Saturday, March 3, 2012

What I Learned at AWP

  • Margaret Atwood is incredibly funny.
  • Allison Joseph (winner of the AWP/George Garrett Award for Outstanding Community Service in Literature) is eloquent, stunning, inspiring, encouraging, lovely in every way, and exudes goodness. With her words and her hands and the tilt of her head as she speaks, she is the embodiment of poetry.
  • Even panel talks that weren’t what I expected or hoped had me scribbling down good ideas for my teaching, or the program, or the journal. Just take breaks from the panels, browse the bookfair, remember to eat.
  • Not all Chicago deep dish pizzas are created equal: Pizzeria Due  >  Lou Malnati’s  >  Chicago Hilton room service
  • So many writers are gracious and kind, sincerely congratulating us for starting our new literary journal, and telling us our book is beautiful, and recognizing names of authors we’d published. And: writers love free books. We put 500 copies of TLR into the hands of lots of writers from lots of places, and that makes us very happy.
  • Yes, windy. Very, very windy. 
  • My students who manned our bookfair table were wonderful representatives of Lindenwood’s MFA program—generous with their time and knowledge, pleasant and engaging with everyone who stopped by, and endlessly happy to be there. I am so grateful for them, and for our growing program, our new journal, and the University’s support in all of this. That may be the most important thing I learned—how very lucky we are. 
Thank you to Nick, Pat, and Michelle!
--Beth Mead

4 comments:

kelli and brian said...

Lovely reflections on a successful conference.

beth said...

Thank you, Kelli! Congratulations on your event--a huge crowd and a great presentation!

Allison J. said...

thanks for the beautiful comments about me--my MFA program and your MFA program should meet for drinks sometime! We are not that far from you all in St. Charles.

LUmfa said...

You were the most inspirational part of AWP for me. Thank you!