Friday, April 13, 2012

A BIG Thank You!

I just wanted to pass on the letter of thanks I received from CARE International to all who paticipated. -Kathy-Diane Leveille

Thank you for participating in Writers who CARE: The 50/50 Project in support of CARE Canada.

I’m pleased to advise that the project goal to raise $1,000 was surpassed and even more Canadians, including 20 budding writers, have been introduced to CARE and our mission to empower women and girls around the world to fight global poverty.

I would like to offer a special thank you to Kathy-Diane Leveille for launching this incredible project as well as to all of you for your participation. Your support made all the difference in making this fundraiser a success!

Founded in 1945, CARE is the foremost international humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. In over 80 countries, CARE works with the poorest communities to improve basic health and education, enhance rural livelihoods and food security, increase access to clean water and sanitation, expand economic opportunity, help vulnerable people adapt to climate change and provide lifesaving assistance during emergencies. Funds raised for the Writers who CARE project will be directed to support CARE’s relief efforts in East Africa.

Thank you again for your contribution. We invite you to stay in touch with CARE and keep updated on to fight poverty around the world.

Visit for more information.

Rosemary Tassie
Officer, Ambassador Relations & Events
Agente, ambassadeurs & événements
rosemary.tassie | Tel: (613) 228-5603
CARE Canada |
200-9 Gurdwara Rd | Ottawa, ON K2E 7X6

Thursday, January 12, 2012

We reached our goal!

We reached our goal of raising $1000.00  in the 50/50 project. Thank you so much to all who have donated.  

When I saw the post in the WFNS newsletter I was struck by the quiet brilliance of Kathy's 'Writers who Care' idea - I love the simplicity of it: donate $50, have 50 pages reviewed by another author. It raises money to help people struggling in a part of the world so far from here - that in itself is reason enough to participate, and each dollar spent in Somalia will have a ripple effect in the lives and communities of the people who receive the funds. But the initiative does something else as well - bringing together writers in disparate genres to review and comment on each other's work. That adds another ripple to the effect of each dollar - a layer of community support 'back home'. My own writing project is about Africa, and about my relationship with a small, struggling village there, so I am particularly aware of how the ripples reinforce. Thanks for the great idea, Kathy. And, for the push!

-Munju Ravindra

The 50/50 project is an inspired idea. How could I pass up the chance to help war-ravaged Somalia, especially when I'd get something so valuable in return? The critique I received from Jacquelyn Mitchard gave me the feedback I needed to shape the opening of my YA novel, UNIVERSAL FORCES, and the encouragement I needed to finish the project. I'm grateful for her comments!

-Monica Shaughnessy

I donated to this cause because I believe in supporting writers. I have always loved to write and to dabble with writing; believing and dreaming that I can. I believe that writers all over the world should have the right to express their feelings, thoughts and visions through the written word, for all to see.  Writers have contributed so much to humanity whether it be Rumi, The Brontes, Munroe, Attwood, Chomski, or local writers like Shauntay Grant, Wayne Johnston, etc. Writers are suffering in prisons just for their words, I ache for them.I believe in the freedom of the word and in the freedom to read a book and in the freedom to write in all forms.

My own writing has been mainly from my life experiences. My life in Newfoundland was shaped by rich, everyday "stories" and what a joy it would be for me to put these into a book...My current life interacting with refugees and new Canadians is rich. I have many words swirling in my head waiting for me to make a decision - which path shall I take?  "Two paths diverged into a wood and I took the one less taken and that has made all of the difference."

-Ruth Larson

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

$900.00 and growing!

We've raised $900.00 dollars to date. We only need two more donors to reach our goal! Thanks to all. The CARE office is closed until January 3, 2012 for the holidays so when you make a donation you won't hear from us until then.  In the meantime, have a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

"I belong to a group of New Brunswick writers called the River Girls. We inspire and encourage each other with our writing. It is always helpful to have someone new read my work, especially a published writer. One of the River Girls let me know about the 50/50 project and I couldn’t refuse. I am always looking for ways I can give back, since I am so fortunate in life to be happy, healthy and safe. I have been matched with Marni Graff and have submitted pages from two novels that I am working on, a murder mystery and a children’s fantasy novel. I look forward to her feedback. Thanks so much, Kathy-Diane, for this win-win opportunity, and thanks to the authors who are providing such a wonderful service."

