I wasn't sure what to expect from "The Author-Editor Connection" but I found all the panelists to be excellent, and the information useful. Ron Carlson was funny as he talked about his relationships with editors and the expectations of his students. Janet Burroway was very direct in talking about her mixed experiences with trade and independent publishers, and the two editors--one from University of Iowa Press, one from Graywolf--were also forthcoming about expectations from their authors. One surprise to me was that Graywolf, as a relatively small independent press, still gets almost almost all of its work from agented authors.
Next I went to "Shameless Promotion: Get the Book to the Readers" and this was inspiring, because it discussed real and proven techniques for book promotion. It was a little corny at times, but the presenters (Marisha Chamberlain, Margaret Hasse, Todd Boss, Jon Spayde) made it memorable. Their tips are shared at Squad 365: Book Marketing. Very useful stuff.
Next was a very interesting but less stimulating panel on "Omniscience: We Know, We Know," featuring Peter Turchi, Robert Boswell, Antonya Nelson, and Laura Kasischke. I was especially interested in what Boswell and Turchi had to say and ended up buying one of Turchi's books down in the bookfair.
I skipped the next session in order to grab lunch and make another tour of the bookfair, an overwhelming spectacle of publishing, and a place to make connections, meet new people and see old friends. And there were several panels I was interested in for the following session, but I didn't get to that one either, because we were meeting Queens MFA folks up at The Gage. It was good to see Jessica and Tracy and Mike and Rebecca and Geoff and Steve and Sylvia and all the rest there. We then came back to the hotel for the Sewanee party, a highlight for me.
It was wonderful to see Cherie Peters and Wyatt Prunty there. Somehow I missed Kevin Wilson at the party, but I think he was there. Richard Bausch came in and we got to speak to him for a little while. I saw Andrew Hudgins and Erin McGraw as well as Claudia Emerson. And there were dozens of Sewanee Fellows, Scholars, and Participants from my various years at the conference. I wish that could have lasted a bit longer! And, in fact, we did spill down to the hotel bar to keep the fun going another couple of hours, before crashing.