2004 Conference Schedule

White County Creative Writers is pleased to announce their 9th annual Writers Conference. The conference will be held September 4, 2004, in the Founders’ Room of the American Heritage Conference Center at Harding University in Searcy, AR. Please join us and welcome our speakers


8:00 – 8:20 a.m. Registration
8:20 – 8:30 a.m. Welcome

8:30 – 9:45
Maris Fletcher
Empower Your Prose –
Five Ways to Effective Writing

9:45 – 10:00 a.m. Break

10:00 – 11:15
David Roper
So You Think Writing
for Children is Easy???

11:15 – 11:30 Break and Browse

11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Luncheon and
Awards Ceremony

1:00 – 2:15
Radine Trees Nehring
Master the Mystery

2:15 – 2:30 Break

2:30 – 4:00
Paula Martin Morell
Getting Inspired
assisted by Elaine Corum

Registration fee of $25.00 includes luncheon. Please mail by August 25, 2004, to Dorothy Hatfield, W.C.C.W., 802 West Center, Beebe, AR 72012. Checks should be made payable to W.C.C.W.


Conference Registration does NOT include Contest Fees.

Information on Speakers

2004 Conference Speakers

45 writers joined us on September 4, 2004,
in the Founders’ Room at the American Heritage Center on the Harding University campus in Searcy, AR, as
Maris Fletcher, David Roper,
Radine Trees Nehring,
and Paula Martin Morell help us expand our horizons and improve our skills. Contest Awards and Door prizes were handed out during the luncheon, and handouts and various items were given to all who attended.


Maris Fletcher explores the form and function of the essay and shows us how to give our prose the empowering punch that makes for outstanding writing. With ‘Five Ways to Effective Writing’ she takes us through the process; considering the title of our piece, the controlling idea, opening statement, supporting evidence, and the ‘kicker’ or ‘wrap’. Dr. Fletcher, Assistant professor of English at ASU-Beebe, received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in English from Sul Ross State University, and later Master’s Degrees and a PH.D. in literature from the University of Arkansas/Fayetteville.-Fayetteville. She has been teaching French, Humanities, and World Literature at ASU-Beebe since 1997.

Have trouble Getting Inspired? Paula Martin Morel, with Elaine Corum, will show us how to tap into our creativity and vision by using the senses for inspiration. Employing a multi-media approach that includes music, art, and movement, Paula and Elaine will open for us the process that has inspired students of all ages, new and seasoned writers alike. Paula is an award-winning writer who received her M.F.A. at the University of New Orleans Creative Writing Workshop. Her works have appeared in Short Story Journal, The Arkansas Women’s Journal, Little Rock Free Press, and many others. She has been featured three times as an emerging writer at the International Conference on the Short Story in English. She is currently the creative director of A Way With Words Writing Workshops, LLC
Elaine Corum is a writer and consultant, holding a B.A. in psychology from the university of Georgia and an M.S. in educational psychology from the University of Tennessee. Her personal passion is short stories and essays. A student of Paula’s , she found her inspiration and voice flourished in Paula’s workshops, and has received several writing awards. Elaine is now Managing Director of A Way with Words Writing Workshops, LLC

Enter content here

Horizontal Divider 1

Who said writing for children was simple? First of all, why bother? how is writing for children similar to writing for adults? how is it different? What are the pitfalls? What do publishers want? David Roper ‘s writings for kids have appeared in Ladybug, Boy’s Life, and Highlights for Children. His writings for adults have appeared in Toastmaster’s Magazine and Christian Woman. He has authored almost seventy books and booklets and is currently writes full-time for the religious publication, Truth for Today. David was presented two major awards at the 2003 Oklahoma Writers Conference, to add to many others he has received. An entertaining magician, he has written about the craft of magic as well.

Horizontal Divider 1

Award-winning writer Radine Trees Nehring and her photographer husband live near Gravette in the Ozarks. Research for her magazine and newspaper features and a weekly radio show takes them throughout the state. Editor Fred Pfister of The Ozark Mountaineer applauds her “fiction about the Ozarks that rings true…” Look for her new … to Die For mystery novel series.
In preparation for this session you might want to look up the word ‘mystery’ in your dictionary or thesaurus and keep in mind three definitions/synonyms that you like best. Then, we’ll talk about why the term ‘mystery writer’ is really an incomplete description, even for Agatha Christie, P.D. James, or Dick Francis. Finally, we’ll discover why every writer must Master the Mystery.

