In a Dec. 8 post, I wrote about Colorado poet Aaron Abeyta coming to Cheyenne June 5-7 as the keynoter for the Wyoming Writers, Inc., annual conference.
What I forgot to mention are the other fine writers and editors serving as faculty at the conference. Fiction writer and essayist Laura Pritchett from Fort Collins will be there, as well as Kent Nelson, a great short story writer from Salida, Colo. Editor Patrick Thomas will represent Milkweed Editions, one of Pritchett's publishers ("Hell's Bottom, Colorado") and one of America's great non-profit presses based in Minneapolis/St. Paul. Other editors include Tiffany Schofield from Five Star Publishing and Meghan Saar, senior editor of True West Magazine.
The WWInc conference launches the summer art season in Wyoming. School's out, the flowers are in bloom, and the snow is mostly over. People enjoy the outdoors all day and sip Wyoming-made IPAs on the front porch in the evening. Air Guard C-130s and Blackhawks buzz our house and the neighbor kid pops wheelies on his dirtbike. Al over the state, people dig music festivals, art fairs and brewfests. The mountains, too -- can't forget those.
At the writers' conference, I've agreed to serve as emcee for Friday and Saturday night's open readings. I enjoy the job. Each writer (me included) gets five minutes for their prose or poetry. Some accompany themselves on guitars or kazoos. When the timer sounds at the end of five minutes, the writer has to sit down. The hook comes out if they don't. You don't want to get the hook. It goes on your permanent record.
See you in June in Cheyenne.