ITPOTY@IPA@IPG and a speech • 9 March 2008 • The SnowBlog

ITPOTY@IPA@IPG and a speech

          Here, Rob, let me jog your failing memory: 


Wheeeee! I can't tell you how chuffed I am to announce that Rob, Anna and I, aka Snowbooks, won the Independent Trade Publisher of the Year at the Independent Publishing Awards last night, held during the Independent Publisher's Guild conference. How exciting!


I've just got a press release from the organisers, and here's what they said about Snowbooks: 

"Snowbooks' award caps its rapid rise in publishing since it was set up in 2003. Judges liked its energetic marketing and publicity and its efforts to build close relationships with retailers and other partners in the trade. Snowbooks' lively website and design service for other publishers were also both praised. "The energy of this energetic publisher fizzes off the page," said the judges. "It's a very innovative company, great to work with, and likely to sustain its early growth in the years ahead." "

Isn't that nice? (And they spelled it right, and got the possessive apostrophes right, and everything!) It was a really lovely evening from the start because it was in Brighton where the IPG conference was held, which is full of healthful sea air, and Andy my husband travelled down to come to the dinner and awards. So I got to see him in the aforementioned DJ which was very appealing. And I had new patent purple shoes and an utterly gorgeous handbag (thanks, Joan!) which were fabulous. Then we poled along to the drinks reception, and I got to introduce Andy to a bunch of people, thus confirming in his mind finally that I do not simply, in fact, go to the park every day and feed the pigeons (unless I'd undertaken a very elaborate and well planned ruse that involved bribing total strangers in advance to pretend that they knew me). Dinner was superb, and huge, heartfelt thanks to Chris R and Ros from Bertrams who were our gracious hosts and are wonderful people. Then the awards bit of the evening was hosted by Hardeep Singh Kohli who is a very funny man from t'radio (and Celebrity Masterchef, as I'm led to believe). He did a bit of a turn, then announced the first award, which was the Indie Trade Publisher of the Year. And presto, it was us! 

I was genuinely, truly not expecting it, because I thought the boys at Summersdale would walk it since they're a company I rate higher than any, and my resultant lack of planning led to a bit of confusion. Being the first award, there was no precedent set for how you got onto the stage or what you did. So I stepped up onto the stage (it was only about a foot off the ground) to the alarm of the organisers (not health and safety appropriate, apparantly - should have used the steps twenty foot away) and had my photo taken in a complete daze, then a lady ushered me off the stage. It was only once I'd got back to my seat that I thought 'Eek! Glasses! Speech!" I'm long sighted so I'd had my glasses on to watch the proceedings, and forgot to take them off for a PHOTO. Disaster. And I also forgot to do any sort of speech (yes, I was stupefied and stupid but, admittedly, I wasn't offered the podium), which made me sad because I thought immediately afterwards that I could have thanked Andy for supporting me and being so wonderful. So here is my acceptance speech, a day late: 


Hmm. Tick for emotional content, but needs polish. Let's try again, with less adrenaline. 

"There is an adage that 80% of small businesses fail in the first five years. Snowbooks will be five years old on 1st April of this year - so we only have to get through another 22 days and we've made it! 

[Appreciative laughter, ripple of applause.]

On behalf of my fellow Snowbookers, Rob and Anna, I would like to thank all the readers, retailers and wholesalers, authors and suppliers who support us so brilliantly. Without them we'd be nothing. I'd also like to thank those friends and colleagues whose advice, support and friendship means so much and is so crucial. 

And most of all, I'd like to thank my wonderful parents and my husband, Andy, who has believed in us since before the beginning; who has never lost patience; who is always there with wise words and kindness; whose sacrifices mean I get to live my dream." 

Good job I forgot, really. I'd have welled up and gone all Gwyneth. 

Erg! Forgot to thank the cats: 


And then we had champagne, huge thanks again to Chris R (although muggins here had to live vicariously through others, on account of my condition) and had lots of lovely chats with lots of lovely people. It was one of those sorts of evenings. Pretty perfect. 


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