RWA Chapters — A Great Place to Meet Aspiring and Published Authors

Check out this great interview about the Yosemite Romance Writers–one of the many fantastic RWA chapters where aspiring writers and published writers get together to talk craft, marketing, and everything that matters to the writing process.

Towers of Earth — Future Suspense and a Heart-Warming Romance

J. C. Conway’s new release, Towers of Earth, is an exciting science-fiction adventure interwoven with a first-kiss teen romance that is central to the story and the young protagonist’s arc. Perfect for readers from middle-grade to adult, Towers of Earth is a captivating read with warmth, suspense and vision.

At the brink of an impending dark age, 15-year-old Allison Taylor escapes Earth on a colony ship to the stars. But a catastrophic quark drive failure forces a desperate, near-light-speed return a millennium into Earth’s future. Allison is surprised to find humanity in a “New Renaissance” and to see the Great Geostationary Towers her father engineered still stretching majestically from ground to high orbit, now housing Earth’s billions.

When Allison learns the “New Renaissance” is a mere façade, she struggles against crushing odds to reunite with her fellow colonists. Finally gaining the opportunity to flee again, she realizes her special knowledge of the Towers may empower her to break the Tower Administrators’ tyranny—but at the cost of her means of escape. Allison is torn. Will fulfilling her father’s dream be worth abandoning her chance to finally reach the stars?

TOWERS OF EARTH is available as an e-book at:

Kindle | Kobo | Apple

Other venues pending. The print edition will be available soon.

Yosemite Romance Writers September Workshop on World Building from an Intelligence Point of View


Instructor: Merien Grey
Dates: September 5-30
PRICE: $25*

As writers we always look for ways to make our jobs easier.  If you are building a world from scratch you have enough on your plate.  One of the things intelligence professionals do is build country studies.  They are very similar to what an author does when they build their world.  It is very easy to take one or two country studies that have a characteristic based on something in your story and find dozens of cause and effect relationships to build conflict.  All you have to do is know where and how to look.  By the time we are done you will know how to build your own country study and how to use the ones already available.

Your setting is a character of its own.  It can push characters to kill, love, despair, or feel great joy.  Everything in your story stems from and hinges on the world you build it in.  When the stakes are high (life, love, money, freedom) the first thing any real organization (military or private) does is do a country study or some version thereof. These studies expose where potential conflicts may arise for those wanting to travel in this new land.  As a writer you are after those potential conflicts, they ground your writing in reality and keep the cardboard out of your characters.  This course is to provide you with new insights to how everyday things can change your setting.  There are over forty key items intelligence professionals know before anyone goes near new territory.  You will be given the perspective to look at your world like an intelligence operative would.   Links to real world country studies will be provided along with how to understand them and apply that type of information gathering to your world making it fuller, more believable and roiling with conflict for you to capitalize on.

*$20 for members of Yosemite Romance Writers
Image Credit: Adobe Stock | Photocreo Bednarek

About Merien Grey:

 Merien spent eleven years in the military intelligence.  She learned a lot of things and specifically ways to pick things apart to determine what significance each tiny item has. She is always into something and curious about nearly everything. She has multiple degrees specializing in Anthropology, Sociology, English and Communications Technology. She spent a decade traveling the world as a military intelligence analyst learning and observing all manner of people and their behavior. Before becoming an author and speaker, her occupations ranged from bartender to infrared security system instructor and developer to many years as a 911 operator. She currently lives in the shadow of Mount Rainier with her husband, two dogs and a little one who rules the land with an iron hand at least until bedtime.

About Yosemite Romance Writers:

Romance AdobeStock_56168345Yosemite Romance Writers is a chapter of Romance Writers of America. All writers of romance are invited to join our San Joaquin Valley group of aspiring and published authors.

Yosemite Romance Writers offers regular and online membership. It is a group of dedicated, experienced, and fun writers to assist and encourage advancement in every stage of the writing career. For members, monthly guest speakers present on various and cross-genre topics related directly to writing.

 To learn more, visit YRW’s website.

Image Credit: Adobe Stock | aleshin

SoCal MWA Presents: From Page to Screen — Adapting Novels Into Screenplays


Sunday, May 22, Noon
(Doors open at 11:30)

Open to the Public, but SoCal MWA members get a discount

Terrill Lee Lankford
Jordan Harper
Elissa Matsueda
Richard Lange

Moderated by Eric Beetner

Join SoCal MWA for a discussion of the unique skills required, and the pitfalls awaiting, as writers adapt material, previously written for another medium, to the screen,
big and small.

Terrill Lee Lankford has written many feature screenplays as well as Amazon’s Bosch, adapted from the Michael Connelly novels


Jordan Harper writer-producer of such shows as The Mentalistand Gotham, sold his first novel, If All Roads Were Blind, and also the screen rights. He is currently adapting it for the screen.


Elissa Matsueda  adapted the non-fiction story “Spare Parts” for the screen and is currently writing other projects for Lion’s Gate entertainment.



Richard Lange  adapted his own novel, Angel Baby, for the screen and lived through all the promise and let down an adaptation can often bring.


Eric Beetner is the author of more than a dozen novels. He lives in Los Angeles where he co-hosts the Noir At The Bar reading series and serves as MWA SoCal’s Treasurer.

2980 Los Feliz Blvd
Los Angeles 90039

Paid valet or free street parking available

You will place your food order at the Tam.
No need to pre-order.

The menu choices will include their famous Prime Rib,
plus chicken or fish, vegetarian and gluten-free options.

Members $20
Non-members $30

You may pay at the door by cash or check, but PayPal is preferred.

KOBO eBook Sale October 6th through 11th–Three for the Price of Two

From October 6, 2015 through October 11, 2015, Kobo is featuring a special offer allowing readers to purchase three eBooks for the price of two on select titles.

