Category Archives: Activities

Find Me On Sunday|

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For the last couple years, my friend Jonathan Malm has run a great outfit called Sunday| Magazine. I’ve enjoyed reading it and even contributing to it twice in the last year. But something changed this week.

Now, if you check out the footer of the Sunday| site, it says, “A venture by Jonathan Malm and Scott McClellan.” That’s right — I’ve joined the team. I’ll be running the Sunday| blog and posting there a few times a week with content that’s short, timely, and (hopefully) helpful to church communicators like me.

Keep an eye on SundayMag.tv and follow @SundayMagtv on Twitter because this is going to be fun.

2013 International Speaking and Self-Promotion Tour

Okay, it’s hardly a speaking tour and it barely qualifies as international, but I’m going to be at a few great events in the near future. Here goes:

Killer Tribes Conference — Atlanta, GA | March 23

Can’t wait to attend this conference, let alone be a part of the official program. I’ll be participating on a panel of authors, drawing upon my VAST experience. Want to come to Killer Tribes? Register here and save $20 with the promo code ILIKESCOTT. (Note: You don’t actually have to like me.)

TransFORM — Ft. Worth, TX | April 5-6

This event is dedicated to forming missional communities — a cause I can certainly get behind. I’m teaching a workshop on story, and the registration cost is just $25, so sign up.

Tapestry Adoption & Foster Care Event — Irving, TX | April 13

Adoption is a big part of my family’s story, which figures prominently into the opening of Tell Me a Story, so I’m so happy to be talking with adoptive and foster families about story at this free event. Tapestry is a wonderful ministry that Annie and I are honored to be a part of, and you’re welcome to join us.

Create — St. Catherines, ON, Canada | June 3-5

I spoke at the first Create back in 2011, and I’m thrilled to be invited back this year. If you’re Canadian, or if you’re just fond of Canadians, you’ll love this experience. They’ve put together a great lineup (as always), so check it out.

Echo — Dallas, TX | July 24-26

When I was the director of Echo I could just invite myself to teach a breakout session (and I did, like, every year). This year I’m no longer the director, but the Echo team was nice enough to invite me back any way. Needless to say, I’m looking forward to it.

So, that’s my schedule. I hope to see you out on the road somewhere!

Next

Two weeks ago I announced a fairly significant transition — after almost 8 years, my time at RT Creative Group has come to an end. If you can spare a minute, read that post for a few of my thoughts on the move.

Today it’s my great pleasure to share what’s next for me. On February 1st I’ll report for work as the new Communications Pastor at Irving Bible Church, the local church my wife and I have been a part of for more than nine years.

I’m excited about the move for a number of reasons — I’m passionate about the work, I love the church, I have several friends on staff, I get to collaborate with a talented team, I get to support the work of more than a dozen wonderful ministries, and so on.

So that’s what is next for me. In the meantime I’m getting some things projects done around the house, getting caught up on Downton Abbey, spending extra time with my girls, having lunch with friends, and trying to get ready for the impending release of my book.

Thanks for checking in on me. If you think about it, will you pray for me as I step into this new role? And if you’d like to point me toward any people or resources you think would serve me well, you’re welcome to do that too.

I Wrote Some Things

I’ve been writing up a storm on Echo Hub, per usual, but I wrote pieces for two other outlets recently:

I’m proud of both, so check ’em out. If you want to email them to your entire address book, or share them on Google+ and stuff, go right ahead!

Tapestry Conference and Two Misconceptions About Story

In a few weeks I’m teaching a session at Tapestry Conference (Saturday, October 27) titled, Story. I’m hoping to convey the power of story for adoptive and foster families, but we’ll see.

Anyway, on the Tapestry blog I was asked three questions about the topic of story, and I thought I’d share this one with you:

Are there common misconceptions about story?

I think maybe there are two. The first is that many people associate story with fiction, and so they don’t take it seriously. Perhaps they assume that story is make believe or child’s play. Or perhaps they think story is just for artists and dreamers. Obviously, I disagree. 

The other misconception is that story is about wish fulfillment, as though we’re guaranteed any outcome we can imagine. If I decide the story of my life is that I’m going to be a professional basketball player, well, I’m still going to come up short (even though I’m 6’6”). 

Somewhere in the middle — and we’ll talk about this in my session — is the power of narrative in the life of your family.

Of course, I have a lot of thoughts on story these days because of the book, so keep an eye out for that. Oh, and if you can make it to Tapestry Conference (it’s FREE), you absolutely should.

Echo: A Team Effort

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This week I was honored to be named to the Rejuvanate Meetings “40 Under 40 Class of 2012.” Essentially, it’s a list of 40 people under the age of 40 who plan faith-based events, conferences, and meetings. I appear on the list as the director Echo alongside people I look up to: Scott Harrison, Jon Acuff, Tripp Crosby, Lecrae, and others. Again, it’s an honor, and I’m grateful.

