One of the TAGIE Awards is for young inventors with products that have made it to retail shelves and this year we had some very accomplished young inventor nominees. Kylie Copenhagen invented Zobmondo's Ladybug game when she was in first grade and it has been top selling pre-school game at Target for years. Jake, Erin and Lachlan Johnson, the inventors of FlipOutz, a hot new product sold by Wild Creations, were featured on Shark Tank and Daymond John invested in them. Last, but not least, Greyson MacLean, inventor of BrickStix, a removable label for bricks like Legos, that is being picked up by stores everywhere.
Our PR firm, Media Maison, worked to get these nominees and other TAGIE nominees and their products national exposure. Conan O’Brien invited Greyson as a guest on his November 12th show. You may have seen the clip as it circulated around the industry. Greyson was amazing. He not only held his own, stealing the show from LL Cool J, but bested Conan a few times. Definitely worth the watch. http://teamcoco.com/video/greyson-maclean-drops-truth.
I asked Greyson if he would share with us what it was like being on Conan, winning the TAGIE Young Inventor Award and working his BrickStix booth at ChiTAG. I am publishing his response unedited and in its entirety. Thank you to his mom, Amy, for the pictures.
Here are the few paragraphs you asked me to do. Sorry it has taken so long. I have had a lot of homework this week.
My name is Greyson MacLean, and I invented BrickStix. I'm a regular 12 year old who had the opportunity to do some not-so-regular things in the past few weeks. Things were crazy for a while, but life is getting back to normal again. When it comes to the business side of BrickStix, I let the adults handle it, school comes first in our family. I am the inventor, or what my mom likes to call the "dreamer" of BrickStix. I started it, and I am involved in Research and Development now. I love that part.
I was nominated back in October for the TAGIE Award for Young Inventor of the Year. Wow, that made a lot of things happen! Turns out, the TAGIEs are the Oscars of the Toy Business. They honor the Inventor. Pretty cool. I still can't believe I was nominated. Being nominated got me on Conan. I'm still not quite sure how it happened, but I am glad it did. Everyone at the show was really nice to me, and I got to experience things most don't. When I got off stage my mom asked me how I felt. I was so excited, but I didn't remember anything that went on. I was glad to be able to watch it later. That's when things started coming back to me! We all talked to Conan after the show. He is really tall and super nice. He told me to always be myself. He reminds me of my dad.
When we got home from LA, we left a couple days later for the TAGIE Awards and ChiTAG. I wasn't expecting to win, I was just happy to be mentioned among all of the rest of the inventors. When they called my name, I froze for a minute. I didn't have a speech, so I just went up, and was myself. I think it went okay. Sitting in the audience, I began to appreciate all the Toy Inventors and what they have done for kids like me. It was a really special night. The next day we set up our booth at ChiTAG and I met lots of kids who liked my BrickStix. It was fun to build with them and show them what BrickStix can do. I really liked seeing all of their builds with our stix on them. Plus, it was really cool to test all of the new toys at ChiTAG! I have added a lot of them to my wish list.
It's been about week and a half I have had a LEGO Robotics competition, hockey games, hockey practice, tests, homework, chores–regular kid stuff. Back to being a regular kid, back to being me. I am honored to be a small part of the Toy Business. I have met lots of amazing people. None of these crazy things would have happened if my mom would have been busy that day I told her my idea. BrickStix would not exist without the support and hard work from my mom, dad, aunt and uncle. Everybody has ideas and I know there are lots of other toys waiting to be developed…I hope someone listens, and believes.
(Hockey photo courtesy of ©2011 Thistle & Muse.)