Thank you for the opportunity to attend the Black Writers Reunion Conference in Las Vegas. The news that I won the scholarship could not have come at a better time. I had just lost my stepfather in March, and my biological father in February. These two men were my biggest fans and cheerleaders, and I felt so discouraged about a lot of things. When I submitted my short story God had given me the word that I needed to stop procrastinating and being scared and move forward with my dreams. It always pays to step out on faith. I obtained so much quality information on how to self-publish my book as well as find an editor and artist for my cover. Reshonda Tate Billingsley’s workshop was awesome and informative and she is such a down-to-earth and sincere woman. M. Kali Mincy’s workshop made me feel as if I was getting information that people would pay thousands of dollars to have, and I was blessed to receive it. She kept it real with us but encouraged us to continue to make our work our number one priority. A lot of times I think that we as writers allow life’s situations to take a front seat and our aspirations to write take a back seat.
This conference has shown me that not only do I have something to say in my poetry and my stories, but that I am doing myself and my readers a disservice when I do not put my thoughts to paper and get it out there to the public. I may have a good poem or story; however, it is not doing me any good if it is just in my head. The Christian writing workshop was also informative. As a Christian woman who writes I felt hindered and fearful of what I should or could write in my stories, and Mrs. Deloney helped clear it all up for me and showed me that I was on the right track. In the end I have to stay true to myself and my work. God will work out the rest. I look forward to coming to the event next year.