The weekend started with a very welcome email. Alexandra Owens, the Executive Director of the ASJA Educational Foundation, wrote to tell me, well, I’ll let her say it in her own words:
It is with great pleasure that I hereby notify you of your selection as a recipient of a 2013 ASJA Writers Conference scholarship. Congratulations! We were very impressed with the quality and number of applications we received, and yours was indeed a standout. We are very happy to offer you a place at the Conference.
For those who don’t know already, ASJA is the American Society of Journalists and Authors. Their annual conference is at the end of April in New York City. I had applied for a scholarship that would cover the cost of the two-day registration (which, as you might guess, is not cheap). So I’m in. Ah, but it doesn’t stop there (or perhaps, “But wait, there’s more!”).
Not only do I get the registration fee waived, they also toss in a ticket to the ASJA Awards Presentation event being held that Thursday evening. While Friday and Saturday are open to non-members, Thursday is reserved for special sessions open only to ASJA members (of which I am not one…yet). I still can’t attend the day events but I’ll get a chance to sit in as ASJA acknowledges the work of their members in various categories. And as luck would have it, an acquaintance of mine turns out to be one of the winners. Is that karma or what?
But that isn’t all. I also get a 30-minute mentoring session with “an established, professional writer specializing in your topic of choice.” Now all I need is a topic of choice.
All in all this is exciting stuff. And that’s even before figuring in all of the great presentations and workshops during the two days. Keynote speaker A.J. Jacobs will tell us about his most recent experiences trying to become “the healthiest person in the world.” In fact I recently finished one of his earlier books The Know-It-All, which chronicles his mildly insane project of reading the entire 32-volume hard copy Encyclopedia Britannica. I’ve heard him speak before so know that it will be an entertaining luncheon.
Of course, I’ll likely mention a time or two about my forthcoming book on Nikola Tesla. I had some great news on that front earlier in the week as well. But wait there’s more! (Couldn’t resist). Two other exciting events happened this past week as well. I’ll save those for another post. For now I’m off to get myself psyched for New York City. And what better way to do that than listening to Alicia Keys.