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If you attended the Association of Writers and Writing Programs conference last week in Boston, could you take 30 seconds to answer a few multiple-choice questions about your experience for this IHE-exclusive survey? It’s all completely anonymous and very unscientific. I thank you.


That’s not me sitting at our bookfair table, peddling new issues of The McNeese Review and offering free beads to passersby. That’s my old traveling companion Frenchy, whom I mention from time to time, when local color is needed. He can do about anything—most recently he’s been a deep-sea diving coach to a National Book Award winner—so I guess it shouldn’t have come as a surprise that he’s also a consummate salesman. But I’ve known him nearly 30 years, and only at this conference, after I saw him in action, did he admit that his father, Colonel Louie, told him early on, “Boy, you could sell bull crap to a farmer.”

So he and our grad students sold out all the journals and event posters we took with us. If you didn't get one at the conference or you’re interested in an excellent issue, hot off the press, with the work of Sonja Livingston, Mark Wisniewski, Sandra Beasley, Amelia Gray, Donají Olmedo, and many other excellent poets, writers, and artists, shoot me an e-mail ( and I’ll let you know how to get one. I’m awfully proud of our MFA and MA students’ work on this journal, and of the huge talents included in it.

As for the conference, I consider it a triumph that I didn’t get a horrible cold, as I have at every other AWP I’ve attended. We got a lot done, had some fun, and the answers to my own survey are:

No; am glad; Gatsby; nada pues nada; sitting down to chat with Sonja Livingston while Richard Bausch told the one about the monkey and the cue ball; abomination; bookfair; Jeroboam; gluttonous; and it'll make your wallet throb.

Please answer for yourself!

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