Wednesday, February 2, 2011

AWP Conference Alert: We Are Taking A Break From Our Regular Schedule

Usually on Wednesdays I try to write about the books I've read this week. This week, I've read two spectacular books I can't wait to write about. But it's not going to be today.

Because two days ago my plans for the week changed.

A friend from school sent me a message asking, "Are you going to the AWP conference this week? Do you want to meet up?"

Honestly, I didn't even know there was a conference, let alone that it was this week. I've kind of stopped looking at conferences altogether because I just can't afford them right now. And with school - well - I don't have time to go traipsing off to some foreign city hotel for a week. I did that a month ago.

And until residency, I didn't even know what the AWP was. It's this totally amazing writing association for people who write. Anyone who writes. Not just romance writers. Or mystery writers. Or children's writers. Anyone. Poets, short story writers, novelists, memoir-ists. Anyone. And they have all this amazing stuff available for members. You should go check it out!

And apparently, they have this HUGE conference every year.

And apparently this year it's in D.C. Which is practically my back yard.

So even though the hotels are all sold out (which I think is actually just a technicality, since half the people can't get here due to the snow storms), I can metro it in like nobody's business.

And, it turns out, since I'm a student, I can flip my ID card and get the student rate, which is (hold your hearts here, because this is GOOD!!!)... $45.  Yes. You read that right. I didn't leave off a zero or anything. And that covers all three days. Isn't that CRAZY??? Turns out all that grad school debt is paying off. :)

So I'm musing about this on Monday, that there is this conference and that I know people going, and that it's right up the street, practically, and how sad it is that I didn't know this ahead of time, and next year it's going to be in Chicago and then I won't go because it's so far away and I would have to travel and get a hotel room, and my husband says:

"Well, you should go."

And I'm like, "What??"

And he says, "Yeah. You should go. Let's see if we can figure out who can watch the kids, and I'll just drop you off at the metro on my way to work, and pick you up on my way home."

So yeah. He totally rocks.

So now, it's official. I'm going to the conference.

And along with classes on how to get an agent and how to get published (which are panel discussions led by some agents whom I'm sure you'd know), there are readings by some authors like Joshua Ferris, Joyce Carol Oates, and Ben Percy (who is one of the writer/faculty at Pacific who is AMAZING!!). And there are other classes on how to write, too, of course.

So I'll be missing out on some of the more fun aspects. The keynote speaker and big conference events are at night, along with the reception and dance party, and I'll be home by then.

But something is better than nothing, and I'm so excited!

Come back here tomorrow, though, because I'm hosting Jen Blom on her most awesome Possum Summer World Blog Tour for her debut book. It's an awesome and funny interview, and her character butts in a little and also draws a picture of me. :)  You don't want to miss that!


  1. $45 - that's insane, why wouldn't you go. I need to go to a conference, somewhere in the states. Maybe in the spring.

    Looking forward to your interview with Jen, she was one of my first commenters.

  2. What a happy coincidence! I've gone to one conference which I loved, but figured I'd only go to again when I had an ACTUAL BOOK. Have fun!

  3. Awesome for you! Looking forward to hearing about it (and maybe seeing a few pictures?).

  4. Heidi! Awesome!!
    I'm booking my plane tickets right now for a conference in May. Happy stuff. I think, though, that it might cost me a little more than 45...