Thursday, June 27, 2013

B-I-N-G-O and bingo was the game-o!

I put together a bingo game for Romcon 2013. After I'd been asked to do a Bingo game during lunch on Friday at the Reader Conference in Colorado Springs, I put out a call to authors for a copy of their cover and $5 to cover printing and set up. I also asked them to send books or prizes for the winners.

Boy did the authors come through! Even when I had to ask for their covers a second time because my computer crashed they were all gracious and resent the covers. Then I put the covers in folders labeled: Western, Historical, Contemporary, Paranormal, and Suspense.

My daughter designs my covers and is a wizard at math so I gave her the job of making the bingo cards. She found software on the internet that formulated how to mix up the covers. She numbered them and went to work. I went to work putting the author names and websites on a page for the back of the card.
Me reading the powerpoint
At home, I made a power point of the covers, with the hope to have the covers displayed on a screen. I rolled a dice using the numbers to correlate with the columns: one-western, two- historical, three-contemporary, four- paranormal, and five- suspense. If the number was a three, then I wrote Contemporary at the top of the powerpoint slide and inserted the covers in the order they were in the folder each time I rolled a three. This was how I randomly set up the covers to show at the event. However, the event was in an atrium that was to light to make use of the poser point other than for me to call out the covers and authors.

At the event, I passed out a card and two rolls of smarties to use as the tokens to place on the called cover. The problem was there wasn't any room on the tables to leave their cards flat and still be able to have their lunch. So, they were allowed to eat the smarties and use a pen to mark off the covers. I'd initially wanted the covers unmarked for when they took the cards home. Oh well, best laid plans.

Participants juggling lunch and cards
When a participant filled their first row either across, up and down, or diagonal they received a prize. In some cases it was several books. We started running out of the packaged prizes and were handing out individual ones before Candice finally filled her card and won the gift basket from Anna Kathryn Lanier. We had only 12 covers left to reveal when a card was filled and only minutes to spare for the end of lunch. So, the event filled the time perfectly!

Barbara Vey of Publishers Weekly was there having a good time, and she facebooked and tweeted about the event. Afterwards every time I saw Michele(one of the coordinators) she said, "Bingo was a huge hit! Everyone is talking about it! That leads me to believe it was totally worth my time and the author's prizes.

Would I do it again next year? Possibly. It just depends on what is happening in my life at that time.



28 comments:

Karen Michelle Nutt said...

Sounds like you had a great time. What a great promo idea.

Paty Jager said...

It was a lot of fun, Karen!

AJ Nuest said...

Oh my gosh, Paty, this is awesome! Thank you so much for all your hard work in getting this tomorrow. You're the best! Very exciting to see my cover on there! LOL Whoot!

Jill Hughey said...

Thanks for all your hard work on this. I think my cover was mixed in on the cards somewhere!

Judith Ashley said...

A very creative and obviously successful idea - lots of work involved!

VICKI BATMAN, said...

Paty, it was awesome. I saved my card with my cover on it because it really is well done. You rock! Your daughter rocks too!

Terry Spear said...

My cover was there too, but never heard it called out. Lots of fun! Gorgeous covers.

Melissa Keir said...

What a great idea! I loved that you put the covers out there for everyone to see.

PamelaTurner said...

Thank you for doing this! Sounds like a great time. :-)

Andrea Downing said...

Thanks so much for including Loveland, Paty I especially appreciate it since I see the Romance Novel Convention in VEgas wants something like $200 for the privilege of being included in their Bingo!

LKF said...

It looked like a great time and thanks for including my book, Rescued from the Dark.
Lynda

Jennifer Delamere said...

Thanks for doing this, Paty! I'm glad I could participate, and very glad the game was a hit.

Linda McLaughlin said...

Glad to hear the Bingo game was such a success. Happy to participate. Thanks for doing this, Paty!

Sarah Hoss said...

It sounds like fun! Thanks for letting me participate.
Sarah Hoss

Paty Jager said...

Everyone! It was fun! And there were 200 bingo cards made up with every cover on at least 10 cards. And your name and website on every card.

Anna Brentwood said...

A really great idea and I was so thrilled to be able to participate. Glad it went over so well-- very original idea and so glad all that hard work paid off!

Danita Cahill said...

Sounds like a blast! I know you and Christy worked hard on it. Thanks for including me and "Mist!"

Sarah Richmond said...

Thanks, Paty, to you and your daughter. A fab idea. Saw some of the cards posted on Facebook.

E. Ayers said...

Thanks, Paty, for all the hard work and allowing me to be part of it.

bn100 said...

Fun idea

Paty Jager said...

My daughter did a great job on the cards and it was a fun experience.

Lyn Horner said...

Paty, I'm glad the Bingo game was a hit. I was so happy to be included on the cards. Thanks to you and your daughter for all your work.

Donna Michaels said...

I thought everything went very well, Paty. I had fun and know the other participating authors did too!

Well done!

Paty Jager said...

Thanks Donna! I forgot to mention you, Donna Michaels, Geri Foster, Donna Dalton and Brenda Gayle helped pass out the prizes. Thank you ladies!!!

Maggie Jaimeson said...

Sounds like it was a great success. I know you worked really hard, both coordinating authors and covers, as well as making up all the Bingo cards. You are a truly creative marketer and we all benefit from your knowledge and hard work.

Thank you for sharing this!

Paty Jager said...

Those are kind words, Maggie. Thank you. I don't feel like a good marketer.

Dalton Diaz said...

What an awesome idea, and well executed, too!

Paty Jager said...

Thank you Dalton!