-Heather O’Connell

"I heard about Writers Who Care and the 50/50 project from Kathy-Diane Leveille. I feel humbled as I contribute to this devastating cause. Hunger is something that still hangs in the memory of the Irish people who suffered the horrors of the Great Potato Famine in the 1840's and scattered much of the population to the four corners of the globe in their effort to escape its fate. I have been working on a memoir of my youth in Ireland in the 50's and 60's and appreciate the opportunity to have my writing evaluated by a published author. I must say it feels strange to be able to receive something in return for donating. I look forward to receiving any tips or feedback that will help me along the way..I applaud all the 'Writers Who Care' who came on board to offer their time and talents to this worthy cause. Thank you."

 -Helena Hook

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

We've raised $600.00!

Thanks to all the writers who are supporting us.  Our tally now stands at $600.00. Who is donating?

"As soon as I spotted the Writers Who Care 50/50 Project in my weekly e-loop from the Writers Federation of Nova Scotia, I knew this project was for me. It's innovative, inspiring, and has been downright useful to a nature writer testing the uncertain waters of fiction. I felt great about making a donation to support CARE's efforts to raise funds to combat hunger in East Africa, and was thrilled to send the first four chapters of my romantic novel to Sophia Knightly for her commentary. She replied within a week and offered me praise, encouragement, and excellent detailed suggestions for improving my work in progress, A Look Across the Sand (Jenny Winter). The 50/50 Project has been a definite win/win situation for me. Wishing you the best..."

-Magi Nams

"I read about the 50/50 Project on author Susan Olding's blog. I thought it was a great way to contribute to a worthwhile cause as well as receive a critique from a professional writer who is generously donating his or her time for this initiative. When I was younger I always enjoyed writing stories and poems, but I did not get back seriously into writing until about 4 years ago; I'm now part of a writers' group that meets biweekly. I've written several short stories and a few poems and am now working on a novel for tweens. So this is a great chance to get some feedback from a published YA writer, Janet Fox, and I look forward to what I'll learn from her".

-Jeannie Prinsen

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Who is donating?

Thank you to those who have contributed to our cause. To date, we have have raised over $400.00.  Here's a look at a few of the people who have donated:

I have a dual rationale for donating. First, I truly believe that we need to promote awareness of the crisis in Eastern Africa. Secondly, it afforded me the opportunity to donate to a worthwhile cause while connecting with other writers. I am grateful to those experienced writers who agreed to read our work. It is their generous support, and the effort behind Writers Who Care, that is truly inspiring.
-Andrea Kikuchi

I decided to donate to Writers Who Care for a couple of reasons. The first is that I support, as much as my pocketbook will allow, writer sponsored charity drives because I know the funds raised will go to where the help is most needed. The situation in Somalia is devastating. The second is the opportunity to have my manuscript evaluated by a well known published author. In my case, Ashley March, a well known romance author.
Writers Who Care came at a good time for me because I’d just entered Lord Beaumont’s Bride in to the Romance Writers' of America’s Golden Heart writing competition for unpublished authors. Lord Beaumont’s Bride, is about an innocent spinster seeking love and the rake who traps her into marriage.

-Ella Quinn
I believe that we are all connected in time and space in this planet of ours and that we share pains and laughs even from far away. Thus, we feel a sense of obligation to help, within the constraints of our means, our brothers and sisters in distress regardless of where they live. I had already made a contribution through my church, but could not resist Kathy-Diane’s call. I do not consider myself either a writer or a poet. I just enjoy writing, shifting from essays to short stories and poems and even to the composition of songs.  Three months ago I organized my poems into a collection of 37 pieces and was looking for an experienced writer to find out whether they were any good. When Lee Thompson, the executive director of the Writers' Federation of New Brunswick, forwarded Kathy-Diane’s message, I thought that my prayers had been answered. Not only was I going to receive a general evaluation of my poems at a nominal cost, but my contribution would go to a worthy cause.  Yours was a great idea, Kathy-Diane. As a beneficiary of your creativity, I am very grateful to you and to Mike Blouin, who kindly agreed to read my poems. 

