A great weekend in San Antonio

April 18, 2010

Tags: Texas Library Association Convention, TLA, San Antonio, Kathryn Casey

I just returned home from a wonderful weekend in San Antonio, where I was on a panel at the Texas Library Association Convention. Thank you to Sharon and Victoria who invited me to attend, and to all the great librarians who stopped by to meet me.

Libraries are inspiring places, don't you agree? I told the story of my first encounters with the school library, and how I fell in love with one book in particular: The Reader's Guide to Periodic Literature. Strange choice? True. Very true. Why that book? BecauseI was a kid who dreamed of one day writing for magazines, and seeing all those authors' names reassured me that it was a reachable goal, that if I worked hard, one day I would have my name included in the heavy volumes that contained listings of all the periodic literature published in the U.S. in the course of a year.

Many years later, when I wrote for magazines, I dropped in at my public library and looked up my name in the Reader's Guide for the first time. There it was in Times Roman type. I sat back and smiled, thinking of the school girl who dreamed of being a journalist.

Libraries and librarians are, obviously, close to my heart. So the invitation to talk to so many was much appreciated. The panel was great fun. The main draw was erstwhile gubernatorial candidate and oft-quoted Texas humorist Kinky Friedman. My other panel mates included authors Kathleen Kent, Francis Ray, and Ben Rehder. We took turns, and I talked first, which I loved. That meant I wasn't sitting waiting, getting nervous, while the others spoke. Instead, once I finished my ten-minutes at the microphone, I sat back and enjoyed the rest of the program with the audience.

So that's how I spent my weekend, concluded by a stroll down the Riverwalk. Hope yours was great fun as well!