As part of each meeting, guild members share their writing.

Rules for 5-7 minute reading of prepared work:

  • Referred to as the homework assignment, this is a time for members to share something they’ve written. This can be a work-in-progress, something new, an article for the DCER, or something written a while back but not yet shared.
  • Each meeting focuses on a specific genre, but members are not required to write in that genre.
    • Keep in mind that a mystery can be humorous, romantic, historical, fantasy, children’s, etc.,. It can be a poem or a memoir. Likewise, a humor assignment can be part of any other genre.
    • The genre list is a guideline to allow members to try new things and grow in their writing.
    • Don’t stress over the assignment. If a memoir is too difficult that week, write something else. The important thing is to write.
  • To insure each member has time to present their work, readings are timed and will be cut off at seven minutes (five minutes if the meeting schedule is tight).
    • Up to 700 words is what members should shoot for in prepared writings. 800 words should be below the 7 minute ceiling. Anything over 800 is probably going to go over no matter how fast you speak. This is an excellent time to practice tightening up verbiage and staying on track for short stories and paper submissions.
    • When reading an excerpt from a longer work, plan ahead and find a good stopping place in the story below the 800 word mark.

Rules for 5-minute in-class writing assignment:

  • At each guild meeting, 5 minutes is dedicated to writing “off the cuff”. No preparation involved.
  • A writing prompt is provided, but not mandatory. Each member can write whatever they wish, but for this short writing assignment everyone is encouraged to write in the assigned genre even if the prompt is not used.
  • After the writing time, members read what they have written in that short amount of time. It’s not uncommon to be forced to stop in the middle of a thought.
  • The prompt is always for the genre that is assigned for the next meeting. Members may flesh out the story at home as the ‘homework assignment’ and read the expanded story at the next meeting if they desire.