Monday, April 29, 2013

People I Saw in New York

If you look behind the horse-drawn carriage, you can see the driver wearing a top hat.
A few weeks ago, I visited New York City. To say it's amazing is an understatement.There is so much to see and so much to do, that it's easy to get swept up in the skyscrapers, restaurants, Broadway, Fifth Avenue, Central Park, and the landmarks like the Times Square, Statue of Liberty, Brooklyn Bridge, and the Empire State Building. All of that was incredible, but I'm still amazed by the people. One walk through the hotel and different nationalities and languages overwhelmed me. In one day, I met people from Sydney, Australia; Russia; Istanbul, Turkey; India; China; and Scotland - and that was before lunch!

The languages produced a melody that set the beat for the city. On average, for every ten people I passed, only one was speaking English. Some of the languages I identified, but some were as mysterious as clouds.

Times Square on a Friday night.

The "Naked Cowboy" in Times Square.
Seen in Times Square on a Friday night.
Times Square on a Friday night.

Times Square!
If you want to experience the people, then Times Square is definitely one of the places to go.
Day or night, Times Square is always crowded. For that matter, every where is crowded!
There was one thing I didn't see. There were no celebrity sightings on my trip! But I did get to hear one loud and clear! My conference was next door to a ballroom where another conference was taking place. I didn't see him, but I surely heard him...

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Country Girl Takes a Bite Out of the Big Apple

It's been two weeks since I returned to my home in the coalfields of Southwestern VA from New York City. I was asked by my publisher, Abbott Press, to blog about my experience. I am sharing that blog below. I have added pictures! The link on the Abbott Press Website is:

Dare to dream. I did, and I ended up in New York City. Granted, that may not impress most people, but to me, a woman who’s lived her whole life in the coalfields of Southwestern Virginia, it felt like somebody handed me the moon.

I’m talking about my recent trip to New York City to attend the Writer’s Digest Conference. For three days I went to workshops, listened to the experts in publishing, met literary agents from the top agencies, and heard author Adriana Trigiani give a keynote address that was as entertaining as it was inspirational. Because let’s face it, writers need editors, agents and publishers, but they also need inspiration.

Spending three days surrounded by fellow wordsmiths filled my bucket to the brim with inspiration. For a while, I will have enough to sip on while I write and when I run low, I’ll seek out another gathering of folks like me — people who soak up words like other folks breathe air. It doesn’t matter what you write or which genre you claim as your own, what matters is that you write.

Central Park
I didn’t just meet writers; I met a myriad of storytellers. Some were fledglings just beginning the writer’s journey, like the 17-year-old writer who was there with her father, and others had made writing their life’s work. Some were there because they were self-published or were considering self-publishing, some were traditionally published, and some hoped to be published. Many were there to experience the Pitch Slam and perhaps find the perfect agent.

All in all, no matter how diverse the conference members were, they had one thing in common — each had a story to tell. Each person had dared to dream that somewhere in the world, an audience waited to read their story. Some of them may have been like me, the daughter and granddaughter of coal miners, finally realizing my dream of publishing my first novel and taking a bite out of the Big Apple.