Our Mission Statement:

The mission of Pens & Pages Writers Guild is to facilitate and encourage writers of all genres, to share resources and tips about the writing process and, most of all, to provide a positive and productive forum that will encourage and support each writer in his or her creative endeavors.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Small Town Newspapers Work for Me!

Michelle Malkin
Amarillo Globe-News
Box 2091
Amarillo, Texas 79166

December 26, 2008

Dear Michelle Malkin,

This letter is in regards to your article in the Amarillo Globe-News on Dec. 6, 2008 entitled "Just say no to newspaper bailout".

I am in complete agreement when it comes to government bailouts. I am against them. The only one I supported somewhat was the original financial sector bailout which was partially caused by our government. Our legislators know very little about financial matters. Most have not run a business, and most could not even figure their own families' cash-flow.

Your job requires that you stay on top of all news. It is, therefore, very necessary for you to sit down at your computer to read many different newspapers. Once you have that information, you can remain at your computer to write the articles which bring in your income. That is very understandable, but not everyone gets paid for writing opinion page articles.

Many people go about their own work, which may be just as important as yours, without time to read a newspaper until they take "a break". Personally, I need to prop my legs up a few times a day and that is when I read the newspaper.

Just because you get your information from online newspapers does not make your way superior. Just because others get their information from paper newspapers does not make their way inferior.

You could have made your case against bailouts of newspapers without sneering at small town newspapers. Our small town of about 3800 people gets its local news from our local weekly newspaper, which is also available online. It informs us of the plans of our city council and of our businesses. It also recognizes our students. Because we are a small town, many of our same students will be named on the school honor roll as well as in the sport programs.

Also, your phrase "in dead-tree form" was an unnecessary sarcasm. Just like wheat and corn, trees are also planted in order to be harvested for building supplies. One by-product is pulp for making paper.

Your article told as much about your urban bias as it did about federal government bailouts.


Amelia Wright
Friona, Texas

Friday, December 26, 2008


I was supposed to post a blog entry between 13 December and 19 December. And I got behind. But here I am! Never late than better. Uhm...

Christmas is once again a memory, and all the trimmings and trappings are (mostly) cleaned up. Remnants remain, alone, to remind us of the celebration. Our kids have grown bored (already?!) with the trinkets they received and we are (almost) over the headache from the late night spent as Assistant Elves. What do we do now?!


That's right, write it down. Record the day -- the day before and the day after, too, if you want -- and use the celebration as a prompt. Crack those knuckles and flex those writerly muscles and go back to what you do: write it down.

Your kids will cherish the record written down in your hand of times spent together as family, long after the distant memory of those Christmas morning trinkets has faded.

Happy After Christmas Writing, you writers!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Observations On The Season

It’s inevitable! Your level of expenses at Christmas time will always rise to exceed your level of income.

The shortest line at the check out counter requires the longest wait. Then the number of heavy packages you’ll have to carry out to the car will be in direct proportion to how far away you had to park.

Gift giving:
Children’s toys are too expensive and too complicated. Get them a basket full of batteries. They’ll need them.

Give food gifts to the people on your list who have everything. Everyone has to eat.

For the very special people, give a gift of yourself --- write a poem, an essay, or a Christmas memory, then roll it up and tie it with a ribbon. This is something they’ll cherish forever --- the cost is small but the thought is priceless.

Don’t let the problems of the season obscure the blessings of the season. You’ll find them in the sparkle of the stars in a velvet sky on a frosty night. You’ll find them in the sounds of friends and neighbors singing traditional carols at church. You’ll find them in the warm tiny hugs and moist kisses of grandchildren with innocent shining eyes.

Even Scrooge and the Grinch came to realize that “things” don’t make Christmas. It’s the feelings in the heart that make it all so special.

Wishing my sisters in writing the best life has to offer. I’ll see you all next year,

“Grannie Carol”

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Another site that might be helpful

I ran across Daily Writing Tips today, and it has a lot of useful information, nuts and bolts stuff like grammar and punctuation, as well as tips on fiction writing and a lot of interesting idiosyncratic articles like "40 Yiddish Words You Should Know".