This is the year I go to California (a lot!)

photo by Rachel Eliza Griffths

photo by Rachel Eliza Griffths

This past week has been all about Resurrection, Renewal and Blessings.  A Lucent Fire: New & Selected Poem is a finalist for the Poetry Society of America’s William Carlos Williams Award.  The winner is Brian Shimoda.

And this past Thursday I was asked to join the faculty for the Summer Workshop at The Community of Writers at Squaw Valley. I attended two conferences and created some wonderful work.  I so hope I will help other poets do when I am there.

So now I gear up for a day of teaching and then off again to California.

On Wednesday, I will join literally thousands of poets, writers, teachers, arts administrators, journalists (an occasional musician) and go Los Angeles for the 2016 AWP Conference.  It will be enthralling, overwhelming, occasionally delightful and full of stress.  All conventions are part professional networking, part party, part boredom–like why isn’t there downtown and where is the free coffee?  L.A. is always an odd place to be.  It is incredibly dense, but no one talks about that.  The traffic is non stop–people do talk about that.  It has wonderful bookstores, but you really have to search them out and places of powerful beauty and utterly awfulness.  And sometimes it is very warm, but every once in a while it is as chilly as the Bay Area far far to its North.

I have the great pleasure of reading with Fellows from the Black Earth Institute on March 31; I will be doing a book signing for A Lucent Fire on Friday April 1 between 2-3 at the White Pine Press table; signing The Best of Cutthroat on the same day at 1.  And on Saturday, Laura Hinton asked me to moderate the panel Out of L.A.: A Tribute to Jayne Cortez that will take place on Saturday, 3:15-4:30 with Aldon Nielsen, Jennifer Ryan, Pam Ward and of course Laura Hinton.  There are reunions for the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley; VCCA: and Vermont College.  And many readings that I may or may not make it too. These events are listed on my web sites: Readings & Events Page.

It will be slightly insane, useful, terrible, beautiful, slighty giddy and wearisome.  Oh writers, oh conferences, Oh California!


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