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 Calendar of Events 


Tuesday, October 20, 2020, 6:30 p.m. 
Critique Group Creation and Support

A Word from Critique Group Coordinator, Jennifer Hurlburt  

 Are you considering joining a CWC Critique Group?

These groups can be a wonderful way to share your project with your fellow writers, see your work through fresh eyes, and receive valuable feedback. These groups also help writers stay on track and continue writing, providing encouragement and accountability.

All Charlotte Writer's Club members have the opportunity to participate in a Critique Group. Critique Groups typically meet once per month. Members either bring work to share at each meeting or, if the work is longer, share work in advance and use the meeting time to provide and receive feedback. Critique Groups are scheduled and run independently of regular CWC meetings; however, all Critique Group participants must be current CWC members.

Currently, we have 17 active groups meeting virtually throughout the greater Charlotte area. The following groups are currently seeking new members:

Children's/Young Adult (meets in the evenings)
Mixed Genre Fiction (meets mornings)
Mixed Genre (meets in the evenings) NEW GROUP!

Don't see a group relevant to your interests? No worries! New groups will be forming this fall, and the October CWC meeting is the place to meet fellow writers interested in receiving regular feedback on their writing projects.The goal of this lively exchange is for you to connect with writers of like ambition and to form groups that will take your projects to the next level.  

Although this year's Critique Group Meeting is Virtual thru ZOOM, we will still work with members to help them find a critique group that works for them.

New groups are forming all the time. If you are interested in starting a new Critique Group, or if you have general questions about the groups, please contact Jennifer Hurlburt.


CWC’s Virtual Writing Salon & Social Time is Back by Popular Demand!

On Monday, November 9th at 7 pm come write with Tiffany Grantham for 75-minutes or so. We'll have a little face time, a little catch up time before she spins instrumental music for your mind to riff on. Following each prompt, there will be time for volunteers to read aloud. 

Please join us, there is no pressure, no angst, just you and your writing instrument and your untamed creativity.  Bring your own characters, write with your own story in mind or let your thoughts dance across the page. Shake off the dust of the day and perhaps when we’re done, those tunes will have you humming something brand new, a song that really jazzes you. Writers of all genres, all stages of the craft are welcome. CWC members will receive an invitation with the Zoom link. If you want to be our guest contact us here and we’ll send you the link.

Tiffany is a Children’s Service Specialist for Charlotte Mecklenburg Library, short story-fiction writer and secretary for CWC’s executive board. Learn more about Tiffany by clicking the link in her name. Check out her website and blog at Creatiffwritng.

Click to REGISTER.  



Click on the link below to view photos and program recap from previous meetings.


September 15, 2020 - Phillip Lewis - Adding Meaning and Depth to a Story or Novel
October 5, 2020 - CWC's Virtual Writing Salon and Social Time, led by Tiffany Grantham 

October 20, 2020 - Critique Group Information Session
November 17, 2020 - Panel - Author Publicity and Marketing

December 15, 2020 Diana Pinckney - Poet

January 19, 2021- Kevin Winchester - Developing Realistic Main Characters

February 16, 2021 - Kimmery Martin - No Matter the Genre, Suspense is the Key to a Successful Novel

March 16, 2021 - Daren Dean - Writing from the Unconscious

April 20, 2021 - Boris “Bluz” Rogers, Poetry Performance and Craft Talk

May 18, 2021 - Panel - Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators 

2020-2021 CWC Upcoming Club Meetings



Tuesday, November 17, 2020, 6:30 p.m. 
Panel  - Author Publicity and Marketing

Three experienced publicists will share their wisdom on author publicity and marketing.

Meet your panelists.

Lynda Bouchard is a literary publicist and founder of Booking Authors Ink, a boutique marketing firm dedicated to Southern authors. For over 20 years, Lynda has worked with high profile authors such as Nicholas Sparks, Mary Alice Monroe, Cassandra King Conroy and the late Pat Conroy. She collaborates with New York publishing houses on Southern media campaigns and serves as an 'author concierge' for authors on tour throughout the South. With a Master’s Degree in Public Relations from Boston University and post graduate work in Literature from Oxford University in England, Lynda believes that book marketing is all about collaborative story-telling. She shares advice about publicity and marketing on Where Writers Win blog, and has been a featured speaker for the S.C. Writers Workshop as well as other literary workshops around the South.


Dawn Michelle Hardy has aided novelists and non-fiction authors for 17 years on their climb to publishing success by using strategic promotions to expand their readership, build their brands, win awards and garner national and local media attention. She is an award-winning publicist, a literary agent, speaker and sought after book publishing consultant who believes that success promoting writers and their work hinges on discoverability, access, and an entrepreneurial approach. Her clients have won a wide range of awards including the IPPY, the USA Best Book Award, and the Eric Hoffer Award. Another client, author of a sports narrative, was Shortlisted for the PEN/ESPN Award for Literary Sports Writing. Dawn is President of Dream Relations PR & Literary Consulting, and the brainchild behind Publishing in Your Pajamas, a virtual writers conference that educates and empowers aspiring and debut authors. 


