there's something in the air

Photo via {frolic}

I had the most wonderful time at the Women on Writing (WoW) Conference today! I don't even know where to begin, its all too a good way. Maybe after I've calmed down and re-centered, I'll be able to reflect on the experience and share them with all of you here. In the meantime, here are bits and pieces:

I've never been to a writing conference or a writer's workshop but I've been in a rut lately and desperately needed inspiration so I decided to go to this one. I almost cringed at the fee but luckily I remembered to tell them that I work for the school district and they gave me a discount!

The conference was held in Skyline College, just west off of Skyline Boulevard and its breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean.

Standing in line to get breakfast, a lady next to me asked if I am a writer. I was surprised at how quickly and confidently I said "yes". Am I finally embracing my "writer self"? I hope so.

Julia Whitty, the keynote speaker, was so eloquent and inspiring that there were moments in her speech that I felt like I was being punched in the gut. She talked about writing as if you are tiptoeing on the precipice, standing on the edge between solid ground and empty air, knowing that the edge is an unsettling place to be but at the same time it is the only place that you'd rather be -- doesn't this describe perfectly how utterly exhilarating and scary writing is?

I attended Susan Wooldridge's (author of Poemcrazy) poetry workshop and again, was blown away by the realization that I was there, listening to this woman speak, when 10 years ago I was just standing at a bookstore in the Philippines flipping through the pages of her book because I was drawn by its cover and the phrase freeing your life with words. Back then, my days were filled memorizing names of bones and muscles, studying neuroanatomy, and dissecting cadavers. Never in a million years did I imagine that I'd be writing poetry, or in fact, that I'd be writing at all.

Susan gave us "word tickets" as writing prompts and three of the words that I got were falling, unfold, flight. These are some of my favorite words and I thought it was serendipitous that I got them.

During the workshops, I wrote a poem and an essay that I feel rather excited about. They're still very drafty but I might share them here later.

Finally, its hard to explain how much the experience moved me, the closest thing that I could think of are these words from Annie Dillard: Right now, you are flying. Right now, your job is to hold your breath.


  1. Sounds wonderful.

    I've always been one who loves reading great writing (not the one writing it, or even wanting to write it). I'm glad people like you are out there to write and keep me entertained :)

  2. Wish I'd been inspired!

  3. Sounds delightful, so glad you had a terrific time. So glad you wrote things you are excited about. What a gift, all of it.

  4. angela, thanks! i'm glad you liked it.

    jo, i wish you were there too! would love to write with you someday.

    deb, yes its great to be excited about what you're writing. its not always that way and i'm thankful when it is.