Diana, the Arkenstone

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entire weekend’s embarrassment of riches: Diana Glyer and Michael Ward performed a reading of selected letters from the unpublished (as yet) correspondence of Major Warren Lewis and Blanche Biggs, a missionary doctor stationed in Papua New Guinea.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.

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3 thoughts on “Diana, the Arkenstone

  1. Don’t sell yourself short, Mike. I’ve heard good things. I’m looking forward to meeting you in July. I imagine you were at the Mythcon in Connecticut as well, but I can’t recall our actually meeting there. Always too little time for everything one would like to do, everyone one would like to meet. If we did meet there, and I’ve forgotten, then my apologies, and I look forward to meeting you again in July. 🙂

  2. @Jason: Diana attended the Connecticut Mythcon by herself. Were you at UCLA? As for the dramatic readings — I enjoy those a lot. I’ve played Warren Lewis before — with most success at the 1998 conference in Wheaton.

  3. I was supposed to be at UCLA (I had a paper read there), but a travel conflict came up almost at the last minute, and I couldn’t make it.

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