I joined the Horror Writers Association as an affiliate member shortly after Salt Lake Comic Con in September, but I’ve been so busy I wasn’t able to jump in on the Utah chapter community and activities until I attended their meeting last night at the Gateway Barnes and Noble in Salt Lake. After a thrilling commute through heavy wind and rain, and passing at least four accidents on the freeway going up from Provo (no joke), I made it there in one piece. It was wonderful to reconnect with familiar faces I’ve seen at conventions and shared panels, and equally wonderful to make new contacts, hear about writing and publishing successes in the Utah horror genre community, and to get to know more about the goings on in the group. If you happen to write horror, or aspire to do so, I highly recommend looking into joining the HWA and, if you happen to live in Utah, coming to the local chapter meetings. They also do an annual anthology, and will publish their second installment early next year.
The HWA is a professional writing organization, like the SFWA, the RWA, SCBWI, and so forth. It’s easier to get into the HWA than some of these other organizations because they recognize a lot of horror sells to niche markets through small presses and self publishing, and are therefore more lenient with regards to their membership requirements. The Utah chapter has had a presence at many local events from LTUE to Salt Lake Comic Con and plan to be at the World Horror Convention coming to Provo in April. I’m working with the Utah HWA (UHWA) to see if I can get onto some panels for that event. It’ll be a blast, and the first large, professional writing convention I’ll have the opportunity to attend.
Check out the Utah chapter’s website here: http://utahhorror.org
And their Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/UtahHorrorWriters/.
You can also find the Horror Writers Association website here for details on what they’re about and how to join: http://horror.org.
The Utah Chapter seems like a fun, close-knit group with roughly twenty members that has grown from just a handful who opened the chapter about a year and a half ago. They provide a great networking opportunity, and have a lot of information on other Utah writing groups, events, and resources as well. If you’re interested in joining the group you can contact Cody Langille on Facebook or have him direct you to Charlie Lindsay. Or just watch on social media for the time and place of the next meeting, or stop by the UHWA booth at the next local convention, and come check it out!