Hannah Turner is a publicist and digital marketer for artists across the creative spectrum including award-winning authors, musicians, fine artists, and independent filmmakers. She has served as an editor, public relations specialist, and marketer for both editorial firms and media outlets, including a Pulitzer Prize winning newspaper, The Post & Courier. After working in several different facets of the publishing and media industries, Hannah used her experience to launch her own boutique marketing and public relations firm, Spellbound PR. Spellbound takes traditional PR tactics and puts a modern digital spin on storytelling campaigns to identify and reach target markets. Hannah has always been an avid reader and writer and is currently in the process of launching a book review column in addition to serving as a contributor to several online publications.

Moderator Landis Wade is the producer and host of Charlotte Readers Podcast, launched in the fall of 2018 as a way to help authors give voice to their written words. In the first two years of the podcast, he interviewed over 150 authors on the podcast and conducted more than 24 one hour discussions with authors on the craft and business of writing for the podcast’s Patreon channel. His third book—The Christmas Redemption—won the Holiday category of the 12th Annual National Indie Excellence Awards and his short story Tried and Convicted was selected for publication in the latest edition of Flying South.


Tuesday, December 15, 2020, 6:30 p.m. 
Diana Pinckney - 

Diana Pinckney, Charlotte, NC, has five collections of poetry, including The Beast and The Innocent (2015). She is the Winner of the 2010 Ekphrasis Prize, Atlanta Review’s 2012 International Prize and Press 53 Prime Number’s 2018 Award. Her work has appeared in such journals as Cave Wall, Arroyo, RHINO, Iodine, Tar River Poetry, Emrys Journal, The Pedestal Magazine, Green Mountains Review, Main Street Rag and other magazines and anthologies. Pinckney admits to being addicted to writing persona, and ekphrastic poems, and has led workshops on both forms for the Charlotte Center for the Literary Arts.

Releasing The Tiger in The Poem
In this presentation, poet Diana Pinckney focuses on tools that poets can use to get their words on the page and write their way to the heart of a poem. Chez Milosz, from Ars Poetica, wrote about a tiger springing forth in the process of writing poetry. Diana sees this act as unexpected, out of the dark jungle of our hearts and minds, sprung from the depth of our being—” the constellation of the unconscious” as the great poet, Stanley Kunitz, said when speaking of what comes up when we go deeper. Because the process of writing poetry can sometimes be as scary as the blank page, Diana will explore these ideas and discuss how the poet can meet up with their tiger to see what imaginative paths emerge. 


Tuesday, January 19, 2020, 6:30 p.m. 
Kevin Winchester - Developing Realistic Main Characters

Kevin Winchester, who lives just south of Charlotte in the small town of

Waxhaw, has made his way as a writer with stories of life in the neo-gothic south where many of his characters struggle to make their way in a hostile world determined to beat them into submission. In Everybody’s Gotta Eat (2009), an early collection of short stories, Kevin staked his claim to a place among the great southern writers and storytellers. A later story, “Waiting on Something to Happen,” the winner of the Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize in 2013, made good on that claim.

Kevin’s first novel, Sunflower Dog: Dancing the Flathead Shuffle (2020) – “a rare delight, a rollicking dark comedy with a heart of pure gold” (Jessica Handler, author of Magnetic Girl) – won a Silver Medal for regional fiction from the Independent Publisher’s Association. He has published additional work in a variety of literary magazines: Tin House, Gulf Coast, Barren Magazine, StorySouth, Barrelhouse, Dead Mule, Barren Magazine and the anthologies Everything But the Baby and Making Notes: Music of the Carolinas.

The holder of an MFA in Creative Writing from Queens University, Kevin currently teaches writing at Wingate University. When he’s not writing, teaching, playing in the band Flatland Tourists, or hanging with his family, he’s hiking, riding his Harley, or working in his garden.

Developing Realistic Main Characters
We all know it—readers identify with characters. That’s why they keep reading.  But as writers, we want to tell the story. Sure, the story has characters, a protagonist, an antagonist probably, and those characters are directly involved in the story. But, if we want those readers to keep turning pages, we have to get out of the way and let our characters tell their story. The better we know those characters, the easier it will be to step aside and let them shine.

This program will provide tools and techniques for creating a new character or fleshing out one you already have. Through a series of guided questions and explorations, attendees will come away with a character they really know, and know intimately, and they’ll also gain techniques to find, identify, and employ conflict that arises naturally from character to create stories (and characters) readers remember.


Tuesday, February 16, 2020, 6:30 p.m. 
Kimmery Martin, No Matter the Genre, Suspense is the Key to a Successful Novel

Kimmery Martin, who lives with her husband and three children in Charlotte, North Carolina, is an emergency medicine doctor and a self-proclaimed “literary nerd” whose voracious reading led her to “become curious if I could write a book too.” That self-imposed question led to her first novel, The Queen of Hearts (2018), described by Publishers Weekly as “difficult to put down . . . “a story of friendship shrewdly plotted [that] contains a cast of flawed, rich, believable characters.” Her second book, The Antidote for Everything – “Intense and vibrant . . . a binge-worthy page-turner” (Kerry Lonsdale, bestselling Wall Street Journal author) – followed only two years later. She is currently at work on a novel about an infectious disease specialist whose children become ill during an emerging viral pandemic (scheduled for publication by Penguin Random House, Fall 2021).

