Today I discover how much I've forgotten about being the Compleat Traveler, I must keep commentary short to the accompanying images. I plugged the laptop into an outlet at the NHCC and when I packed up, left the power converter in the wall. Menso me.
The morning begins with an arresting talk by Don Rudolfo Anaya, with the key message that kept being repeated throughout the day: if you say you're going to be a writer, you already are. Thus, diligence, discipline, trust your characters, enjoy the privilege of writing, and most critically, forget publishing. Get a good editor!
Then comes a major treat, a tour of el torreón, a watchtower Yeats would have loved, made all the more so with the breathtaking mural exectued by Frederico Vigil. The visit, curated by the NHCC's principal fundraiser, Mara Holguin, literally blinded the visitors--no photos allowed, as the center reserves the exclusive control over the process and images. Add this site to El Castillo de Chapultepec and the Reina Sofia in Madrid, who similarly have this strange notion that the public must be restricted in its ability to share what they see.
After the tour, the workshops--the business of the conference begins. With simultaneous workshops running, attenders must pick and choose. I selected prose fiction sessions led by Helen Viramontes, Kathleen Azevedo, and Rolando Hinojosa-Smith.
Kathleen Azevedo's workshop (click for larger view):
Rolando Hinojosa's workshop (click for larger view):
I'm sure the wonderful chow has a lot to do with my forgetfulness. Great acknowledgement and thanks goes to the unnamed staff who tirelessly see to the details that make a conference like this as wonderful and enjoyable as it can be. Obviously enjoying the variety tan rico are Hinojosa and Espada.
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