Today, on the last day of the Willamette Writers Conference, there was a first page “Gong Show” where each participant submitted their page to a panel of expert judges, lit agents. Each page was read by one of two readers, until the agents pulled the plug, then ever-so-tactfully explained why. (No bodily fluids in the first page, please!)
To close out the conference, Sheila Hamilton gave a moving speech on the healing power of words, underscoring the fact that personal trauma is the root of many mental illnesses. Took some concentration to keep from getting weepy.