Sunday, December 14, 2008

next steps, and a deadline

Yes, a deadline for our creative cooperative--but don't panic. Like an amateur dramatic society, I'm choosing a date absurdly far away: Monday, January 4th. So take a breath, and read on.

First of all, if you don't know what I'm talking about read the posts, and comments, here, here, and here. They're in chronological order.

Okay. Over the holidays I would like everyone who is interested to come up with an idea (or two, or ten--ideas are cheap) on what project, specifically, they would like to see us get behind. It can be as small and tidy or as wild and ambitious as you like. Realism isn't important at this stage; profligate brainstorming is. So if you want, for example, poetry from Lorca inscribed on the wings of butterflies, say so. If you want short stories by Ursula K. Le Guin illustrated with the nature photography of Friend of AN Jennifer Durham, say so. If you want to republish the thrillers of Helen MacInnes, say so. If you want to publish the crayon drawings of your neighbour's see your own first collection of edit an original anthology of erotic ornithology...speak up. Now is your chance. Don't censor yourself. We won't know what's possible until we thrash through it all together.

Get as specific as you can--be as long as you like, or as short--about your idea, and append it to this post as a comment. Feel free to mention only the project itself, or to embroider it with all your marketing/publicity notions. Then we all discuss, here in the comments. Then on the 4th of January, we vote for the number one idea (and #s 2 and 3, just in case). Then, between that Monday and, say, the next, we figure out if we can make the project happen: if it's Helen MacInnes, can we persuade her estate to give us the rights? If it's poetry on butterfly wings, can we source the butterflies? That kind of thing.

If we can make it happen, then we begin. If we can't make it happen, then we discuss #2.

It's at this stage that I hope all the people who have been sending me private emails will come forth publicly and add their names to the list. We already have an astonishing roster of talent and expertise; let's make it bigger. Please feel free to recruit people of all stripes (as long as they play by our rules).

Oooh, this could be cool. We could test theories of publishing, distribution, marketing and publicity. We could create a new kind of business model. We could bring a piece of art into the world that might never have existed. And, hey, worst case scenario, we just have a blast coming up with wacky ideas.

Start your engines!

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