Friday, May 22, 2009

Busy....Busy...



After the excitement of Monday Night, I have spent the week immersed in tracking registrations answering queries and emails and responding to begging emails.

Right at the beginning of this Conference Ride, a year ago last month, we thought ‘ok let’s aim for 80 people.’ That’s a reasonable number, (double the previous conference 16 years ago.) It is affordable at the venue. The next biggest venue would double our costs....(Would anyone in NZ pay $700 to go to the same conference given the current economic climate...)

When we began to realise the public interest in what we were doing we started to let everyone know that interest was high. The speed of the take up surprised us and baffled some who thought Oh I’ll register tomorrow or next week. So now we have a waiting list...growing by the hour....

I did take a little break on Wednesday night to update our WCBA blog about the New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards. Fifi was texting them through from the award ceremony so I had to post them. Go Here if you want to read what I wrote.

Hats off and a wave to Melinda, fellow blogger, who won The Children’s Choice Award with The Were-Nana.

It has been a busy week...but I took another break this morning to catch up on blog reading.
So here are some little gems for you to take you into the weekend....

Every now and again I hop onto The Buried Editor site and have a look at what Madeline is talking about. Recently she posted the handout of the workshop she took at a regional conference in Texas. Madeline took a session looking at Online Marketing. It is very informative and covers a lot of ground. So go take a look.

The team at Writers Digest have put together a conference in New York that touches on some of the themes at our own conference. So worldwide, everyone seems to be asking the same questions. There is a great line up of speakers and sessions...

The great Jane has posted a MUST READ article on Five Ways Writers and Book Publishers Need To Embrace Change NOW.
Jane is an amazing resource in what’s coming and trends in the publishing world in America. Keep an eye on her....


When you take these 5 things together, I think authors will partner with publishers who offer a community of other like-minded authors (networking/growth potential), who offer diverse opportunities and methods of support, across all types of media, and who share the same values.


So it's been a busy week...


Maybe this weekend I'll get my tax done, paint that wall, write something on Mars....


Maureen


pic says it all really

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Wow! What a night!!!!



The Spinning Gold Team gathered at Fifis studio...all a bit nervous...we had tested and tweaked and tested everything to make sure it all worked. We gathered around the computer....


Fifi put up the link five minutes early because we were so nervous and we couldn't wait any more....


I put up the live spreadsheet that recorded the registrations and we waited,


NOT FOR LONG.


The first registration came in 30 seconds! and it was all go from then on....


By 10:30 when I left the studio there was only 6 spaces left...


I didn't sleep much...I was going over and over the numbers making sure I hadn't missed any double registrations and there were a few of those....people were so keen....


This morning at 8 am there were only 3 spaces left....


By 9:30 am it was over. We were full.....and now we are dealing with the waiting list.....

Fifi and I have spent the morning replying to emails....


At some point today or in the next few days we have to send Congratulations emails to everybody who made it.


But we (The Fabulous Spinning Gold Team) are so pleased and proud to have such support for our conference.


Tomorrow it the turn of the finalists in the NZ Post Book Awards!


Three members of our team will be at the awards. Quite a few of our conference presenters will be there too.


Good Luck Everybody!


Maureen- head spinning......Spinning.....GOLD

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Twittering....




No I have not joined the tweeting throngs...I’m too busy for that...that’s why I like Jane Friedmans Friday posts called ‘I watch twitter so you don’t have to”

There are some interesting links...here’s one that will be of interest to a few people who are planning on attending the Spinning Gold conference. (programme up on Friday hopefully)
Mark Coker of Smashwords has a great interview up with Sramana Mitra, an indie author on 'How authors can build their personal franchise.'

This interview shows what can happen when the author embraces the new digital age....here is a little taster of the interview...but go and read the rest...


[Sramana Mitra] - Entrepreneurs often bootstrap their way to proving their concepts, and then follow up with additional financing from investors. Authors can think of it the same way. Develop your concept. Bootstrap. Build a blog. Write books. eBooks. Columns. Build a platform. Build a franchise. Build a following for your work. Then, if you like, you can also get to work with regular publishers and get additional leverage. This is how I operate.



And for all the geeks out there...

Astro Mike is twittering from space. He is on the mission updating the Hubble Telescope...the last of the shuttle missions to do this. The shuttle fleet is retiring in 2010...what will they do then, I wonder.... (and so do many thousands more)

Right back to work on the conference.....

maureen


Pic is from www.drawingcoach.com

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Ah conferences....



Conference planning has taken over my life.


I have no topics of conversation.


My family are watching the gibbering wreck become more gibbery....as we get into the sharp end of getting this National Conference of Children’s Writers and Illustrators off the ground. I am awake at 3am worrying about little details....and big ones....I have written nothing but conference related material since February.

But I feel proud of what we have achieved and very soon you will get a chance to see what has been keeping me awake...greying my hair and giving me a nervous twitch...hopefully after the announcement of the programme and registration I will look less manic and go back to writing fiction.

In the meantime the HUGE Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators conference begins taking registrations tomorrow for their MASSIVE 4 day conference in L.A. If you have a spare three thousand NZ dollars....not to mention airfares and food...
Imagine organising this...
maureen
co convenor of Spinning Gold - New Zealand Conference of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators....gibbering quietly in a corner....(how come my other co convenor who is in the middle of work deadlines, tv appearences and a major wow creation looks so good....what are you on Fifi and how come you didn't slip me any......)
pic is the logo of this years American Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators Conference(August 7-10)

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