Prince William writers group to pack a Metro car with writers 

MANASSAS — (Press Release) Write by the Rails (WbtR), the Prince William Chapter of the Virginia Writer’s Club, has elected a new board of officers and has scheduled events throughout 2019, including an en route write-in on February 23, 2019, Write ON the Rails.

Participants will meet at the Old Town Manassas Virginia Railway Express/Amtrak station on West Street in Manassas at 10 a.m., and then carpool to the Vienna Metro station. Once on the train, writers will take and then ride Metro’s Orange Line to the New Carrollton station in Maryland.

Writers can choose to use provided writing prompts or use the time to work on an in-progress piece. Writers will return to Vienna on a return trip on the Orange line.

After the Metro ride, they will share writing while dining at Okra’s Cajun Creole, where Write by the Rails was officially launched in August of 2011.

“Write ON the Rails” offers members and non-members a few hours of consistent, uninterrupted writing in a unique setting with other writers. The goal is to have enough writers to fill a Metro car.

“This is an excellent way to get some writing in without the distraction of the internet, phones ringing, dogs barking…you know, those things that detract from focused creativity,” said Katherine Gotthardt, WbtR co-founder and newly elected president. “Writing in a different setting with fellow writers can bring things out that you might not have known were there. Change where you write and see what happens. You might be pleasantly surprised.”

Gotthardt credits vice president Jan Rayl with proposing the idea for the outing. “Jan has run the club with Becks Sosa, our secretary, for the past three years. Both of these ladies have incredible energy and creativity. And they are just wonderful human beings. If it weren’t for their support, I’m not sure I would have accepted the nomination,” said Gotthardt.

New to the board is Cathy P. Ryan, treasurer. Ryan has an eclectic background, has published magazine and anthology pieces and is working on three novels, two of which she hopes will be published in 2019.

“I think what’s great about this board is we bring our real-world experiences – writing and otherwise – to the club. Jan is a nurse and a teacher. She’s super organized. Becks has worked in PR and knows photography. Cathy has worked in research biology and is a creative writer, exercising both parts of the brain. I fee like, as a team, we can be a great resource for the club.”

In the literary world, Gotthardt is best known for her poetry and her work in Prince William Living magazine, where she is the incoming editor in chief. She has also written for Potomac Local, Patch, Bristow Beat and the former News & Messenger. She has published five books and is working on a sixth, #KatherinesCoffeehouse. Gotthardt currently serves full-time as a digital content and social media specialist for an IT contracting firm.

For more information on Write by the Rails, visit and/or email WriteByTheRails[at]

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