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In the comments of yesterday's Street Conversation, jlundberg made the suggestion of turning the finished product into a chapbook.

The idea has latched itself into my head, but I'm not sure if there's a point. When next week is done, the whole thing will be up here, free for anyone and everyone, which was the intention. Is there even the vague need for a solid product? Would people buy it?

Personally, I like the idea, and for a couple of reasons.

The first is that I really like the whole dialogue format, and I'd like doing another set of these. Which, of course, got me thinking about doing it as an annual project. I really like the idea that, about once a year, I could release a small chapbook of these dialogues and have them unified by themes or place or whatever. (The idea is still in the jelly stage and I haven't allowed it to go much beyond that.) They would probably still be done first on the blog, like this.

Secondly, I like the idea that I could bring in different elements to a paper product. It would be too expensive to put photography with it, but lets face it, my pictures are amateur at best, and I wouldn't want them there. However, I do like the idea of little black and white drawings taking the place. I would still keep the black and red dialogue, but a series of sketches would work well, I think. Lastly, it would also allow me to change that horrible title I came up with. At the moment, my idea is that I would change it to Dialogues: On the Street.

Of course, there are practical concerns to be raised. A lot of you appear to like the series, but that doesn't mean you'd pay for it, which is fair enough. I never intended for money to be spent. I'm just sort of rolling with this and seeing where it goes, which might be nowhere. There is also finding an artistic to provide the sketches and who would work cheap. I'd probably just kick any money I got out of it to him/her, but there'd be no mistaking the really minor amount of cash that the artist would be working for.

And lastly, there's finding a publisher. I figure it would be difficult to find a publisher who would want to invest their time and resources. Of course, there's always the option of switching back on the Urban Sprawl Project as a print form, which I like, but which at the current moment, I don't have the resources to do.

So, anyhow, they're some of the thoughts in my head about it and since this is my blog, I created a poll for you all to vote in.*

Poll #465016 Street Conversations Chapbook Idea

Would You Buy a Chapbook?

I've read it and it was free and that's how I kind of like it.
1(7.7%)
I'd feel like you were conning me by offering new bits and say no.
0(0.0%)
Fuck no.
0(0.0%)
If it was reasonably priced.
9(69.2%)
Totally. I love this. I want more.
3(23.1%)

Anything You Would Like Add About This Idea Goes Here







* Yes, I'm hiding the results of the poll, firstly to give people privacy to say additional comments, and secondly to also prevent embarrassing myself in public. Sufficient to say, if you never hear about this again, a lot of people said, "Fuck no."

Comments

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minus9
Mar. 31st, 2005 02:25 am (UTC)
Firstly, somehow your "results viewable to none" thing didn't quite work. I can see them. *shrug*

Now, as to an actual comment, I like the idea of seeing a writer's work before buying, being able to enjoy it and see if it is something I like, and then being able to get a nicer copy for my library. And these vignettes are the sort of thing I would like to include.

R

minus9
Mar. 31st, 2005 02:27 am (UTC)

Clarification: I can see the numerical results, but not the comments entered in the little comment box.

R
benpeek
Mar. 31st, 2005 03:15 am (UTC)
ah well about the results. still, i don't think you can see who voted for what.

i think, if i kept it going as an annual thing, i'd keep the whole blog angle to it. there's a certain joy to watching them get build every week like this.
jlundberg
Mar. 31st, 2005 02:28 am (UTC)
You might want to pitch it to Prime Books. They're branching out into chapbooks right now, with ones by sovay, catvalente and nihilistic_kid.
benpeek
Mar. 31st, 2005 03:19 am (UTC)
yeah, it's probably a reasonable suggestion, though i worry about the fact that it's not spec fic. i'm not sure what i'd call them, genre wise, but it might not be to wallace's interest because of that.
studebakerhawk
Mar. 31st, 2005 03:18 am (UTC)
I'd be more than happy to do illustrations if you need/want any done. :D
benpeek
Mar. 31st, 2005 03:21 am (UTC)
it has actually crossed my mind, i'll have you know.
studebakerhawk
Mar. 31st, 2005 03:45 am (UTC)
Really? Kewl. Well keep me posted and i'll keep moving my hand in tiny circles so as to ensure it doesn't die and fall off.
(Anonymous)
Mar. 31st, 2005 01:41 pm (UTC)
I agree with your suggestion of having it, at the very least, as a weekly release. I loved the anticipation of having a new read each week. Whilst the stories weren't linked in terms of narrative, you could get a clearer picture of the technique you were trying to go for. I suggest keep it that way, but open it up for a "honest donation" system where if people wanted to pay for the pleasure of reading it, they can. I recall Stephen King employing a similar system for "Riding the Bullet" or "The Plant", so if it's good enough for The King, it can't be half bad for you.

Oh yeah and keep the pictures. They add to the fun of the reader trying to interpret the story.

John
benpeek
Mar. 31st, 2005 02:07 pm (UTC)
i don't like the honest donation system. it can and has been useful before, but from my point of view, i'd rather see people give cash over for something they can have, you know? that doesn't mean i'm against it--just for this kind of thing, i'd feel uncomfortable with it.

but still, you never know how it'll end up. everything breathes and has transition. it's what i like abotu this stuff.
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