So I have some very interesting and exciting news to share with you in this post.
Last Saturday Feb 10th, 2018 I entered the the King's and Queen's Arts and Sciences (A&S) Championship for the East Kingdom. I submitted a research paper I wrote on La Verdadera Destreza.
If you are interested in reading the paper you can click the title:
I will jump to the conclusion very quickly to avoid any stupid suspense and just tell you.... I Won!
For people not familiar with the SCA A&S championship it goes like this. There is a competition held once a year and the winners hold the position for a year. There are 2 champions selected, 1 King's and 1 Queen's. In some of the East Kingdom championships the King's is considered the overall winner, but in the Arts and Sciences competition the Queen's is the overall winner. Well, not only did I win Queen's A&S, but my Lady Elena Hylton (who has helped me with my work more than you can imagine) won King's Championship.... yup, speechless.
It is an insanely difficult competition to judge to say the least, as you are not just comparing apples to oranges. You are evaluating scribal art, fiber art, leatherwork, painting, research, brewing, blacksmithing, and another dozen or so types of SCA period artistry. There were about 37 entries I believe and each one was beautifully unique. The Minister of A&S, his deputies, and last year's champs have done an amazing job of standardizing the judging rubrics, but I do not envy that job in the least.
The quality of the works at the competition left me in awe and beyond humbled. I loved so much of what I saw and was so excited to talk to people and not only learn about what they did, but to see the joy and excitement in their eyes as they geeked out with me about the thing that they put SOOOOO much time into and that which gave them joy and passion.
I want to, but will not spend this post thanking everyone that made it an amazing day, but I did post a G+ thank you that got some of it across I hope.
One thing that should be mentioned, and many folks in the rapier community are very excited about, is that this is the first time a Martial research project has ever won champs. It is an amazing thing to have this recognized as an art worthy of the name and study and just so COOL! It is a testament to all of the martial researchers in the East who made this possible, such as Master Donovan and Don Lorenzo and all of the other fencers and fighters who shared their passions for period martial research with each other. Thank you!
Part of the job of being one of the kingdom champions is to represent the East in the coming year and spread the message of A&S. I will be working hard with Elena to do this together. Her intelligence and passion for A&S is beyond compare and she will also be getting her well deserved Laurel in just about a month. Her mind is boiling over with ideas on how to get more people involved and we are both so excited.
The main message I personally want to get out this year comes down to:
- More people should and can study the Martial Arts and Sciences in ALL forms
- Spread the joy of ALL our A&S passions to others and remember THIS IS FUN!
- A&S is a process and takes time so just try something and learn
If anyone wants to see more about the process and falls I went through to get this paper to its current shape, I made 2 other blog posts in the past year to try and document my journey.
A&S LVD Research Paper Experience 3-28-17 (contains an older version of my paper)
Remember that we are doing all of this because we find joy in sharing our crazy geeky hobbies. This isn't our full time job, but it is a full time passion that we must all cultivate by sharing with each other.