Monday, December 22, 2008

The underpants gnomes take to the Internet

I've realized for a while that making a living by writing online is an awful lot like the business plan of South Park's underpants gnomes.
Phase 1: Collect Underpants
Phase 2: ???
Phase 3: Profit!
In my case, it's more like:
Phase 1: Accept invitations to write for online outlets for the sheer glory of it
Phase 2: ???
Phase 3: Profit!
OK. That exaggerates the situation a bit. I have a nice paid gig now for The Examiner and I have a book proposal a-brewing that I hope will lead to a credible deal. But I don't know how many very flattering invitations I've received in recent months to write, create vlog posts, do an online video talk show, and otherwise put my ideas and persona out there -- for free.

By and large, these have been invitations from sincere, talented people with really interesting projects. I've said "yes" to a couple, "no" to a lot more. If possible, I would have signed on for most of them -- really. There are an awful lot of interesting, well-executed online media projects out there. At least, the folks approaching me have cool ideas.

But I have enough on my plate to keep me occupied, and my wife insists that my son needs a little attention from me on occasion. And honestly, I need some play time, too.

So if you approach me with a carefully crafted plan for an online publication that you're convinced would be a great forum for my specific voice if only I'd be willing to put in some volunteer time up-front, and I say "no," please don't be insulted. It probably is a great idea, really.

But my column needs to be written, my proposal demands my attention, and my kid ... well ... he really needs to get potty trained now.

And those underpants gnomes are never satisfied.



Blogger Johnny said...

blogger, n, a type of writer who slanders others on the internet whilst wearing sleeping garments.

December 23, 2008 1:22 AM  

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