Monday, March 03, 2008

Home from Phoenix

It's 29 degrees Fahrenheit here. I've got a fire in the woodstove and am considering moving from the cold office to the warm living room (I don't usually keep the front doors open, but it made a better picture). What a contrast with last week in Phoenix, where it was 80 degrees. Not that I'd want to live in Phoenix (think of July!), but it was wonderful to bask in the warmth for a while.

In fact, the whole trip was pretty wonderful. On Monday, I told Queen Berta and King Pippin to Liz Warren's class on long stories at South Mountain Community College. The beginning storytelling class next door came over to listen as well. What a great audience! Afterwards we had a long discussion, with lots of useful feedback. Did I get a recording of it? I thought so, but it turns out I need to reread the manual on my minidisc recorder. Grrr.

I'm so impressed with the Storytelling Institute at South Mountain. If I lived in Phoenix, I'd take classes there to keep my skills sharp. The next day, I told stories to two more beginning storytelling classes, one Liz teaches and one taught by LynnAnn Wojciechowicz, director of the institute. I gave them a mix of stories and puppets, with storytelling tips thrown in for good measure. Very fun! I've had a couple of e-mails from students in LynnAnn's class since then.

The Outside In Storytelling Bootcamp began on Wednesday. That was my original reason for going to Phoenix. LynnAnn kindly gave me a ride over to the west side of Phoenix, as she was also attending the bootcamp. That was after an entertaining morning of hanging around with Liz and her husband Mark.

OISBC is the brainchild of Sean Buvala, director of When he called me last fall to ask if I'd be interested in being a co-presenter, I agreed right away. I knew that whatever Sean planned would be well worth attending. His idea is to use a corporate training model to teach storytellers how to succeed. The session last week focused on marketing. While I did give the participants my perspective on being a full-time storyteller, I also learned a ton. Sean has broad experience with marketing and he brought in a CPA to talk about taxes for one session. (More on the bootcamp in the March/April issue of Storytelling Magazine.)

One of the key elements of OISBC was the way the attendees bonded during the three days of intense learning. It was a lovely group. I'm looking forward to being in touch with the others, as we help each other keep on track. Sean blogged about it, with plenty of pictures, most taken by his daughters.

An added bonus was getting to meet and hang out with Sean's family (Kelsey, did you learn to drive yet?).


Anonymous said...

An old hobbyhorse of mine: an "added bonus" is over the top. A bonus is already added.

But I was glad to get your take on this pretty intense time in Phoenix.Have you come home to rest up?

I looked in the stove's mouth to look for tonsils.

PriscillaHowe said...

Oh, yeah. Like a free gift. One of my bugaboos is when people use the word "quality" to mean extremely good--things can be of bad quality as well as good.

I'm home for a while.

No tonsils in the stove. Just Osage orange (hedge), walnut and oak today.

Sean said...

No it is possible to have "added bonus" in lieu of additional bonus. From a vernacular standpoint, it works.

One of my many added boni (lol) from this event was having you with us Priscilla. Thanks for all you added to the Marketing Camp event. You were a nice balance for us all.