Interesting Things I learned at AWP (Association of Writers and Writing Programs):

Look at the map of the city before you get there, you might find cool places to eat and be able to find your way around a lot more easier. The Google Maps app cannot be trusted, sometimes it leads you to very strange places.

Try to get the closest hotel you can to the convention center that is hosting AWP. It’s not fun to walk almost a mile to get there. Especially if you’re going to be carting around all the books, and lit magazines you’ve bought during the day.

If you’re staying in a room with more than just two people bring an extension cord, It gives you more plugs to use because you never know how many outlets there will be at your hotel.

Bring a tote back, you will be buying a lot of books and it’s always a good idea to have a place to put them. Also the tote back is good for bringing small snacks, a water bottle and other things like band-aids, headache medicine. Because trust me you don’t want to have to pay $3.50 for a water bottle.

Remember to bring a good pair of shoes. I thought I would be okay with the boots I brought but I killed my feet within the first day. Dealing with blisters is never fun.

Find a post office not in the convention center. If you’re flying you don’t have the space for your books so most people will send them through the mail, but the wait for the post office there was almost two hours, the line was out the door! Even if you have to walk a little bit further the smaller line is worth it.

If you know someone who works at a table ask them if you could stash your things there, it was really useful when I had a coat and I could just hide it away and didn’t have to worry about it for the rest of the day but don’t forget to pick it!

Realize that you’re only human, thinking you can go to 5 panels everyday is just over reaching yourself. Take a breath, drink a coffee (or a beverage of your choice) and explore the city. It’s nice to just walk around and think about the cool things you learned instead of trying to stuff as much information down your throat at one time. Also give yourself a long period of time to look through the book fair. Because let’s face it, books are awesome!


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