Call for Ideas!

The officers of the HoCo Chapter will be putting together next year’s monthly meetings starting in September.  If you have ideas for what you would like to see (or who you would like to see) on next year’s schedule, now is the time to start bombarding us with your suggestions! Send your suggestions hereSuzanne, Chapter President,

Upcoming Conferences

September 15th Writing to Inspire Christian Writers Workshop at the Tea Room in Frederick, MD.  One day, $40 per person or $60 / couple. On the schedule: Novella writing; Approaching Editors & Agents; Self-Editing 101, Preparing your Manuscript.  Contact Rita Gerlach at if interested; this is a small conference capped at 50 attendees.

Sept 28 – 30 The Baltimore Book Festival at the Inner HarborThis one is huge and diverse, with something for everyone: to be avalanched with details!

10 November – The Baltimore Writers Conference at Towson University.

Have a conference you’d like to see on our list? Let us know!

Critique Groups in Howard County

Just getting started with writing? Been writing forever but need a fresh perspective on your work? Consider joining a HoCo Chapter Critique group!

The Chapter currently has four active critique groups, one specializing in Poetry and the others open to a variety of literary genres. In addition, we are happy to open new groups depending on demand. To learn what is available to you and what groups currently have openings, check out or, for the most up-to-the-minute information, contact Suzanne at

Upcoming Events at HoCo MWA

Spoken Word, featuring an overview of this fascinating genre by Patti Ross, along with examples voiced by a professional actor.  We will also have the opportunity to try our hands at creating texts. Who knows, maybe you will have your effort read aloud by a professional who really knows how to give it maximum impact!

** Note: This meeting will also have elections for the HoCo Chapter Officers for the next year. Come let your voices be heard and your votes registered.

Thursday, July 19, 2018
7:00 – 9:00
Owen Brown Community Center
6800 Cradlerock Way
Columbia, MD 21045

About the Speakers

Patti Ross is an enthusiastic supporter of equitable access to education and a life-long learner. She holds a Master’s degree in human resource management. Ms. Ross has passion for homeless services and has been an active volunteer at Sarah’s Hope, Mount Street, an emergency shelter for women and children in West Baltimore. She is the co-Founder of the Baltimore site of the non-profit So What Else Can We Do to Help and actively participates in the sites programming. She is also a member of the board of the Marki Foundation and as a lover of literature and an aspiring poet Ms. Ross holds the position of Secretary for the Maryland Writers Association. She is an active member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority an international public service sorority.

Niles Finklea is a versatile Actor with a background in Theater, Television, Commercials, and Film. He has trained at the Yale University, Studio Theater, Goucher College, and with Acting Coach, Denise Diggs. Some of his credits include: Dutchman, Ananse, Fannie Lou Hamer Musical, Much Ado About Nothing, Survivor’s Remorse, Kevin Probably Saves the World, Loving, For My Man, Animal Farm, and more. He is also a Spoken Word Poet/Songwriter, Public Speaker, Impressionist, and an Improv Actor. Currently, he is striving for growth within his craft.


And coming up:

16 August – Poetry in Motion, a workshop led by JA Grier.

20 September –Mauled Men, Drowned Dames, and Crispy Critters: a Body Disposal Primer for Writers, led by Jeanne Adams

18 October – Get your short fiction, poetry, and screenplay excerpts polished up because this is our annual Open Mic and Critique!

HoCo continues to collect new or gently-used books for HopeWorks. (The Howard County Domestic Violence Center.) All genres and age groups are needed, but due to the nature of their services, they request that the books contain no mention of violence against women or children.