As usual, I’m sitting in a parking lot writing this blog. I’m always early. Today, while waiting on my Green Bay Unit Groom, I took a call regarding a follow up interview on the Juror #10 AKA Mary Martin Story.
As many of you are aware, I have not agreed to an interview regarding my by now “infamous client.” My reasons are that after seeing the interview, I knew the general public would be opinionated. They were. Had I been aware of what a train wreck that interview would be, I would have strongly suggested that Mary let my entertainment attorney, Jonathan draw up a production contract or personal release regarding the “scope” of the interview.
But, Mary did the interview without any self preservation for herself or Luther inadvertently. How? Well, the details are far more interesting and will give you insight on just how Mary was actually a victim of barnstorming by the network and reporter “covering the story.”
Let’s go over how “they” found Mary in the first place. Reporters are always searching for a story. One reporter was searching at the DA’s office. THIS reporter and her team showed up at Mary’s place of employment WITHOUT bothering to contact her prior to doing so. Are you catching on yet? You should be.
Mary was unfamiliar with television, editing, story twisting and frankenbiting. If you don’t know what frankenbiting is, you’ve never worked in (or for) the entertainment industry. I have. But, I will enlighten you on how whatever you say on film can easily be edited.
Let us cautiously consider… the Frankenbite.
If you’re not familiar with the word, it’s a combination of “soundbite” and “Frankenstein,” the novel written in 1818 by Mary Shelley about a mad scientist who stitched together a monster from pieces of various human corpses.
A description that some would consider accurate when applied to Reality TV in general. But we digress.
Frankenbites come into being when, for whatever reason, content creators make a mashup of soundbites that never existed together in their original form.
Sometimes in order to make a character say what the producers want to hear, editors and story producers will grab a phrase here, a word there, and cobble together a brand new thought.
By using film and sound bites, it’s easy to change the dynamics. In fact, this sneaky way of doing things happens frequently in television.
Mary didn’t sign a release. Why? She was never offered one to review that’s why. Mary had never been on television. Mary is now getting death threats. Her fiancée, Luther is too. Getting through the process to be granted approval to marry Luther, Mary has been through Hell.
Mary has been judged by people who don’t even know her or the real story without referencing the victims family who Mary had nothing to do with. Mary has also sent me copies of letters from Luther. I know you may have an opinion if you’ve watched the interview but, I know personally that Mary loves Luther. No one would go through all of this stress without love.
Mary was juror #10. Why is that important? It’s important because 11 other jurors helped sentence Luther. Not Mary alone but 11 other people too.
I’ve watched the clip several times. Mary isn’t at home or in a studio. Mary’s walking in a field. Why? This is somewhat irregular. For a person like me who has filmed numerous projects, filming outside in Texas is “tricky” at best. Why? North Texas wind that’s why. Mary was at work.
Obviously, a carnival of a chaos AKA “media circus” showing up at your place of business and dragging you from your job would be unsettling to anyone. It was to Mary.
I first spoke to Mary in December. Normally, the Prison wedding process takes 3-5 weeks. For Mary that wasn’t the case. The reason was based entirely on “the interview.” This interview was on over 100 networks.
At the time of this “televised news interview,” Mary had thought she would marry Luther on February 20th.
I had set aside the date on my calendar to accommodate Mary in Iowa Park, Texas at Allred Unit. But, the backlash and attention of the interview were the reasons her wedding were effectively “put off.”
I’ve emailed back and forth with Mary numerous times throughout this process to plan her wedding.
I’ve also strictly forbidden Mary to conduct ANY FURTHER INTERVIEWS until after the wedding. I’ve also declined to be interviewed myself for over a month now.
What media outlets do not understand is that a Prison and a Warden aren’t “loving the attention” this unique story has brought to them.
Neither Allred Unit or the Warden “asked” to be part of this story. I didn’t either. Mary and Luther had no idea of the repercussions or “ripple effect” the interview would bring into their lives.
In my opinion, the “interview” was the sole basis of all of this backlash and primary reason that Mary and Luther aren’t married yet. Prisons don’t like publicity.
Last week, I was driving to Jack County Jail to meet clients when an email came in from Mary announcing “I have spoke with the Warden and he’s going to Approve the I60.”
For the laymen that don’t understand what an I60 is, this form is REQUIRED for any couple to marry in a Texas Department Of Criminal Justice Facility. Privately owned Units as well as Federal Units fall under the TDCJ Administrative Directive pertaining to inmate marriage.
Last Friday, after FINALLY getting scheduled on March 20th to marry, neither I, Mary or even the Unit itself could have predicted a Lock Down.
But, it happened. Hearing this news, I called Chaplain Redwine on behalf of my client, Mary to inquire about the length of the Lock Down.
