This is the second part of a series of three podcasts looking at the way we create, distribute, and interact with a post-industrial world.
I have a friend who became a published author two years ago. He didn’t submit a book proposal. He didn’t have an agent. He didn’t even really want to become a full time writer.
But he had built a blog over the course of a couple of years and through giving away a short e-book in exchange for email addresses. And he developed a mailing list of over 100,000 people.
It didn’t take long before a publishing house came knocking, not because of what he was writing but because of the impact he was already having. Then another publisher turned up on his proverbial doorstep…and another…and another.
He was basically able to use the leverage he had from the size of his audience to play publishers off against one another and get himself a very good deal over which he retained an unusually high level of control.
Things have changed a LOT over the past couple of decades and in this series of shows I summarise a presentation that I recently put together encouraging young people to think differently about their future.
There was a time when you pretty much made music in one of two capacities:
As a hobby
As a professional
You either just did it for fun, or you were good/lucky enough to be able to do it for money.
We are in the age of
We can no longer simply sit around waiting to be picked by the gatekeeper of our destiny (record label, publishing house, film studio etc). Those days are over (if indeed they ever truly existed.
If you want to make serious art then you have to start building your influence, your platform, your audience, your tribe.
This is where the power balance shifts between you and your ability to make art sustainably and progressively. And it shifts your thinking away from this desire to be picked and to impress people with the hope that they will offer you something ‘you’ve always dreamed of’.
In this episode I look deeper at this idea of permission and outline a few case studies of creative artists who are pushing the boundaries. But bring back the truth that change isn’t really going to happen if no one is listening.
’Don’t strive for success, strive instead to be of value’ – Einstein