Gala All Stars Contest Winners

It was a beautiful day to share a good meal, friendship, and stories with fellow authors.  What a talented group of writers.  Attendees voted for the winning entries.  The winners of the 2021 Gala are:

1st Place:  Sarah Honenberger
2nd Place:  Sonja McGiboney
3rd Place:  Robert Webb

For the Rick Bailey Humor Award, there was a tie:
Denise Devries and Cindy Freeman

Congratulations to the winners but also to everyone who presented their stories.  I enjoyed each one of them.
                                          Sonja McGiboney
                                          CBW Director-Membership


Congratulations, Ronald Munro!
Golden Nib State Winner
Third Place FIction

Virginia Writers Club 2021
Golden Nib State Winners

Third place: Treasure of the Wooded Forest - Ronald Munro; Chesapeake Bay
Second Place: Day the Lights Went out - Damean Mathews; Appalachian Authors Guild
First place: Death and Peanuts. - Sandy Roslan; Hanover Writers Club

Third Place: Crows -James W. Reynolds; Valley
Second Place: Sojourners -Ray Griffin; Blue Ridge
This Place: Kayak -Katherine Gotthardt; Write By the Rails

3rd place: Crossing Halstead Street - June Forte; Write By the Rails
2nd place: Running Out of Time - Sharon L. Hostler; Blue Ridge
1st place: The Last Caterpillar -Abbey Pachter; Virginia Beach
Chesapeake Bay Writers 2021 Golden Nib Winners
CBW is pleased to announce the winners of the chapter level of the Virginia Writers Club Golden Nib Contest.

Chesapeake Bay Writers President Carol J. Bova will recognize the club winners at CBW’s Annual All Star Gala Luncheon November 17 at the Two Rivers County Club.

1st  Ronald G. Munro "Treasure of the Wooded Forest"
2nd Ann Eichenmuller "Survivor's Guilt"
3rd Andrew Ball "The Best Disaster Ever"

1st Terry Cox-Joseph "Thomas"
2nd Dayna Hutson  "My Life -My Blog"
3rd Ellen Dugan  "Fake News"

1st Andrew Ball "What Do I Know"
2nd Christian Pascale "Gypsum Dunes"
3rd Peggy Newcomb "My Family"
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NEW!  See Resources Page for List of Book Reviews from
Chesapeake Style's Books in Style

Chesapeake Style Magazine offers Books in Style reviews for authors of recently published books. Members of CBW or its critique groups are encouraged to ask someone request guidelines and write an original 500-word review and send it with a high-resolution image of the book's front cover. Reviews are not limited to members, but CBW folks should take advantage of this special opportunity to share news of your work in issues with a distribution of 10,000 copies in the Middle Peninsula, Northern Neck and Williamsburg.

Apply Now for 2021 CBW Second Monday Radio Interviews with Neal Steele on XTRA 99.1 FM!

We are looking for members with recently published print books to take advantage of this wonderful opportunity to be interviewed by Neal Steele on XTRA 99.1 FM.  Email Tracy Lanum at or call (804) 815-9954 to get a copy of the show guidelines and discuss scheduling an interview.

Welcome to
Our New Board Members

We are pleased to welcome two new members to the CBW Board of Directors.

Denise DeVries will be handling publicity for CBW, Denise is a blogger and translator who writes poetry, historical fiction and time travel books set in the Northern Neck and Middle Peninsula. DeVries and her husband, artist Alvaro Ibañez, along with their daughter Delia Ibañez, are developing a retreat center for the arts on their Virginia property.  Her website address is
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Sonja McGiboney will be in charge of membership. Sonja is the author of “Jazzy's Books” and lives in Smithfield, Virginia with her husband Dale and her dog Jazzy. She combines beautiful photography with lyrical writing and rhyme to create engaging, educational children’s books in which Jazzy is the main character. She is currently writing two more Jazzy books and two young adult or adult novels. Her website is at
Sonja mcgiboney

Janice Hoffman on CBW Second Monday Radio Show with Neal Steele September 13

Neal Steele interviewed Janice Hoffman about Azaleas in October: Surviving the Loss of a Child to Suicide which chronicles her journey after losing her 35-year-old son Brian to suicide. Now 10 years later, she released this small chapbook, a collection of 18 free verse poems. Going beyond her own loss, however, the author dedicates these pages to the families and friends who have lost loved ones to suicide and to parents who have lost children by any means.
With poems born out of deep sorrow, the early ones are rather raw and contain trigger warnings, but the later ones change in tone  to encourage those still in the midst of their pain that, one day, they can smile again. Jan makes a point to leave the reader with a sense of hope. This work’s purpose is to educate those who are still untouched by tragedy, to empathize with those still in the throes of anguish, and to encourage those who wonder if they will ever smile again.
Azaleas in October is available at
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Connie Lapallo retraced her path from page to screen at CBW 's September 15 meeting!

