It’s been a real joy to see how people have embraced the Hutchmoot. I look forward to meeting you folks and joining faces with familiar names. (Joining faces? That sounds really weird but I refuse to edit it.)
Over the last couple of days there have been quite a few questions raised and I’m going to do my best to give the answers. If you’ve got other questions shambling around in your brain that this post doesn’t cover, post them in the comments and I’ll be happy to answer .
Question: I’m not a singer/songwriter/author/artist. Can I still come?
Answer: Absolutely. Our vision is for the Hutchmoot to be an event that fosters conversation and community. We don’t want it to be so stuffy and academic that it feels like English Composition 101, or so arts-based that it’s nothing more than a series of workshops. We want to provide an environment in which anyone who loves great stories can come and be fed, even if that means you just love stories for the simple enjoyment of receiving rather than creating.
In a lot of ways, the Hutchmoot will be like the Rabbit Room website: We’ll say stuff about books or music, or movies, or our faith and we’ll try our best to sound like we know what we’re talking about. But instead of leaving comments on a post, you’ll be able to make sarcastic comments in person! It’ll be fun. And if you’re the lurking sort, that’s fine too, we’ll provide some comfy corners for you to listen from.
Question: How late can I register?
Answer: The sooner the better. We’ve got to have a certain number of registrants in order to pay the bills so if we don’t have enough sign-ups by June 15th, we’ll probably have to cancel, and we don’t want that. If the response is really good though, we’ve got a maximum number of people that we can comfortably accommodate in the facility (probably somewhere around 100). So if we fill up fast, you might miss your chance.
Question: Can I wait and pay when I get there or do I have to register in advance?
Answer: For planning purposes we need to know exactly how many folks are coming. We’ll eventually have to set a registration deadline and beyond that we won’t be able to accept any more registrations. It’s not that we don’t want you, it’s just a matter of logistics. So make your plans early and register while there’s time.
Question: Why are registration fees and deposits non-refundable?
Answer: Because all of our planning will be based off of the number of registrations and if people back out at the last minute, we’ll be in big trouble when it comes time to pay the bills. We only want you to register if you are sure you are coming.
Question: Will there be any special guests?
Answer: Yes, oh yes. But we aren’t ready to announce that just yet.
Question: What about kids? I’d like to bring my entire family but we can’t afford to pay full price for our children. And what about those of us who are dead broke college kids?
Answer: We are looking into this. I hope we will be able to offer some sort of option for the under-18 and student crowd. Look for an announcement in the coming weeks.
Question: Will the sessions and panels be recorded for podcasts?
Answer: We intend to record everything so that we can make it available online but we haven’t worked out the logistics of that yet. We hope it will happen but we can’t promise it.
Question: Will this be an annual event?
Answer: We sure hope so.
Question: The date conflicts with (insert conference name here), will it be on the same weekend every year?
Answer: Every date seems to conflict with something, and those other conferences aren’t half as cool anyway. We don’t know if we’ll do it on the same weekend every year or not. Too early to tell.
Question: Where should we stay when we come?
Answer: We’re working with a couple of hotels in the area to provide discount rates to Hutchmoot attendees. We’ll make an announcement when we know more.
I’m also going to do my best to set up a Hutchmoot Forum this weekend on the website to give folks an opportunity to connect with each other and share rides or possibly even find someone to stay with here in Nashville. Look for an update as soon as that’s functional.
Question: I have a certain type of food allergy. Will there be alternate menu options available to me?
Answer: I’m still waiting to hear from Evie on this, but I’m pretty sure we can find something tasty for you to eat (even if I have to run down to the store and pick it up myself.)
Question: What can I do to help?
Answer: Spread the word. Tweet about it. Mention it in your Facebook updates. Blog about it. Write your congressman.
Question: Why don’t we hear about the Nashville flood in the national news?
Answer: We don’t know but trust us, it was (and still is) an epic event in Nashville history.
Question: Why do they call you Pete if your initials are A.S.?
Answer: Ancient Swedish-German secret.
Question: Why doesn’t my local Taco Bell sell Chili Cheese Burritos anymore?
Answer: Because they are insane and should be shunned.
That’s all I’ve got for now. If there’s anything I didn’t cover, go ahead and ask. I’ll do my best to get you a quick answer. Big announcement coming next week. Stay tuned.
Pete Peterson is the author of the Revolutionary War adventure The Fiddler’s Gun and its sequel Fiddler’s Green. Among the many strange things he’s been in life are the following: U.S Marine air traffic controller, television editor, art teacher and boatwright at the Florida Sheriffs Boys Ranch, and progenitor of the mysterious Budge-Nuzzard. He lives in Nashville with his wife, Jennifer, where he's the Executive Director of the Rabbit Room and Managing Editor of Rabbit Room Press.