NYC recap

IMG_0772I spent Thursday-Saturday in NYC this past week. My “anchor event” was the American Society of Journalists and Authors conference, where I delivered the welcome keynote on Friday. I have gone to this conference most years since (I think) 2005, so it was an honor to be asked to speak. I am getting to know the Roosevelt Hotel quite well. I had not, however, been up to the roof deck bar. This photo was taken up there after a long day of conference-going, editor-meeting, and the like.

I did a few NYC pilgrimages. I went downtown to meet an editor who works in the World Trade Center area, so I visited the IMG_0764memorials. The pools were incredibly well done. All the names spelled out along the borders inspire being thoughtful, reflective. I also walked around the graveyard by St. Paul’s Chapel. The 200-year-old dates on those tombstones put a bit of a memento mori thought in my head: we pass the dates of our deaths every year, never knowing that we are doing so. It is an interesting thing to ponder.

I went to Central Park twice to run. Once was on Thursday afternoon, when I had to wade around the crowds. The second time was early Saturday morning. The streets were nearly empty and the park itself fairly empty too (except for a surprising number of dog walkers with their dogs not on leash — I guess that’s when people figure no one will notice!) The park is such a beautiful place, and the beautiful thing about being at a conference without kids is that I went to bed at 10:30, woke up at 6:30, ran several miles and still made it to the conference by 8:30 A.M.!

I hung out with Dorie Clark on Saturday afternoon before heading back to Philadelphia. Sunday was very kid-intensive: up with the baby early, chasing the little one at the sidelines of my daughter’s soccer game. Then my husband took the baby to our 6-year-old’s soccer game. The baby was definitely cranky after all this, and he had a right to be — he probably suspects the big kids will never be forced to go to his games.


6 thoughts on “NYC recap

    1. @Louisa- thanks! I was speaking on time management (as I always do) – though particularly for independent writers. I talked about time tracking and figuring out what we want to do more of with our time and planning these things in first. Then I talked about creating a portfolio approach to time: making sure not to spend all time on core production, but also spending time on strategy, boosting visibility, skill building, and nurturing existing relationships. And letting go of things that aren’t important. We can waste minutes on Facebook, but waste years worrying about stuff that doesn’t matter!

  1. Hi Laura,

    I was there at the ASJA conference and saw you speak about time management. It was great. I am an ASJA member and bought your book. I look forward to reading it and learning from your great tips since I freelance write, have a 4 year old and work in a company. I was hoping to bump into you so you could sign my book! I am a fan. 🙂

    1. @Ana – thanks so much! Glad you enjoyed the talk. If you want to email me your mailing address I’ll send over a book plate! (lvanderkam at yahoo dot com).

  2. Congratulations! You had quite a week! I thought a lot about the idea of passing one’s death date annually after reading David Nicholl’s book One Day. (The book follows the characters annually on a death date.) I listened to an interview he gave and he said he was really fascinated with the idea that we pass that date every year, just like our birthdays. The book is really good, if a bit sad.

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