Growing up watching Chet & Nat reporting daily events before dinner was my primary media intake. Not so in today's tech-driven world. It seems Boston is truly the Hub of the world today. All four sports teams are involved in stories which would appear at the top of the prime time news-hour or front page on daily papers any other day. The "Trial of the Century" is happening on the South Boston waterfront. Preparations are underway for the next one as officials prepare to prosecute the perpetrators involved in the Boston Marathon bombings. The state is in the middle of a Senatorial election which is growing more contemptuous every day.
As I write this, Aaron Hernandez of the New Endland Patriots is being pursued by local news-copters. Watching an alarmingly similar event unfold mirroring the lead up to the last "Trial of the Century", I began to wonder if information overload is occurring. Never before do I remember so many events happening in my home state while the world watched. Are the events worthy of all this attention? At the risk of offending neo-Luddites, my conclusion is a resounding "Yes".
As a huge Patriots fan and fantasy football dreamer I have watched with delight as Aaron Hernandez has become one of the best players at his position. However, listening to Gresh & Zo attempt to filter the reports coming in about the situation almost minute-by-minute something occurred to me. They're professionals who steer away from speculation in serious matters beyond the scope of sports. Their day-to-day tasks require delving into the minds of sports figures attempting to predict the future or explain motives. However, Gresh & Zo understand their role as reporters in such matters and have risen to meet the challenge. Using the same technology platforms to gather and report information which everyone has access to reveals to me their adherence to professionalism and responsibility. In spite of the fact that the situation does not "look good" for Hernandez, no one knows for sure how it will all play out. Trumpeting unverified or gratuitous leads is irresponsible. Kudos to Gresh & Zo for wading though troves of data and providing us with the most accurate information possible.
Createspace.com is the self-publishing arm of Amazon.com. After hooking up with a local author who was seeking a "Social Media Guru" via a Craigslist ad I discovered the world of self-publishing. Had it not been for my new position with Mr. Local Author I did not consider the self-publishing field as a venue for my skill set as a Web developer. Now, it makes sense. Essentially, formatting content is the crux of the self-publishing world. Since my literary abilities are limited (thankfully) to this blog it took Mr. Author's work to drive me toward adding "Self-Publisher" to my resume.
The platform Createspace provides all the tools necessary for publishing market-ready physical softcover books. ISBN numbers are provided free of charge. Templates for interior and cover art are also available. Obtaining a Library of Congress number is the only service I had to pay for while creating Mr. Author's book. The cost for this feature is a reasonable $49. E-publishing is also possible with the platform. Different templates than what is necessary for physical books are required for e-books but are not any more tricky to format. Searching throughout the platform for the option to publish a hardcover version proved fruitless. There are options for that online but this is beyond the scope of this post.
Self-publishing using the Createspace platform was an exciting adventure. However, it is not for a tech novice. Assistance for formatting text, cover design, and marketing is available to those who need it but for a cost. Using the entire gamut of assistance available at Createspace makes the entire publishing process extremely simple. The downside is cost. Shelling out roughly $2500 will fetch you an excellent book usable across all platforms that will make any author proud.
I am considering developing tutorials for some of the more difficult aspect of the platform. Feedback to this post will help determine which feature to focus on first.