Po-Money Po-Problems: announcing the CSP AWP Consulting Firm


besides the silliness over ACL, the other hot topic is all the silliness over AWP–that is, everyone is hearing back about panel acceptances and rejections–and those who have been rejected are not too happy. a whole slew of good people got rejected too: here, here, here, here. the crazy thing is that some guy at AWP is calling anyone who mentions how pissed they are on their blog about being rejected! crazy.

i’ve studied the development of AWP over the years, and am currently editing the first ever AWP Handbook and Ranking System.

some historical background: “AWP” used to stand for “All White Poets”. now, it quite aptly stands for “Abramson Writers Partnership.” Yes, seth has used all the money he made with ALC to buy AWP. crazy.

so here’s the lowdown: 850 panel proposals this year. they accepted about 35% of proposals. yes, that means that many panels were rejected, including yours. including many of you womens, queers, and ethnics. and–gasp–many white poet panels were also rejected! unless, of course, your panel is about either TS Eliot or the New Critics–then you’re in.

why do so many people send in proposals to AWP? it’s really quite simple: if professors present at a conference, their university will pay for them to go. otherwise, they prob cant afford to go. yes, that’s also why people propose several panels or are on several panels–hedging their bets. yes, that’s also why AWP only allows you to be on 3 proposed panels (or else they auto reject all panels your name is on!)

the funny thing about this is: how many times have you been at AWP and someone is about to go present on their panel and they havent prepared a damn thing? EVERY SECOND. why? because no one gives a shite about the presentation, they just want the free trip! that’s also why SO MANY people drop out last minute, or why SO MANY panels are cancelled last minute–because when you return to your university all you have to show is the conference program that has your name listed…the reimbursements office will never know that you didnt show up. crazy.

as you can see, getting an AWP panel accepted can be worth maybe a 1000 dollars in a free ticket, hotel room, registration fee, and per diem.

So that’s why i’ve decided to start a new altruistic business venture called CSP AWP CONSULTING FIRM. Here is our mission statement:

CSP-AWP CONSULTING is the first-ever consulting firm designed exclusively for Event proposal applicants to the annual AWP conference. All of our consultant never even applied to the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and all is trained in giving professional-grade critiques of panel proposals as he has been on one panel before and was rejected this year–so he knows what not to do.

As the panel proposal process to the AWP is an almost entirely subjective one, we cannot guarantee specific results for our clients. We are committed, however, to making po-money helping clients substantially improve the quality of their proposal and roster of panelists. All of this is done with an eye towards making sure your university pays for you to attend this highly competitive conference.


Title of Event Critique: $10
Event Description Critique: $50
Statement of Merit Critique: $75
Biographical Notes Critique: $25

For an additional $100, you can choose from our list of distinguished poets to be on your Event Proposal. They are famous enough to get your Event accepted but famous enough to cancel last minute with no one becoming suspicious.


if you’d like my services, please make a donation in the correct amount here:


16 thoughts on “Po-Money Po-Problems: announcing the CSP AWP Consulting Firm

  1. This is the proper way to start the work day. TE AMO CRAIG! (I am available to consult on ways to AMO me back, for a mere two bits.)

  2. I just wanted to drop in and say how grateful I am for your services. Quite frankly, I'm befuddled by the kerfuffle that your critics are raising! Thanks to you, every proposal I've paid your very reasonable fee to critique has been accepted by the AWP! (All on this your first day of business, too! You're fast!)

    Keep up the good work!

  3. I think you should be charging $100 per distinguished poet chosen from your exclusive list. Come on now, your services are more valuable than you give yourself credit for.

  4. reb,

    i understand–i was a married woman once. but i hate to say this…but my firm has made me rich too! and i'm quite firm 😉


  5. rich! a mere two bits! i want to take more than two bits out of you my sexy friend!

    i dont know if you know but AMO now stands for "Abramson Marriage Organization". yep.


  6. b,

    perhaps you are right…esp since your name is on our distinguished list (i forgot to ask: you didnt go to iowa did you?).

    our trick is to start low, gather testimonials, then jack up our prices as we become more successful. i mean, to slowly increase our prices with inflation & oil prices (it takes a lot to run this well-oiled machine baby!)


  7. A podcast infomercial testimonial would naturally require compensation, but my fees are also very reasonable.

  8. I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.



  9. Someone just peeped me to you. This is the best!
    And given that my name has been on three proposals, all of which rejected, I may need your services. Bravo.

  10. lol thanks for your kind words LaTasha! I’ll give you a 10% discount for next year’s conference if you need my services 🙂


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