Friday, March 9, 2012

People I Got to Meet at AWP

Well, I came home with “conference crud” as people call it, and I’ve been chilled and tired and not attending my exercise class (so I don’t ensicken the other class members), but I think I got it from my son, though we both got it from Chicago, thank you very much. Sigh….

Anyhoo, it was a thrill to bump into many people at the AWP Conference, people I’d met online through blogs or Facebook, or through submissions, etc., and this wonderful bunch of random coincidii started immediately after registration, when I walked into the Bookfair and saw the Tupelo Press booth and there was:

Marie Gauthier, who said, “I was just, moments ago, talking about you and saying I hoped I’d meet you. Were your ears burning?” I hoped I’d meet her, too! I just didn’t know it would be within minutes!

Daily, I stopped by the Arsenic Lobster/Hyacinth Girl/Weighed Words shared table in the Bookfair, so I got to meet/see:

Susan Yount, editor of Arsenic Lobster and MadamBlack-Eyed Susan at the Chicago Poetry BordelloEllen Wade Beals, editor of the anthology Solace in So ManyWords, and Margaret Bashaar, editor & publisher of Hyacinth Girl Press, a feminist micro-press.

During one of these drop-in visits, Ellen was talking to a tall man who turned out to be Dave Bonta, of Via Negativa, the Morning Porch, and Moving Poems, which he was demonstrating, with video and earphones for audio. A nice surprise.
Passing through the hotel hallways or the bookfair, or going up and down the stairs, I also bumped into, often causing hugging, several old friends, recent acquaintances, and familiar strangers, including:

Patricia McMillen, an old poet friend from Chicago…not “old,” but an old friend!
Lindsay Teague, formerly of the Great Books Foundation
Helen Vitoria, editor of the new journal, Thrush
Susan Elbe, a poet I’d met at a reading at Woman Made Gallery
Duriel Harris, ditto WMG, but she also happens to be in Normal, at Illinois State University
Kirstin Hotelling Zona, ditto Normal, new editor of SpoonRiver Poetry Review
Steve Halle, with Spoon River, but I met him at Matt Guenette’s reading of American Busboy at Illinois Wesleyan University, part of their Tongue & Ink series
Meg Tuite, Susan Tepper, and Amy Monticello at book fair
Alice George, Pamela Miller, and Jeanne Larsen, poets I got to have dinner with before their reading for Mayapple Press, and their editor, Judith Kerman
Danna Ephland, Susan Blackwell Ramsey, and Renee D’Aoust, poets I got to have dinner with on Saturday night
Debra Bruce, a Chicago area poet, whose book Sudden Hunger I read as soon as I got home.  Our paths had crossed before, but I met and spoke with her at the Adanna Journal reading Saturday night, where I also got to meet editor Christine Redman-Waldeyer and poet SandyLonghorn, whose poems and blog I love and admire!
Bertha Rogers, a poet I’d featured at Escape Into Life, and Georgia Popoff, poet and editor of The Comstock Review, at their reading in celebration of 25 years of Comstock!
And Matt Dye and Jason Reynolds, new literary editors at Escape Into Life, whom I’d never met!

I got to chat with Jodee Stanley of Ninth Letter, the current issue of which opens with the alphabet written in octopus…toast, banana, and other interesting things. And I got to meet Albert Goldbarth and to thank him for being alive!

I probably ran into more of you, but I’m too tired to remember or write more. Fear not, as I wasn’t contagious then! But I am now. **coughing**


Sandy Longhorn said...

Wow, that exhaustion was well earned!

marly said...

Interesting. I shall have to go some year. I met Dave in Wales, and I have known Jeanne L. a long time (though haven't seen her in two years.) Debby Bruce was at Brown with me (or I with her) many years ago. She lived in a wonderful big yellow house with many other students, and it was fun to be invited to dinner there.

And those are all I know in "real life."


It was great to meet you! I am so glad we ran into one another!

Kathleen said...

A delight to meet you, Helen!

It really was fun just to keep bumping into people! Faces familiar from blogs, etc. And thank goodness for name tags!

Dave said...

It was a pleasure to meet you, too -- I only wish we'd had a bit more time to chat!

Kathleen said...

Everything went by so fast!