Writers’ Conference events still available

By Susan Page

The Ninth Annual San Miguel Writers’ Conference is now in full swing at the Real de Minas Hotel. More than 300 people have traveled to San Miguel from Canada, the US, other parts of Mexico, and even Europe to take advantage of a gathering of distinguished writers. In the remaining days of the Conference, event tickets are still available, and some events are free and open to the public.

San Miguel International Writers’ Conference and Literary Festival
Fri, Feb 14–Mon, Feb 17
Keynote addresses
Book signing reception
Conference bookstore
Intensive writing workshops
Real de Minas Hotel
Ancha de San Antonio 1


Keynote addresses

Remaining keynote speakers include Laura Esquivel (Like Water for Chocolate) on Friday, February 14, at 6pm; Ellen Bass (award-winning poet) on Saturday, February 15, at 1:30pm; and Benjamin Alire Sáenz (In Perfect Light, which was selected for this year’s San Miguel Big Read) on Saturday, February 15, at 6pm.

Co-cultural panel

On Sunday afternoon, February 16 at 1:30pm, a panel including some of Canada’s and Mexico’s most important writers will discuss the use of fantasy and magical realism in literature. The panel will be presented in English and will include Yann Martel (Life of Pi), Alberto Ruy-Sánchez (author and editor of the Artes in Mexico magazine series); Ignacio Padilla (novelist and short story writer); Jorge Volpi (In Search of Klingsor); and Rosa Beltrán, professor at Mexico’s UNAM University.

Free gala book-signing reception

Free and open to the public is the book-signing reception to take place in the gardens behind the Hotel Real de Minas on Saturday afternoon at 3pm. Signing books and greeting readers will be Calvin Trillin, Yann Martel, Laura Esquivel, Benjamin Alire Sáenz, and Duncan Tonatiuh.

Bookstore and CD sale

Browsing in the Conference Bookstore will be a treat because this particular collection of books will never again be assembled. To be found are books by conference faculty, conference participants, and members of the San Miguel Literary Sala. Also available will be CD recordings of all of the conference keynote addresses plus each of the 56 daily workshops presented during the week. If you could not attend the Conference, listen to recordings of the sessions that interest you!

Theater extraordinaire

The theater piece, Women of Will, written and acted by Tina Packer and Nigel Gore, direct from a long run in New York, chronicles the development of Shakespeare’s attitudes about women from his early to his later plays. The two actors are seasoned Shakespeare actors who have garnered many awards for their work over many years. This will be presented in the Real de Minas ballroom on Sunday, February 16, at 6pm.


Readings and audience participation

The program “Women’s Voices” has been produced to rave review across the States and is soon to move to England, and now Mexico! As one reviewer wrote, “We expected vividly authentic writing from the accomplished authors. Women’s Voices will take place on Monday evening, February 17, at 6pm as the closing event of the Conference.

Intensive writing workshops

Spaces are still available in the 17 four-hour intensive writing workshops with world-class, greatly revered teachers on topics ranging from fiction and creative non-fiction to travel writing and travel photography to poetry and even social media.

To obtain tickets

For tickets to any of the above events, come to the Bookstore Tent behind the Real de Minas Hotel from 9am to 5pm daily until the Conference closes on February 17. For more information about all of the above events, visit the Conference website at www.sanmiguelwritersconference2014.org.


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