“Which comes first, writing as an art or writing as a business?” That’s a question award-winning mystery author Betty Webb will address when she speaks to the Scottsdale Society of Women Writers at the monthly dinner meeting Wednesday, Dec. 17. The meeting will be held at the Chaparral Suites Resort, 5001 N. Scottsdale Road in Scottsdale, Arizona. Cost is $25 for members, $30 for guests. To attend, R.S.V.P. to Patricia L. Brooks, SSWW president/founder, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Betty Webb has been an asset to the writing community in the Scottsdale/Phoenix area for a long time,” said Brooks. “She has generously given of her time as a speaker for SSWW on several occasions. We are thrilled to have her back again on the 17th.” Brooks added that Webb “always brings with her new ideas on the writing and marketing of her latest book, and we have a good time learning from her.”
After a 25-year career in journalism and literary reviewing, Webb began to write her own books and is now known for her prize-winning Lena Jones crime novels and the humorous Gunn Zoo mysteries. The Lena Jones novels began with “Desert Noir,” and include “Desert Wives,” “Desert Shadows,” “Desert Run,” “Desert Cut,” “Desert Lost” (chosen as one of the top five mysteries of 2009 by Library Journal), “Desert Wind” and her newest addition, “Desert Rage.”
In “The Anteater of Death,” the first Gunn Zoo mystery, an innocent giant anteater is suspected of murder. Second in the series is “The Koala of Death,” followed by “The Llama of Death.” The fourth book in the series, “The Puffin of Death,” is due out by October 2015. Webb not only writes about zoo animals, she also volunteers at the Phoenix Zoo.
At the Dec. 17 meeting, the successful journalist, writing teacher, book critic and novelist will talk about decisions she has had to make and will cover creativity, working habits, marketing and the ethical conflicts that have arisen during her more than 40-year professional writing career.
“People—even writers—tend to have a lot of misinformation about what is termed ‘traditional’ publishing, as opposed to self-publishing,” Webb said, “and I’ll talk about some of the differences. Especially the financial differences! But I’ll also be discussing the craft of writing itself.”
As a journalist, she interviewed astronauts who walked on the moon, Nobel Prize winners, U.S. presidents and polygamy runaways. She has also taught at both Phoenix College and Arizona State University, has been a syndicated book critic, and has served as a judge for national literary awards.