GDRWA meets the third Tuesday of every month except July and December from 7:30 - 10:00 p.m. (unless otherwise notified) at the Royal Oak Senior Center located on 3500 Marais Road in Royal Oak, Michigan, 48073.

We are dedicated to supporting the writing goals of all our members through networking, featured speakers covering topics on craft or business, critique sessions, and pitch practice. We work to provide a stimulating and productive environment for both the aspiring and the professional writer.

2019 Dates:

For more details about the meeting programs, please scroll down.

January 15

Medicine in Fiction Panel.

April 16

Eileen Dreyer - His Brain/Her Brain/Their Brain

July 24 - 27

GDRWA is on break to attend RWA national conference held in New York, NY!

October 15

Barbara Samuel - The First 100 Pages.

February 19

Heather Novak and author branding.

May 21

TBD. Closed to guests.

August 20

Karen Rose - Villians

November 19

Critique night! Bring 3 pages to be read aloud and critiqued by members of GDRWA. Closed to guests.

March 19

Melanie Harlow - Feminism in Romance

June 18

Beverly Jenkins - World building/Taking a Project to Film

September 17

Patience Bloom, Senior Editor, Harlequin. Closed to guests.

December 10

GRDWA is on break for the holiday! We will meet at a location to be announced for dinner, prizes and fun. Closed to guests.

old typewriter with a red rose

January - Medicine Meets Fiction

As romance authors, we love to put medical professionals in our stories, whether as heroes and heroines or as key secondary characters. But how accurately are we portraying these characters? A panel of medical professionals from various healthcare fields will share their thoughts about what writers are getting right and wrong in their portrayals of characters from their fields in books, movies and television. They will share a day-in-the-life in their professions and take questions to help us build true-to-life characters our readers will love.

February - Heather Novak - Author Branding & Identity

Why branding is important and more than simply choosing a genre, and how to build your author identity.

old typewriter with a red rose

March - Melanie Harlow

Feminism in Romance


There really is a difference between the sexes, and much of it resides in the brain. And while every character should be unique, there really is a template from which to build your heroine’s decision-making skills or your hero’s language, a template born of thousands of years of evolution, hormones and chromosomes. Before building any character anywhere along the unbroken arc of gender and sexuality, it helps to know what the basic building blocks are, what impacts them, and how best to arrange them. Based on scientific research, the talk is a fun, active look into what makes us who we are, and how we as authors can best reflect our characters’ sexuality and gender.

old typewriter with a red rose
old typewriter with a red rose


Closed to guests.

June - Beverly Jenkins

“Building a fictional world for contemporary and historical romance.”

Side workshop: Taking a book from the page to the screen, How Deadly/Sexy became a film.”



July - RWA National Conference

Join Romance Writers of America for RWA2018 at the New York Marriott Marquis, New York City, NY, July 24–27.

The RWA Conference is the place where career-focused romance writers gather to make lasting connections and grow their careers—and so much more. When 2,000 romance writers and industry professionals assemble in one place, the sense of community is undeniable.

At the conference, career-focused romance writers can anticipate:

  • education and information,
  • networking with fellow writers,
  • interaction with editors, agents, publishers, vendors, retailers, and other romance publishing industry professionals.

August - Karen Rose


old typewriter with a red rose
old typewriter with a red rose

September - Patience Bloom

Patience Bloom, Senior Editor, Harlequin. Closed to guests.

October - Barbara Samuel -The First 100 Pages - getting your novel up and breathing

The first 100 pages of a novel are critical to creating a world readers want to immerse themselves in, but from the writer’s end, it can be challenging. What needs to happen in those pages? What key elements absolutely must be there? How do you introduce multiple characters without overwhelming the  reader? How do you lay the groundwork for your conflict? Learn world building, character introduction, and other key elements of those first 100 pages.

old typewriter with a red rose
Couple kissing at the bench at alley.

November - Critique Night

Every year we dedicate one meeting to critique night. Please bring 3 printed pages of your current work-in-progress to be read aloud and critiqued by our GDRWA members. All authors bringing pages must notify the president in advance of the meeting at as there is limited time for 8 - 10 critiques. First come / first serve.

December - Celebration!

Members of GDRWA are welcome to join us at a location to be announced on the second Tuesday of December at 6:30 p.m. to celebrate another year of our chapter, recognize the winner of our Joan Shapiro service award for 2019, receive prizes, and have fun! An invitation to sign up will be mailed in November 2019 by the chapter president.


Holiday Party 2017
Stack of books isolated on the white

A Recap of 2018 Speakers

Jan - Isabelle Drake - How the Magic Happens: Scene Structure Simplified

Feb - Hero Panel

Mar - Kathy Lyons - Master's Class in Characterization

Apr - Rachel Aaron - 2k - 10k How to Write Faster, Write Better, and Write More of What You Love

May - R.C. Matthews - 5 Mistakes New Authors Make

Jun - Janna Bonikowski

Jul - National RWA Conference in Orlando

Aug - Alyssa Alexander - The Funnel of Love: Plotting from a Panster Beginning

Sep - Tori Lynne - Sex Positive Writing for Romance

Oct - Aliza Mann - The Perfect Package

Dec - Holiday Party

How to Join...

General membership in GDRWA is open to all persons seriously pursuing a writing career in the romance genre.  Associate membership is open to other related professionals, who are members in good standing of National RWA. Click here to find out more.