Monday, May 30, 2011

Missouri Writers’ Guild Assisting Joplin Schools with Library Needs

The Missouri Writers’ Guild has launched efforts to assist Joplin school libraries in organizing a “Buy the Books” fundraiser to benefit the four schools in Joplin, Missouri devastated by the recent tornado.
The fundraiser’s main effort is spearheaded by members of the Joplin Writers’ Guild, who are calling for submissions to an anthology they plan to publish this summer.  Guidelines for submission to the Storm Country anthology can be found here.

“The recent devastation in Joplin touches all our lives because these are our Missouri neighbors,” said MWG President Deborah Marshall. “It touches our statewide writing community directly because we have a chapter of the Missouri Writers’ Guild that calls Joplin home.”

“I hope all members of the Missouri Writers’ Guild and its chapters around the state will help us ‘Buy the Books’ for the school libraries and support the Joplin chapter by encouraging members to submit to the anthology,” Marshall said. “This is personal to us.  We have many members from Joplin and the surrounding area, among them MWG Past President Veda Boyd Jones and this year’s Walter Williams Award Winner Larry Wood.  We’re fortunate in that everyone in both the state organization and the Joplin chapter survived this catastrophe.”

Larry Cunningham, president of Joplin’s neighboring Springfield Writers’ Guild, has encouraged his members to contribute dollars directly to the school district’s fundraising efforts.  “Joplin needs boots on the ground and financial contributions,” he said.  “They have no place to store donated items at this time.”  Cunningham is lending his chainsaw, pickup truck and his own physical labor to the cleanup efforts.

Saturday Writers, another chapter of Missouri Writers’ Guild in St. Peters, Missouri, is also directing funds to the Joplin School District, according to President Becky Povich.  “We’ll address other needs as they are determined,” she said.  “I know they’ll be needing plenty as time goes on.”

Marshall is coordinating direct efforts with the Joplin School District as they identify specific needs for their libraries, especially at the high school, which was a total loss.  “As of Saturday evening, the Joplin School District has located 100% of their faculty and staff and has confirmed the location and status of all of their 7,764 students,” Marshall said.  “Their needs change on an hour-to-hour basis, but they are committed to rebuilding and returning to a state of normalcy.  Their goal is to begin the school year on August 17th as planned, and the Missouri Writers’ Guild has partnered with the school district to help make that happen.”  Cash contributions for books should be sent to:

Joplin North Middle School
Attn: Kim Vann
102 N. Gray Avenue
Joplin, MO 64801

To coordinate fundraising efforts or to learn more about the “Buy the Books” Campaign, contact MWG President Deb Marshall at or 314-602-0928.


  1. Margo,

    Did you see the post that now we can send gently used books as well?