In which your intrepid author visits the nation’s capitol
I spent a good part of last week in Washington D.C. at the Association of Writers and Writing Programs annual conference. I went to find poets partially–for the English department’s speaker series at UMary and for the North Dakota Poetry Festival I’m coordinating for the ND Humanities Council–and I was very successful. It was hard not to be, since there were poets everywhere you turned, but I was able to identify several excellent writers to invite to the speaker series and to meet with the booking agent for several bigger name poets for the ND festival.
The other reason I was there was to begin promotion of Barking Mad. This was even more fun than poet-hunting, mainly because I got to hang out with my editor Jen Woods and the enthusiastic team from Typecast Publishing. We handed out postcards with pictures of Reggie, Mimsy, Pelham, and Arabella on them, and talked and met and shook hands. Jen toured through the (huge, huge) book fair and glad-handed the editors of magazines we’d like to review the novel. It was pretty exciting, frankly, and I felt like a real live author.
I also attended a couple of off-site poetry readings hosted by Typecast, one at the small, funky, and crowded Black Squirrel and one at…wait for this…the Lincoln Memorial. Typecast, H_ngm_n, and Forklift Ohio gave a joint reading on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial thanks to a National Park Service permit. It was pretty fricking awesome, if I may so express myself. A great crowd in an amazing location, and some really, really great poets. The pic below is of Matt Hart, reading from his upcoming collection Sermons and Lectures. The picture gives some sense of the event, though you need to see the Washington Monument lit up in the background behind Matt to get the full effect.