Saturday, January 28, 2012

Contest - Me, History & Interpretation - Winner

It's been almost a month and nearly a week and half of that month vegging in the eastern Caribbean, aboard a cruise ship since I announced the contest.  My brain is functioning again. If there is one thing I've learned in branding or logos, words are tools and use them wisely. Everyone relates, interprets words according to their own historical use of a particular word.

Thank you, thank you for all the suggestions I had via postings, email and facebook.

I've been back over all the suggestions and plugged them into the logo and put them into a power point slide. I will use the slide at the beginning of each presentation, when I tell who I am, my "expertise",  what the subject is today,  etc.

I then took several of the suggestions/tag lines and mixed them with each others. I'm leaning toward these two. Remember that Lady Carolyn is in Red right above this line. So Lady Carolyn.....

          Brings History's Lesser Known (Tidbits) to Life

          Brings Lesser Known Historical (Tidbits) to Life

A couple people (Vicky, Maridy) suggested Tidbits - I like the word, but would it turn off the male population?  is it connotations-- delicate? dainty?  Dictionary and thesaurus -"a tiny morsel of food or a pleasing bit of anything, as news or gossip". Girls gossip!This word my be to feminine.

The word Past, everyone enjoys the past. Everyone you meet you want to know about their past or facts of their life, we're curious about them. Past is much better word we relate to than facts. Do you say "Tell me about the (facts, past) of your life". You may not be that direct on a first date, but you will find out their past.   Facts- accurate  word but seems dull. Facts and History is what everyone avoided in high school.

Stories, everyone enjoys a good story. No one suggested this word, it actually came to me while I was typing this up. As an interpreter  we are taught that Stories can create an emotional bond which can tie us to the past or history.

As much as I personally love the word tidbits I think I'll have to past on this one. If I only spoke to women this would be such a lovely word to use. Women relate to tidbits in food, you know, you'll  only take a little bit of that delicious dessert. What woman doesn't love a  pleasing bit of news or gossip? And tidbits of history would wet their appetite for some juicy morsel of information about someone or something.

"Past" doesn't seem to have a zing to it, but stories could be exciting to settle down and hear about. Uumm may I be as good a story teller of history that matches the level of my historical costuming! Now that could be a scary thought, not living up to the costumes.

Lady Carolyn, Brings History's Lesser Known Stories to Life
Lady Carolyn, Brings History's Lesser Known Past to Life
Lady Carolyn, Brings History's Lesser Known Tidbits to Life -rats! I like, but no - don't think I can unless I get an overwhelming "yes use it"
Lady Carolyn, Brings Lesser Known Historical Stories to Life

Give me some feed back and then I'm done!And then to pick a winner of the slogan, that may have to be one or two, as I pirated part of their words, Maridy and Vicky.  

Beginning to get brain dead again and I need to order a corset pattern, I HAVE to get busy on my Titanic era gown.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Interview and Interviewed with Sixth Star

As many of you know I was in Florida last week to catch the ship Celebrity Eclipse for a cruise and to speak aboard ship. Sometimes I don’t know whether to say I was speaking, doing a presentation, a show or wrap it all together into edutainment.  I did receive some wonderful feedback from Maria, the Activity Director on board.  I’m unique, out of the box! Those of you who know me  might say, “oh, she’s different alright” J  She would love to have me book several back to back runs.  What a nice complement!

But on to Sixth Star.  Our ship left port on Saturday, January 14th. To catch a ship back east, you have to fly in the day before due to the time changes, which would put the date for flying on Friday the 13th. My dear husband does have a bit of superstition in him, no flying on Friday the 13th.  So we flew in on Thursday. We had a free day Friday so I made arrangements to meet with Sixth Star for information on their company.  They in turn were interested in me as a speaker.

