Who We Are!

The Heritage Writers Guild (HWG) is a chapter of the League of Utah Writers (LUW), a non-profit organization dedicated to offering friendship, education and encouragement to the writers, poets and illustrators of Utah. New members are always welcome.


Our organization is dedicated to the encouragement and improvement of all writers and illustrators in their various skills. Members are writers, poets and illustrators with various interests at all levels of skill and professionalism. We meet monthly to write, read and discuss our work. We share ideas and expertise on the art of writing or illustrating. Special guests may be invited to address our chapter meetings or we have feedback meetings.


Chapter meetings are open to the public and new members are always welcome. For more information about our meetings, visit the Events page on our site.


In contrast to guilds that serve members with a specific interest, chapters serve members in a specific geographical location. The backbone of the League of Utah Writers is its local chapters. There is a local chapter in or near almost every metropolis.


To find information about the chapter nearest you visit LUW.

HWG Mission Statement:

The mission of Heritage Writers Guild is to provide our community of writers, poets and illustrators with an atmosphere of compassion and encouragement in order to improve every member's writing and artist skill; thus, with each suggestion, we intend to practice the Golden Rule, treating others as we would want to be treated.

 Member Benefits:

 * Friendly camaraderie based on expanded mutual interests

 * Exposure to a variety of genres

 * Constructive, ongoing feedback for improved literary skills

 * Shared learning activities, including stimulating workshops, from professionals

 * Monthly newsletter covering writing hints, upcoming events and members' achievements

 * Reduced contest entry fees

 * Professional publishing advice

 * Valuable networking

 * Book-selling opportunities

 * Yearly conferences through LUW and HWG

 * Personal Member page on HWG website


~Member spotlight~

Jon Thompson

Three words that describe you? Pensive, delighted, driven 

Are you a morning person or a night owl? Night owl

What is your favorite food? Edible, kosher - I am an international epicurean adventurer within that boundary

Where do you dream of traveling to and why? Tahiti - the beach, Ireland - the rolling hills, Germany - the beer, Australia - the reef

Do you listen to music while writing? No, I prefer quiet.

What's your favorite book or who is your favorite writer? It depends on what day it is, and how I feel.

Can you tell us a bit about your latest manuscript? It's a YA novel about a teen soccer star who discovers the genealogical basis for her outstanding abilities lies less in who her ancestors were, and more with what they were. Her discovery leads to her parent's being kidnapped by Homeland Security, and she joins with others like herself to rescue her parents and expose the generations long subjugation of almost humans like her.

What have you learned about writing and publishing since you first started? About writing - It has been similar what I could say I learned moving through elementary, middle, and high school, how to tighten my writing, the difference between writing down words, and selecting the best words for the place, and putting them together to flow smoothly into the story that grows in my head and on the screen. On publishing - It's a lot about finding the right people, at the right place, at the right time, with the right work, and working as fervently at marketing as I did at writing, and then praying.

Do you plan everything or just let the story flow? Both. I plan out my initial idea and lay it out in a scattered outline form, but as I follow the plan, when a character or line takes a turn out of the course, I may go along for the ride if I like where it seems to be headed. I'm often surprised to find out a character and I have landed somewhere far afield from the scheduled plan - then I take my marker, and change the outline to conform to where we are now, and work from there.

Do your characters ever want to take over the story? Not the whole story, just their part of it.

Is there anything you would do differently? Start earlier, be bolder, make more mistakes faster, and sit beside more magnificent places to write.

Who, or what, if anything has influenced your writing? My family, my wife who always accepts me and tolerates my absence. Every author I've read - some as examples, others as warnings. My daughter who so shamed my feeble attempts by her prolific writing prowess that I felt compelled to get committed and keep going.

Anything you would say to those just starting out in the craft? Start now, and don't stop, set a daily word count and stick to it day after day. Read widely, imitate those authors you admire and learn how to avoid the things you dislike in the work of others. Write often, write much, and periodically look back on what you wrote last year to see if you're getting better. Learn from good teachers, and when you have the chance, learn from the best.

Blurb of your latest release or coming soon publication if any: Star soccer player Michelle Thorn is faster and stronger than players two years ahead of her in school. Even the boys. But it isn’t until she helps her friend Billy find his lost dog that she uncovers the secret to her exceptional ability. When her parents are kidnapped by Homeland Security and kept in a secret prison, she turns to an old hermit who lives in the neighborhood’s haunted house for help. Together they build a revolution that could turn the world as we know it upside down. Michelle discovers that she is almost human, but not quite, and she’s only one of many the government are trying to keep quiet, recruit, or eliminate. Michelle could end up being a hero, a criminal, or terminated, only time will tell.

List of previous books if any: God: Your Jealous Husband

Any websites/places we can find you on the web?

 Officers & Board Members

 ~President, Amy Jarecki & Caroll Sheerve

 ~President-elect, Tom Garrison

 ~Treasurer, Liesa Hafen

 ~Secretary, Marie Tollstrup

 ~Membership Chair, Marilyn Richardson

 ~Newsletter Editor, David Smith

 ~Public Relations Chair, Jon Thompson

 ~Conference Chair, David Smith & Virginia S Grenier

 ~Grants Chair, Linne Marsh

 ~ Blog Coordinator, Traci McDonald
 ~Web Coordinator, Virginia S Grenier


 ~Board Members: Lin Floyd & Amanda Thompson