HSW September 2022 Newsletter

Next HSW Meeting 

Saturday September 10th at 10 am at Scheels at Legends. 

Also online via Google Meet.

Craft Meeting – Show Don’t Tell

For thousands of years, people have been telling stories, so in some ways, it’s natural to tell a tale. But the modern trend, and this dates back to the early 20th century, is to show. The concept is credited to Anton Chekhov, who once said, “Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.”

So, if notes from your critique group or editor say you’re telling, not showing, what exactly do you do to fix it? Especially when you think you are showing. What is showing rather than telling?

At our September meeting, Troy Becker is going to show (not tell) how to actually do it. For this, we want to take some writing examples and look at ways to convert them from tell to show. We’ll need some examples, so if you are willing…you can do this anonymously…bring a paragraph or two where you think you’re telling rather than showing. Hand it to Rene or Matt or discretely set it on the table up front.

So, pack a note pad and pen and prepare to learn how to convert a dull telling sequence into something more dynamic.

Online Meeting Information:
High Sierra Writers Meeting
Saturday, September 10 · 9:30am – 12:30pm
Google Meet joining info
Video call link: https://meet.google.com/bmx-txbf-nnuOr dial: ‪(US) +1 949-424-7153‬ PIN: ‪995 846 279‬#
More phone numbers: https://tel.meet/bmx-txbf-nnu?pin=1873220995940

To attend in person, the Scheels meeting room is on the second floor. Stop for a coffee or tea at Ginnia’s Coffee Shop behind the escalators, then go up the escalator, turn to the left, and turn toward the restrooms. Turn left and go through the white door with an electronic lock. It will be open. The meeting rooms are on the left as you go down the hallway.

Matt will be doing First Pages at the meeting if we have submissions.  To submit the first page of your book, please send it to Matt by Friday, September 9th. Follow these guidelines: Do not put your name on the page, do include the title and genre, use 12-point Times New Roman or an equivalent font and double space. Send to MattBayan@aol.com

Lynda Bailey (Enos) will be conducting the critique group discussion after the regular meeting is concluded. 

From the President:

Last month we polled the members at the meeting, asking what type of programming they wanted to see. Overwhelmingly, the response was to have more time devoted to craft.

So, our September meeting will focus on two topics: 1. Telling vs. showing and how to do it; and 2. How to construct interesting characters.

Bring samples of your writing to work on or to get feedback on.

We’ll also have First Pages. Bring in a first page you’d like feedback on (anonymously).

Either in the latter part of the meeting if we run short, or directly after the meeting we’ll have our Free Form Critique Group. If you’re working on a piece of dialogue or an action sequence or anything else where you’d like some idea of how well it works for a reader, bring in some pages. Unlike First Pages, you’ll have an opportunity to get feedback on a longer segment, up to 5 or 6 pages.

See you next week,


Randy Peyser and Nicolas Potter’s Screenwriting Class

Randy spoke about this class happening in August, but they rescheduled it to September 9-13. This is a masterclass taught by Nickolas Potter who is an award-winning screenwriter and worked for Disney and 1492 studios as an acquisitions editor.

If you want to learn how to turn your book into screenplay or to tighten up your screenplay to find a producer, then this workshop is for you. For more information, go to Randy’s website – Author One Stop:

Randy Peyser Video

We had a great, although not completely video successful, presentation by Randy Peyser at the September 2022 meeting. Due to a glitch with her computer, it only showed her business name on the screen while Randy called in via phone with video of herself. Those on the Google Meet online were able to view her while those of us in the room only saw the logo. Mid-way through, I realized if I put everyone on screen, we could see Randi, but the video only picked up her computer screen.

Still, we do have the audio to listen to with her tips and other information about getting a Book Deal with a Publisher. This is on the HSW YouTube channel, which is unlisted. Only users with the video link may see it. To go to it, use this link:


Video Issues with Scheels

After doing these online meetings for over a year, we may have finally found the key to getting the audio and visual to both work. We had a connection that worked a few months ago, but Scheels techs couldn’t seem to duplicate the connection.  Until the August meeting. We finally got the right tech who knew how to connect the computer to the projector properly. Of course, once we got this working, Randy’s computer turned out to be a problem.  Nonetheless, I am feeling pretty confident we can recreate it, so we expect the next online meeting part to work well in September.

Need Critique Partners?

Critique groups are a big bonus in being a High Sierra Writers member. A compatible group can give you priceless feedback on your work in progress or completed manuscript. Our critique wrangler, Linda Enos (Bailey) is working to match writers with existing or new groups. 

Generally, the groups have five or six members and meet once a month or more frequently to give each other feedback on their chapters. So, if you’re looking for feedback on your manuscript or short story, you might be in need of a critique group. Linda will help you get started, give you critiquing guidelines, and tips.

Got a finished manuscript? Email Linda about forming a Finished Manuscript Group with other HSW members. This is similar to Matt’s JumpStart group. Usually about 4 to 5 people will read and critique one book a month. 

Are you a memoirist who wants feedback on your work? The Memoir Group is looking for new members. 

Are you interested in flash fiction? We have a member who wants to start a flash fiction critique group and is looking for like-minded people. If you’re interested in it or would like to learn to write super-short fiction, contact Linda. Her email address is lynda.r.bailey@gmail.com 

Local HSW Writers News:

In the Reno Gazette Best of Lists for this year, as voted on by residents, Marie Navarro won the Best Local Author with Jacci Turner coming in 4th. Congratulations to both of these HSW members. Good job!



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