It’s a funny thing, though — an individual honor related to what is first and foremost a team effort. See, Echo happened last week, and so it’s still fresh on my mind. Knowing firsthand what it takes to plan and execute a conference, I started to get a little uncomfortable with being singled out for my work.

I’m the director of Echo, but I’m not Echo. Echo is a community experience comprised of hundreds of people — staff, volunteers, speakers, teachers, sponsors, vendors, and of course, attendees. On the planning and execution side, Echo doesn’t happen without a great church partner like Watermark Community Church—from top to bottom, the Watermark staff serves our conference in an incredible way.

As I said, I’m grateful to Rejuvenate for the profile. At the same time, I’d be crazy not to publicly express how grateful I am to be a part of the Echo team year after year. Together we make something that I believe to be a special experience, and I can’t wait to do it again next year.

I’m Writing A Book

I’ve done a lot of writing these last five years. I’ve written papers, posts, articles, and far too many tweets. Now, it’s time to try something new.

Now, I’m writing a book.

The book is called Tell Me a Story: Finding God (and Ourselves) Through Narrative, and it’ll be released by Moody Publishers in March 2013.

Want to see the cover? Here she is:

Tell Me a Story_JM7

Here’s a quick description of the book:

Life and faith seem to defy formulas and bullet points, but for thousands of years human beings have discovered and shared meaning through stories. Tell Me a Story explores how narrative can inform our understanding of God, ourselves, and our common calling as Christians to be storytellers.

If that sounds like a book you might interested in, start saving your loose change and Amazon gift cards now. Also, check back on this site and follow me on Twitter to stay abreast of any and all developments related to Tell Me a Story.

As for how I’m feeling about this whole thing, I’m incredibly excited. Writing a book has been a dream of mine for several years now. Of course, there’s nothing like the challenge of completing a manuscript (not to mention completing it on time) to temper one’s excitement. Tell Me a Story has been a labor of love these last five months, and I can honestly say I’ve experienced both the labor and the love. Once I submit my manuscript in early September I plan on enjoying a lot more love and a lot less labor. But we’ll see.

Frank Chimero wrote a book in the last year, and in a post about that process he shared the following words from the great John Steinbeck:

The writer wants to cry out—”Bring it back! Let me rewrite it or better—let me burn it. Don’t let it out in the unfriendly cold in that condition.”

Yeah, I know that feeling. At the same time, I can’t wait for all of you to read Tell Me a Story. I think — think — you’re going to like it. In that regard, March 2013 can’t get here fast enough. If you’d like to get an update every month or two about the book (and other stuff I’m working on), just signup for my brand new newsletter. I won’t bombard you with emails or anything — the idea is that I can remind you about the book when it comes out and so on.

So, that’s what’s new with me. Thanks for reading.

Echo 2012

In case you missed it, the Echo 2012 site is live.

The site is beautiful (okay, I’m biased) and the event itself is going to be even better (okay, I’m still biased). The lineup is chock full of people who I respect and admire, and I can’t wait to hear what they have to share. If you can make it to Echo this summer, come on out.

And if I can’t persuade you, maybe our promo video can. Brace yourself:

(Did you spot me in the background at the church? I’m really good at being tall and walking in a straight line.)

International Speaking Tour!!!

Granted, “International Speaking Tour” might be overselling it a bit, but I have three dates on the ol’ speaking calendar in the coming months and I’d like to share them with you.

First up, Christian Web Conference — April 14-16 at Biola University just outside beautiful Los Angeles, California. I’m leading a workshop on social media strategy, and it should be a lot of fun. More important, I’m honored to be part of a lineup that includes Tony Morgan, Charles Lee, Drew Goodmanson, John Dyer, Matt Anderson, and the rest. As I tweeted the other day, it’s professors, PhDs, pastors, authors, CEOs, and me.

Next, Create Conference — June 6-8 in St. Catherines, Ontario, CANADA. See, I told you it was international! Again, I’m honored to be part of an amazing lineup: Phil Cooke, Kem Meyer, and Craig Groeschel via video. (“Enough with the professionals, who can we get who’s inexperienced and goofy looking?!?”) This time around, I’m giving a keynote talk on storytelling. This will be my first time in Canada, so let’s hope I don’t do anything to offend our friendly neighbors to the north.

 

Finally, Echo — July 27-29 in Dallas. This one is special because, um, I sorta help run Echo. I love Echo, which is why I invited myself to speak at it. This conference lineup is also spectacular — Scott Belsky, Andy Crouch, Jon Acuff, Joshua Blankenship, Blaine Hogan, Stephen Brewster, and on and on — so I’d love for you to come. I’m going to teach a breakout session about … something fun and interesting and to be determined.

That’s it for the 2011 International Speaking Tour — at least for the time being — so go ahead and register for all three events.