Yesterday, Mary was told the date was confirmed for March 20th. I reiterated the “no interview rule” with Mary who told me “they want you involved with the interview to discuss your calling.” I again reminded Mary that I would require a Release for not only Mary but also, myself.
Any and ALL interview requests would be scheduled or addressed AFTER and NOT BEFORE March 20, 2019 in order to prevent further disruptions to the Unit and, as far away from the Allred Unit as possible. No references to the Unit by name will be permitted either.
Quite frankly, I can’t wait for this wedding to be over. I work 7 days a week and consistent calls from reporters regarding my client are disruptive.
Please try emailing me instead (Wendy@texastwinsevents.com) as during the week, I’m in Prisons or Jails addressing my clients needs I don’t speak to reporters without reviewing a release FIRST.
On weekends, I work for numerous venues I’m on staff at as well as clients from The Pawning Planners and Texas Twins Events. I.E. I’m busy. If you are calling to ask me about Mary, my answer is currently “no comment.”
I’ve also assured the Warden at ALLRED UNIT that there will not be a media circus on March 20th at Allred and, I meant it.
If you happen to be a reporter planning to camp out at Allred, I’m renting a car rather than driving one of our black suvs in order to prevent you from recognizing either Mary or I entering the Unit.
To prevent Mary from being barnstormed again, I’m also picking her up at an undisclosed gas station in Wichita Falls and driving her to the Unit myself.
If you are “one of those reporters” too lazy to use my email to contact me,” PLEASE don’t simply Google Wendy Wortham and call me at the number associated with Bell Tower Chapel disrupting THEIR day too. The phone number listed is to book me not call me.
It should be noted that all Officiants on staff (including me) at Bell Tower Chapel voluntarily DONATE $200 of our $300 fee to Officiate ceremonies to ACH. For those unaware that ACH owns and operates Bell Tower Chapel, I will add information as to where any and all venue fees as well as $200 of Officiants fees goes:
Belltower Chapel & Garden is wholly owned and operated by ACH Child and Family Services. Belltower Chapel & Garden seeks to financially contribute to the mission of ACH Child and Family Services and provide supportive employment and economic empowerment to foster youth.
I am on staff at numerous venues and work by bookings.
I AM NOT at any venue I’m on staff with on a daily basis. These consistent and demanding phone calls are the specific reason that I’m not calling you back.
I can be reached through ANY Wendy Wortham website. In fact, for those (who apparently) don’t look hard enough to find my websites before calling a venue I’m on staff at off the internet, I will add my site links as a courtesy. Texas Twins Events. Texas Twins TV. Texas Twins Treasures. TDCJ Officiant.
My client, Mary had no one protecting her from invasive questions during her first interview. I will not allow that to happen during any future interviews.
Mary and her decision to marry Luther may not be the “Love Story” everyone accepts or condones but, it’s a love story nonetheless as are all of my other TDCJ Brides and Grooms journeys.
I’m going to specifically answer the phone message left by a reporter from North Texas directly and publicly on this blog post. “Yes, I do Officiate LBGT as well as Interracial Weddings at BOTH Texas Prisons and Jails as well as other states I Officiate inmate weddings within.”
Honestly, I found your “intrusive and opinionated” phone message offensive for not only my clients but also, myself. Had you researched further, you would have found that I was the FIRST openly LBGT FRIENDLY vendor in Texas.
In fact had you checked my bio, you would have already realized that Bell Tower lists that I’m LBGT Friendly but, since you effectively “missed it,” I’m adding the link for you– Rev Wendy Wortham Bell Tower Chapel.
Also, the urgency of your phone message yesterday interrupted me while working 4 different events in the DFW Area was disruptive to my overwhelming work flow last weekend.
I don’t appreciate stupidity. I don’t appreciate opinionated questions that obviously “out you” (or your beliefs) as attempting to portray me in a negative, controversial spotlight “because I’m based in Texas” and you assume everyone is either a hillbilly or redneck or worse, that my “Rainbow Client Base” is either unusual or odd. You were shocked that I also perform Prison Weddings too? I’m all over the internet. I can only assume that you didn’t bother using Google?
I’m looking forward to finally meeting Mary in person and protecting her from any further negative media attention that literally “spins” her relationship into either an oddity or carnival or even crazy idea.
For the other inquiries regarding my affiliation within the LBGT Community, I’m including the interview with me, my twin sister and my twin grandnieces in Dallas, Texas to give you a “better idea” of just how many LBGT Couples there actually are in Texas– CW33 Interview With Wendy Wortham Dallas, Texas. Let me remind you that this event was called the “No Hate Campaign.”
