I'm having such a great time! I've met Joyce Carol Oates, who is my writer idol (like the picture?). What an inspiration she is. Hearing her today has been a big eye opener, and I've had just about a million revelations. I won't bore you with all of those, but let's just say I can't wait to get home and get to work. I've also met Sapphire and Mary Gaitskill, which was also a huge honor.
The panels have also been great (well some of them anyway). I attended one this morning called "Race in the Creative Writing Workshop." It blew my mind. An African American student disclosed that her southern MFA program told her that they would not discuss her characters in workshop because of their ethnicity! I can't believe things like that are still going on. I was glad I chose that one because I learned so much in just an hour and fifteen minutes.
I also attended a workshop where editors and agents shared the best practices for securing publishing partners and another today on the art of rejection. I'll be posting the scoop on both of those next week.
I feel so lucky to be here, and it's so humbling to be in the presence of such great writers. This conference has rejuvenated me after being rejected quite a bit in the past couple of weeks and has left me hopeful and ready to continue to put in work for my writing. If anything, I have realized that I want to be the best. I won't settle for being mediocre. I'm not trying to sound pompous, but I want to be the best that I can be. I want to be on top and don't we all? Let this serve as my official announcement to the universe. I won't rest until I make it. :)
Also, I just realized I forgot to put a deadline on the contest. It will close on February 18, 2011 11:59 pm. I'll go back and add that to the post.