AWP, Travel, Vacation Planning

Be kind to the help

MCL-ETYCB Single Suite Hotel Room
Do you ever walk into a hotel room and wonder if those are really clean sheets on the bed? | MCL-ETYCB Single Suite Hotel Room (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This morning, I came across this article begging attendees at the upcoming AWP (Association of Writers and Writing Programs) Conference in Seattle not to be “assholes” to the help while they’re in town. The article specifically focuses on the hotel housekeepers who will be cleaning up after AWP guests throughout the conference. As a former hotel housekeeper myself, I have a few points that I would like to add.

I worked at a small hotel right after high school. I was paid minimum wage, and like one of the housekeepers mentioned in the article, I had only a few minutes to turn over each room. It didn’t matter how big the room was or how badly it might have been trashed. If the room wasn’t completed within the allotted number of minutes, the hotel docked my pay. Which meant there were days when I did this disgusting, back-breaking work for LESS than minimum wage. Needless to say, I only lasted one summer before rushing to a cushy job down the block at Wal-Mart. Some of these workers don’t have that option. Continue reading “Be kind to the help”

Chicago, Conventions & Conferences, Travel

AWP 2012 Conference – Chicago

The Palmer House Hilton
The lobby of the Palmer House Hilton in downtown Chicago - Image via Wikipedia

Well, I returned safely from my quick two days at the Association of Writers and Writing Programs’ 2012 Conference and Book Fair in Chicago. The conference was a whirlwind of activity with over 10,000 attendees filling ballrooms at both the Chicago Hilton and the Palmer House Hilton in downtown Windy City.

I came home with a good 10 – 15 pages of notes on the sessions I attended at the conference, so there’s no way I will hit it all in one blog post. But I do have a lot of useful information I’d like to share with my readers, so I think I will just touch on some of the surface fluff for today and then do a series of posts discussing the down and dirty writing stuff I picked up.

Since I wasn’t able to make it to Chicago until Friday afternoon (I was teaching a class Friday morning,) they were all out of AWP tote bags and conference programs by the time I arrived. So, I was a little disoriented trying to find my way around. By the way, I’d love to get my hands on a program still, so if you went and happen to have an extra one, I’d gladly take it off your hands!

I went to a couple of sessions Friday and then went out to eat with a professor and one of her friends at the Tamarind (I’m planning a restaurant review blog post too, so stay tuned for more info on that) before heading back to my room for the night.  Continue reading “AWP 2012 Conference – Chicago”

Chicago, Conventions & Conferences, Mount Mary College, Travel, Writing Programs

Windy city-bound today

English: Author Margaret Atwood attends a read...

I’m off to the Windy City today for the Association of Writers and Writing Programs’ (AWP) 2012 Annual Conference and Book Fair. This year’s conference includes a variety of readings from published authors, a keynote address by author Margaret Atwood (pictured at right,) and a plethora of educational sessions. There are so many options to choose from, I’m having a hard time deciding which to do. But here’s a quick-list of a few sessions I’m hoping to hit today: Continue reading “Windy city-bound today”