April 23-25, 2009, I had the delightful privilege of exhibiting and speaking at the Christian Heritage Washington State Family Discipleship and Homeschooling Conference in Redmond, Washington. An overwhelmingly record-breaking crowd (over 2,100) turned out for the fourth annual conference.
The conference is organized (and I mean organized!) by the delightful Bradrick family, the Christian Heritage Board of Directors, and an attentive entourage of cheerful volunteers. I was privileged to be at the receiving end of the attentions of the Hamilton family, who hauled loads of books and posters, set up the exhibit, escorted me to the different halls I was to speak in, ran errands, brought me lunch, and made me London Fog Lattes! I came away spoiled rotten! Seriously, it was one of the most Christ-like run conferences I have attended or participated in.
I delivered three addresses. The first, Teaching Truth With Fiction, to a large group (Scott Hamilton told me they had to turn 100 people away because the room could not hold anymore), where I concluded by reading an episode from Hostage Lands; the second, Heroes: Inspiring Servant Greatness in the Next Generation, where I read the story of my hero, WW II, P-47 flyer, John Hemminger, and War on Terror hero, David Uthlaut, from HOLD FAST In a Broken World; and the last an address entitled, Why Teach Poetry in a Post-Poetry World? wherein I emphasized that the Psalms are the model by which all poetry must be measured, and the enriching benefits of incorporating the study of hymns and hymn writing into instruction.
One of my favorite things as an author is to meet readers, answer questions, and sign books. Our booth was super well positioned to connect with lots of readers and get acquainted. Thanks to the good folks who put the conference together with such excellence and who invited me to participate as a speaker! Watch for audio exerpts from the conference, to be posted soon.