October 15th Speaker: Tara Settembre


Social Media Hacks & Best Practices

Forget life hacks, let’s talk about social media hacks to engage and grow your social media channels and reach readers. Do you have over 2,000 Facebook page likes, but only 63 people are reading your posts? Did you know by adding a photo to your tweet you can increase clickthroughs by 18% and retweets by 150%? Social media maven, Tara Settembre, will share simple tips and tricks for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest that every author and brand should harness, and what they should be thinking about the next time they update their feeds.


Tara Settembre (@tarametblog) is a PR and social media strategist with a Master’s degree in journalism & communications from NYU. She was previously the Corporate Communications Manager at WWE and PR Manager for The Walt Disney Company. During her decade of PR experience Tara also launched and managed Pepsi, Chevrolet and DisneyBaby’s twitter accounts; oversaw a YouTube campaign for Obama’s first inauguration; and handled social media for Stand up to Cancer’s first national star-studded telethon. In addition, for the past 11 years Tara has been a successful lifestyle blogger at TaraMetBlog.com and writer for The Huffington Post and TravelingMom.com. An avid romance reader, she is currently penning her first manuscript.

Meeting begins at 10am at the east bank branch of the Jefferson Parish Library. 

RWA RITA and Golden Heart Awards Night

Join us on July 16 as we live stream the RWA Rita and Golden Heart awards ceremony and cheer on one of our own, Pamela Kopfler.

We have the St. Charles meeting room at the New Orleans Marriott Metairie at Lakeway, 3838 N. Causeway Boulevard Metairie, Louisiana, 70002.

The St. Charles room will be ours from 5pm until 12:30am so if anyone wants to come early and do some writing sprints or talk plots, it’s available.

For those wishing to stay the night at the hotel, we have a few rooms reserved at a special rate of $109, double occupancy.

Email your name to Devon (devonalexander@cox.net) if you wish to reserve a room so the hotel can put it in the system at the discounted price. You will have to present your credit card upon arrival to pay for it.

Valet parking is discounted to $5.00 for us so be sure to mention you are with the RWA Awards ceremony event to receive this price.

Hope to see you there!

May Speaker: Laura Lane McNeal

Please join SOLA on May 21st to hear author Laura Lane McNeal speak about “The Story Behind DOLLBABY,” her inspiration after Hurricane Katrina and why she wanted to write about New Orleans in a way she felt no had before.

Laura Lane McNeal was born and raised in New Orleans. After receiving two undergraduate degrees from Southern Methodist University, she went on to earn an MBA from Tulane. She spent most of her career in advertising, working for agencies in New York and Dallas, before returning to New Orleans where she became a free-lance writer, magazine editor and decorative artist. The devastation of Hurricane Katrina led her to fulfill her lifelong dream of becoming a writer. Laura presently resides in New Orleans and is married with two sons.

DOLLBABY is a 2014 Goodreads Choice Awards Top Ten Finalist in Historical Fiction, a 2015 SIBA Awards Finalist, A New York Post Must Read, an Indie Next Pick, A SIBA Okra Pick, and a Library Reads Pick, among others. DOLLBABY is her first novel. She has recently completed a second novel that begins on River Road in 1926 that weaves together the lives of two young women whose lives collide during the Great Flood of 1927.

SOLA Congratulates Golden Heart and RITA Nominees

Sabrina The RITA — the highest award of distinction in romance fiction — recognizes excellence in published romance novels and novellas. The Golden Heart recognizes excellence in unpublished romance manuscripts.

Sabrina Jeffries novel If the Viscount Falls was nominated for a RITA in the Historical Romance Long category.

Pamela KopflerPamela Kopfler has two works nominated for the Golden Heart Award. One More Breath is nominated in the Inspirational Romance category and Better Dead is nominated in the Paranormal Romance category.


Congratulations, Sabrina and Pamela, for being recognized for your great writing talent.

To Sell or Not to Sell, That is the Question – The Pros and Cons of publishing with a Small Press

Please join us for the panel presentation on Saturday, February 20, 2016 at the east bank branch of the Jefferson Parish Library. The panelists presenting will be…


Liah Penn is an award winning author of two romantic suspense novels in the Ina Stone and Sam Fujimoto mystery series. She is a 2015 recipient of the prestigious Daphne du Maurier Award for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense for her debut novel Pure Death published by Etopia Press, as well as a first and second place winner in the romantic suspense categories for her manuscripts Bare Bones and The Sweet Death in the Dixie Kane Memorial Contest. She is a member of Romance Writers of America and recently penned an article for RT Digital about her journey to publication. Her legal career is as varied as her personal interests: she has worked as a prosecutor on an Indian reservation, on the Mexican border and in a major metropolis, and her sometimes gritty imagery is based on her personal experience on the streets and morgues of Arizona. Apart from writing, she is also a visual artist and enjoys painting and pottery. She resides outside of New Orleans with her husband and two sons, both of whom show great promise as a writer and an artist.

Pure Death (Etopia Press 2014)

Pure Justice (Etopia Press 2015)

Short Story: “A Cabin in the Woods”, Never Fear – Christmas Terrors (13Thirty Publishers)

Farrah Rochon

FARRAHROCHONUSA Today Bestselling author Farrah Rochon hails from a small town just west of New Orleans. She has garnered much acclaim for her Holmes Brothers, New York Sabers, Bayou Dreams and Moments in Maplesville series. I’ll Catch You, the second book in her New York Sabers series for Harlequin Kimani, was a 2012 RITA ® Award finalist. Yours Forever, the third book in the Bayou Dreams series, was a 2015 RITA® finalist. Farrah has been nominated for an RT BOOKReviews Reviewers Choice Award, and in 2015 received the Emma Award for Author of the Year.

When she is not writing in her favorite coffee shop, Farrah spends most of her time reading, traveling the world, visiting Walt Disney World, and catching her favorite Broadway shows. An admitted sports fanatic, she feeds her addiction to football by watching New Orleans Saints games on Sunday afternoons.

Dawn Chartier

Dawn ChartierDawn Chartier might occasionally have a gator parked in her front yard there on the bayou, but it’s the snakes that really scare the bejeezus out of her. So instead, she tends to hole up with a good romance book, chocolate by the pound, or marathon tv viewing of Game of Thrones, Downton Abbey, Outlander, various home renovation shows and Supernatural—oh Dean. *swoons*

Occasionally, you’ll find her on a golf course, fishing or trying to tan on the beach in Florida. Dawn resides with her husband, daughters, two Goldens, and Ollie the guinea pig. You can find her books by visiting her website at dawnchartier.com

Ann B Cantrell
Indie Publisher

Ann Cantrell 018In 2009, Ann retired from 39 years of nursing to actively pursue her writing dreams. Her first novel was published in 2010. To date, Ann has written and published a time-travel, historical romance trilogy—“Legacy of Time,” “Legacy of Revenge,” “Legacy of Conflict,” a stand alone historical romance, “Calico Queen,” and a sarcastic/humorous novella titled, “How Many Frogs Must I Kiss?”
Ann’s writing credentials also include an award winning nursing article. “Uterine Artery Embolism,” published in the April 2001 AORN Journal, won the award for 1st place Clinical Category in the AORN/Johnson and Johnson 2001 Writers Contest.
Her current work in progress, “Cherokee Tears,” is a contemporary romance with historical flashbacks.
Visit http://www.annbcantrell.com for more information.