Our first in-person event since February 2020 was an outstanding success!

Some writers dream of seeing their books on the big screen. For Connie Lapallo, the dream has come true. In September, she shared how it happened at CBW’s Literary Luncheon Meeting in Williamsburg on Wednesday September 15. Lapallo described how she came to write three novels about the women and children of Jamestown in 1608-1649. Her son, Adam Lapallo, who wrote the screenplay shared how the film based on her novel Dark Enough to See the Stars became a finalist in the 2021 Richmond International Film Festival and recently won a second award.

As Lapallo explains, success didn’t happen overnight. “I started collecting family tree information when I was eleven years old, directly from my great-grandmother who lived with us. Her turn-of-the-century memories fascinated me. Sometimes she told older family stories that her grandmother had passed on to her.” She continues, “I began researching in earnest in 1976 for a 9th grade family tree project inspired by the Bicentennial and Roots. Thirty-five years later, I’m still at work on the assignment!”

One day, in 1994,  while researching at the Library of Virginia, Lapallo noticed a familiar name. It was an ancestor, Archer Cox, who lived in Mecklenburg, Virginia, in the early 1800s. The book traced him all the way back to Jamestown. “Suddenly I had links taking me all the way back to a woman named Temperance Bailey and to her mother, Cecily (or Sisley).” Cecily was one of nearly a hundred women and children who left England for Jamestown in 1609. As Lapallo learned, eleven year-old Cecily had been a Jamestown mystery for professional genealogists for 120 years. “Who was she, and why had she come to Virginia alone?”

Cecily’s trail continued in a used bookstore in Williamsburg when Lapallo found a volume called Ancient Adventurers, by Samuel Bemiss. In a passage recalling Jamestown’s Starving Time, Bemiss wrote, “Ann Burras, Temperance Flowerdieu and Sisley Jordan can represent all the unsung heroines of that heroic age.”

Lapallo spent eight years working on Dark Enough to See the Stars in a Jamestown Sky, her first novel. Her daughter Sarah designed the book cover. It took Lapallo another five years to complete the sequel, When the Moon Has No More Silver. Since completing the third novel in her trilogy, she has begun writing a biography of Sir Thomas Gates. Learn more at Connie Lapallo's website.
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Cliff Garstang: Becoming a Citizen of the (Literary) World: Influences, Responsibilities, and Publishing Trends"  June 16, 2021

A recording of the program is available at Passcode: rj^#Mi98.

Cliff Garstang is a former international lawyer and prize-winning author of two novels, Oliver’s Travels and The Shaman of Turtle Valley, and three story collections, In an Uncharted Country, What the Zhang Boys Know, and House of the Ancients and Other Stories, as well as the editor of the anthology series, Everywhere Stories: Short Fiction from a Small Planet. With degrees from Northwestern University, Indiana University’s Maurer School of Law, and Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, Garstang was an international lawyer in Chicago, Los Angeles, and Singapore and a legal reform consultant in Almaty, Kazakhstan. 

"It's Never Too Late to Write"
with Dr. Bradley Harper

We started off CBW 2021 with a wonderful program on Zoom on January 27.  Dr. Bradley Harper was our guest speaker and he was great! His talk was informative and inspiring.

Jeanne Johansen of High Tide Publications hosted the program and is preparing a recording for us. Watch for it to be posted in the near future.

Brad began writing at the tender age of 63 after a thirty-seven-year career in the US Army. He will talk about his journey to becoming an award-winning author, addressing both the creative and business side of writing. Brad says it's never too late to pursue your dreams and hopefully, his experience will help you take your dreams and make them goals.
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Bradley Harper -
Army Pathologist Turned Writer

My life before becoming an author was as a board-certified Army Pathologist. I have performed over 200 autopsies during my 37 years of active duty as a pathologist, and my clinical years are interwoven with four stints as the commanding officer of various medical units. I was an Infantry officer before medical school, worked in the Pentagon, and learned to speak five languages. Yet, I also happily play Santa each Christmas (with my loving wife as Mrs. Claus). It is this juxtaposition of exploring the body, mind, and humanity that allows me share universal truths with my readers.

Bradley Harper’s second novel, Queen’s Gambit was recently awarded the 2020 Silver Falchion Award both as Best Suspense and as Book of the Year.

A life-long fan of Sherlock Holmes, Harper did intensive research for his debut novel, A Knife in the Fog, including a trip to London's East End with noted Jack the Ripper historian Richard Jones. Harper’s first novel was published in October 2018 and was a finalist for a 2019 Edgar Award by the Mystery Writers of America for Best First Novel by an American Author. Click here for Harper's Website .

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VWC Membership is independent of CBW Chapter Membership and requires a separate application and dues payment. If you wish to join the Virginia Writers Club (VWC), click here.