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Scared Of Santa

"It was at an annual meeting of the American Association of Sunday and Features Editors (now the Society for Features Journalism) - during a 'Show and Steal' presentation of conference attendees' favorite works - that (Denise) Joyce saw a series of photographs the Palm Beach Post had run of crying kids on Santa's lap. She took the idea home to try in Q , one of the Tribune's Sunday lifestyle sections," the Fort Myers Florida Weekly reports.

When they asked readers to send in photos of their scared kids on Santa's lap, she says, "I was expecting maybe 15, 20 pictures. How many can there be out there?"

But every day, more pictures would arrive. They kept coming.

"Nancy (Watkins) and I were thinking: This is fabulous! We were laughing every day. They just kept coming in. It crashed the email system."

The paper put a photo gallery online.

"They kept putting it up, in 2004 and in 2005," Ms. Joyce says. "The thing was a click magnet. We got over a million hits to the photo gallery."

Because the site was getting such heavy traffic, their editor asked them to do the feature in the paper again.

Once again, it was wildly successful.

So successful that a literary agent called Ms. Joyce and said he thought it'd make a good book."

*

From Amazon:

"Nothing says Christmas quite like innocent children shrieking with terror as a stranger dressed in red drags them kicking and screaming onto his lap. Now this time-honored rite of passage is celebrated with a hilarious collection of more than two hundred and fifty priceless photos of kids' traumatic trips to Santa's workshop.

"Scared of Santa offers a cornucopia of photographic funnies - from sixty-year-old family heirlooms to last year's howlers - along with delightful commentary on those unforgettable childhood visits to scary ol' Saint Nick."

*

The Tribune gallery is still up.

*

Other galleries:

* Today.

* The Columbus Dispatch.

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Do They Know It's Christmas Time At All?

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Comments welcome.



Permalink

Posted on December 23, 2014


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