I met with Doug Jones, president of Sixth Star Entertainment and Marketing.  Doug is a high energy, inspirational guy. You can definitely feel his edutainment, entertaining type of back ground.  He started out in the late 1970’s in the industry with the Royal Viking line. He then worked his way up through the cruise industry in various positions, but always in the sector of entertainment aboard ships. This guy knows the “in’s and out’s” aspects of the entertainment end of cruise lines.  This background gave him the ability to be the first to set up a company that would provide speakers aboard ships. He has been so successful in this endeavor that he now is doing events on land for clients in the corporate or private sector who wants quality entertainment or props, e.g., conferences, trade shows or private parties.
There are about six-or-so booking agencies for speakers on cruise ships, I asked Doug what he thought made Sixth Star distinctive, different, stand out from the others.   
Ø  Sheer Volume Bookings– They do about 90% of the bookings on several cruise lines. This sheer volume has forced them to fine tune their bookings and communication process between them, the cruise lines and those they place on the ships, which has promoted a working relationship that all enjoy.
Ø  Sheer Volume People – Their data bank of Bridge Directors, Ballroom Dance Instructors, Destination & Special Interest Speakers, Distinguished Gents, Arts and Crafts Instructors and Specialty Artists (Face Painters, Balloon Twisters, Silhouette Artist, etc.) has allowed them to match people with ships needs. They have had very few to no complaints about the speakers they recommend to go aboard. Doug could not even remember the last time they had a complaint.
Ø  Vetting Process – this seemed to be a stellar component to his company. His group finds qualified people and works with them to be successful. The dialog between the Sixth Star  staff and a prospective speaker/person is to tweak their skills for ships. This dialog seems to be a main ingredient of success for Sixth Star and the person being placed.
Ø  Instruction Manual and Port Information Sheet – He spent considerable time and energy to answer many questions ahead of time in the Instruction Manual. Port Information Sheet, even speakers from other agencies will look at his Port  Information sheet to answer their questions about port, i.e., how far from airport to ship, address of port, different ways to get to port.
Doug did state they are always looking for persons who can do the enrichment speakers series. Destination speakers are always in high demand. He compared his company to a casting agency for cable TV, as you know cable TV broadcast shows that several years ago would never have been accepted by the major TV stations. Now people demand cable as much as they demand the major TV stations. Sixth Star is always looking for people who can speak to the interest of the people as much as the cable TV looks for that niche of people.  Who would have thought food or crime investigation would have such a devout group of followers.

I asked Doug what was the number one attribute they looked for. He had one word, actually he had two words. The number one thing is ADAPTABLE, not only in tweaking your skills for the cruise lines, but sometimes you need to roll with the punches aboard ship and be a team player. His other word, don’t let the word Prickly end up in your data base.

If you think you might like to work with Sixth Star, the first step is to fill out an application.  If they feel you have some skills they can work with the dialog will start.
As I left Sixth Star the logo and theme for Allstate Insurance came to mind “you’re in good hands with Sixth Star”.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Parlez-vous Destination, Enrichment on les Cruise Lines?

 Article 5 – Passion! It’s the sweetstuff that should be driving your personal life,your career and speaking on cruise ships. Passion may be the last principle of Beck and Cable in their book, Interpretation for the 21st Century, but if this guideline is not present your audience will know. I think passion should be one of the cornerstones of your abilities for interpretation.  Beck and Cable list three areas one must be passionate about: the resource, the people and inspiring others.

The Resource 

·         You must love your subject!  Audiences will forgive a couple of slides in a power point out of order as long as they know you are passionate about your subject. Now this is not a license to put together a poor presentation, but passion has to be the basis you build on. If you are using your subject matter as a means to cruise but don’t love your subject it will show in your presentation. You can expect the passengers to rate you as mediocre and you may not be asked back again to be a speaker on that cruise line. Yes, the passengers are asked to rate all aspects of their cruising experience and the Enrichment program is part of that experience.  If you are passionate, love your subject, good news travels fast on a ship and you can expect a good number at your presentations.

·          Part of the resource for speakers on cruise ships, is the ship itself and the company it represents.  Cruising does offer an excellent way to travel and take a vacation, but you represent the cruise lines. You are not an employee and you are not staff, but you do have full passenger status.  Consider yourself an ambassador, you are there to do a job – you were hired on to enhance the experience of the passengers. Do your research on the cruise line you are representing.  What type of passengers generally sail with them, what age bracket are they, what do they expect of the speaker? Look at the ship’s excursions, the lay out of the ship; it will give you a feel for the type of passengers they are catering to. Try to have an affinity or love for cruising. If you have never cruised before and not sure if cruising is for you, at least have a love of travel and people.

The People

Tilden states in Interpreting our Heritage, we must be in love. Tilden considered love, a “priceless ingredient” Not a mushy love, but a love of our audience and our resource, this type of love is considered a brotherly love for our audience. The Greeks call this love, agape (ah-gah-pey).

