First Conference Experience – Gregynog 2013

I’ve just returned from the annual Association of Welsh Writing in English (AWWE) conference at Gregynog Hall, Powys. After battling against the elements the conference brought together academics and students from the field of Welsh Writing in English. For a first conference experience I couldn’t have wished for anything more. My nerves immediately disappeared as I was welcomed into an academic field that is so friendly and encouraging.

Beautiful surroundings

Beautiful surroundings

A thoroughly stimulating and enlightening weekend, I was thrilled to be surrounded by people who are as passionate about WWiE as I am. Being only one of a few students at Bangor concentrating on Welsh Writing it was refreshing to meet postgraduate students from other universities. It was also a pleasure to meet and chat with academics in a relaxed environment that was not at all intimidating.

The conference was based on ‘Literary Topographies: Mapping Welsh Writing in English’. All papers and keynote lectures focused on the way Welsh Literature is linked with space and place. The schedule was packed with over thirty papers given over the weekend but plenty of fuel was provided in the form of cake and coffee.

Despite the weather creating a worryingly murder-mystery atmosphere, it was refreshing to spend a weekend isolated without signal and internet connection, allowing for no distractions. After an exhausting term the conference provided much needed inspiration and I am now looking forward to my next conference.