Ironic that someone (a reporter) who had an opinion so strong regarding same sex marriage would assume that leaving a message about my “affiliation with LBGT Couples” didn’t even bother to read my bio on the venue site that specifically addresses LBGT Weddings. Sorry Mister, you didn’t shock or surprise the receptionist taking your message as I’m not nor have I ever been hiding my Client base or my belief that Love Is Love. Before you started blasting off that message and making a fool out of yourself, you might have researched that the particular venue you were calling is LBGT Friendly. I’m far more prone to research myself but, not everyone looks for the facts. You (Mr Reporter) obviously didn’t do your research.
My venues already know that I perform LBGT Weddings. After all, I perform these ceremonies at the same venue you left your wordy phone message at while going on and on about how controversial I am. To you maybe but, certainly not to anyone who actually knows me.
No one I’m affiliated or on staff with cares that I also perform Prison Weddings. Why? Because I’m not performing Prison Weddings at the venues I’m on staff at that’s why. But, thanks for trying to interject controversy at a venue I’ve been on staff at for over 6 years. Nice try genius. You aren’t the first “chili stirrer” I’ve dealt with and you won’t be the last.
By the way, Mr Reporter, when and if my client, Mary and I do agree to a follow up interview, I can assure you that it will not be with YOUR STATION.
I’ve got a Cindyism for reporters who don’t care who they hurt or what emotional shape they left their latest victim in due to “their thirst for a Pulitzer.”
Morals are like a good set of tires, everything you have is riding on them.
Please let Mary have some peace and plan for her wedding to Luther without constantly calling her (or me) begging for the first “follow up” interview after the wedding is finally completed.
I’m carefully reviewing media inquiries who will give her (and I) an unbiased and honest interview without all the “fluff, controversy or sensationalism” regarding not only Mary and Luther but also, my role or “calling” to become a TDCJ Officiant.
The truth is that I never planned on merging Texas Twins Events and Texas Twins Treasures to create The Pawning Planners but, the need for folks who didn’t have any money existed and the barter option solved this issue.
I also didn’t plan to rebrand and expand again by extending Texas Twins Events services to include Texas Prison Weddings either but, by being flexible and adjusting or “tweaking” my original business model to make events affordable by starting Texas Twins Events (a people over profit based business), I had creative requests from people who needed help but didn’t know where to find it.
In my quest to accommodate any creative request, rebranding and expanding addressed nearly ANY request. I’ve also NEVER ADVERTISED.
That’s right. I just said NEVER. Why? I’ve never needed to that’s why. I exceed client expectations and by doing so have had enough referral business to add four generations of my family on board to address new bookings.
In fact, it’s not unusual for a client to reschedule their event date to accommodate my calendar. It actually happens frequently.
Loyalty is a priceless commodity. Our clients loyalty is the sole reason we have never needed advertising and never will. Our clients are like family to us. You don’t find that type of personalized service at affordable prices just anywhere.
My Texas Twins Events & The Pawning Planners Team Members are proud to say that even our photographers when booked, provide FREE PHOTOS. That’s right. FREE. We are different than ANY other event vendor in the United States. We are different because someone needed to care about people with limited resources. That someone was ME.
Four generations of my family changed all of that. Rather than charging exorbitant fees, we kept our costs low enough for just about anyone to afford to book us.
Five years ago, a client had no money but did have an antique desk and other items they were willing to flip in exchange for their Dream Event. From that moment on, The Pawning Planners became a way to help EVEN people with no money.
Did I expect that the demand for prison weddings was big enough to now occupy 75% of my personal bookings? No. Who would? But, in fact I do far more Prison Weddings than any other booking and have for over two years. I work only on referral as an Event Planner. Why? Time. From weekday bookings at Units to weekend bookings, time is the one thing I have very little of.
Not everyone will embrace Prison Weddings or accept it but, I can assure you that my TDCJ Clients don’t need acceptance or approval and neither do my LBGT Couples. Both diverse sets of clients are as unique as Pawning Planners Clients in that they are thankful and feel blessed to have found a Team that welcomes them with open arms. That “Team” is my family and I who treat everyone entrusting and honoring us by booking through one of our businesses and continuing to refer their friends and families all these years later.
Mary may not be your “typical bride” but, she’s excited about finding a dress and doing her photo shoot after the wedding and like any other bride, looking forward to saying “I Do.”
I’ve also decided to put Mary in a hotel far from Nacodoches and local media close to the Unit. Mary will also be getting her hair and makeup professionally done before sitting down for a private interview with me about her journey as a Prison bride. We won’t discuss Luther or his crime. Instead, we will discuss the issues that most clients face going through The Prison Wedding Planning Process. In Mary’s case, the process has been emotionally difficult.
Mary is a person who should be able to express her journey as an individual who isn’t responsible for Luthers choices because she isn’t. The fact that she was a juror put her in a negative light but, serving as a juror in a high profile case is never easy.
I’m doing everything possible to give Mary the wedding day she has always wanted…