AWP: Follow Up Thoughts & a Big To-Do List

In response to fellow Goddard-ite and AWPer Anthony Connelly, here are a few of my favorite things from last week:

  • Meeting Kevin Morgan Watson from Press 53 in person. I am so thrilled to be working with him and the press.
  • Catching up with old friends like Kevin Rabas, Ann E. Michaels, and Anthony, no matter how brief the visits were.
  • Seeing Jhumpa Lahiri in person and hearing how she became a writer.
  • Junot Diaz asking for questions to be shouted out between his readings.
  • Attending informative panels by incredible writers, editors, and publishers.
  • Having new authors sign books for me and being sincerely happy to do so.
  • Meeting people genuinely happy for others to get published.
  • Having a break from the bleak snow and cold wind of Cleveland.
  • Coming home with so many great books that I’m dizzy trying to choose what to read first.

I wasn’t inspired to write at AWP like I am when I attend Clockhouse Writers’ Conference.

However, I was VERY inspired to do more on the business side of being a writer. I am committed to sending out work, engaging with writers and presses online, blogging, etc. but I don’t read many book review sites or other writers’ blogs, so those are things I will add to my business of writing.

I WAS suddenly inspired to write on the drive home from upstate New York to Cleveland. I had to pull to the side of road near Erie, PA, get coffee, and write out eight pages long-hand in my journal.

Junot Diaz inspired me to write in second person, something I have never tried. My traveling companion, Chris Mackowski, inspired the story.

Next is to get it onto the electronic page without my inner editor polishing off too much of the story’s rawness.

I have many more ideas for stories, other stories to finish, people to connect with, and more blog posts to write. Oh, and a family, job and dog to attend to also.

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