·        The cruise line had an interest in your subject and that is why you were brought on board. You may have great knowledge about your presentations, but chances are there may be a few passengers on board who know more about the arts, science or history that coincides with your talk. If they share with you, embrace them as one you can glean nuggets of information from. This means you must be humble about your subject and love your fellow passenger’s insights.

·         There is a certain amount of notoriety being the speaker on the cruise ship. You may become a mini-celebrity. People may seek you out for comments, conversation and company. If you love your subject you will enjoy sharing your knowledge with others. Some cruise lines expect more visibility as a speaker. Some expect you be a host at a dinner table; be available at a “coffee” time to interact on a casual basis with passengers. Other cruise lines expect nothing more than doing the presentations. You need to be a people person and love the passengers, their comments, their questions and their curiosity.  Please do not become a bore when visiting with others. Remember as soon as you leave the ship your mini-celebrity status evaporates around your family and colleges and your 15 minutes of fame is gone and forgotten.

Inspiring Others

Through the love of your subject you could be the spark that ignites passengers to delve more into your subject. You will be influencing those in audience, for good or a ho hum drum way. You will be introducing passengers to something you love. Your interpretation of your subject will inspire those to learn more or to visit a historical structure when they go ashore. The cruise lines are looking for you to inspire or enrich the passenger’s experience. When passengers book on to a cruise it is generally to escape the cares of the world they left ashore. If they choose to come to your presentation and did not go to Bingo, dance class or sit around the pool they are looking to be inspired, enriched and to some degree, entertained. If you are passionate about your subject you will be interesting, sometimes witty, engaging and naturally inspiring. You will love people and people will love you.

The following quote sums up what love and passion should be. As a speaker, I now cringe at the image of gongs and cymbals. Check your agape meter; it’s a dose of reality that should add some humility to your life.

If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love (passion), I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. I Cor 13:1

If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn't love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. I Cor. 13:1

Monday, January 2, 2012

Anchors Away! Interpretative Cruising, Jan 14-21, 2012

Celebrity Eclipse
In ten days we take off for Florida,  to sail away on Celebrity Eclipse.  I always choose the Caribbean in Jan or Feb to take a cruise. The holidays are over, but cold weather is still hanging around Reno and I'm always hankering for spring. 

The Interpretation talks for this cruise are:

Cruising the Caribbean, Board the Banana Boat via the early 1900’sLearn what early cruising was like in the early 1900’s with the United Fruit Company who was the  dominate "cruise" company to the Caribbean.  (This is a fun one, I love doing this one)

Pirate Speak - Thou yeasty mammet! What say ye a curse to the spouse or a boon to the boss? We will learn phrases, facts and lore of the pirate. Handouts (informative and lots of trivia)

The Cruising Victorian Lady Bustles, hoops, cotton, silk, velvet, 27 lbs of clothing? 17-18 layers and accouterments? Could they travel in those things? See it layer by layer (the flagship show, I've been doing for years)

Life was Not Sweet on the Caribbean Sugar Routes  A look at the Triangle Trade Route of Slaves and Sugar throughout the Caribbean. (Sad commentary on part of history)

Musings - Me, History & Interpretation & Contest

It's the New Year, the beginning of 2012. I am feeling that Lady Carolyn needs a shot of adrenaline. I've been tossing around some ideals in my head. Before attending the NAI training at the end of October I knew what I did, but the explaining of that was..well.. sometimes a little cloudy. I've know what my forte is, but putting that into a logo or a one sentence could be difficult at best. "Brings History to Life" is on my business card, which is an accurate statement, but history is not always a big earth shattering historical moment. The big wheel in history would be what you can put your finger on and say that person or event changed the course of history. I bring to life, the little bits or a little cog in the wheels of history. Sometimes my stories are a by-product of what was happening at the time the big wheel was the topic of conversation. My little cogs of information supported the big wheel and kept it turning, it may be if that little clog had not been there,  the big event may not have happened.

Over the weekend I've been playing around with a new business card, logo concept. Maybe changing the web site to reflect more accurately what I do. I'm not 100% satisfied yet, especially with the "Bringing the Little Cogs of History to Life". As my dear husband said "What's that? What does that mean?" so then "Bringing the Little Things of the Past to Life" seems better.

I seem to be brain dead working on this and it's only January 2, 2012 there's 363 days left to be energized. If you can think of a one liner to put here, it would be much appreciated and a Starbucks gift card will be coming your way.