- Trim back some of my reading materials. I was so worried about not having enough content to fill my allotted time that I didn't leave room for much of a Q&A session.
- The East Texas Historical Association paper I presented last year in Nacogdoches works well as reading material. The intro is a little too academic, but the meat of the paper is gripping, even outside of an academic setting. This is good to know.
- Scale back the number of Ghosts of the Chicken Ranch images. Specifically, multiple shots/angles of the same thing. What works well in book form can get repetitive quickly on screen.
- People really liked seeing the ruins and getting a virtual tour of the place. The years of neglect and vandalism sickened them as much as it does me.
- People really, really liked seeing my historical photos, including the Chicken Ranch restaurant in Dallas and Miss Edna standing in the oh-so-tastefully-decorated parlor.
- Keep a checklist so I don't forget anything. I was baffled as to how I end my presentation early (15 minutes ahead of time, to be precise). It wasn't until after the throngs had departed that I realized I'd completely forgotten about the 11 minute video I'd brought along. I screened it for the library staff, so it wasn't a total waste, but I'm kicking myself.
- Bring multiple titles to a signing. I almost didn't bring Voices of Vision along, because it has absolutely nothing to do with the Chicken Ranch. But the $45 price of Ghosts was too steep for some (understandably enough) so they opted for the $15 interview collection instead. Ghosts will make a very good companion volume to take along when I'm touring for the history book (whenever that may be). Lots of potential here, yes indeed.
- At its core, I have a very good Chicken Ranch presentation. This will play very well to audiences across the state, and can be tailored to specific audiences with minimal effort. Once I get the big history book published, I'm loaded for bear.
Chicken Ranch Central