So she could blog for an hour. My, the Denver Airport is just crawling with kids! In the shuttle to the airport, she rode with six fellow conference attendees, and got into a very pleasant conversation with a poet from Arizona (who knows self’s ex-Stanford classmate, Beth Alvarado!) The poet’s name is Rebecca Seiferle, and she works for The Art Center in Tucson.
As soon as self gets home, she’s gonna download the pictures she took at the conference: the pictures of Evelina, Luisa, Brian, Margarita, Rebecca Olson, and Kelsey. The best times self had at the conference were hanging out at the Calyx table. It’s too bad Calyx can’t afford to come every year (The charge for a table is $450, and that’s a lot for a small press). In fact, kudos to all those brave little magazines (like tuesdayjournal.org, and Poetry Flash) who pulled together the funds to make it. For the Bookfair would be so much the poorer without their presence.
Self noticed that Isotope wasn’t there this year. Oh, Isotope, what a brave little magazine that is! And she couldn’t find the table for The Chattahoochee Review. But she did see John Wang at Juked. And yes, she did finally get to meet Martha Bates of Michigan State University Press, in person. And almost just before the Bookfair closed, self got to hug Amy Hoffman of the Women’s Review of Books.
But back to Calyx. Where would self be in this life without Calyx? Nowhere, she would be nowhere. It’s amazing: Margarita Donnelly and son both attended the same high school: Sacred Heart Prep in Atherton. And Margarita is going to attend her 50th high school reunion this June! That should be a blast!
Self also wants to say that Anthony Varallo, who was book-signing with her for The Writer’s Center; and Josh Weil, also book-signing, were absolute gents. And self can’t wait to read their books.
And, if self weren’t so worried about getting left behind by the last Frontier flight to San Jose, she would make this a much longer post. And say things like:
Becky Olson (Calyx Assistant Editor)’s favorite poet is Bridget Pegeen Kelly
And self talked to her a little bit about “the new feminism” (This would make a great topic for a panel, self feels!), and Becky talked about a new, “post-gender” type of feminism, which is “less about womanhood” and more like an “eco-feminism”. She says that in Oregon there is a new coming together of environmentalism and feminism and this excites self so much, she wishes it could be imported to California!
“Humming the Blues” is Calyx’s newest book. There was a gorgeous yellow poster on the table (and by the way, the Calyx table had the most books of any table at the Bookfair! And self isn’t saying that just because she’s a Calyx author!)
Self asked Margarita Donnelly what she saw as the biggest challenge confronting Calyx in the last decade, and Margarita said, the demise of independent bookstores (which coincided with the rise of the chains), and also the bankruptcies of former distributors like Bookslingers, Book People, and Pacific Pipeline.
Self thinks we should all write to Oprah, and make a pitch for women’s press books to get on her book club list of recommendations!
There was one feminist panel at the AWP, and it was scheduled for the last part of the afternoon, and on it were supposed to be representatives from The Feminist Press, Seal Press, and others (but they forgot to include Calyx). At the last minute, the sole feminist panel at AWP was cancelled! For shame!
People, write to Oprah. She needs to know.