How many times have family or friends listened to you tell one of your stories and said, “you should write a book!” If you are a veteran, on active-duty or retired, or a member of a military family, there is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping you learn the writing skills to do exactly that. The Military Writers Society of America (MWSA) offers a unique (and free!) one-day workshop each year at the start of their annual conference called “Write Your Story.” This year the workshop will be held in New London, CT on Sept. 16, and followed by the conference from Sept. 17-19, 2021 Many writers have gotten their start working with the prize-winning authors who volunteer to teach these workshops and share their knowledge about storytelling, character development, how to write a scene, short story, memoir, poetry, and many other aspects of writing. How did such an opportunity to learn to write get started? In 1998, Vietnam veteran and author Bill McDonald built a website presence, titled “The Vietnam Experience,” for his old Army unit that he served with in the Vietnam War (the 128th Assault Helicopter Company). Like many soldiers, it had taken years for Bill to speak, and write, about what he had experienced in the midst of battle back in the 1960s. That original website began with some of the poetry and prose he had composed while serving in South Vietnam. Starting with his own war memories, he eventually expanded to include dozens of his comrades who had also begun to write about their experiences. The website took off. During the first six months, online traffic increased to over 17,000 […]