“How do I become a member?” and various other questions are answered here by topic. These include general questions about Utah Valley Writers and our meetings. We invite you to look over this information before contacting us. Most of the time the answer can be found here.
Thank you for your interest in joining our chapter. The Utah Valley Chapter is open to the public for membership and we accept all writers of Fiction, Non-Fiction, Poets, etc. Membership fees are $40. To join our chapter please either pay online at http://theuaa.org/join-us/ or bring payment to one of our meetings (see “Our Events” menu) and speak with a member of the UVW leadership.
We have 40+ members in our chapter. We also have members that are not located in Utah County or even the State of Utah. These individuals feel welcomed on account of the online platforms we use. You can view a list of some of our members (those that have chosen to have a public profile) Here.
Because of what we do as a chapter, we have some members that are out of state and even a few members that are international. We embrace technology. If you are serious about learning the craft and business of writing or finding like-minded individuals, we welcome you from any location in the world. Note: We appreciate interest from various locations in the world, but we are an English speaking/writing chapter.
Writers by nature are an accepting group. While we cannot guarantee that you will “fit in,” a few simple courtesies on your part will help. Things to remember:
Writers come from all walks of life and each genre fluctuates. We accept all genres except: Erotica and Splatter. In general terms, the majority of our members write works of fiction and we have some non-fiction writers and poets. Specifically, the break down in our chapter, by popularity:
We meet in person and online.
In-person Meetings are chapter workshops/guest presenters/educational topics, critiques, contest critiques, and publication primers. These are scheduled a year in advance, but things can change. For dates, locations, times and subjects, see Our Events.
Online Meetings currently are for critiques, publication primers, contest critiques, and some educational/workshop meetings. Tweet us or follow the posts on our Facebook Group. We will let you know through these mediums when and how to attend these meetings. If you are not on these social media platforms you can also see our Contact Us page for the online group email address. We are working to expand our online meetings to match our in-person meetings. More detailed descriptions of each meeting type can be found be clicking the name of each meeting.
These meetings usually fall the first meeting of the month going from 6 PM – 9 PM. They are members divided into groups of 5-6 persons, based on genre or interest where shared time is given for useful, constructive, feedback on each person’s work.
Note: You are responsible for printing out copies of your manuscript for others to give feedback on. Please put your pages in manuscript form (double spaced, 1 in margins, 12 point font, and NOT printed front to back). You will need at least 5 copies. Our word count limit is 2500 words (or roughly 8-10 pages).
We do things differently at our critique meetings. We expect out to learn how to critique well and receive critiques. It’s okay if you are not experienced in critiquing or have had bad experiences. We’ll help you.
Our critiques set us apart from other organizations, where you can come and expect detailed feedback on your work. If you’ve felt wanting for more feedback give us a try.
Now if you’ve had a bad experience with another organization or group, it’s likely they have ascribed to the misguided belief of “That’s just how it is. Here’s a box of tissues, now deal with it.” While ultimately every writer needs to develop a thick skin, we are NOT a tissue box organization. The best critiques are honest critiques and there is a difference between honesty and harshness.
UVW focuses on the work and its structure. We strive to help the author make their work better. We invite you to read our blog post on critiques called, “The Myths of Critiquing” Once you understand this post, you’ll understand why critiquing is neccessary, what attitude you should come with and how it will help you become a better writer . . . and person.
These meetings occur at the same time as the Critique Meetings. A table is specifically set aside to assist persons that have a complete manuscript who are getting ready to submit their work, those that need assistance with formatting, query letters, synopsis writing, etc. To join this meeting let people know when you arrive that you would specifically like to be at this table.
These meetings occur at the same time as the Critique Meetings. A table is specifically set aside to assist persons desiring to submit work to contests. We want our members to win and get literary cred. Often this table is combined with the Publication Primers. To join this meeting let people know when you arrive that you would specifically like to be at this table.
These meetings usually fall in the 4th week of the month and rotate with guest presenter meetings.
6 PM – 6:50 PM is for Q&A, brainstorming, or for makeup critiques (Those that might have missed out on a critique during our Critique Meeting may bring the full critique and they have priority OR those that are unable to make the Critique Meeting have priority. Due to the shortened time, we can usually get through only 2 persons’ work. If you need your work critiqued, create or join a table that has 1 or no persons with work needing to be critiqued. )
7 PM – 9 PM is a focused on a topic that instructs, provides a literary exercise or assists members in craft of writing or the business of writing. These topics are generally taught be an experienced member in the chapter. We get mentored, learn and grow together.
These meetings usually fall in the 4th week of the month and rotate with workshops/educational meetings.
6 PM – 6:50 PM is for Q&A, brainstorming, or for makeup critiques (Those that might have missed out on a critique during our Critique Meeting may bring the full critique and they have priority. For any new critiques, the word count is cut to 1000 words or roughly 4 pages.)
7 PM – 9 PM is instruction by a guest presenter. This can be done by an author, editor, agent, publisher, or other writing or helpful to writing professional. Topics related to specifics about the craft or business of writing are spoken on. We learn from those that are there and/or have been there.
We meet via video conferencing for critiques. These meetings can occur throughout the month, depending on the availability and number of UVW Critique Chairs, as well as the availability of members.
Participants are divided into groups of 5-6 persons, based on genre or interest, where shared time is given for useful, constructive, feedback on each person’s work.
We also rotate in Publication Primers and Contest Critique Meetings with these meetings. We occasionally will have workshops/educational meetings online too. (These later are basically the same as our in-person meetings but in an online format.)
As the meeting is scheduled participants determine through the social media formats whether or not they would like to share their work via a Google Doc with everyone and then meet online for the video conferencing or if they would like to meet and read it over video conferencing and then get critiqued.
Each participant is responsible for:
Our meetings are open to the public for this purpose. Priority is given to our members for critiquing, but we do allow prospective members to attend our meetings for two months to see if they would like to become a member. If it works well for you, great! If not, we’d love to hear why. As writers and as an organization we welcome and appreciate feedback.
For one year. The process of transitioning authority begins each May. Chapter members are asked to nominate individuals they feel would serve the chapter well. These individuals are informed of their nomination and asked for their willingness and availability by the outgoing executive leadership. Elections finalize by the end of June at UVW’s annual conference and the new leadership takes over starting July.
We appreciate your willingness to help. Learning to balance writing and public expectations is also a great way to start a career in writing. To serve in the chapter you must first be a member. After joining, the best way to go about this is to contact our Executive Leaders to the email address listed under Membership on our Contact Us page.
We’ll get you involved with the current leadership and the members. If you see a need or a path we could take, suggest it. Serving in any capacity is a great way to build friends, network, and develop yourself as a writer.
This is a great question. We care about the quality of our meetings. Ultimately be nice, courteous and professional. Since our meetings are in the Orem Library we ask that you: