Stories of Gratitude

There are words that are never said enough. “Thank you.” are among them. Fairelands are a full continent, and there are so many people involved in bringing them to us, so many people making them alive and calling others to join in that it is impossible for any of us to even learn all the names, let alone form friendships with each and every one of them. That is why the Faire organization functions in parts, with only Her High Faireness Elizabeth Tinsley, Fantasy, being the glue keeping us together, overseeing the care and content of the Fairelands as a whole.

My part is right here — the website you are reading — as well as organizing the bloggers, the Chroniclers of the Faire. I help here and there with other parts that need to be done, but this is the work I do, the people I talk with, the people I ask for help in recording our love story with the Fairelands, the people that provide words and pictures, soul and spirit, the people whose work becomes the archives, the shared memories of the magic we felt.

I always feel the need to mention the region photographers first. Without them the website would be a sad sight. They provide the pictures for posts, often also for events, as well as the material for Alia Baroque to make the website headers and Days of the Faire banners from. They allow the website to look like the Fairelands each year, give each post that visual feel that is akin to a scent, the familiarity of being right there when reading the accompanying words. This year, as many countless before, the region photographers are Sachi (Vix Zhou), Sunny Difference, Wildstar Beaumont, Caitlin Tobias and JustenTyme. Thank you.

Continuing with the official media, there’s the matter of the event posters. Alia Baroque is the one behind the design, and the task of keeping them visually consistent and recognizable as Faire at a glance, but he could not do much without the pictures on them. This year the pictures on the event posters were taken by Caitlin Tobias, Adair (Nadjanator) and Sachi (Vix Zhou). Thank you.

axolittles by Nadjanator

Next I want to simply offer my undying gratitude to Adair (Nadjanator) for taking over the role of Shopping Guide Manager this year. She brought in new ideas, new solutions and new energy, giving us the chance to make shopping at the Faire easier than ever before. Asking for her help is one of the best decisions I have made in probably a decade. She was aided by a team of her own: Aznana Shieldmaiden, Duchess Flux, LilithVon Hexem and Sugah Pancake. They wrangled data, pictures, slurls, double-checking things, doing endless fixes and edits, all just to offer you a better chance of finding things you never knew you needed at the Faire. Thank you.

In addition to the work they did for the Shopping Guide, Aznana Shieldmaiden and Duchess Flux also worked together with Aisling Sinclair to gather all the pictures of the prizes for the Fairelands Quest, and then sent them to Adair, who turned them into a preview gallery in basically a blink of an eye. Thank you.

Beyond the looks, beyond the galleries, there are words. There’s information that needs to be shared, stories that need to be told, events that need to be announced so people can find them, stories woven from events, reports detailed to become a part of the archives. For this purpose we have liaisons from various different parts of the Faire. From parts that if left to me, you would maybe get ‘a thing happening here, go see’. If lucky. It all ties to Faire being so large that no one can know everything about it. That is why we need a specialist, a correspondent from each section, someone who is present in all their events, and is familiar with the people involved. This year the liaisons were Aelva for Dance & Performance, Strifeclaw for Roleplay, Aoife Lorefield for Literary Festival, Saffia Widdershins for Film Festival, and Chuu Hikari Akamine for the Tabletop Games. Thank you.

Faire is more than information, Faire is always at its core, a story. It is a story we tell each other, a story we weave together, each one’s personal story joining with others’, each experience as true and real as everyone else’s. This is why I have always wanted and delighted in having exactly that on the website. Stories. Views into the Fairelands, different perspectives, different tales. The authors this year were Gwen Enchanted, Helena Stringer, KulaanDragon, Ryanna Foxclaw and Vylna Daviau. Thank you.

Why I Relay
Why I Relay by Sukubia Scarmon

Then we reach the group that always delights me with their dedication and excitement, and makes me proud to watch as their visions of the Fairelands spread across the grid, showing to the poor, unfortunate souls who might have never heard of the Fairelands why they should come on over right now. Showing them the way home. The bloggers. The Chroniclers of the Fairelands.

I have been the blogger manager for the Faire since 2013 and during this decade I have seen many blogging trends grow and wane, many bloggers come and go, but somehow we still have a core group that has been with us most of that way. People who know what Fairelands are about, understand the magic and let it show in their pictures, in their stories. We also always have new people joining us, because as much as we don’t necessarily need more bloggers, I want to keep the doors open just a bit. Junction calls to those with imagination and soul, those ready to immerse themselves in wonder and search for ways to express it. Junction calls, and I will always be ready to listen to the answers on her behalf. For all your words, all your pictures, all your films, and all your love for the Fairelands: thank you.

The website and spreading word about the Faire are just one small part of the whole. Without the Fairelands we would have nothing to take pictures of. Without events we would have nothing to report on. Without merchants we would have nothing to shop. In the big picture we are just a mix between bards and archivists. Without something happening, we would have nothing to do. The Fairelander Tribe is vast and bigger than the sum of its parts. Each part adds to it until it becomes the celebration of life and hope we know and love.

From my small part, to all of yours: thank you.

Holding on, till next year by Tamzin Xigalia

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