With a count of close to…

With a count of close to 60 attendees, I'd say the opening reception was a tremendous success! We knew that between volunteer staff and panelists, we'd have close to 20, but anything beyond that was gravy. :-) Among the luminaries attending were four of my creative writing students, one of my colleagues (very sweet of her), and the provost of Roosevelt (ditto).

The readers were great, offering very different kinds of work, from Nepalese short stories to experimental science fiction to performance poetry. The work that stuck with me the most was Shailja Patel's piece about language, which was just gorgeous. Sachin Waikar's "Taxi Driver Auntie" brought down the house, and was a perfect closing. :-) Fabulous energy in the room!

I think everyone who attended had a terrific time. We ate almost all the food (the crab cakes were yummy) and ran out of wine, but hey, that's just the sign of a good party, right?

Sadly, I had a rough night after it was all done. Came home and chilled with Smallville, but then pretty much couldn't sleep. I dozed from about 2:30 to 4:30 a.m., and then gave up. Got up, made piles of stuff all ready for packet stuffing, cleaned up the kitchen a bit, had breakfast and am now drinking tea. In a bit, I'll cook a little more; several panelists and staff are coming for packet stuffing, and I'm making rice and curries. I also need to print out signs for the site, print out the current registration list, write checks and thank you cards for the authors, close pre-registration on the website, shower and dress by 10. So it's probably just as well that I got up early.

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