Saturday, May 24, 2008

Dispatch from NLWC, Alburquerque Friday.

7:30 a.m. is the perfect time to get started on Friday’s activities at the 6th Annual Latino Writers Conference in the National Hispanic Cultural Center. By the wey: Click images for a larger view.

My first meeting takes me to Anne Hawkins’ Agent Workshop. She covers the details of the book deal in a comprehensive and fully entertaining morning. Note the agent's commitment to new media--in the center panel she displays her electronic book device from Sony. No more paper when considering author output. She receives files instead of cardboard boxes and easily carries a handful of for-consideration manuscripts on the airplane, in her portfolio.

Saturday, several people will be meeting individually with Ms. Hawkins for a serious interview regarding that writer’s path toward representation and publication. Some writers enjoyed the opportunity after Anne's talk to plan the next day's conversation.

Lunchtime amenities surpass yesterday’s consideration. We haven’t seen anything yet, as we learn at the banquet!

The first afternoon session includes the Internet Resources Panel, La Bloga’s raison d’etre at the Conference.

Scheduling allowed ample time for the attenders to relax and continue lunchtime conversations and more of the comradeship that is the NLWC second-most vital contribution to these writers’ experience.

The Internet Resources Panel started with an Richard J. Griego, who manages the New Mexico Viewpoint website, followed by University of Denver Profe, and EFE correspondent, Lydia Gil, Professor at U Denver and the regional correspondent to EFE, the Spanish news agency, Lydia writes regular bookreviews for the organization and has agreed to an occasional contribution to La Bloga reporting on American and USAmerican Spanish-language literature.

Friday was a day for practical sessions, such as the Publishers and Agents Panel that followed the Internet Resources Panel. Presenters represented Arte Publico Press, Chusma House, University of New Mexico, the New Mexico Art Museum, as well as two literary agents.

The banquet celebrated two important awards. To Verónica Gonzalez, El Premio Aztlán, for her novel Twin Time, or How Death Befell Me. The NHCC Literary Award received by Martín Espada proved the highlight of the evening, with the poet’s reading of several poems. Reflecting the cultural richness of the NHCC, Espada remarked that the beautiful display of Puerto Rican posters evoked the night’s list of readings.

Earlier in the week, Jovie Last, Espada's Brooklyn Homegirl, showed Espada a drawing of the poet done by Ms. Last’s father, whose poster collection comprised the poet-inspiring hangings.

Entertainment followed the poet's thoroughly engaging reading, Roberto Mondragón and two primos cantando Las Mañanitas, New Mexico style, and several other musical treats.

I'll post Saturday's photos at my earliest access to a WI-FI connection. Saturday's a travel day back to California, to escape the cold and wet of the surprise New Mexico weather.

La Bloga welcomes guest columnists. If you'd enjoy sharing a review, a writer's essay, or something you believe appropriate to La Bloga's readers,
click here or leave a comment when you have the work ready to go up.


Manuel Ramos said...

Michael - thanks for the dispatches from Albq. NM - I appreciated your reports and the photos; I'm sure all of us at La Bloga enjoyed the news and views, you did a fine job representing us all.

msedano said...

thank you. i will have a fleshed out version of my remarks, supplemented with summaries of my co-panelists. i'll follow up that column with an overall assessment of the conference.

i was deeply gratified to receive so many compliments on behalf of la bloga's work. as sally field might have said, "they like us, they really like us."

estupendo and completamente impresionante la conferencia. totally cool.

ABQJames said...

I would have love to attend this conference however the price of registration was prohibitive. Nice to read about the event here.