Friday, May 15, 2009

May 2009 Meeting

Pulitzer-nominated journalist Rex Bowman, author of Blue Ridge Chronicles, delighted members of the Roanoke Pen Women during their May 13 meeting.

Rex Bowman reads from his work.

Bowman served as the Southwestern Virginia correspondent for The Richmond Times-Dispatch for over a decade. He is now a book author.

The writer spoke to the Pen Women about the secret of writing. He called that "surprise," saying that writers must surprise their readers by saying something new and surprising or saying something old in a surprising way.

He offered a number of rhetorical devices as part of a writer's toolbox and urged the writers in the Pen Women's group to review this methodology for the apt and appropriate turn of phrase.

Other suggestions included ensuring that landscapes have people in them, using sensory detail (the five senses), writing in the author's voice, writing intimately, using the imperative voice, using periodic sentences instead of loose sentences, and using language appropriate to the story.

Gail Lambert, Judy Ayyldiz and Pat Bijwaard listen to Rex Bowman talk.

The Pen Women discussed their lack of scholarship applications (no one applied) and determined to pass along the $100 prize money to last year's winner, Amy Tate, who is continuing her education again in the upcoming year.

The Pen Women will receive the Perry F. Kendig Award in June for their work to promote the arts.