Kobo calls it a “Buy Two, Get One Free” sale. One of the selected titles is the archaeological romantic suspense, Hearts in Ruin by J.C. Conway.


Kobo is a large eBook provider that sells in multiple formats and also markets competitive eBook readers. Its site includes easy access to millions of eBooks and magazines.

Sample Kobo Page 2

NaNoWriMo Novels–From Mayhem to Print

National Novel Writing Month is a now famous (or infamous) event with writers. Thousands of writers pledge to draft a 50,000-word novel in 30 days. The question that raises is: “Do these novels get published?”

The answer (after substantial revisions and edits I presume, in most cases) is “yes.” And now at least as to Los Angeles NaNoWriMo participants, there is a list of novels first penned during the event that, after editing and revision, found their way to being published, including:

Seven Weeks to Forever (A Love Story) by Jennifer Farwell

Cassidy Jordan knows she’ll die a few weeks after her eighteenth birthday, and she can’t wait. This is her second time here, and she knows what’s waiting for her in The Life-After — the place most mistakenly call “the afterlife.” Getting back there is supposed to be easy: she just has to find nineteen-year-old Riley Davis and help him get his life on track. By the time she finds him, though, she has only seven weeks to help him. Riley will die too young if she fails, and she’ll never see The Life-After or this life again.

But no one told her helping Riley would mean dating him; she hasn’t dated anyone since the love of her first life caused her death the last time she turned eighteen. When Cassidy realizes she’s falling for Riley, she’s faced with a choice: give him the life he’s meant for and leave when it’s time, or give up eternity for the true love she’s never had, knowing Riley will die the same way she did in her first life and that her entire existence could end at any time.

????????????????????????????????????Hearts in Ruin by J. C. Conway

Andrea had one goal in life, a quiet career as a mainstream archaeologist—nothing more nothing less—and she’s one ancient secret away. When she is teamed with maverick prodigy Daniel Fuchs at his controversial pre-Clovis dig on tribal land, she soon realizes his wild theories may sidetrack her career. Her smartest move is to expose him and that is exactly what she plans to do. Except…he’s hot, sexy, and there is a chance his theories may be right.

As the dig deepens and outside forces mount, Andrea and Daniel find their careers and their shaky relationship on the brink of ruin. Who can she trust? To survive professionally and emotionally, Andrea must decide between what is expected and what she believes, because time is running out and the developers’ bulldozers are poised to level the site.

Delve into the mystery and excitement of an archaeological dig in the New Mexico desert and experience the drive, determination, and passion surrounding the quest to unlock the Paleolithic past in this contemporary, romantic suspense. Hearts In Ruin…no shovel required to join this adventure to discover an ancient truth!

Heartbreak Cake by Cindy Arora

Business is sweet for pastry chef Indira Aguilar. Her indie bakery, Cake Pan, is fast becoming the talk of the wedding circuit for its unique take on cakes and homespun creations for the modern bride, garnering national recognition and drawing in celebrity clients. But while her professional life is blossoming, her personal life is crumbling. Indira may have a talent for blending buttercream into bliss, but when it comes to relationships, she’s got a lot to learn. Considering that the love of her life, Josh Oliver, is not only married, but also runs the award-winning pastry department of her fiercest competition, Crystal Cove Resort, Indira puts much more at stake than just her heart when she ends her affair with him. Rumors begin to fly as the small seaside community of Long Beach learns of her secret relationship, and Indira must defend not only her actions, but her wedding business and her reputation while trying to maneuver the choppy heartbreak waters of starting over, finding new love, and facing her past. With the support of friends and family, a fondness for butter, and a determined spirit, Indira may just bake her way back to happiness and possibly into the heart of Crystal Cove’s dishy new chef, Noah. But one thing is certain. Where there’s heartbreak, there must be cake.

The entire list is posted on Goodreads by the Los Angeles NaNoWriMo coordinators, and can be found at THIS LINK. The list includes books published by LA WriMos (and other LA Region WriMo followers outside of La La Land). It is probably not complete (relying on notification from the authors), but gives a good idea of the number of novels arising from the event.

The list also includes the NaNoWriMo anthology Believe Me Not, An Unreliable AnthologyBrought to you by Sara McBride and a cool cast of Associate Editors. It is the first NaNo Los Angeles Anthology–46 stories, 12 from young writers age 10-17, and all from NaNoWriMo participants. With instant short story classics like Guilt Monkey and Mr. Mungo’s Shop of Oddities (filled with NaNo icons galore), this anthology is a WriMo reading experience. 100% of the proceeds are to benefit NaNoWriMo, its Young Writer’s Program, and help make possible all the wonderful NaNo events held in the Los Angeles area.

The second NaNoLosAngeles anthology is open for submissions, which are due April 6th. Lemur Publishing invites all LA WriMos, Honolulu WriMos (our 2015 Sister City), and anyone who subscribes to either region, regardless of where they live, to submit short stories for the 2015 anthology. This year the theme is TIME.
TIME should be a central element, either thematically or structurally to the story. The prompt is that the story must contain an Oops moment—A mistake must be made. Also, if you can organically use a NaNo Icon – you get bonus points from the judges. For information on NaNo Icons – please see the descriptions at Date: April 6, 2015. Submit to: (Ref: Anthology 2015 submission). Submissions guidelines:

-4000 words or less. (Flash fiction is also great.)
-Something approximating standard manuscript format and sent as .doc (not .docx), .rtf, or plain-text attachments.
-Please do not copy/paste your entire story in the email.
-Grammar questions – Check the Chicago Manual of Style (free trial) or do a search on Grammar Girl.
-Please spell check and proof your story before you submit.
-Proofread–have a friend read your story before submission.
-Each submission will be personally confirmed.