A weekend for imagination at LTUE

Reading Time: 2 minutes LTUE is one of Utah’s many writing conferences. Unlike some of the others that focus on story development or technical classes, LTUE provides a playground for creators to meet and learn.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

The Life, the Universe, and Everything Symposium (LTUE) was founded 42 years ago by several creative writing professors at BYU and creative writers that lived in the Provo area. Since that first event, LTUE has grown significantly in size, but it has kept one very important aspect from its inception: it is very friendly toward students and beginners. This conference is less a professional development opportunity and more a playground for imagination and networking. 

Many of the panels hosted this past week were meant for beginners in the field of editing, writing, or art. The classes were very practical in nature, giving actionable steps for getting started with things like marketing and freelancing. Students and editors just starting out in the field filed into these classes, anxious to have their questions answered. Each panel left time for questions from the audience. If one’s questions were not answered, the panelists almost always stuck around for one-on-one mentorship.  

Some of the panels were more technical, catering to those who had a specific need after finishing their first draft or were running into a snag in their self-employment. Other classes inspired the imagination, offering advice that could be applied to just about any world a person was creating. An example was the “Science Fiction Vehicles” class, a time for people to let their imagination run wild, no matter what stage of the writing process they were in. 

As part of this three-day conference, William Munn (with Dax Levine as the MC) hosted a massive world-building game based on the rules from Arium, created by Adept Icarus. William Munn is one of the founders of Adept Icarus and helped adapt Arium’s format for a crowd of over 75 people. This was truly a moment where attendees could be incredibly creative and zany, working in teams to create a fun and unique world that will eventually be part of a published anthology. Each participant got to add their ideas to their table and will get credit for their part in creating the imaginary world. This event was a great chance to be imaginative and have fun with complete strangers. 

Throughout the day there were also meetups for writers based on their genre. LTUE provided ample opportunities for networking to meet people and times to have fun with friends. They truly had something for every creative. If you are interested in visiting LTUE next year or online, visit their website, at ltue.net.