Where’s the TechCrunch of lifestyle businesses?”
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Where’s the TechCrunch of lifestyle businesses?”
…finding the problem intolerable and feeling it must be possible to solve it. Simple as it seems, that’s the recipe for a lot of startup ideas.”
It’s ridiculous to me how much crap I have to deal with to get Markdown to work in my favorite text editor. I had it all sorted, then upgraded to Mavericks which botched it up again. But I’ve fixed it.
The trick is this: you’ve gotta use Fletcher Penney’s MD bundle because it’s better (basic bundle doesn’t support hyphen lists… absurd). But that bundle hasn’t been updated in forever. And mavericks needs some updates to this shit due to a ruby change.
So I did a lil’ hack job and updated the ruby path in all the files in Fletcher’s MD bundle. I’d update it on Git also but what’s a git? You can download it here:
Creativity is the residue of time wasted.”
Editorially’s online publication launched a day or two ago. It’s made by people I pay attention to. I admire them because they’re so good at the things they do.
I’m in the middle of designing a big, exciting, new thing for us at Fizzle so I was extremely curious: what decisions did these people make about their online publishing thing?
Here’s what struck me: it’s fine. The design is the design. It’s fine. And this thing will survive not on the quality of the design or the decisions about the sidebar.
It will survive or not — for me, the individual reader — based on the ongoing relationship I have with what they publish. The “content.”
They probably call this the editorial voice… cuz they’re smart. I look up to them for words and ideas like this.
Investigating this site, the decisions of these lovely and smart people, makes me realize how much I already know about online publishing.
As people building our thing online it’s easy to get wrapped up in the skin of stuff. “Oh damn, i have got to figure out how to do that big ol’ background header thing. So cool.” But that skin is only valuable as a conduit for the guts. We don’t stay friends with superficial and beautiful people from high school if they stay superficial (unless we’re horny). They’re pretty, which is nice, but they don’t get MST3K, they don’t like to play cards, I don’t feel connected to them. And life is too short for that kind of disconnection.
Wishing the team at Editorially all the best. I hope they connect super hard.
Knowing what you’re doing is not nearly as important as knowing what you believe in and what your values are and understanding how to translate that into the decisions that you’re making.”
Max Temkin, Creator of Cards Against Humanity
Click the name and watch the talk. An excellent story of success found doing stuff you and your friends like.
The freedom of all to be lords of our own, personal skull-sized kingdoms… alone at the center of all creation.
The really important kind of freedom involves attention and awareness and discipline and being able truly to care about people and to sacrifice for them, over and over in myriad petty, little unsexy ways everyday. That is real freedom.”
Oh goodness I loved this. I was there, in the audience, sitting with my friends, one of whom has a podcast, the artwork of which is prominently features on one of Marco’s slides.
I love this for several reasons.
So I’m thrilled when a guy I admire, someone I think is much smarter than me, lauds podcasting as a beautiful, enriching, important and likely profitable thing. (See the quote below).
2. Marco’s openness about and investigation of his fears. He says “I’ve always been afraid of this.” But he doesn’t stop there. He also says, “so I asked myself, ‘why am I like this?’”
He a). realizes the stress level, the anxiety, the internal horror, b). does enough introspection to name it, and c). investigates why his self responds this way.
I’ve done some work of my own in this regard… but I’ve got things to learn from Marco in this regard because he doesn’t stop there.
3. He creates a business project in an attempt to get over his fear. Overcast forces him to swim upstream towards the fear he thinks isn’t true, isn’t necessary.
When we start businesses we think they’re forever. That’s what makes them exciting and horrifying. What if we thought about them as projects to learn and develop ourselves so our next thing is that much better? Yea, sounds la la, but I dig it.
4. “This succeeds or fails based on what I do with it.” Fuck stressing about the competition. Fuck stressing about market trends. Fuck trying to be like Steve Jobs. Engage yourself.
5. His closing thought:
I love this medium. This is so good. It really enables independent creative people and it’s fulfilling to listen to, fulfilling to make. I’m going to find it immensely satisfying to do anything I can to promote and improve and strengthen this world.”
When my son died I learned how flowers in vases don’t last long. So when I found this by John Baldessari it hit hard.
I don’t expect to reach or change anybody I don’t already know. I realize there’s potential for that, but I don’t expect it.”
This has been rattling around my brain since I’ve heard it. In Fizzle I keep encouraging folks to think small, small, smaller. If you think about women who ride unicycles to work in north portland you can a). find those people easily (there are 10 of them), b). study and serve them well in small and meaningful ways that c). make a serious impact on that crew.
But in our online growing stuff — marketing stuff — for Fizzle and ThinkTraffic and, shit, even this blog, my mind defaults to “i need more people” mode.
Getting in front of new folks.
Making a good impression on them.
Creating an emotional experience with them on the page.
Making it easier and more enjoyable for them to find us.
But when I heard Frank say this I knew it was True™.
We still need to grow (maybe that’s another question to explore), but we can do it more like a family or a neighborhood than a “startup.”
First, find out what your hero wants, then just follow him.”
Well, what do you want?
I now know that the work doesn’t last—and if it somehow does, it lasting doesn’t have much to do with me. The work went far because other people carried it. Disabusing myself of the idea that I did anything important or special has been really good for me. If the bounty of success is attention, and you feel like you don’t deserve that attention, then you have no responsibility to it. It has no power over you. That frees you up to take risks. If those risks pay off, then great. If they don’t: c’est la vie. At least you’re alive, tried something, and lived a little.”
Wow, what a great read. I have liked Chimero’s words for a while. Hearing some of his story, how he’s processing grief as a creative worker, only makes me a bigger fan. Here’s some other Frank posts I’ve written about.
I looked at three sites focused exclusively on reading. There are great designers on these teams thinking hard about what makes the best reading experience. Below are the answers they’ve decided on (and my summary of which is best).
(Click the image above for a full size preview)
Instapaper is by far the best reading experience. It felt easy to go from line to line… my eyes felt at home. This is a result of it’s smaller font (by a hair) and much larger line height.
The other two are fine… if you were just reading them you’d be happy with the experience. But when you compare these back and forth Instapaper becomes the clear winner.