-Joe Ruggeri

I think the 50 pages for 50 dollars initiative is creative and fun. It makes donating a two-way street. I'm sure that writers, like most artists, don't have a whole lot of extra cash to donate themselves, but they have big hearts and want to do what they can. Lovely idea of someone else providing the cash and the writers showing their expertise and experience. It's brilliant.  

-Jen Powley

Thursday, September 15, 2011

The 50/50 Project

I was painting a lawn chair, listening to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's radio show SUNDAY EDITION, when I first heard about the Somalian refugees tramping miles and miles to reach the camps. They left grandparents behind knowing they would die. They journeyed with the sickening certainty that not all their children would survive the trip. When they finally arrived at what they'd held out as a last bastion of hope, they were confronted with harsh and bitter disappointment; resources were slim to nil. Trying to imagine the horrible circumstances they face, wrought by starvation, drought and war tore me up. I needed to do something. The 50/50 Project is it.

Kathy-Diane Leveille

FIFTY PAGES FOR FIFTY DOLLARS: That's the 50/50 Project.

How does it work? Working with CARE INTERNATIONAL, Writers who CARE: the 50/50 PROJECT will allow anyone who makes a donation of $50.00 to submit 50 pages double-spaced of a work-in-progress for a 1-2 page critique by one of the participating authors.  All donators wishing a critique must have access to e-mail and the Internet for correspondence with a published author in order to qualify. Authors and donators will be matched on a first come, first serve basis as long as slots are open. The project is also open to those wishing simply to make a donation to this worthy cause.


INSTRUCTIONS: If you are interested in participating and receiving a critique, start studying the PARTICIPATING PUBLISHED AUTHORS page listed above. Read the author bios and research their web sites (click on author's photos in side bar for direct link). Once you make a donation and are contacted, you will be asked to rank your top five picks for your critique. You will then be matched depending on which authors are still available at the time of your donation. At that point, you will be contacted by your matched author who will provide their own specific submission requirements for the 50-page submission (at their discretion). Donators are responsible for providing submissions that meet requirements to be eligible for a critique.

The critique will not consist of line editing, but a general overview of plot, character, setting, voice etc at the author's discretion provided within 90 days of receipt. These exceptionally talented North American and UK writers hail from a wide range of literary and genre fiction: romance, paranormal, mystery, thriller, young adult, historical and mainstream; along with a smaller percentage of literary biography, memoir and journalists. Once all authors are matched the notification that we are no longer accepting critiques will be posted on the MAKE A DONATION page.  Anyone can make a donation to this cause whether you wish to receive a critique or not.

Anyone receiving a critique is not eligible for a tax receipt according to CCRA rules since a service is being provided.
Thank you for considering Writers who CARE: The 50/50 Project. We appreciate any support you can give. For more information contact

Please be patient in waiting to be contacted by 50/50 once you've made a donation. You should hear from us within 5-7 days. CARE will forward a list of current donors to us at the end of each week.  In the meantime, research the authors and prepare your list of preferences for critique if you plan to request one.

Participating authors are members of numerous professional writing associations including The Writers' Union of Canada, International ThrillWriters, The Crime Writers' Association (UK), Sisters in Crime, Mystery Writers of America, The Romance Writers of America, RWA Kiss of Death Romantic Suspence Chapter, Professional Writers' Association of Canada, The Society of Authors (UK), Canadian Writers' Group, Travel Media Association of Canada, The Writers' Federation of Nova Scotia and The Writers' Federation of New Brunswick.

