By Megan Haskell
Some of you may already know me, but I’m Megan Haskell, the new Program Director and Blog Editor for O.C. Writers. I met Deanna and Greta way back in September 2014 at the Southern California Writers Conference, Los Angeles (…but really OC…’cause it was in Newport). After that, I started hanging out at the Lake Forest Panera for the Thursday write-in meetings, until I had my second daughter in April 2015.
It’s been hard to get out to meetings and events with the baby, but I manned a booth at the first O.C. Writers Book Fair last March, and have been lurking around the Facebook group quite a bit. So you’ve probably seen me around virtually, if nothing else.
In any case, Greta called me shortly after she took over as Director of O.C. Writers with this crazy idea to expand the network and build a hub for Southern California writers with both online and in-person resources. Only, it wasn’t so crazy. It made a lot of sense.
Sure, there are a ton of resources for writers out there, but how often do you meet the people behind the message? How can you be sure they know what they’re talking about, or ask your questions in a supportive in-person forum? It’s pretty rare.
And that’s what we’re striving for. The perfect combination of online resources and in-real-life experiences.
We want O.C. Writers to become the destination for Southern California writers of all stripes, the author network that you’ve been dreaming about, the place to meet and share ideas across genres and skill levels, both online and in-person.
Our Vision for O.C. Writers:
To build on the foundation set by Deanna Cameron and create a supportive and informative environment for published and aspiring authors, poets, screenwriters, and other literary creatives in the Orange County, CA area.
How We’ll Achieve Our Vision:
- Expand the O.C. Writers network: invite authors, poets, screenwriters and other literary creatives to join the group and participate!
- Build the blog: provide frequent content that inspires and educates the network
- Negotiate discounts and preferred access to local and online events and programs
- Plan our own live events
What We’ve Accomplished So Far:
- Moved the website from ocwriters.org to ocwriters.network, which we feel better describes our mission and community. We’ve also begun the process of redesigning the website to be more user friendly and informative.
- Launched the blog. (Duh.) But seriously, we’ve scheduled some great content over the next few weeks and months, including regular columns focusing on local events, the traditional path to publication, the indie path to publication, health and wellness for writers, and even an Ask the Officer crime feature.
- We’ve already negotiated a registration discount with the Southern California Writers’ Conference. Their L.A. (Irvine) “Weekend For Words” is coming up this September 23-25. (I’ll be there!) To get $25 off your full conference registration, sign up for our mailing list.
- Expanded the Facebook group with focused daily discussions and regular online writing sprints.
Looking to the Future:
Greta and I have about fifteen million ideas for where we’d like to go with this group and what we’d like to achieve. But first, we’re curious…
What can O.C. Writers do for you? What do you already love about the group, and what would you like to change?
Tell us in the comments!
Megan Haskell is the author of the B.R.A.G. Medallion awarded dark fantasy adventure, Sanyare: The Last Descendant, and Program Director for O.C. Writers, A Network of Published and Aspiring Authors. She lives in Orange County, California with her husband, two young daughters, and one ridiculously energetic dog. You can find her on her website at www.MeganHaskell.com, www.OCWriters.Network, and Facebook.
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