After a short sleep, I woke up this morning at probably 5:50 to another roommate’s trash-can lid sound emitting from his iPhone. It might have been a gong. Either way, it did the trick…for me. I wasn’t upset about being up because I had wanted to get to the convention as early as possible. A friend had a poster session that began at 8. With a bagel in my belly, I hit the road with my Chestnut Praline Latte and got there around 8:20. It was good to see my colleague, and I was inspired by her work and our brief catch-up chat. More on that in a moment.
Let me speak to the exhibit hall of my convention. I know thousands of English teachers under one roof sounds, perhaps, like a raucous group of activists who bleed red ink, but the people I spoke to while in lines or at tables were some of the most genuine and funny people I’ve ever met. They love books; they love teaching; they love sharing stories.
I caught the end of a session on blogging for teachers, and I learned about two pretty well known sites:
Everyone I spoke to at these sessions felt these blogs were among the best going for teacher-writers. I had not considered writing about my profession; I have decided that will be coming soon.
This leads me to my day’s highlight!
Just after the session with the bloggers, the same room was used for a session entitled “Meet the Editors.” These editors were from NCTE’s journals. In short, attendees had a chance to learn submission guidelines and pitch ideas for upcoming issues. I was able to speak to a column editor for English Journal, who gave me very positive feedback about an idea I have for a column. At the same table were the chief editors, and I spoke with one of them who identified with my concept and also encouraged me to write it! I’m going to start on it soon and submit it. I might have a real shot, folks!
Anyway, it was a great day overall. I met a few more authors (including Cory Doctorow, above) picked up about 8-10 more books for my classroom, and left the conference feeling rejuvenated and excited about my profession! While I may not be able to attend each year, I do hope to attend again in the coming years. Who knows…maybe I’ll be one of the authors this time!