Encyclo-Media is sponsored by the Oklahoma State Department of Education under State Superintendent Sandy Garrett. The event has over 1,000 exhibitors and many sessions for teachers, librarians, and school councilors.
We saved and continued publishing books. After less than two years in business, we took twenty-three titles to the event, displaying them in a 10 x 10 booth.
On Wednesday, Jacque, Suzy Koch (whose book Being Jacob: First Day of School made its debut), and I, with help from Mike Koch, set up our booth.
Thursday, the event began. Jacque and I were on site, after driving through rain, by 7:30 AM. We left for home a little before 5 PM. Suzy joined us that morning after battling her way through masses of idiot drivers and left in time to pick up her sons at school.
Hundreds and hundreds of the 5,000 or more teachers, librarians, and/or counselors attending stopped and examined our books. More than half who stopped and looked took notes about the titles that interested them. All had to return to their schools and send out purchase orders for any books they wanted.
Quite a few teachers asked if we would/could prepare AR tests to go with the books. Jacque has worked with Advanced Reader for more than one grade level and said we could and would. A few of our books already have study guides, some of which have tests already: Bubba & Giganto: Odds Against Us by Lea Schizas, State of Wilderness and State of Quarries by Elysabeth Eldering (illustrated by Aidana WillowRaven), and Prairie Dog Cowboy by V. Gilbert Zabel, illustrated by Jordan M. Vinyard.
I put together a written process for educators to follow when they order from the company so they get a discount. Most of those who visited with us thought the discount was an incentive for schools to order from us.
Friday, we were on duty from 7:30 until shortly before 3. They locked the doors of the hall at 3. Jacob, Suzy's son and the Jacob of her book, joined us Friday.
All of us were excited, tired, and anxious.
Now we wait.