Published Authors who CARE


Ellyn Bache

Ellyn Bache is the award-winning fiction writer of nine novels (including "Safe Passage," which was made into a film starring Susan Sarandon) and a short story collection that won the Willa Cather Fiction Prize. Her most recent book, "The Art of Saying Goodbye," a William Morrow trade paperback, was chosen for special recognition by the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance, through it's "Okra Pick" program. Ellyn is also the fiction editor for the literary magazine, "Emrys Journal." More information is on her website,

Gary Blackwood

At sixteen, Gary got his first encouraging letter from an editor and sold his first story at nineteen. After this promising start, he produced a seemingly endless string of unpublished books and collected a prodigious quantity of discouraging letters from editors. Finally, in 1987, Atheneum published his juvenile novel, Wild Timothy, followed by The Dying Sun and Beyond the Door. Then his editor was fired. Seven long years later - during which time he worked for The Institute of Children's Literature, teaching others how to write and not sell their work - the publication of The Shakespeare Stealer resurrected his writing career, which has been going strong ever since. His work covers the whole spectrum of kids' books, from picture books to young adult, both fiction and nonfiction. Any time that's left over he devotes to writing plays for adults and young audiences. His adaptation of The Shakespeare Stealer has been produced many times in the U.S. in such venues as the Kennedy Center and Seattle Children's Theatre.

Allie Boniface

Allie Boniface is a multi-published author of contemporary romance who lives and works as a high school English teacher in the the lower Hudson Valley, NY. She has appeared at numerous conferences, writing workshops, and book readings/signings and loves working with aspiring and published writers alike. She is a member of both the national and local chapters of RWA.


Michael Blouin

Michael Blouin's critically acclaimed first novel CHASE AND HAVEN (Coach House) was a finalist for the First Novel Award and
won the 2009 ReLit Award for Best Novel in Canada. In 2007, his first collected poetry "I am not going to lie to you" (Pedlar Press) was a finalist for the Lampman Scott Award. In 2011 Pedlar Press released WORE DOWN TRUST which has garnered excellent national and international reviews. He was a finalist for the 2010 CBC Literary Awards and his work has been published in many literary magazines including Descant, Arc, The Antigonish Review, Event, Queen's Quarterly,  Branch, The New Quarterly, and the The Fiddlehead. He is currently completely work on his second novel and is represented by Westwood Creative artists.

Patti Brooks

Patti became a professional writer at sixteen when she was paid $3 for an article in a national trade journal. Since then she has published over 500 articles, two novels (a historical set in the Prohibition era and a contemporary murder mystery), a short story collection and her work is included in an anthology of mysteries. Patti is also a professional horse trainer and breeder and avid competitor in 100 mile distance rides.

DeAnna Cameron

DeAnna Cameron is the author of romantic historical fiction set in Victorian and Edwardian America. THE BELLY DANCER (Berkley, 2009) immerses readers in the real-life belly-dancing scandal at the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair. DANCING AT THE CHANCE (Berkley, spring 2012) takes readers on a struggling vaudeville dancer’s journey to save the down-and-out theater she calls home. Ms. Cameron is an active member of the Historical Novel Society, Romance Writers of America and the Literary Guild of Orange County. She lives and writes in Orange County, California.


Karen Duvall

Karen Duvall is a native Californian who grew up in Hawaii, lived in Colorado most of her adult life, and now lives in Bend, Oregon with her husband and four incredibly spoiled pets. She has three grown children and five grandchildren.

Karen has been telling stories since the age of three, when she wasn’t yet able to write but could tell her tales to her mother, who wrote them down for her. Karen is a professional graphic designer with a passion for portraying her characters and scenes by painting pictures with words. You can visit her website at

Sandra Elzie
Sandra Elzie was challenged by her husband in 2001 to not wait until retirement in 2005 to start writing the book he had been hearing about almost since they had been married. Picking up the gantlet he had thrown down, she spent the next 8 years honing her craft and finishing 21 manuscripts—two of which have been published by Avalon Books, several more that are self-published on Amazon under Sandra McGregor, and many more to come on Kindle & Nook in the very near future.

She now lives in South Georgia with her husband and cat and enjoys reading, traveling and her three children and four grandchildren.

Flo Fitzpatrick

Flo Fitzpatrick is a multi-published author of romance/mystery, romantic suspense and paranormal romance, plus numerous short stories and non-fiction articles. Her second Kensington release, "Hot Stuff", was nominated by RTBookReviews for Best Romantic Suspense and is currently under option for film. Flo worked for a Literary/Talent Agency in New York as a “first reader” and has judged for RWA and Sisters in Crime contests, while also teaching Writing Workshops online. She loves using her background in Theatre and Dance to create wacky characters who seem to inhabit those worlds on and off-stage.

