To paraphrase an old Mac Davis song, happiness is Lubbock, Texas, in my rearview mirror.
We’re just back from a visit there for the annual Western Writers of America convention. Leaving Lubbock was a happy occasion because when we left town I took with me a WWA Spur Award for my novel Rawhide Robinson Rides the Range and a Spur Finalist Award for my poem “Song of the Stampede” from my book Goodnight Goes Riding and Other Poems.
Beyond that, it was enjoyable just being there.
There’s a lot of music in the air in Lubbock—besides Mac Davis, rock and roll pioneer Buddy Holly called the place home. Multi-talented Andy Wilkinson is from Lubbock, and he writes some of the best-ever songs and poems and plays about the American West and its people. He entertained WWA members with the able assistance of his Lubbock neighbor and saddle pal, singer-songwriter Andy Hedges.
Finally, it’s always enjoyable to attend the WWA convention to renew old friendships and make new ones. There is little in life as agreeable as hanging around with folks who love the West and words and writing and appreciate the difficulty of getting an idea down just right—say, for instance, capturing a young man’s quest for adventure with a line like, “I thought happiness was Lubbock, Texas, in my rearview mirror.”