Thursday, February 16, 2017

An Epiphany of Sorts

Seldom do I ever use the word "writer" to describe myself because I have never thought that I am that person.  I hem and haw about the fact that I write a blog in a somewhat apologetic way as though it is not
a serious endeavor and does not have much meaning other then enlightenment about Mexico and humor at

Whoa.  Yesterday at the San Miguel Literary Festival and Writer's Conference, the Keynote Speaker was
Mary Karr.  She is a writer that is a joy to read.  Not only her fiction/non-fiction but her poetry as well.

Her accomplishments and accolades are far reaching.  This from a girl who grew up in East Texas in one
of the most dysfunctional families that I have ever read about.  She now lives in NYC and is and has been
a Professor at Syracuse University for a long time.

Remembering reading Liar's Club twenty or so years ago was a seminal moment for me.  It was written as a Texan with all the crazy names and situations that only seem to happen in Texas.  Extremely humorous in parts.

She spoke of those things yesterday as she teaches memoir writing among other things at the University.
The more she talked, the more I realized that the blog is a form of a memoir for me.  Now, there ARE some things that at this point in my life still cannot be written about, but even this morning I'm thunderstruck to
realize that for the last ten years this blog has been a legacy of sorts to my children and grandchildren.

It is so darn much fun to sit down and write that it has not been something that has been a serious endeavor.
Not sure if that will change, but it will sure be something that will be written with more care in the future, maybe, ha.

The conference was packed to hear Mary.  She did not disappoint with her humor and Texas colloquialisms.
What a character!

Last evening the speaker was Judy Collins, the singer, activist and amazing woman.  I had a ticket but did not
get there.  I heard that the entire room sang Amazing Grace with her.  Can you imagine how moving that was
for all that were there?  Sorry I missed it.

Tonight is Billy Collins, poet and former Poet Laureate of the United States.  Yes, I have a ticket and hope to be there.

The conference goes on until Sunday evening when Naomi Klein is the final speaker.  There are workshops and all kinds of other activities going on this whole week.  Some are open to the public.  It was astonishing yesterday to discover how many people had come from foreign countries besides the USA and Canada.
Croatia, New Zealand, Australia, Cuba, England and others to just name a few.  This twelve year old conference is growing by leaps and bounds.

Congratulations go out to Susan Page and her staff and all the volunteers who work all year to make this event the only multilingual writers conference in the Americas!

5 comments: said...

So glad you saw Kate. I heard her read a few years ago here in Houston. She's a hoot! Her sister was with her when I saw her. Enjoy Billy Collins, a fine poet and a favorite.

Joyce Wycoff said...

Wear the "writer" mantle proudly. You deserve it. Nice to find your blog.

Babs said...

Hi Kay.......I saw Mary Karr, no one named Kate. Mary Karr is a hoot. My son John said he met her in Austin, but she wasn't lecturing or anything and he said she was hilarious. He gave her a few Texas sayings. He said he doesn't know if she ever used any of them.....Kay, you would have LOVED the conference since you are a published poet and writer as well.

Joyce, thanks but you are a REAL writer with your two books Gratitude Miracles and
Sarana's Gift. I hope to read both........It was great meeting you at the conference.

Steve Cotton said...

I wish I could have been there for the Collins lecture.

Babs said...

Steve, he was quite extraordinary. No lecture but his reading his poetry and talking a bit...........

This conference is amazing with the writers and workshops and lectures that are here.
You might want to give some thought into coming next year. I usually get the preview information in August.........I'll forward it to you.....if I remember.