by Flynn Sheridan
This is a series of articles with each of the current board of directors overseeing the SLSA. We have three new board members and two who are half way through their term. I have always felt that getting to know the directors helps the membership as a whole. After all, they represent YOU… they are there to help make a better experience for SLSA comps and the surfing community as a whole. With my butt firmly planted in the sand… watching SLSA grow, I can say I am proud of what SLSA has become. And so here they are in a post every couple of days… your board of directors. I’ll start with our newest board member, WillowWynn.
Flynn: Tell us how you got involved in Second Life (SL) surfing. What surfing experiences do you have in RL?
Willow: My father, Maldrul Morris, got me involved in Surfing in SL. Since he’s already part of the SLSA it seemed a fine place to start and to learn. As for real life, the only experiences I have are dreaming about surfing. I haven’t lived in places where such an activity is really realistically available since I’ve been mostly in land locked states.
Flynn: How long have you been competing in SLSA competitions? Do you participate in other competitions? What is your favorite thing about comps and what do you like least?
Willow: I’ve only done one season’s worth of competing since I’m fairly new to the whole thing. I haven’t really gotten a chance to explore competitions outside of the SLSA, save one.
My favorite thing is how everyone cheers on everyone else, no matter what team they are on or who they are. It’s a Surf to have Fun mentality, not a “I’m going to beat you today” mentality and that really helps.
The think I dislike the most is the lag. Of course, that’s not something that can always be helped, but it does put a cramp in the style sometimes. 🙂
Flynn: What prompted your decision to run for SLSA Director this term? What qualifications, skills, competencies, traits, etc. do you hope to bring in as a director?
Willow: What prompted me was the idea that they didn’t have ANY applications put in at the time. It worried me since if that was left that way it would mean that the SLSA couldn’t continue. I’ve grown exceptionally fond of the SLSA and its members so I didn’t want to risk that.
I think my work at college being a large part of student government groups, and other head positions should help me immensely as a director. I’ve learned a lot about proposals, communications and management of resources. That coupled with the lightning flashes of inspiration I get sometimes when faced with a problem might come in handy- or at least I hope it does.
Flynn: How will you improve the experience for SLSA surfers? How will you connect to the various groups and personalities so that you can represent their interests and possible concerns?
Willow: I feel that expanding what we use for boards and waves gets people’s attention really well. I could tell people were really excited this season, for example, with the hp boards being used in the first competition. We should build off that excitement and work with it. It will be fun, I think. As for connecting to other groups, well I think that’s really simple. Talk to them. Ask them questions of what they think and put together the best possible options that can work for the majority of the group. I know you can’t please everyone, but there usually is a common denominator that can be reached which can make most happy.
Flynn: What do you see as your first priority as an SLSA director? What do you see as the top issues facing SL surfing in general?
Willow: My first priority is fairness. I know that no matter what I can’t give any kind of preferential treatment to anyone. Sure we have teams, friends and we’re only human, but there is going to be some point where as a director it’ll be important to step back and make sure that we’re looking at the big picture. The largest issues facing SL surfing are to make sure we keep people coming in, both those who have been here forever and new surfers. We need to make sure they’re welcomed with open arms, and that we work together as a community to create a fun environment for all.
Flynn: As founder, we envisioned that SLSA would be more than putting on competitions. Do you think SLSA today has a greater role to play in the SL surfing community?
Willow: I think it brings people together to learn and have fun more than it just puts out competitions. That’s what it’s for- networking, community, parties. You get the idea. I say this because I’ve seen it in action. I’ve had people come up to me that I’ve never talked to before and start helping me with whatever I was having trouble with. That sort of tradition is important and goes a long way to making friends and long term committed people within the organization.
That’s it for the tough questions. 😉
Flynn: What board is your current favorite?
Willow: HP 5.. by far… It’s fast, it turns on a dime, and it’s the first board I really felt comfortable with. I’ll take it over an ssi any day. 🙂
Flynn: What wave is your current favorite?
Willow: Oh, that’s hard… I’m torn between the nala and the jaws… The nala had some great feel to it with the short boards and I tried the HP on it a few times too. I just did this great thing with the barrel rolls and the air I could get was amazing. The Jaws… well…. it’s huge… and there is just something majestic about it. it’s the only wave I’ve been ok with riding a longboard ssi on because of that. I love how it curls into itself like waves do as well. So artful.
Flynn: What are some of your favorite SL surfing spots (a location is much more than a wave) ?
Willow: Witch’s Rock… It’s usually pretty empty when I go there… so little to no lag… it’s very hp friendly with the waves…and above all… it’s gorgeous. Absolutely gorgeous. I dare you to go there, put your settings on sunset or sunrise, either works, and not be in awe at the layout of the place.
Flynn: Anything else you would like readers to know about you?
Willow: I’m an artist, going to college for animation. I am pondering how to do a machinima video (is that redundant?) for the SLSA, but I have to work out a few story boards first before I get started on it. I suppose I should get permission before I do this too…. might be a good idea. I would also like to take this moment in the interview to thank everyone who helped me learn how to surf and what boards are and such. I greatly appreciate all the support I got as a newbie to the organization and I only hope I can repay it back in kind.
I want to thank for taking the time to respond and letting us get to know you a little better.