Here’s to the Age of Conversation

Here’s how it all happened.

I posted about a project called We Are Smarter than Me which gives people a chance to help author a guest book.

In the comments of that post Gavin Heaton said “Great concept! And it sounds like it could be fun … but you know what, Drew? I reckon between a few of us we could knock out a short book…All we need is a theme and a charity …”

To which I said…“You are very right.  Let’s do it.  Watch for an e-mail from me!”

Two weeks later — here we are.  And we’d like you to consider joining us.

Conversationage_2And out of that blogging conversation and a few e-mails, Gavin & I concocted the idea for an e-book about this new era of communications we’ve all entered together. But not just any book. It has to be a quick book. Exciting.  Sharp. Inclusive. It had to be a book about community and conversation that came from that community and spoke the same vernacular. The title — The  Conversation Age.

And  that is why we are talking to you. Our idea:

  • 100  authors. We’re a few but need more.
  • The  overriding topic is “The Conversation Age” — where you take it is up to  you.
  • The items  are short – one 8.5″ x 11″ page — it can be words, diagrams, photos (again up to  you)  If it is words – about 400, give or take a couple.
  • We  write it quickly and get it out there. We publish electronically.
  • We  make it available online for a small fee and we donate 100% of the proceeds to  Variety the Children’s Charity  — which serves children across the entire globe.

If you’d like to write a chapter, here’s  what you need to do.  E-mail me with a commitment and a focus/topic that will fit under Conversation Age (first in gets to choose) by April 11th.  I’m going to keep the master list so we keep the content from getting too overlapped.

Your chapter will be due April 30th.

We’ve already got a few chapter authors on board.  Want to know who your co-authors will be?  (If I missed anyone — I apologize. Shoot me an e-mail.)

Gavin Heaton
Drew McLellan
Valeria Maltoni
Emily Reed
Katie Chatfield
Greg Verdino
Mack Collier
Lewis Green
Ann Handley
Paul McEnany
Roger von Oech
Anna Farmery
David Armano
Bob Glaza
Mark Goren
Matt Dickman
Scott Monty
Richard Huntington

We hope you’ll join us!  And a special thanks to Mike Sansone for creating our button for us!

UPDATE: Ann asks a great question.  Who is our audience?  Our intended audience is anyone who has to create marketing tools in this Conversation Age.  It might be a small business owner, a CMO, a marketing student, an agency type, a marketing blogger, or even a professor who is teaching tomorrow’s marketers.

UPDATE 2: We were waiting until CK was back online to make this announcement.  As most of you probably know, she lost her mom recently.  Gavin and I decided that one way this community could honor our friend CK and her mom was to dedicate the book to her. What I said to CK in an e-mail was “as you can imagine…many of your friends have already signed-on to write a chapter. So it felt right to make this community and conversation-focused book be dedicated to the woman who obviously taught you your values of community, listening, loving and bringing others into the conversations.”

And so it will be.  We hope that makes this project even more special to all the authors, readers and of course, our friend CK.

UPDATE 3:  The book is CLOSED!  We have exceeded our 100 author goal — thank you very much.  We are now a mere 17 days away from the chapter submission deadline, so we will  not be accepting any new authors.  Stay tuned for the author list — it rocks!

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30 comments on “Here’s to the Age of Conversation

  1. Ann Handley says:

    Thanks for pulling this together, Drew. One clarifying question: Who do you see as the audience for this book? I know you say, “Where you take it is up to you….” but it helps if I know where to aim it.

  2. Fantastic idea, Drew. I’d be honored to be one of the contributors. I’ll email as soon as this is posted.


  3. David Reich says:

    Count me in, please. I’ll do some thinking on it over the weekend.

  4. Jim Kukral says:

    Email sent Drew. I’d love to participate.

  5. Bob Glaza says:

    Great to be on board, Drew – Thanks for creating this inclusive and diverse forum –

  6. Tim Jackson says:

    I am SO in on this! I love the entire concept- is it possible to sign up for more than one chapter? Anybody who has ever read anything I’ve written will know there is no way I can stick to 400 words.

    Seriously, this is awesome and I hope my application gets accepted.

  7. mindblob says:

    This is… such a great and insightful idea. I’d love to add my 2 (Euro) cents.

  8. David Armano says:


    A wonderful idea and I’m glad I can be a part of it.

  9. Connie Reece says:

    What fun! Count me in. I’ll e-mail with ideas for my contribution.

  10. I think it’s a fantastic idea too. I’ll think of some ideas over the weekend and let you know next week. Hope you get many more responses!

  11. Toby says:

    Would love to join this expectional group. Wonderful idea of $ going to a children’s cause. Please count me in!

  12. Sign me up Drew. This is a great idea for a great cause.

  13. Love the response to this idea! Thanks to all of you for jumping on board.

    Please be sure to e-mail me with your chapter’s topic so we can make sure we don’t have a lot of duplication.

    This book is going to rock! You aren’t going to believe all of the incredible content and insights.

    Thanks again for your enthusiasm.


  14. Just found this link from Becky Carroll’s blog…Can I play? Shaping Youth would love to be a part of this conversation, especially with your tie to children’s charities! Check out our site, see what you think.

  15. Hi Drew,

    Is there still time to get in on the fun? I would love to be a part of this.


  16. I am so honored to be included in this, guys! My chapter is almost done and ready to submit.

    What’s the expected publishing date?

  17. Bob,

    We’re thrilled to have you and all the other incredible authors. As for the publication date — we’re still working on that part. But stay tuned!


  18. Any idea of topics that are already covered, or that still need covering, would help! I will give you more after the weekend.

  19. James (auto insurance),

    The book is really a primer on this new age of communications tools and cultural shifts. So it’s perfect for anyone who is working with others — from teachers to business owners. And of course, marketing folks.


  20. The group of authors in “The Age of Conversation” understand book marketing and online promotion.

    Not only are the authors each experts in their own right, they have used best practices in creating a wonderful example of publishing done right.

  21. Trianz says:

    Thanks for pulling this together, Drew. One clarifying question: Who do you see as the audience for this book? I know you say, “Where you take it is up to you….” but it helps if I know where to aim it.

  22. I like to bring this book when I do speeches about viral marketing, Web2.0 and blogging because it gives a very tangible example of the power of new media. The whole concept of world conversation can be a bit intimidating or frightening to some, but The Age of Conversation brings it to a concrete level.

  23. Jake Poore says:

    thanks for this. looks like a great read. I especially like the idea of “We are smarter than me”. With the contribution of 100 authors The conversation age looks like something I should be getting into!

  24. The entries were very concise. Great idea for a book project.

  25. We write it quickly and get it out there. We publish electronically.

  26. I think we need to bring more ideas for this purpose. Involvement of young people can be handy in this regard. I am happy to find a good post here. Thank you

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  29. Very informative post. Keep up the good work. I would really look forward to your other posts

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