My oversized bag is packed. My schedule is eleven pages long. I am giddy with anticipation every time I think of three, little letters: AWP.
You see, I’ve been waiting for this for a very long time. The AWP, or the Association of Writers & Writing Programs, annual conference begins tomorrow morning. It’s a big deal. More than 15,000 men and women will travel to the Minneapolis Convention Center for three days of nerdy and wonderful fun.
I first heard of AWP five years ago as an undergrad. My writing professor cancelled two days of class so she could learn about poetry and attend one of the world’s largest bookfairs. I was immediately jealous. I wanted to grow as a writer; I wanted to hear some of the greats read their works, attend sessions on young adult literature, discuss my craft, and buy my weight in books.
So, I did the logical thing: I googled. I found out the AWP conference traveled ever year to a different city. As a debt-ridden college student, I had no hope of attending the following year’s conference in some far away, coastal city, but I vowed to check back, praying that in the coming years, AWP would be within driving distance.
In the following years, I remembered my vow, and lo and behold, I finally saw the most beautiful sight: Future Conferences, Minneapolis, Minnesota, April 8-11, 2015. It didn’t matter that the conference was three years away, I was ecstatic and I was going.
Tonight, I sit on the cusp of a dream. A dream that comes with the dawn. So, come on, morning. I’m waiting.