So, I’m registered to attend a couple of days of the Florida Mystery Writer’s of America’s Sleuthfest. It’s local, which means I don’t need to pay for planes or hotels. I can drive up Thursday after a doctor’s appointment, hang out until I’m ready to leave, and sleep in my own bed with my own hubby. (He’s cute, the hubby.)
The problem with a conference of any kind is that there are either blocks of time when you want to attend everything (or even just two things, which still isn’t possible unless you’re living in an alternate sci-fi universe) or blocks of time when you want to attend nothing. This was how it worked with the juvenile justice/correctional education conferences, and the problem becomes compounded if you attend more than one in a year as I had to once. In all fairness, the parking conference I got roped into once (yes, as in parking meters and parking lots and all the various exciting ways to organize these things) was all things I wanted no park of. I’d have had far more fun that trip roaming the outskirts of Vegas in search of abandoned buildings and old neon, but instead I came down with monkey flu (or some equally-evil variant of sickness).
The last time I attended a writing conference was… well, it was before I spent years losing the ability to write by typing rows of used car descriptions and proofing copier toner refill catalog pages and it was certainly before I spent a few years teaching math to kids allergic to fractions. It feels like it must have been far enough back that I’m sure I was a zygote, though I distinctly remember driving.
At any rate, whether I learn anything or not (and realizing I already know things like bring a few containers of water and a pile of Clif Bars in case the “meal” is disgusting or full of meat), my main hope is that I’ll be re-inspired or re-energized, or re-wired and can thus deem myself fully recovered from that 10-month disaster that is over but left its mess stuck to surfaces I can’t scrub clean enough. Plus, I’m taking two days off work — and you can’t go wrong with that unless you spend them trapped in an overflowing toilet at Dulles International.
Lastly, this card looks suspiciously like the MWA-FL mascot: