Sunday, October 19, 2008

Story Conference Debrief

I'm really tired here and I can't take long as I am meeting dear friend and erstwhile Los Angeles expat Karen Hall for Mass and brunch. But what an amazing two days we just had!

It's hard not to think that we participated in something monumental in the Story Conference. Ten brains - all very sharp and passionate about the question. And everybody really showed up in the sense of being prepared, witty, entertaining, and deeply thoughtful.

Peter Kreeft told me at the end that in all the conferences he has ever attended, this one will be special and rank among the best, particularly because of the Socratic format we used. (Scott! I so wish you could've been there. You would have really loved it. Next time I pathetically whine and plead, you should relent!)

Anyway, we had so much fun because I have rarely been in dialogue with more witty, experienced and profound people. The brilliant thoughts and back and forth were thick and almost too many. I kept wanting to stop the days so that I could move into a corner and consider the ramifications of somebody's thought. But then we were off like a train again.

Now, we look forward to the book, podcasts and magazine articles. Dr. Pat Phalen will be transcribing and editing the event for publication. It will be a monumental task seeing we had about 14 hours of continuous discussion and presentations.

My thought is that anybody whose arena is storytelling will have to regard the book from this event as seminal. And then anybody else who is awake culturally will find it a must read. There is just nothing else like it out there, and if particularly Christians could brood over it, we could move so far past the "Fireproof vs. Sex in the City" facile dualism that we might be able to actually get somewhere as apostles in the culture.

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