Today we delivered our first editorial presentation to the OSU Literacy Studies Grad Student Interdisciplinary Working Group (or something with some combination of those words), a dry run of the presentation we will deliver next Friday at the Feminism(s) and Rhetoric(s) conference in Little Rock, AR.
So, WHEW. Big sigh of relief after weeks of astonishingly intense stress and sleeplessness — and not a little bit of excitment and even confidence. And, for the most part, things went as hoped… especially in the sense that this run-through served its purpose of teaching us what we need to revise to make next week’s that much better.
We have put a moratorium on apologies, so I will only say that my presentation will need the most revision. I knew this going in; the campus talk targeted a vastly different audience than we will face at Fem/Rhet — who won’t be quite as interested in the cast of supporters, for example. More importantly, the audience today helped us realize a major gap — a concretization of the project and product from the opening. So my “film” will be scrapped (and those lost hours mourned appropriately) in favor of a brief origins/development story culminating in a thorough exploration of the site and submissions. Problem solved… and humility safely intact.
The pride, though, is also still there — especially when I consider the amazing performances given by the rest of the board. They were smooth, professional, and inspiring. We were, however, gently called out on our tendency towards self-deprecation. As rhetoricians, we need to be mroe aware of our own ethos, in our persons as well as our site.
To close on a positive note, then, we found our work validated by the warmth of the audience’s response — and even more so by the engaged and engaging conversation that followed our presentations. Such provokative and good-natured dialogue is exactly Harlot‘s theory in practice. Thanks to all who made that happen.