Last week I had the pleasure of returning to Berry College. I had been there before as a participant in the Southern Women Writers Conference in 2003. I knew from that experience that the folks at Berry knew how to treat a writer right, but that didn’t prepare me for the warm welcome I received last Thursday night.
The Berry College First Year Experience Committee chose my first novel, Leaving Atlanta, as the summer book-club pick. This meant that they bought copies of the novel for all the incoming students! And that wasn’t even the best part.
The best part, hands down, was the taco-in-a-bag served at the welcome reception. It was a Mexican twist on the old-school frito-pie. (See, we southerners respect globalization.)
But really, the best part of interacting with the wonderful students at Berry. I gave my lecture at 8pm on Thursday to a packed cathedral. (Keep in mind that this was the evening of the premiere of “Gray’s Anatomy.”) I gave my address and then launched into Q&A. You wouldn’t believe how smart the questions were.
The next day, I had breakfast with the Black Student Alliance and those young folks were ready to take on the next challenges of thier lives.
Thanks, Berry College, for all the hospitality. I hope to come back real soon.
Pictures by Richie.