STRATFOR Emails Leak
WikiLeaks just released The Global Intelligence Files, five million-plus emails from global intelligence company Stratfor headquartered in Austin, Texas.
OVER 9000 Over 25 media outlets working together.
I just wrote a piece on WikiLeaks and Julian Assange for Salon. Please contact me at once (email@example.com) if you’re in Austin and doing anything related to Stratfor and/or this leak. If there’s sufficient reason, I’m coming down there!
Hashtags for the leak: #giFiles and #giFind.
WikiLeaks STRATFOR Leak — Are you in Austin? Contact Me! by Douglas Lucas is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. Based on a work at www.douglaslucas.com. Seeking permissions beyond the scope of this license? Email me: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Whoa, I just earned actual money by writing and self-publishing fiction without an agent or a publisher or an editor or an acquisitions editor. Without any other gatekeeper. The point of this post isn’t the handful (or less) of euros, but another anecdote supporting the march toward what might well be a new paradigm for publishing.
I’ve received fan mail for the story; again, this is not to brag, but to point out that netizens actually read and enjoyed the piece without mediators between them and me. (Artistically, critiquers helped me, of course; and, there are Dreamhost and Flattr and other web companies/organizations, plus the overhead cost of running this website. So in a very loose sense there are, if not mediators, connectors.)
The money came because someone I’ve never met flattr‘ed — donated in favor of — my short story “Glenn of Green Gables,” which I self-published under a Creative Commons license.
The license allows readers to share (copy) and remix (adapt; e.g., translate) the story so long as they do so on a noncommercial basis, give my name and my story attribution & linkage, and license any remix/adaptation they make similarly. In other words, share the story all you want, freely, and do something cool with it, unless it involves plagiarism or making money. (If you’re Hollywood, email me.)
Yeah, download the short story, the whole thing, and toss a few coins in the tip jar on my digital street corner here where I’m being your bard.
I think magazines and publishing houses are still very necessary. They provide authors with infrastructure for, say, interviews and book tours, among other functions. (After all, most artist types aren’t the greatest biz folk at promoting themselves.) Houses help readers choose between fiction based on reputation. They connect authors with communities and with editors — though tons of editors are already freelancing outside the umbrellas of publishing houses. AND magazines and publishers still have bigger bullhorns than many websites (including mine), bigger wallets than micro-donaters, and they typically bestow more credibility (for opportunities such as speaking gigs) than self-publications. So, sure, I definitely still want to get a bunch of stories past gatekeepers. They’re not all bad or anything!
But the bottom line: in order to connect with readers and score some pocket change, I won’t have to have gatekeepers’ approval. Not anymore. Score one for the Internet.
Except for the gunk on the scanner and the CIA black highlighter, that above is what my business card looks like, as of today anyway. I’m no expert on business card design strategy, though I bet the Net has plenty of self-help articles besides this one(!) that’ll tell you all about it and all about what I’ve done “wrong.” The only research I did was to lift one of each business card on display at the Fuzzy’s Taco Shop down the street; then I looked at those cards, figured out what I liked, what I didn’t. I arrived at a few points of wisdom that work for me, and now I’ll broadcast them as if they were absolute truths:
- You should be able to write on the back side of the card (people will want to jot down notes to jog their memories of receiving it); and, if you want to get the front side laminated, make it a thin lamination so the card doesn’t feel imposingly unusual or outlandish. (Mine isn’t laminated on either side.)
- Keep It Simple, Stupid. Looking at the card, I want to discern immediately what’s up. This is because I process billions of business cards per day, obviously.
- Why should I strain to read your card? Increase font size!
- Keep it mostly white to avoid appearing cutesy. Unless being ephemeral is your thing, I guess.
- Be traditional and fairly formal so that your card can be used in a wide variety of circumstances: flexible. However, put a charming thing or two on it — such as a tagline — so that you don’t seem impersonal. Because of the Net, I think freelance biz depends on a personal touch even more than before.
I had 200 cards made at Staples down the other side of the street for just under $40, if I recall correctly. Easier to have a small quantity now (since people do ask me for them) and figure out the hypothetical perfect design later. For designing Staples set me at a touchscreen computer that was easy enough, and you can bring a JPG there if you want for a logo.
The best business card I saw at Fuzzy’s, by the way, was a woman advertising her services as an Experimental Physicist. As opposed to a Theoretical Physicist, of course.
P.S., as an editor I can fix up your AD/PR or flier or whatnot, and as a tutor I teach Latin, humanities courses (depending), and study skills.