When Words Collide — Day One
When Words Collide — Day One

When Words Collide — Day One

I sur­vived Day One.

I have been supremely anxious about this event for weeks and weeks. As far back as sev­er­al months ago, when “When Words Col­lide” popped into my head I got this feel­ing of dread in my belly. At that time I could ban­ish it because, “That’s ages away.” Sud­denly it was loom­ing, and I star­ted get­ting head­aches and stom­ach aches. WTF??

I love con­ven­tions, and have atten­ded WWC in per­son, and vir­tu­ally last year. The worst thing is that usu­ally when I feel anxious about a thing I can sit down and think about why, what’s going on, and can pin­point it, and work through it. This time? No idea. Even after get­ting through yes­ter­day I have no idea. But hav­ing got through it, I *think* I feel bet­ter today. Too early in the morn­ing, and not enough cof­fee yet to tell for sure.

[And I dis­covered in the morn­ing that my name/bio isn’t in the pro­gram. *sigh* … These things hap­pen, I know. I checked a few oth­er names, and it isn’t just me, but you know, here I am prep­ping for a dis­cus­sion about Imposter Syn­drome and now I am feel­ing like the fest­iv­al is already telling me I don’t belong… that I’m not worthy of hav­ing my name in the pro­gram… STOP! I man­aged to set that aside, because yes, abso­lutely–> This whole thing is being run by volun­teers and every­one is work­ing their butt off and I appre­ci­ate them.]

Still! Ok, the pan­el on Imposter Syn­drome was fine. Took me a while to settle in, and there were some weird­nesses: with no des­ig­nated mod­er­at­or… one per­son reluct­antly said she’d take it on, then anoth­er said Well, ok she’d do it. But then a third per­son stepped in and kept say­ing Mod­er­at­or-like things, and the one who’d said she’d do it was unfor­tu­nately not great at mak­ing sure each per­son got a chance to speak to a ques­tion. (Ordin­ar­ily I would take on Mod­er­at­ing, but I was not in the right frame of mind to do it…see above). Then, there was a fel­low who kind of inser­ted him­self and gave an intro­duc­tion. He seemed to think he was on the pan­el, which he was not. Clearly there was a mis­take some­where (I even went back an checked the pro­gram… sorry, friend, your name is not here). The oth­ers ignored him, and I don’t blame them, but that twis­ted up my anxi­ety again, because I was wor­ried about hurt­ing his feel­ings, yet struggled with how to solve the prob­lem. (see above).

Oth­er than that, the dis­cus­sion was good. Oh! And I real­ized I had left all my notes upstairs. [face­palm]

Then, on to Make Them Laugh: Inject­ing Humour into all Forms of Fiction.

There was a mod­er­at­or for this one… yay! But… See that sub­title?? I was pre­pared to talk about that. I was not pre­pared to talk about ana­lyz­ing all the forms of humour. There I was on a pan­el with three people who have many pub­lished works, and two of them at least pur­pose­fully write humour. They have stud­ied it and they write it. I write humour, and I “inject humour into all forms of my fic­tion” but I sure don’t study it. Intim­id­a­tion star­ted to creep in.

Then I thought to myself, “You lit­er­ally just fin­ished a pan­el on Imposter Syn­drome. Do NOT let this get to you. You belong here you belong here you belong here.…” If you were there, could you see those words float­ing around in my head? I was think­ing them so hard I was sure every­one could hear me. Any­way, I think I did ok, and made some points about what works for me, and I learned some things. I was proud of myself for say­ing, “I am not so ana­lyt­ic­al,” at one point, because Past Krista would have thought, “Oh no, I’m doing humour wrong, I’m sup­posed to be ana­lyt­ic­al about it,” and tried to fake my way through it. But over the years I have learned that actually…just coz someone else does a thing one way, and even if lots of people do a thing that way, it does­n’t mean my way is wrong. I am find­ing the cour­age to talk about my way, even if it’s dif­fer­ent, and you know what? Quite often, my way res­on­ates with people, so there you go.

I fin­ished my pan­els and went into decom­pres­sion mode. Japan­ese take-out and wine, plus a mar­tini to cel­eb­rate my mum (on top of everything it was the anniversary of my mother­’s death yesterday…though no, that was not what was get­ting to me).

I did want to say here that the books I men­tioned in the pan­els were Big Magic by Eliza­beth Gil­bert, and Keep Calm and Bury On — a Select­ive His­tory of a Plague Year by Dirk Van Stralen.

Ok. On to Day Two. Time for more coffee.