Oh my goodness. I won, under the category of Playwork Writer.
The shock of it sent me into a brief blackout that was probably apparent to anyone in the audience. I walked up and said some words, but am not sure entirely sure what they were – the other nominees were Bob Hughes, Marc Armitage, Richard Trew, and the fine editor of Ip-Dip himself – so it certainly hadn’t occurred to me to prepare anything! I do remember stopping talking and people starting to clap, and a very clear voice in my head that said firmly “get off the stage now, before something goes horribly wrong” and then the feeling of all my limbs bouncing like a puppets’ on long rubber strings as I negotiated the stairs down.
I got back to my table and my table buddies said “nice job, award winner! It’s your round, so go get ’em in. Man, I love this field.
I also want to send a shout-out to the people of Meynell Games, and of course Meynell himself, for organizing an extraordinary Conference.
Another reason I love this field and profession is that it has taken me directly from the marvelous Eastbourne Playwork Conference to Largo, Florida. Most of Team Pop-Up Adventure Play is here delivering training around Saturday’s event in Central Park, called Play Unplugged! Just What the Doctor Ordered.
I really urge you to take a look at the commercial for this, because the focus on health benefits associated with play was a very deliberate choice by the organizers. As a rallying cry, it worked. In a city of 75,000 people, an estimated 15,000 turned out for an event that was explicitly centered on child-directed play.
The day after was spent at the beach and now I’m busily cramming my belongings into a suitcase before heading to the airport.