'Never underestimate the effectiveness...

by tosca on Thursday, April 8, 2010

...of a straight cash bribe.'
- Claud Cockburn (1904-1981), British journalist

Paul Brown is a readers' advisory genius and I am his disciple. But let's not tell him that! That's just between you, me, the blogosphere and the twitterverse. So mum's the word. Seriously, though, here he is world famous in Manukau. His latest idea, to promote the Auckland Writers & Readers Festival 2010 is a killer. So what are we doing??

Reading. Yah. That's it - we're going to read :-) It's so simple it's genius. Hell, it's so simple it just HAS to work. Right? Right! How's it gonna work? Like this...


A Festival.

About 'Books'.

And 'Authors'.

And 'Reading'.

Hhhhmmm, smells like Literary Spirit! And something we know something about. Plus, it's all happening just up SH1 tantalisingly close to us.

We would like to demonstrate Manukau Libraries support for this local and iconic Festival by posting a selection of short-ish book reviews on our website, covering the full range of authors, writing forms and genres being showcased during the Festival.

So... this is a call for staff to read and submit reviews before the Festival starts on May 12.

It is reviewing with a purpose.

It is reviewing with a deadline.

It is reviewing with prizes!"

Oops - that's right, we're going to bribe our staff to read :) A small prize draw for staff who submit book reviews for any and all authors who will be speaking at the festival. There will be 3 categories (staff who submit a review, staff who submit 2 or more, the overall 'Best' review).

Our rules are simple:

1) Use the standard book review template on our website.
2) Review only books that are held by Manukau Libraries.[As there is no law limiting us to just one review per book we will post multiple reviews on the same book... if the reviews are good enough. In fact, how much more engaging will it be for our readers to be informed and entertained by a repository of thoughtfully constructed, articluate, yet diametrically opposed, statements of opinionated fact?!?!?!]
3) Enter the words "Festival Review" at the beginning of your review so that Danielle & Tosca know that you are submitting a review specifically for this project.
4) Keep your reviews to one paragraph (or about 150 - 200 words). These should be short, sharp and "punchy" pieces. Convey your personal / emotional experience of - and response to - the book you read. "Sell" the book's oustanding qualities... or shoot it down in flames... but leave the person reading your review going "WOW! Now that's reviewing entertainment!"
5) You can begin submitting reviews anytime but the deadline for reviews is Monday, May 10. The Festival reviews will begin appearing on our website in the week beginning Monday, May 3.
6) Winners in both categories will be announced after the Festival, in late May.

Personally, I can't wait to see the reviews. I intend to submit but my reviews will be invalid because I get to be one of the bossy tarts what judges 'em

So...how are you celebrating the Auckland Writers & Readers Festival 2010...?

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