View From the Helm | June 2009

Since the last view from the helm, the club has taken more steps into the Age of Internet Networks. Thanks to member Deborah Hymes, we now Twitter, (@CWC_Berkeley), and the Berkeley Branch has its own blog under construction. Also, the Branch has a page at Facebook (CWC Berkeley) that already has over a hundred friends.

Browsing Twitter, we find that the people who “follow” our Twitter offer an interesting pool of offbeat commentators. Some are twits, but all of them tweet. Blogging is already the province of great minds, i.e., Huffington Post, as well as medium, medium-rare, rare, and raw minds. One quite well done is Deborah’s own blog, Writer Vixen Explains It All. Irreverent, iconoclastic, ironic, and irrepressible, a scoop of the Writer Vixen on your morning oats will get your wild day going.

I tried my hand at a club Facebook page. Its hundred-plus “friends” include over a dozen from the Berkeley Branch, an equal number from other branches, with most of the rest writers and wannabes and a spritz of publishing-industry luminaries peeking in to keep up. The ebb and flow of new tides of connectivity and outreach will promote the club and publicize our events and programs. Our greater Web presence will lead to more visitors at our meetings as well as to our Internet sites.

On our FB page Kemble Scott has already announced the release of his new book, Sower, as an e-Book at He and two fellow authors Tamimn Ansary and Joe Quirk, posted a brief video at YouTube about why they released their books in an online digital version. I liked Scott’s previous book, SoMa, and for only two dollars I could buy Sower. Scott tells me he will receive $1.60/book, 80 percent of the “cover” price.

Is a harbinger of things to come in the publishing business? Is the canary tweeting the demise of the print-on-demand industry? Will Amazon drop the price of Kindle books to $1.99? (LOL, in fact ROFL). By next week, will all of this be so last week?

For opinions but not answers to these and other burning questions of our time, check The View From the Helm in future issues of Write Angles.

— AL Levenson, President

1 Comment

  • comment-avatar
    Emery Garriott 07/29/2009 (9:33 am)

    Dear Mr. Levenson,

    My wife, Anita, and I live in Oakland and are interested in joining the Berkeley Branch of the California Writers Club. Please, send us information on how we apply for membership. Thanks.


    Emery Garriott

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