Monday, April 28, 2014

LDStorymakers 2014 and Annual Traditions

This past weekend was the awesome annual event of LDStorymakers (which I've attended for the last 5 years) and the Whitney awards (which I've never attended but have been near the last 2 years.)

Now the only person who seemed to really like the silly idea of framing oneself (besides Julie who created the 'trend') was me. This is the chair of the conference, Don Carey in his framed moment. (see mine below.)

So, there are a couple of annual traditions I have at Storymakers. The first is that I usually end up with one breakfast alone. Yep, I got to sit Friday morning at the restaurant like a friendless loser and listen to Spotify and eat my crepes. (Feeling sorry for me? You should!) Nah, I really didn't mind it that much. It's just funny how many people come up to me and say "Oh, I would've joined you." (Yes, Taffy, that's aimed at you.)

 Writerly friends #selfieday bomb? Storymakers14 @tbronley @juliedaines
(I say I look pensive and awesome. Taffy said I looked concern. There is no vote here and Taffy's wrong. :P )

The other tradition I have is "how many classes do I ditch out on early?" We won't go into my brand of crazy, suffice it to say, sometimes, I just can't stay. But, I really did enjoy the classes I was in.

One of the ones I did not leave early, was taught by the ever awesome Julie Wright. Not only is she a great author (I've read one of her books based for women and would totally recommend it), she's got an awesome spirit about her. What did she teach? Well, the class was called "Taking the Suck out of Success." But really, the true theme I got was "DON'T QUIT!" And yes, that's in caps for a reason.

What made that class so awesome was that it rejuvenated my writing spirit. The previous day, I had another annual tradition of saying "I'm just gonna give up on writing." Yeah, didn't last long, but that's because of Julie. Also, I wouldn't have even had this great spiritual experience had it not been for Scott (Julie's husband) who suggested that Julie feared having no one show up (a common presenter fear) and that Julie and I could just hang out the entire time. So I publicly thank Julie and Scott the awesome Saturday morning experience. (And really, there are no notes I could share because it was just an experience.) And because it was a great experience, I tweeted the following:
 And my final "annual tradition" is getting a lesson no one else got. This year, while everyone was hubbubbing in preparation for the Whitneys, I ended up in a conversation with the Storymakers keynote: Orson Scott Card. Now, I know a lot of people (I'm gonna gauge at least 450) who were quite offended by his keynote. However, this conversation was a polar opposite to the hearsay I have of that keynote.

And since this was my only experience in hearing Mr. Card, I have to say that no matter what anyone will negatively state about him, the man has some wisdom to share. And wow, was it awesome. As LDS members, we refer to spiritual experiences. This was such a great spiritual experience between Mr. Card and the four other people in the room, that it made up for everything negative I've ever heard him say. And honestly, you can believe me or you can hold a keynote against him. If you do the latter, than I'll stand high on my soapbox and cry forgiveness. Because he earned it in my eyes.

But the lesson I really learned here is how much I truly let others' hearsay affect my opinion. I didn't stay for the keynote because I'd never heard anything positive of Mr. Card. After speaking to people during the keynote, I had an even lower opinion. That is until I spoke to Scott Wright who helped me understand that not everything said was judgmental and poor. There was a part at the end that was moving (and I don't mean the "moving people out of the room ASAP" parts).

So as much as I did not appreciate some things that he has said, I found a lot of peace and comfort in the lesson that only four friends got. There may not be an excuse for the things he said, but that doesn't give me the right to be offended either.

Alien abductions are involuntary, but probings are scheduled.

1 comment:

  1. TJ, it was a pleasure and honor to spend time with you. And as for that experience between just four friends, I am seriously humbled to have only heard about it. Thanks for the kind words about my class. You're awesome. Say hi to Mary for me.