Diana Glyer and Michael Ward (Planet Narnia) headlined the 13th annual conference of the C.S. Lewis and Inklings Society last weekend (April 9-11) in Oklahoma City.
Jason Fisher, who will co-chair Mythcon 41 in July, was there. Jason had high praise for Diana’s speech and reading:
Diana Glyer gave a terrific after-banquet keynote speech, in which she discussed the central hypothesis of her own book, The Company They Keep: whether, and to what extent, Lewis and Tolkien (and to a lesser degree, the other Inklings) influenced one another, and moreover, what “influence” itself really means. I say “hypothesis”, but the persuasive power of Diana’s argument is such that it is hardly that any longer. I regard it as established fact…
Finally, a real gem, the very Arkenstone of the entire weekend’s embarrassment of riches: Diana Glyer and Michael Ward performed a reading of selected letters from the unpublished (as yet) correspondence of Major Warren Lewis and Blanche Biggs, a missionary doctor stationed in Papua New Guinea. I know, I know, you’re probably thinking, Warren Lewis? But trust me, their correspondence, of which we heard roughly a quarter of the extant material, was funny, affectionate, clever, and in the end, profoundly moving. It brought tears to my eyes.
Diana and I will be reading these letters again at Mythcon 41, but since I can’t promise to acquire a British accent by then Michael Ward’s performance is likely to remain unequalled.