Author gives publishing tips to Writers’ Guild


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Gary S. Roen co-wrote “Cats, Cats and More Cats.”

Senior Life

The publishing industry, book reviewing and how to get published will be some of the topics discussed by Gary S. Roen, author, nationally syndicated book critic, writer and consultant, following the Aug. 18 meeting of the Space Coast Writers’ Guild.

The free event will be held at 1 p.m. at the Garrett’s Run Condo Association Clubhouse at 7900 Greenboro Drive in West Melbourne.

Roen, who has been writing for close to 45 years, is the author of “Journey” and “Slotski’s World,” two collections of science fiction short stories, and two books of poetry, “Look At Me World” and “Made By Man.” He also is the co-author of “Cats, Cats and More Cats” and the author of a satirical play, “Vamp.”

Roen’s syndicated reviews and articles have appeared in hundreds of newspapers and periodicals, including Midwest Book Review, Sodo News, Orlando Advocate, St. Cloud in the News, Osceola News-Gazette, Bivouac Magazine, Arrhythmic Souls, Beach Side Reader, Strange New Worlds, City Limits, Florida Card and Comic Trader, Alley Cat Magazine, Crime Book Digest, Eleven Magazine, Backstage Pass and West Orlando News.

During the course of his career, Roen was the promotions and sales representative for several publishing houses. He also was a regular on-air radio contributor to WPUL-AM 1590, WBZW-AM 1520 and WOKB-AM 1680; a talk show host for a Rollins College radio station incorporating interviews, reviews and news on current book releases, as well as co-host on a weekly radio talk show on WGT-AM 540.

Roen also was a reporter for “The Tourist Breakfast Travel Show” on WOKB-AM 1600. Roen frequently appeared on “The Michelle Valentine Show” on cable television and conducted market research as an independent contractor for numerous companies in Central Florida.

Roen, 67, prefers writing science fiction to other forms of writing because he can take on social issues, such as segregation and integration.

“I can remember a time in Orlando when there were separate restrooms and water fountains for blacks and whites,” Roen said. “The beauty of science fiction is that you can tackle those issues and cloud it as fiction.”

Roen, who resides in Orlando, credits science fiction authors Ray Bradbury, Richard Matheson and Fredric Brown for influencing his writing. He also credits Andre Norton for showing him how to help people, especially with their writing and getting material published.

“She was so gracious,” he said. “She always gave back to other people by helping people learn how to write.”

Norton, who lived in Winter Park, died in March 2005.

Roen said his address before the guild will center on some of the pitfalls people face in trying to get published. He said some of the mistakes authors make is that they don’t do enough to promote themselves.

“You can’t just use the internet,” he said. “You have to use social media and visit book stores to promote your book.”

For more information about the Space Coast Writers’ Guild, go scwg.org.

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