Tuesday, October 28, 2008

BWC 17: The Condor meets Bart Simpson

This year I'm fortunate to help organize the 17th annual Baltimore Writers' Conference, a daylong gathering where writers who have published and writers who haven't drift around like bees in a garden of words, cross pollinating every which way. This is how amazing the conference can be: We've got the author of Six Days of the Condor, and a novelist who spent four years writing scripts for The Simpsons, and a short story writer who has won two of the major awards given solely to short story collections.

I'm eager to hear Bruce Jacobs, who wrote Race Manners and Race Manners for the 21st Century. In his book, first published in the 1990s, he described ways in which race can be discussed with candor and generosity of spirit. I've heard him speak before, and he's smart and kind. Another highlight will be sitting next to Lia Purpura as we run a panel about creative nonfiction. Lia is a poet and essayist, and she comes at creative nonfiction as a lyricist. As a nonfiction writer with a journalism background, I love reading and listening to the nonfiction writers who approach the genre from a lyrical, poetic stance. The workmanlike moth astonished by the butterfly, that sort of thing.

The whole shebang starts early in the morning on Saturday, Nov. 8, at Towson University. Be you moth or butterfly or bee, if you'd care to register, visit the BWC Web site.

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