2004 Contest Winners


1. Rhymed Poetry –
1st place – Patricia A. Laster, “October bon voyage!”
2nd place – Barbara Baker, “Poetic Desire”
3rd Place – Christine Henderson, “promises, Promises”
1hm – Faye Williiams Jones, “Prayer for Living”
2hm – Dorothy Hatfield, “An Autumn Sonnet”
3rd honorable mention – Carol J. Hodges, “The Beagle’s First Hunt”

2. Humorous Story –
1st place – Laura Loomis, “Goodbye, Mr. Clips”
2nd place – Rhonda Roberts, “Dear Mrs. Brundy”
3rd place – Dorothy Hatfield, “I May Be
Driving the Wrong Way, Officer, But I’m Not Lost”
1hm – Neil Chandler, “Sweet Beth”
2hm – Shannon Vannatter, “Oscar’s Escapade”
3hm – Rita Billbe, “Stubborn, My Ass”

3. Short Story –
1st place – Barbara Massie, “Another World”
2nd place – Dorothy Hatfield, “The Perfect Prize”
3rd place – Christine Henderson, “Search”
1hm – Rhonda Roberts, “Through Janie’s eye”
2hm – Madelyn F. Young, “Lost and Found”
3hm – Steve Whisnant, “Hospicetality”

4. Bad Poetry –
1st place – Wanda Dean, “Ode to Cats I Have Known”
2nd place – Dean Henning, “Reincarnation”
3rd Place – Carol J. Hodges, “I couldn’t Even Think of a Snappy Title for This Stinkin’ Poem”
1hm – Richard Henderson, “To ‘B’ or Not to “B'”
2hm – Rhonda Roberts, “Dark”
3hm – Rita Bilbe, “Brown Cow”

5. Unrhymed poetry –
1st place-Freeda Baker Nichols, “All That Remains”
2nd place – Patricia A. Laster, “Epiphany”
3rd place – Jeanne Godbold, “The Desk”
1hm – Christine Henderson, “Concerto”
2hm – Rhonda Roberts, “Skipping Stars”
3hm – Barbara Baker, “Springscape”

7. Crime and PUNishment –
1st place – Steve Whisnant, “Modernity”
2nd place – Charles Prier, “Freddy’s Friends”
3rd Place – Jean Cavrell, “The Movie Fan”
1hm – Ellen E. Withers, “The Disappearance of Billly Fontaine”
2hm – Barbara Massie, “Dust to Dust”
3hm – Richard Alderson, “The Chief”

7. Children’s Story –
1st place – Rhonda Roberts, “The Hook”
2nd place – Steve Whisnant, “Finally, it was ready!”
3rd place – Elizabeth Orendorff, “Let’s Run Away”
1hm – Carol J. Hodges, “The Wizard in the Garden”
2hm – Ruby A Price, “Minikins and Mayapples”
3hm – Patricia A. Laster, “The Food Drive”

8. The Mary Ann Trulock Memorial Award –
1st place – Rhonda Roberts, “To Thao With Love”
2nd place – Neil Chandler, “Grandpa Knew”
3rd place – Steve Whisnant, “Sybil”
1hm – Ellen E. Wihers, “The Man that Talked to the North Pole”
2hm – Rita Billbe, “North by Choir”
3hm – Tina Bodiak, “A Memorable Mentor”

9. Western Short Story –
1st place – Rhonda Roberts, “Toward the End of the Day”
2nd place – Faye Risner, “A Dark Wind Howls Over Her”
3rd place – Terry Alexander, “Split Nose”
1hm – Neil Chandler, “Yee Haw!”
2hm – Shannon Vannater, “Take he Bull by the Horns”
3hm – Rosi Wilkinson, “The Silver Cross”

Enter content here

Enter content here

2004 Recap

In April, several members participated in the Heber Springs Springfest Artists and Authors Exhibit. Dot, Shannon, Winford, Rhonda, Patsy, and Chris all set up displays of published and/or award-winning works. We met a lot of interesting people and had fun in the process!

2004 so far…

Dorothy Hatfield had us all summarize our accomplishments in 2003, which caused some very introspective essays. Then she gave us a short program on editing, proofreading, and critiquing. Using one of her own pieces as an example, we did all three, with some surprising results. Though we all basically agreed on where changes should take place, some of us had different takes on exactly what the changes should be. This led to a discussion on being sure of the tone and the direction of your writing.

Bo had us bring an ‘inspired’ piece and explain the origin. The result? Inspiration comes from many a strange place. The pieces were lively, introspective, and just plain strange! Made us think a little about where to find a story, though.

David told each of us to pick another member and write about him or her. We found out that a lot of us influence others in ways we never dreamed, and that some of our friends and acquaintances have interesting lives.

Georgie presented a program on ‘how to conduct a thorough interview’. She shared things she has learned over the past few years as a free-lance writer for the Arkansas Democrat Gazette and others – and the assignment for the next month was to use what we learned.


Shannon Vannater at Springfest

Program Schedule 2004 – listing of members who will present or arrange programs/activities each month.
January – Dorothy Hatfield – Editing, Proofing, and Critique
February – Bo Bohannon – Inspiration
March – David Herdendorf – History and influence
April – Georgie McIrvin – Interviewing
May – Open – do an interview using Georgie’s advice.
June – Winford Wallace – the art of critique
July – Debra Middleton
August – Rhonda Roberts
September – Shannon Vannatter
October – open
November – critique session
December – Party!!!!!

W.C.C.W. Calendar –
meeting dates
January 17, 2005
February 21, 2005
March 21, 2005
April 18, 2005
May 16, 2005
June 20, 2005
July 18 2005
August 15, 2005
September 19, 2005
October 17, 2005
November 21, 2005
December 19 , 2005


Critique! Now’s your chance – if you are working on something and having trouble with part of it, or just want an opinion on how to make it better, bring 6 copies. Please bring no more than 3 pages, double spaced.
If you don’t have something to bring, please come and participate in this exercise – learning to edit, proof, and critique is part of the process, and can make you a better writer.

Remember the definitions:
Proofread – to check for typing errors, misspelled words, and grammatical errors
Edit – to proofread and to make suggestions about wording, phrasing, sentence and paragraph structure
Critique – to edit and to evaluate the entire piece for clarity, interest and form, and to give suggestions on how the writing might be improved.

Spring Conference 2004

White County Creative Writers presented a one day workshop with Dusty Richards on
March 27, 2004

In the first session, Dusty presented an overview of what to expect when you take the first step into publishing your work.

Next, he got down to the nitty-gritty of writing, sharing a few tricks he learned on plotting, showing instead of telling, and how to give your characters the charisma needed to entice your readers to care what happens in the next chapter.

We broke for lunch, then gathered again for more information on the art of gaining your readers’ trust and how to hold the readers’ interest.

For the last session, he critiqued some things that a few brave souls brought to the workshop, and talked about critique in general. If you are in a writers’ group, this is an area that takes fine tuning – each members’ needs are different, and the group should be aware of what each member hopes to gain from open critique.

If you weren’t there, you missed out, pardner!

Enter content here

Western writer Dusty Richards says he was born in a tumbleweed and wore western boots in his crib. This Springdale, Arkansas cowboy has sold over sixty novels under his own name and pseudonyms, and gleans many of his stories from his experiences as an auctioneer, radio announcer, chicken doctor, and TV Anchor.
Last year Dusty’s rodeo book, The Natural, was selected as the fiction novel of the year by the Oklahoma Writers’ Federation. This June at the Arkansas Writers’ Conference he will be inducted into the Arkanass Writers’ Hall of Fame. In March, The Ft. Smith Trail, his second book in the Ralph Compton Trail Drive series, will be available, and his novel from Pocket books, Deuces Wild, will be on the shelves in May.

According to Dusty, writing fiction is no different in the western genre than any other; he teaches the ‘how-to’ of fiction writing. Any book is about a person and all the parts of their psyche, their drive and needs, and responses to outside forces and how they reach their goals.

Enter content here