Saturday, June 19, 2010

The Society Needs Your Help

An open letter to the members of the Society of Latino and Hispanic Writers of San Antonio from Ruben Soto:


Fellow SLHW Members and Supporters:

As we celebrate our 6th anniversary next month I cannot help but feel excited and proud to see how far our group has come. We are honored to have had so many authors and literary experts as our guests throughout the years. Thanks to the Barnes and Nobles management at the San Pedro Crossings location for their continuous support that make our monthly meetings possible. And I am also proud that we have an excellent group of Spanish writers that meet monthly at the Barnes and Nobles at La Cantera.

Because of the existence of the Society of Latino and Hispanic Writers many people’s lives have been changed and new friendships have been created. We are definitely “a home away from home” for many of us who consider the members of the Society to be their “second” family – somos una familia. We have all grown and matured not only as writers, but as human beings.

What many of you may not realize is that even though we do not pay for the space at the bookstores, there are other costs associated with holding our monthly meetings. Since we never established a membership fee we have had to rely on contributions from a few of our members to pay for most of our costs. From the first time we invited a guest speaker six years ago up until our latest monthly meeting this week, we have provided an honorarium to the guest speaker. The honorarium averages between $20-$40 (usually a gift card from Barnes and Nobles) and the money has come exclusively from Vince Bosquez and to a lesser degree from me, Ruben Soto - that is over $200 a year that has come from our own money and it averages to over $1,200 in the last six years. We have done this because it was the appropriate thing to do since many of our authors travelled from out of town to be our guest for the meeting. It is the least we could do for them and we wished we had more money to help them with their travel cost.

But now it is time that we get everyone who has benefitted from these meetings throughout the years to assist us financially. We need your financial assistance!

We have other goals as well and we need money to accomplish them. One of our goals for 2011 is to award scholarships to at least 2 graduating high school seniors who will major in Creative Writing. The amount of the scholarships will depend on the amount of money we have in the bank. The other goal is to have enough funds so that we can bring in renowned authors, editors and agents to hold special seminars for us. And all of this requires that we have the financial ability to accomplish them.

So, as the Founder of the Society of Latino and Hispanic Writers of San Antonio I am asking you to consider sending us a tax deductible donation today. The Society is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization so your contribution is tax deductible.

Please send in your donation by check or money order to:

The Society of Latino and Hispanic Writers
P.O. Box 1040
San Antonio, Texas 78294-1040

I thank you sincerely in advance for your donation!

Ruben Soto