Laura in tech for the workshop

Live from San Miguel de Allende #1

Well, I’ve arrived at the San Miguel Writer’s Conference in San Miguel de Allende! I flew in Friday night and have been enjoying the company and hospitality of my old friend and host, Susan Evans, ever since. Yesterday, we wandered the cobblestoned streets, walked through the Candelaria where blocks of succulents, cacti and herbs were laid out for sale. Later, I bought a light green linen dress (something I shopped for repeatedly in Tuscany last spring and never found), and we went out to dinner where I had two ginger/mint margaritas, something I never indulge it at home. As they say, when in Mexico…

I’m staying in Susan’s beautiful casita for the duration of the conference, a welcoming space complete with full kitchen, living room, bedroom and one of coziest beds I’ve ever had the pleasure to crawl into. There’s a gas fireplace and a balcony, both of which come in handy, as the temperature at 7000 feet can vary from 40 degrees or less when I wake up in the morning to 80 degrees in the afternoon. Packing for this trip was quite a challenge. Not just because of the wild temperature variations, but because at home, wearing the same old pair of jeans and alternating a few shirts and scarves is more than adequate for all my teaching on Zoom. Here, where I’ll be up close and personal with my students. I’ve had to take a lot more care with my appearance.

The writer’s conference doesn’t start until after lunch tomorrow, but today I carted in a case of 24 copies of The Burning Light of Two Stars. Carrying books to sell is one of my very least favorite activities in the world. My one big wish for the conference is that I don’t have to cart those books back home again.

In twenty minutes, I’m having a sound check for the one event I’m doing at this conference that isn’t in person but is actually online: a virtual memoir panel called The Real Truth About Telling the Truth. Rather than being in person like everything else, we’re broadcasting the memoir panel on Zoom for a worldwide audience. My two co-panelists, Debra Gwartney and Marion Roach Smith will be joining from Hawaii and New York, while I’ll be live here in San Miguel, shut into a hotel room that’s been set up as a Zoom studio.

We’re about to go live with our little rehearsal…I’ve got to go. How fun! I’m finally getting excited about being back at the Writer’s Conference. It’s been five or six years?

One more thing—if you’re writing memoir, it’s not too late to sign up for our Thursday panel. You can watch us, with many combined decades of memoir teaching between us, from anywhere in the world. And if you can’t make it live you can catch it on the replay. Everyone who signs up will be sent the video.

We’re live for rehearsal in three, two, one…

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