help set up at the awards ceremony (first weekend in June) – it’s such a fun project to be a part of!

Lastly, we are looking for volunteers to help with sign-ins at the next meeting and someone to set out the refreshments. Please contact me if you can assist.

I look forward to hearing from you – you can also let me know what you thought about the meeting and venue – and to seeing you at February’s meeting.

30th Annual 5th Grade Story Contest OPENS!

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5th grade flyer

click to open and print flyer

Please spread the word far and wide to East Bay fifth-grade students and teachers that our 29th Annual Fifth Grade Story Contest is now open for entries! Information about this contest can be found on our website here.

Students can work on polished pieces of writing (a reward in itself) and win cash prizes. The winning story is posted on our website. Special Alert: The deadline has been extended to May 1st, 2015!

See our contest page here for more information.

Good luck to all our promising young writers!



Welcome to The Club!

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The Berkeley Branch is the founding branch of one of the oldest professional writers’ clubs in the country.

CWC Berkeley Branch welcomes all California Writers Club members and guests to our monthly speaker program and affordable workshops on the art and business of writing.

Our events are open to the public!

Join us on Sunday, February 21st, 2016 for

 Scott James:

“It Takes a Village to Get Published”

Michael Larsen’s 10 Commandments That Guarantee Success

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Everyone – Here you can download the PDF handout from SFWC’s Michael Larsen. Thanks for your interest!

Michael Larsen – 10 Commandments.pdf

Sunday’s meeting – 1/17

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Hello, everyone! I hope this note finds you warm and dry – unless you’re like me and love this rainy weather.

This month is a big one for the CWC Berkeley Branch. After several years, we move into what we hope will be a new home. ConneXion@JLP works with many non-profits and has been very generous with us regarding space and cost. The hope is that we will develop a long term relationship with them. Please do let us know what you think after the meeting. If you haven’t been in awhile, come and see what’s new.

This month, we are proud to feature Michael Larsen. Not only has he been a friend of the California Writers Club, he is a prominent figure in the literary world as an agent and co-founder of the annual San Francisco Writers Conference, coming up soon in February. Michael will use his humor and vast knowledge to talk to us about why this is such a great time to be a writer, and how to take advantage of all of the tools available to us. This will be an amazing opportunity for you to meet and talk with someone so influential. The information is all right here:


We’re also kicking off our new Author Support group, prior to our ever-popular Marketing Success group. This addition is at your request, so I hope to see you there! The support group begins at 12pm, the marketing group remains at 1pm. The atrium will be available for social networking, starting at 12:30 until the general meeting begins at 2pm. You’ll have the chance to talk, get to know fellow members, and take a look at our authors’ books. If you are a member and have a book for sale, please bring it! We’ll have a table available for sharing.

We’ll be looking for volunteers to help with various tasks this weekend; specifically the sign-in table and setting up refreshments. Please do email me by replying to this if you are able to help with these tasks. Even if only for part of the time.

Linda Brown is very excited to tell you about the upcoming year long celebration honoring local favorite Jack London. You won’t want to miss out on hearing about the planned events.

We are currently looking to fill some board positions and other important volunteer tasks, including Secretary, Treasurer, and Nor-Cal Rep. If you think you might be interested, contact me or talk with any of our current board members at the meeting. These jobs are integral to the maintenance of the club and we cannot operate without them. It’s not only a great opportunity to work together in building something, it’s your chance to have a voice in the direction of our branch. You can make a difference in more ways than imaginable. Plus it looks great on any writer’s resume. The California Writers Club is a premier organization and known not only here but across the nation.

New venue information: ConneXion@JLP, 520 Third Street in Oakland. There are entrances at both Third and Fourth Streets. It is a 13 minute walk from City Center BART, and there is parking on the street and in the garage by the movie theater. (The entrance on Fourth street is ADA accessible). Please note new meeting fees of $5/members and $10/non-members!

Looking forward to sharing new adventures with you!

Write Angles fall 2015 archive

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For those of you who missed them the first time round, here are the issues of Write Angles from September through December. Happy reading!

Write Angles September 2015

Write_Angles_October 2015

Write Angles November 2015

Write Angles December 2015

Holiday Social / New Venue and other bits

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Season’s greetings, everyone! We have much to talk about.

First up – We’re having a holiday social! Come join us for mingling, appetizers, and readings! There will even be door prizes! The date is Saturday, December 19th, 2-4:30pm. We’ll be meeting at the Octopus Literary Salon in Oakland. You are welcome to bring any guests, just include them in your RSVP. It’s just $15, payable by check or PayPal (slight fee added) no later than December 12th. Checks can be sent to CWC-BB, P O Box 11269, Oakland CA 94611. Fun, fun, FUN! You’ll find the flyer attached, you can also visit our site for more information. Please email Lucille Bellucci at speakers.cwc.berkeley

Next – we have a new venue, beginning in January! We are very excited about it. It’s called ConneXionJLP – you can visit the site here: www.conneXionJLP.com – it’s a great space and we hope you will be happy with it too. To bring you this new great place, we need to start charging a nominal fee for our meetings, which will be just $5 to members, and $10 for guests (one more benefit for members!) We’ve worked hard (thank you, Lucille!) to bring you some great speakers this year, and this will continue in to the next six months of our season. Hopefully this fee will not keep you away. For the longest time, we’ve tried to keep the cost away from the members of our meetings but the time has come to raise funds for our branch.

In addition to our very popular marketing group, we are also going to be offering a new author support group, by request. At our planning retreat last spring, there was an overwhelming interest in this. It, as well as the marketing group, are member-only benefits too, and there’s no need to choose – the support group will be meeting at noon, and the Marketing group at 1pm. More details on the new schedule will come later.

We will also be inviting all of our published authors to bring their books to sell. This is something you’ll want to take advantage of.

We will be in need of a volunteer to lead the Support group. Someone who has some social and organizational skills (keeping track of attendance, and leading the group in topical discussions, keeping the flow) and can attend consistently would be great. Please email me asap if you have any interest, we need someone right away.

Lastly, you all should have received your copy of the CWC Literary Review by now. This lovely magazine is another benefit to members; not just to receive it but to be published in it as well. There is still time to get your submissions in until December 30th. See the attached flyer for details.

Another publishing opportunity is in our own Write Angles – it doesn’t go to only our own members but all 2000 statewide. Contact editor Tanya Grove and lets start filling our pages with stories, articles, and anecdotes! writeangles

As always, I and the board of directors welcome your feedback. Don’t hesitate to get in touch. Let’s talk!

And don’t forget to get your reservation in for the party. Bring yourself, a friend, and your work to share.

Holiday Flyer (2015).pdf
Lit Review flyer.pdf

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