During Sirens, we invited all attendees to write: a testimonial, a love letter, a tale inspired by Sirens. As we work on our new website, arriving November 1, 2015, we will feature the stories shared by the Sirens community.
At my first Sirens, I experienced a keynote address the likes of which I had never before seen. Alaya Dawn Johnson blended her genius with that of Janelle Monáe in a musical journey that made me see her work in a new and richer light. Johnson shared adventures from her travels, surprises from her research, and gems of her ideas with us. The depth with which she spoke and the thoughtfulness of the audience chatter afterward felt unique and exceptional. I decided: I have to come back to this conference every year that I can, come hell or high water.
Two years later, my bookshelves have grown fuller, my circle of friends has expanded, and my writing aspirations have found new encouragement. My hope in the transformative power of literature and the specific power of women is renewed every time this community meets. “I have a book for you” is still the most exciting sentence I hear, and I hear it every year from someone I admire as soon as I meet them. I thank the Goddess that this thrilling, inspiring gathering exists!