Web site:

Janet Fox

Fox is the author of books for children and young adults, including two YA novels set in the early 1900s and published by Speak/Penguin Group. Faithful (2010), set in Yellowstone National Park in 1904, was a YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults nominee and an Amelia Bloomer List pick for 2011. Forgiven (2011) is set in 1906 San Francisco during the time of the great earthquake, and is a Junior Library Guild selection for 2011. She has several middle grade and young adult projects underway including another YA due for publication early in 2013. She lives in Bozeman, Montana.
Website is:

Marni Graff

Marni Graff's Nora Tierney series features an American writer living in the UK. The Blue Virgin is set in Oxford; The Green Remains takes place in Cumbria and will be in print this winter. Graff is co-author with her writing group of Writing in a Changing World, which deals with finding your own writing and critique group. She also run the Writers Read program in Belhaven NC for young and emerging authors, and writes a weekly review blog at: She is a member of Sisters in Crime.
Marianna Jameson

After abandoning her doctoral dissertation, which focused on the privatization and globalization of international telecommunications systems and the commercialization of outer space, New York Times best-selling author Marianna Jameson spent two decades as a senior technical writer and editor in the aerospace, defense, and software security industries and ghost-wrote a non-fiction book on corporate digital security before becoming a novelist. Although her full-time job is the gentle art of writing novels that keep people up at night, Marianna keeps her imagination churning by freelancing as an analyst in the corporate security and intelligence worlds.

Wendy Kitts

Wendy Kitts is a professional freelance writer who has written over 200 articles for publications such as Reader's Digest, Canada's History, Saltscapes, and More. A member of the Professional Writers Association of Canada and the Society of Children's Book Writers & Illustrators, she was a regular contributor of children's book reviews to Canadian Children Book News, the Globe & Mail, Atlantic Books Today, and the New Brunswick Reader (weekly column). Wendy is the author of Sable Island: The Wandering Sandbar (Nimbus, 2011), a non-fiction children's book for seven to nine year-olds; and the co-author of Breaking the Word Barrier: Stories of Adults Learning to Read (Goose Lane Editions, 2009) an anthology on literacy. For two years, Wendy sat on the judging committee choosing the best in Canadian children’s literature for Our Choice (currently Best Books for Kids & Teens), an annual publication of the Canadian Children’s Book Centre. For more information go to
Sylvie Kurtz

Flying an eight-hour solo cross-country in a Piper Arrow with only the airplane's crackling radio and a large bag of M&Ms for company, Sylvie Kurtz realized a pilot's life wasn't for her. The stories zooming in and out of her head proved more entertaining than the flight. Not a quitter, she completed her pilot's course, earning her commercial license and instrument rating. Since then, she's trade in her wings for a keyboard, where she lets her imagination soar to create fictional adventures that explore the complexity of the human mind and the thrill of suspense. She has written 20 novels. Visit for more information ( romantic suspense, action adventure, paranormal).

Kathy-Diane Leveille

Kathy-Diane Leveille is a former broadcast journalist with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Her debut literary suspense novel Let the Shadows Fall Behind You was published by Kunati Books in April 2009. Kathy-Diane’s short story collection Roads Unravelling was published to critical acclaim after a selection from its pages Learning to Spin was adapted to radio drama for CBC’s Summer Drama Festival. The tale Showdown at the Four Corner’s Corral was revised for the stage and performed by New City Theatre in Saint John.

Her web site is
C. J. Lyons
As a paediatric ER doctor, CJ Lyons has lived the life she writes about in her cutting edge thrillers. In addition to being an award-winning, bestselling author, CJ is a nationally known presenter and keynote speaker.

CJ has been called a "master within the genre" (Pittsburgh Magazine) and her work has been praised as "breathtakingly fast-paced" and "riveting" (Publishers Weekly) with "characters with beating hearts and three dimensions" (Newsday).

