Marketing guru Seth Godin is giving up on traditional publishing, according to a teaser to an upcoming interview. We’ll let Godin explain it himself:
“I’ve decided not to publish any more books in the traditional way. 12 for 12 and I’m done. I like the people, but I can’t abide the long wait, the filters, the big push at launch, the nudging to get people to go to a store they don’t usually visit to buy something they don’t usually buy, to get them to pay for an idea in a form that’s hard to spread … I really don’t think the process is worth the effort that it now takes to make it work. I can reach 10 or 50 times as many people electronically. No, it’s not ‘better’, but it’s different. So while I’m not sure what format my writing will take, I’m not planning on it being the 1907 version of hardcover publishing any longer.”
On one hand I think this is kind of funny. Poor Seth Godin, it’s so much work to sell those books. There aren’t that many authors who have an easier time selling books than Seth Godin. He could publish a book of blank pages and it’d top the business best seller list.
On the other hand, I see where he’s coming from. One year from author’s brain to bookstore shelf would be considered lightning fast in the publishing industry. The emphasis on making a big splash can be pretty overwhelming. And if you can spread your ideas in other formats (assuming spreading your ideas is all you’re after), why not go for it?
The reality here is that Godin can do whatever he wants. He can sell hardcover 1907 books if he wants, and he could just as easily sell digital 2010 books. If speed is his concern he could write up a manuscript and have it on Kindle in mere days. He could even have a hardcopy version available on Amazon in about a week. It’s not hard (I’ve done it).
Teachers have a hard job. Somehow everything is their fault. We rarely blame the parents or the administration or the kids themselves. We like to blame those lazy teachers, who clearly went into the job for the money.
It’s easy to dump on teachers and education in general. Marketing guru Seth Godin has given education a beating, especially with the release of his latest book, Linchpin. I haven’t read it, but much of they hype and talk surrounding the book’s release related to education. It centered on the idea that schools churn out similar students who are factory automatons and don’t know how to think differently or be remarkable—resulting in failure in the real world. I constantly hear people go on much like Godin does about how horrible schools are.
I think that’s a bunch of garbage.
Continue reading Teacher Appreciation Week
There are no secrets in the Internet age. Everything you’ve ever done can come to the glaring light of day.
That can either be a blessing or a curse.
Marketing guru Seth Godin describes a friend who googled the applicants for a housekeeping job, and those Google results made nixing applicants easy. Pictures of binge-drinking, your police shoplifting record or a blog post about how you’ll quit this menial job as soon as you can aren’t encouraging to potential employers.
Of course not showing up in Google at all (unless you’re cursed with a common name) can be just as worrisome.
And if you’re an employer, imagine the potential harm in not Googling. That quick search could reveal that your perspective rock star employee was fired from their last job for indescretions, a detail they carefully evaded in the interview. Oops.
Godin sums up the solution:
“Everything you do now ends up in your permanent record. The best plan is to overload Google with a long tail of good stuff and to always act as if you’re on Candid Camera, because you are.”
I love how Seth Godin explains blogging in this little nugget from an interview earlier this year:
“Blogging lets you drip ideas, bit by bit, to people who want to hear them. There are two crucial ideas in that sentence, so let’s unpack them.
“The dripping matters because that’s how people learn. Not in one hour chunks, but one little idea at a time. Do it for five years or more, every single day (as I’ve done on my blog) and you build trust and credibility and a body of work. The permission (“want to hear them”) is important because if no one is reading your blog, you’ll know. And then you can change it. And over time, you can earn the right to talk to a thousand and then ten thousand and then a million people.
“And isn’t that your mission?”
That drip, drip, drip of ideas is how the best of focused blogs work (which probably means this blog isn’t very focused). If you want to succeed at blogging you have to understand the importance of that tiny, consistent process of dripping.