When she’s not busy writing or being a mom, Kimmery promotes reading, interviews authors, and teaches writing seminars, speaking frequently at libraries, conferences, and bookstores around the United States. She is particularly proud of her extensive work with the library foundation here in Charlotte.

No Matter the Genre, Suspense Is the Key to a Successful Novel
Let’s examine the basic structure of a story: it consists of a character—the protagonist – who wants something – and an obstacle or adversary – the antagonist – who threatens to keep the hero from getting what she so desperately wants.

If you want the novel to work, you have to put the reader through some degree of hell. It’s paradoxical. In real life people tend not to enjoy the sensation of constantly being on edge, but in fiction, tension is what keeps them turning the page. In this program we’ll discuss a list of specific strategies for building tension and suspense in your novel, plus several things to avoid.


Tuesday, March 16, 2020, 6:30 p.m. 
Daren Dean, Writing from the Unconcious
Location TBD depending on COVID-19 situation

Reviewers of Daren Dean’s first novel, Far Beyond the Pale (2015) sing his praises as “the laureate of fallen angels,” a writer who takes his readers into “a dysfunctional world characterized by broken people, broken spirits, and broken promises.” The same “grit lit” tone emerges again in his 2019 collection of short stories, I’ll Still Be Here Long after You’re Gone. What might at first seem overwhelmingly grim is, however, redeemed by the redemptive soft spot in the author’s heart “for those fighting back against the darkness.” A second novel, The Black Harvest is slated for publication by the University of West Alabama’s Livingston Press in 2021.

Dean holds an MFA in creative writing from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington and currently teaches at Lincoln University in Missouri. His fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and interviews have appeared in Louisiana Literature, BULL (Men's Fiction), Maryland Literary Review, The Oklahoma Review, The Chattahoochee Review, Ecotone, Image, Midwestern Gothic, Green Hills Literary Lantern, Red Dirt Forum, Yemassee, Ploughshares, The Huffington Post, Bloom, and others. He has recently been nominated for a Pushcart Prize in fiction.

Writing from the Unconscious
Do you worry so much about grammatical errors that it interferes with your writing? Does that pesky little voice in your head, the internal editor who chants “not good enough,” keep you from your desk? Do you lose time waiting for the muse to descend before you can pick up a pen or sit down before a keyboard? If so, help is on the way. Following the lead of Robert Ohlen Butler – “Fiction writers are the writer-directors of the cinema of inner consciousness” – Daren Dean will show you how to revolutionize the way you write by inviting you to step away from crippling rationality and harness the power of the unconscious to make you the best writer you can be.


Tuesday, April 20, 2020, 6:30 p.m. 
Boris "Bluz" Rogers, Poetry Perfomance and Craft Talk
Location TBD depending on COVID-19 situation

When Boris “Bluz” Rogers sits down to write, he sets out “to take words, shape them, and put them in places where they don’t necessarily belong” in order to create visuals that will allow his audience to see the world in new ways. The long list of awards and recognitions he has garnered provides ample evidence of how thoroughly he has succeeded: four Emmys, six Poetry in Motion Awards, three times National Poetry Slam Champion as well as Southern Slam Grand Champion.

“People sometimes forget,” Bluz contends, “that Charlotte is a really cool town.” A community builder, a community booster, Bluz sees his voice as a progressive tool to foster transformation; he strives to create “work that uplifts people when they hear it, encourages them to take pride in where they live and who they are.”

In Charlotte, he has done just that. Bluz has worked with Blumenthal Performing Arts to host the Slam Charlotte and Breakin’ Convention, led and facilitated workshops as part of ASC’s Connect with Culture Days, represented Charlotte as Poet Delegate at the All-America City Awards, and written poetry for Opera Carolina’s Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration. He has hosted the CIAA Fan Fest, done voice-overs for the Carolina Panthers and Raycom Sports, performed at the Foundation for the Carolinas Anniversary Luncheon and the Jazzy Holiday Gala at the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture at the Levine Center for the Arts.


Tuesday, May 18, 2020, 6:30 p.m. 
Panel - Childrens' Writers and Book Illustrators
Location TBD depending on COVID-19 situation

Details to be posted when available.

AT A GLANCE - The Entire 2020-2021 CWC Year's Main Activities by Month

Click HERE to get printable 2020-2021 At a Glance Club Activity Calendar


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Charlotte Lit is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit literary arts center, engaging and educating writers and readers, and building a stronger Charlotte through literature.

Click HERE for events hosted by Charlotte Lit.

Charlotte Lit promotes a deeper understanding of self, community, and world by inspiring and educating readers, developing and supporting writers, and promoting creative, arts-focused conversations that strengthen and transform our community.


Charlotte Writers' Club
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