Tuesday, February 15, 2011

LTUE (or, Why I Can't Figure Out if I'm Important)

Tomorrow I will drive to my home state of Utah to spend three days with Donna Weaver at my alma mater, BYU, attending the Life, the Universe, and Everything Symposium on science fiction and fantasy. Tons of my favorite authors will be there and, get this: I get to help! Not only help, but I get to moderate three of the panels. =D

What is this "moderate" thing, you ask? Well, I'll tell you.... I'm not sure (you'll see why)--but I'm excited to do it, anyway.

When I first decided to attend LTUE a couple months ago, I emailed the powers that be and volunteered to help--and not just because I'm addicted to volunteering, lately. Really. Think about it--what better way to actually get to talk to your favorite authors than if you are in charge of fetching their water bottles? "Here's your water, Mr. Dashner. No, no. My pleasure. What? You want to give me an ARC of The Death Cure? Well... okay. If you insist."

What was I talking about? Oh--the LTUE powers-that-be emailed back and asked if I wanted to be a panelist! Me! Well, when I stopped laughing (seriously--would you come to a panel with me on it? Maybe you shouldn't answer that), I had to confess that I'm not exactly cool enough to be a panelist. I mean, I'm no Brodi Ashton, right? (Not yet....) Still, I really like public speaking, I have a bit of experience with interviewing authors, and, well, combining the two is awesome, so I suggested that maybe I could help, like, moderate or something. And they said yes! Wahoo! I get to be one of the moderators! So. Cool.

Then, today, I get the official email telling everyone which panels they'll be on. (I'm in an email list with, well, everybody!) I'll be moderating the following:

Thursday, February 17, 2011
11:00 am: Poetic license vs. Authorial Obligation, with Clint Johnson, Eric Swedin, and Julie Wright.
5:00 pm: Pay it Forward with Paul Genesse, Elana Johnson, and Tristi Pinkston

Friday, February 18, 2011
Noon: What is an Agent, and What can they do for you? with Tyler Whitsides, James Dashner, and Lesli Muir Lytle

Looks like a really fun time, hey? I'm really excited to meet such great people and to spend time chatting with them about writing-related stuff. Just being at the front of the same room with them will be awesome!

So here's the kicker. At the top of today's official schedule email is this explanatory line:
Except for Robin, all moderators are also panelists.  Robin is our designated moderator.
 Check me, huh? I'm not only A moderator, I'm THE moderator. I'll Be Back er, There

Only... the other panels (three or four every hour, 9-9 for three days) still have assigned moderators (who aren't me)--they just have one of the authors assume the task of keeping everyone in line.

So, basically, I'm the only person LTUE is letting on a panel who doesn't have the necessary credentials to actually instruct the symposium attendees.

Which makes me very important. (I'm pretty sure.)

Either way, I'm showing up, accepting my Moderator nametag, wearing it with pride, and having the time of my life.

Maybe they'll even let me fetch some water bottles....


  1. Look at you, Ms. VIP! Sounds like tons of fun. I can't wait to hear how it goes.

  2. LOL--I'm sure you'll get frequent updates, Susan. As if I could go four days without IMing you!

  3. You ARE important! I can't wait to fetch you a water bottle!

  4. Hi, Robin! I came over here from Brodi's blog. :)

    I loved the post. Congratulations! You will be brilliant! You and Brodi are really making me wish I could attend LTUE. :)

  5. No, no, no, Brodi! You said I could manage YOU! Remember? If there is any fetching of water going on, it will be ME fetching for YOU.

    Welcome, Kristin! I grew up on Kristin Drive--and am currently visiting my parents here! That, together with your obvious good taste in blogs, tells me that you're cool. Wish you could party with us at LTUE!

  6. You are sitting in front of me as I write this. =D You are SO special, Robin. I wonder what they'll be having me do.

  7. Thanks, Donna--I love you, too! So much fun sitting here at your kitchen counter with you, your husband, and three laptops.... :)

  8. So wish I would have known about this conference. I am in Orem Utah. So close, but work keeps me from it. Have fun!