Thursday, May 28, 2015

SJWG Member Roundup for May 2015

Compiled by Jessica A. Walsh and Glenn Walker

There is so much talent in the South Jersey Writers Group, and as we've mentioned in the past, so many bloggers. And many of these bloggers produce content on a fairly frequent basis, so we thought it would be a cool idea to highlight some of each month's more intriguing and interesting blog posts and present them here.

Please give a click and a read, and we hope you will like the samples enough to become regular readers. Check them out!

Jennifer M. Eaton wraps up her wonderful series Lessons from a Manuscript Red Line, so much to learn here!

MK England's great two-part feature on the pros and cons of fan fiction can be found here and here.

Ron Geraci compares cooking to writing here.

Marie Gilbert took a look at church, trains, the film Ex Machina, and also found time to interview Snake Blocker.

Barb Godshalk ponders motherhood in her special Mother's Day post here.

Amy Holiday of Hypothetical Press reviewed the Young Adult books Vagabonding, Still Just Grace, Fangirl, and No Passengers Beyond This Point at her blog here.

Victoria M. Lees talks about revision over at her excellent Adventures in Writing blog, and you can read that post here.

Rosanna Martella talks about Our Macrobiome on her blog right here.

Patti O'Brien rails against traffic and traffic radio in this post.

Robin Renee remembers B.B. King by reminiscing about interviewing him in 2004 in A Few Words with B.B. King.

Randy Ribay shares a personal story about a recent tragedy in Nobody Taught me to Mourn.

Kevin Stephany had a busy month reviewing several books and plays performed in the South Jersey area, including Bonnie and Clyde: A New Musical at Burlington County Footlighters.

Loretta Sisco uncovers the truth of James Franco and Jonah Hill in True Story for Biff Bam Pop in this post.

Vince Sparks writes about ageism in this post.

Rich Voza shares Chapter 16 of Dreamlands.

Glenn Walker continues reviewing "Marvel's Daredevil" on Netflix here.

Jessica A. Walsh holds the first-ever Cracking Nut Contest. Enter by June 1 for a chance to win one of two prizes.

Janice Wilson shares a song that soothes her and reflects on personal motivation and missions in Mission (almost) Complete.

Mieke Zamora-Mackay shares exciting news of her new venture teaching private knitting classes in Handmade Love & Joy.

We hope you liked this month's selections from SJWG member blogs, and will not only read more at their respective sites, but also come back here next month for more. Don't forget to Like the South Jersey Writers at Facebook, Follow us at Twitter, and check us out on Pinterest. Thank you!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Biff Bam Pop! at the SJWG

By Glenn Walker

The internet is a funny thing. The internet is bringing our world closer together, making communication easier. You can get to know people, build friendships and relationships, having never met the people involved. I have known Andy Burns for six years, talk to him nearly every day, consider him one of my best friends - all thanks to the internet - but never met him face to face until just this past week.

Even though Andy lives and works in Toronto, he's well known to the members of the South Jersey Writers Group, not just through me, but seeing as a half-dozen of our members write for his pop culture website Biff Bam Pop!, Andy has achieved something of rock star status among our little group.

As I said, we had never met until last week. When I picked him up at the airport, he got in the car and we shook hands, then kinda laughed and rolled our eyes. This was not a first meeting or an introduction. It wasn't even a blind date. Andy and I have known each other for years. We were soon talking as if we had last talked hours before, which though electronically, we had. He settled into our home for a week as if he was family, more than a friend or colleague.

When he attended the May general meeting of the SJWG as my guest, he felt like family with our little group as well, and what was even cooler, the friendships were bound even closer when we went out to a bar later that night. As the days went by, Marie Gilbert took Andy on a ghost hunt, as well as a tour of historic Philadelphia. With Loretta Sisco and her husband we attended a viewing of the new Poltergeist remake. French fry fanatic me took him to all the cool places to eat like the British Chip Shop for the best fries, got him a real cheesesteak, and all of us got together for a breakfast at Collingswood's Pop Shop.

By the time we parted after that last breakfast, we were all family, despite having never met before last week. So the internet is not such a bad thing, it builds friendships and connections not just here in South Jersey, but also as far away as the mean streets of Toronto.

Andy Burns is a verified expert of the television series "Twin Peaks" as evidenced in his book Wrapped in Plastic. Twin Peaks. His pop culture website Biff Bam Pop! can be found here, you can Follow him on Twitter here, and Like the site on Facebook here.

Among the South Jersey Writers who are also members of Biff Bam Pop! East are senior writer Marie Gilbert, whose work includes reviews of "The Walking Dead," "Penny Dreadful," "American Horror Story," and "Orphan Black" among others; Loretta Sisco, who dazzles us with tales of horrors and serial killers; Robin Renee, our mistress of music; Jim Knipp, our official "Game of Thrones" reviewer; and Sarah Hawkins Miduski, who will be taking on the upcoming "Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell" TV series. And then there's that Glenn Walker guy, associate editor and contributing writer at Biff Bam Pop!. He reviews "The Flash," "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.," and "Avengers Assemble."

We loved hosting Andy, and we're hoping to get together again in person real soon, perhaps a trip to Canada next. Until then, thank you, internet, and thank you, Andy!