Sun, Sand & a Writers Festival

My short story “Freezer Breakdown” will be published in The Best of the Puerto Vallarta Writers Anthology 2012. The book is supposed to come out in time for the Puerto Vallarta Book and Authors’ Festival on Feb 24-26, 2012.  It’s nice to think of my story in that warm place, especially given the story’s title. 

I joined the Puerto Vallarta Writers group last spring after reading a travel article on Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, in the Calgary Herald. Author Wanda St. Hilaire mentioned the writers group. A few weeks earlier, a friend who spends half the year in Mexico had told me about the annual PV festival. I was intrigued, having spent one holiday at a PV all-inclusive resort. That week, in addition to lounging by the beach and pool, Will and I strolled the Malecon, hiked up Gringo Gulch, zip-lined and rode a speed boat to a village inaccessible by road. We often talk of returning to Puerto Vallarta some winter for a longer period of time.

A Google search of the festival led me to the Puerto Vallarta writers group website. It invites everyone to join online with no membership dues or requirements such as having any connection to Puerto Vallarta. Most members seem to be English speakers from cooler climates who live or winter in PV, although some members have Latino names. The group meets Saturday mornings at the Los Mangos Library for discussion and writing feedback.

I joined mainly to have a tiny connection to PV, which I felt I’d particularly appreciate during the long Calgary winter.  Plus, I thought, if I ever did return I might like to attend a meeting of the writers group or the festival.

I started getting e-mail postings from group members. One with the subject header “Call for Submissions” caught my eye. The group was planning to publish an anthology.  The requirements were a short story (1,000-5,000 words) and online membership in the group.  You could submit up to two stories, but only the highest ranking one would be accepted. Each story was judged anonymously by 5 or 6 people, some members of the group, some outsiders. “Freezer Breakdown” made the cut.

The anthology is in production now. Its cover image is a beautiful Mexican beach. I’d like to do a warm weather holiday this winter and am thinking of Puerto Vallarta in February.   

The Best of the Puerto Vallarta Writers Anthology 2012 will be available for purchase on For a list of contributors, visit the Puerto Vallarta Writers Group facebook page.