Welcome to our first meeting back in person! (Or you can join us virtually on Zoom.)

To celebrate that and the upcoming holiday season, we have a special guest -- Sonali Dev will be joining us IN PERSON to talk about "Culture Building is Not Just for Multiculturals."

Please join us on Saturday, Dec. 4 for a memorable morning meeting with a great speaker, breakfast, raffles, door prizes, and goody bags! Tickets are available at dara.ticketleap.com/holiday21.

Our In-Person Gathering will be held at the Richardson Women's Club, 2005 N Cliffe, Richardson, TX 75082. Check-in starts at 9 am, with a full breakfast at 9:30. This catered buffet includes scrambled eggs, pancakes and syrup, potatoes, bacon, sausage, fruit and berries, and drinks including coffee, orange juice and cranberry juice. We'll have our annual DARA turn-over meeting to welcome in our new board at 10 am, and Sonali will begin her presentation about 10:30.

In-person attendees will also receive a goody bag and the chance to win door prizes! The DARA tradition of a holiday raffle continues, with many great items being donated by our members. You can get your in-person raffle tickets when you register, or you can purchase them (or purchase more!) at the event.

The Virtual Event will be available online, beginning with the business meeting at 10 am. We're also holding a virtual raffle, with tickets available when you sign up. Each ticket gets your name put in a random drawing once to win two, $50 Amazon gift cards.

Tickets for the in-person event are $20 for DARA members and $27 for non-members. You can save $12 if you sign up for the holiday gathering and a year's DARA membership together for $60. The virtual meeting is free for DARA members and $7 for non-members.

If you'd like to donate a basket or item to the raffle, please contact Janet at janetleighauthor@gmail.com. To put something in the goody bags, contact Randee at randee@randeeleigh.com.


According to dictionary.com one of the definitions of culture is: "The sum total of ways of living built up by a group of human beings and transmitted from one generation to another." With respect to storytelling it's the sum total of the nitty gritties of human existence that make up the inner and outer worlds our characters live


Culture Building is World Building between the cracks and under the foundation of your story. Learn how to layer your storytelling with the nitty gritties of human existence that make up the world your characters live in. Learn not just how to enrich your narration with the kind of depth and detail that absorbs readers wholly into your story but also learn how to place your characters in conflict with their world to infuse authenticity and meaning into your story, irrespective of genre.


USA Today bestselling author Sonali Dev writes Bollywood-style love stories that explore universal issues. Her novels have been named Best Books of the Year by Library Journal, NPR, the Washington Post, and Kirkus. She has won numerous accolades, including the American Library Association’s award for best romance, the RT Reviewer Choice Award for best contemporary romance, multiple RT Seals of Excellence, has been a RITA® finalist, and has been listed for the Dublin Literary Award. Shelf Awareness calls her “Not only one of the best but one of the bravest romance novelists working today.”

She lives in Chicagoland with her husband, two visiting adult children, and the world’s most perfect dog.

Find more at sonalidev.com.

Join us Saturday, October 23, for Darynda Jones' "Humor and Heat: How to Write Funny Without Sacrificing Sexual Tension." It should be educational and a lot of fun! We'll start at 9 am with a social half-hour, followed by a short business meeting at 9:30. Darynda will start about 10 am. FREE! Invite your friends.

Humor and Heat -- Darynda will give tips on how to add comedy to any book, how to take your sexual tension from lukewarm to blisteringly hot, and how inserting humor hits at the right time can amp up that tension even more.

New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Darynda Jones has won numerous awards for her work, including a prestigious RITA®, a Golden Heart®, and a Daphne du Maurier, and her books have been translated into17 languages. As a born storyteller, she grew up spinning tales of dashing damsels and heroes in distress for any unfortunate soul who happened by. Darynda lives in the Land of Enchantment, also known as New Mexico, with her husband and two beautiful sons, the Mighty, Mighty Jones Boys.

(P.S. There is a new Zoom link this month. Please email info@dallasarearomanceauthors.com for the updated link.)

On August 28, DARA welcomes Beverly Jenkins to share with us about “Setting as Character.”

Join us for a morning presentation that will undoubtedly improve your craft. What ties your story to reality? Does your setting enhance the mood and theme of your work? Will people who know the area or the history write to you to tell you what you got wrong?

Everyone is welcome to join us for the meeting, which will be held August 28 on Zoom. We have social time at 9 am, followed by a short business meeting at 9:30 am. Our speaker starts about 10 am. All times are Central.

Guests are asked to email info@dallasarearomanceauthors.com for an invitation. There is no fee to attend this meeting.

Much of Beverly’s settings come from history, and getting things accurate is vital. “I knew when I did Night Song, which was my very first book, based on the all-black towns in Kansas after the Great Exodus of 1879, that if I was going to present this story to the public, it had to be accurate. So you wind up doing things like, what did they wear, what did they eat, how long does it take a train to go from Denver to Kansas City, where were the railroads, how were black people expected to act in public — all of those little things that all historical romance and historians do when you write fiction — you have to have it correct. I mean, you can’t just make up stuff, because it doesn’t serve your story, it doesn’t serve you as a writer, and it doesn’t serve your readers.” (LINK TO ARTICLE)

Travel and research are the keys to keeping the settings true. “I travel to historic places around the country to visually survey settings that I may be considering. I also use my local library and the Internet to research flora, fauna, average temperature, topography, the state bird or whatever else may be needed to give the setting a true feel. I’ve written a six-book series set in a small town on the plains of Kansas but have never been there.” (LINK TO ARTICLE)

She also does trips with her fans, as the Popular Romance Project chronicled in one of it’s videos of her in Charleston, SC. “I tell people I like to put my stories where African American people really walked, and I put my stories on top of that.” (LINK TO VIDEO)

One of her fans said, “Now I understand all the history she puts in her books. How it’s so accurate because she’s been there. She’s seen everything.”


Beverly Jenkins is the recipient of the 2017 Romance Writers of America Nora Roberts Lifetime Achievement Award, as well as the 2016 Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award for historical romance.

She has been nominated for the NAACP Image Award in Literature, was featured both in the documentary “Love Between the Covers” and on BS Sunday Morning.

Since the publication of Night Song in 1994, she has been leading the charge for multicultural romance, and has been a constant darling of reviewers, fans, and her peers alike, garnering accolades for her work from the likes of The Wall Street Journal, People Magazine, and NPR.

You can find Beverly’s website at beverlyjenkins.com.

For more interviews with Beverly Jenkins in which she discusses setting, click on any of the following links:

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