Her newest project is as co-author of a new suspense series with Erin Brockovich. Learn more about her writing at

Ashley March

Ashley March is the author of Victorian historical romance novels SEDUCING THE DUCHESS and ROMANCING THE COUNTESS. A native of Texas, she currently resides in Colorado with her husband and two young daughters. A lover of languages and travel, she finds her greatest passion in writing stories of happily-ever-after.

Jacquelyn Mitchard

Jacquelyn Mitchard is the New York Times bestselling author of The Deep End of the Ocean, No Time to Wave Goodbye, and fifteen other books for adults and children. A former syndicated columnist, she is a contributing editor for Parade magazine and the founder of the artist's residence One Writer's Place. Mitchard lives in Wisconsin with her family.
The link to her homepage is:

Carol Moriera

Carol Moreira has worked in journalism around the world. Her work has appeared in the Globe and Mail, the Toronto Star and the South China Morning Post among many other newspapers. Magazines include Halifax, Progress and Saltscapes. She won a magazine feature writing award in 2010 and her first novel, a YA story called Charged, was published to good reviews in 2008 by James Lorimer.

Laurie Glenn Norris

Laurie Glenn Norris is a writer, teacher and art historian. Her travel articles and book reviews have appeared in the Telegraph-Journal (Saint John), the Daily Gleaner (Fredericton), Atlantic Books Today and MUSE. Her first book Cumberland County Facts and Folklore (Nimbus) was published in 2009 and her second, The Life and Times of a Haunted Girl: Esther Cox and the Great Amherst Mystery (Nimbus) is forthcoming in 2012. Her particular writing interests are historical non-fiction and biographies. Laurie lives and writes in Lower Kingsclear, New Brunswick with her husband, Barry, a free-lance editor, five cats and many books.
Her web site is

Susan Olding

Susan Olding's Pathologies:A Life in Essays won the Creative Nonfiction Collective's Readers' Choice Award for 2010 and was nominated for several other awards. Her writing has appeared widely in literary journals in the U.S. and Canada. Currently, she is working on a novel and a second book of essays.


Andrew Peterson
Andrew Peterson’s debut thriller, First to Kill, has recently been optioned for a major motion picture. It is the first in a series featuring Nathan McBride, a trained Marine scout sniper and CIA operations officer. His second book, Forced to Kill, is currently available as an exclusive audiobook from Andrew holds the classification of Master in the NRA’s High Power Rifle ranking system and has won numerous competitions throughout the Southwestern United States. Andrew enjoys scuba diving, target shooting, flying helicopters, hiking and camping, and an occasional round of golf. Andrew and his wife, Carla, live in Monterey County, California.

Linda Poitevin
Linda Poitevin is the author of a new urban fantasy series, The Grigori Legacy, from Ace Books. Book one, SINS OF THE ANGELS, will be out September 27/11. Book two, SINS OF THE SON, follows in May 2012. In her life, Linda is a wife, mother, friend, gardener, coffee snob, freelance writer, and zookeeper of too many pets.

Carsen Taite
Carsen Taite works by day (and sometimes night) as a criminal defense attorney in Dallas, Texas. Her goal as an author is to spin plot lines as interesting as the cases she encounters in her practice. She is the author of five novels,, It Should be a Crime (a Lambda Literary Award finalist), Do Not Disturb, Nothing but the Truth, and The Best Defense. She is currently working on her sixth novel, Slingshot, which, like several of her prior works contains a heavy dose of crime. Learn more at

Link to website:
Lea Wait

Bio: Lea Wait is the author of the traditional Agatha-finalist Shadows Antique Print Mystery Series, the most recent of which is Shadows of a Down East Summer, and she also writes 19th century historical novels for ages 7-14 that have been recommended by the Bank Street College, the International Reading Association, and been named to Student Choice Award lists in 14 states. Mystery Scene Magazine wrote, "It's hard to praise too highly Wait's skill at plotting, her ability at building suspense, and her ability to make so many diverse characters come alive."

Website is:

Rebecca Zanetti

Rebecca Zanetti has worked as an art curator, Senate aide, lawyer, college professor and a hearing examiner - only to culminate it all in stories about vampires and science. She is a member of RWA and several of its chapters and has won awards for her works throughout the industry. Her second book in the Dark Protectors series will be released in November 2011 from Kensington Brava.