Sorry if it’s too much information but despite it being my son’s birthday and a beautiful sunny weekend, I’ve cried a lot over the last 48 hours. It started with tears of frustration, continued with a fantastic brain storming session with a patient friend, evolved further in church as, by funny coincidence, or as my new friend Megan would say, with a God wink, the chap doing the talking spoke right into the situation that I was experiencing and ended with me recording the video below and the wish list it introduces.
In a nutshell
I have come to conclude that I can’t continue doing this any more, not in the way I’m doing it anyway. I’ve been wearing too many hats and trying to jump through too many hoops. I love writing so it was probably only natural that that aspect of this site would develop and grow exponentially. Writing for the sheer fun of writing is all well and good, it’s the reason why I set up my personal blog. Believe me, I know the value and pleasure to be had in writing. However, the time I am spending writing twice daily blog posts is getting in the way of more important charity stuff.
So, despite having just last week unveiled a new posting schedule, I’m today tearing it up! Well, that’s not strictly true, we can keep the theme names for the different days to help folk plan and structure community posts, but as of today, I won’t be writing them all. Seeing as we’re trying to keep this as the nutshell version, I’ll spare you the details but my head is bouncing with ideas, thoughts and dreams for Give A Brick. But what’s the point in having all these ideas if there aren’t enough hours in the day to implement them?
In lieu of a time turner therefore, I’m taking some very good advice and asking for help. You’ll see the details in the wish list below. It’s a list I put together fairly quickly without needing to rack my brains much so I suspect there’s things missing that I haven’t even realised should be on there yet. Please bear with me. This is all new to me. I’m fiercely independent and a terrible control freak. I don’t ask for help easily so making a list such as this was tricky
That said, this is a community. If the silly April Fool’s joke taught me nothing else, I learned just how much support, encouragement and goodwill you have for Give A Brick. If Give A Brick is about making the impossible, possible, that can only happen by remaining true to the original idea: lots of individuals doing the little bit that they can to help. Therefore, I’ve got to stop being so stubborn and just ask. This is me asking:
I’ve put the wish list together via Google Docs and made it viewable and editable by anyone. The link for doing that is here although I’ve published it below too for your convenience The purpose of using Google Docs was to make it possible for you, the community, to get involved and add your thoughts. If you could make your additions in a new colour that would be helpful, but it’s by no means essential
Here we go then:
Wish list – April 12th 2010
Web design: Site needs some fresh eyes. A lick of paint (or even a complete over haul). Tweaking or transforming? Want to continue using WP with blog posts on front but need to neaten it up a bit. Landing page with aweber lead capture form. Currently using thesis. Having looked around the web, the GAB site could be soooo much better. We just need an amazingly awesome web designer to take us under their wing
April 14th: The amazing Amanda Farough from Violet Minded has answered my call for help. In the spirit of not getting unless you ask, I sent her an email asking her to help Give A Brick. Between you and I, I love her work. It is beautiful and elegant and a little bit quirky. If I’m honest, I didn’t really think she’d consider working with little ol’ us. But she said yes!! Thank you Amanda
Off-line media expert: Someone in the know about how best to get off-line media coverage, assuming of course we need off-line coverage.
Video creator to take basic stuff and make it slick.
Writers to add content to the site. It’s a community project. We need to hear the voices.
Fund-raising: To raise £69,000 we need a strategy. Then we need people to implement it.
Patron: For publicity purposes we need some big names to give us a brick. If someone famous and namely wanted to adopt us and be our patron, all the better. Stephen Fry is top of my wish list because he loves Twitter and it fits our social media based approach.
The Patron’s song: I’ve just had a rather fun idea. I wondered if maybe someone very talented could do a song for us that would help in our search for a patron? It could be a fun little ditty that could be recorded and uploaded to You Tube. What do you think?
Ask: Need to ask people to Give A Brick. Famous people, infamous people, all people.
Next project: We need to be on the look out for the next project to support. Need a plan for how to find the next project. Video submissions and community vote?
Promotional video: I’ve started collecting clips for this. I’d like all our friends to send in a short clip (maybe just 5-10 seconds) telling people why they should Give A Brick. These will be mixed, music overlaid and form the basis of our landing page and promotional stuff. Please send your clips to firstname.lastname@example.org
Competition: Like how off-line charities have competitions with real prizes, I’d like to have some sort of competition but base in on-line. If we can get Amazon to ship prizes at their cost then great but if not, I’m thinking about top quality ebooks, videos, audio. After that I’m out but I’d like to put a brilliant prize together. Something that contains products so awesome, the authors are knocking on the door offering their goods because they’ve heard about it and want to be included
Auction: Seeing as we’re called Give A Brick, I love the idea of getting a collection of signed bricks together and auctioning them off.
Advertising: This addition to the list came as a result of an offer made by Maria Muir who has kindly offered us a space on her blog(s). This made me think that maybe other peolpe might have room for a Give A Brick badge or even feel compelled to write about us. As soon as our brilliant new landing page is up (see above) that would an excellent page for a badge to link to. Thanks Maria
Badge: Strictly speaking, this is something I can do myself via Photoshop. However, my badges will be very basic so I’m adding this to the list. If you have any really clever ideas for how we could make super shiny badges featuring the Give A Brick logo, I’d love to hear about that too. If you know how to make them go viral, we really need to talk
Knowing who you know: If you’re sitting there thinking that actually, you’d love to get involved but you don’t know how, think about the people who you know who might be able to help us. There’s that law of separation thing that would back me up in saying that the chances are high that you know someone who knows someone who is Tom Cruise’s cousin (for a random example!) You see my point anyway If you can’t do somethig but you know a man (or lady or child ) who can, talk to them and us.
Jing: Do you know anyone who knows anyone who knows someone who is in charge of the screen capture software Jing? I’d love us to have a pro version of that wonderful software to use for creating how to videos for The Giving Machine. We’re talking $25 I think so it’s not a completely unrealistic expectation but I don’t personally know the people to speak to about this. Therefore, please put your thinking cap on and then let me know.
April 13th: I have an exciting update. This wish has been fulfilled by the lovely Ayo Olaniyan from Discovering Purpose. He literally made me cry (in a good way ) by gifting us a copy of Jing Pro. Thank you sooooo much Ayo
In an ideal world, I love to have a team of people who are responsible for individual areas. For example, a person or persons in charge of web design for the charity and another team in charge of fund raising. This would free me up to focus my time and energies on talking to people about Give A Brick and asking them to get involved. Maybe this is my living in a dream land but I’ve got to believe it’s possible. Other charities have teams, they’re not run by one or two people sharing lots of hats
So what do you think? This has all been put together in a fit of excitement. There are details still to be worked out but have a look at our wish list again and please, let me know what you can do to help.