Archive for the SCOD Pipedream Pub Category

Self-Publishing Paradox

Posted in Book Reports, Commercial Corporations, Crafts, Critical Commentary of Civilization, jobs, Languages, Pub Library, Services, Sales or Trade, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 27, 2018 by Drogo

How DC area book stores handle major publishers vs. local authors in 2018.

Book stores are still stuck in the old mentality with major publishers, rather than allow the flooded local markets to flourish with support. Retail profits largely hinge on perceived ‘popularity’ of brands, which is largely self-perpetuating based on reduced whole sale rates, and exaggerated sales advertising to push the merchandise on customers. Book mongers still have a very snobbish attitude towards local authors, even more so now that printed books are in competition with ebooks. Book mongers, like other capitalists will often declare that “there is a DEMAND’ for what they are selling, just as housing developers do when they create a artificial demand by making the supply and cornering the market with advertising and debt based commercial production.

Here is how one book store describes their consignment process on their website:

“Our consignment program helps us accommodate the overwhelming number of requests from local authors who wish to sell their books and host events at Curious Iguana. If, after reading all the information here, you have any questions, email. Please do not stop by or call the store with questions about our consignment program. Click here to download our Consignment Policies and Consignment Form for Author. Note that we do not read review copies, and we do not accept any books without a completed consignment form and FEE. About events – We receive numerous event requests from local authors every week. Only authors whose books have strong consignment sales and broad reader appeal will be considered for an event on a case-by-case basis. Authors should not expect that consigning books will result in an event.”

Consignment usually forces the local author to be in debt to the local store, rather than provide them with any net income. Local authors tend to purchase more books at stores from commercial authors in one visit, than their books may sell all year; so even local authors are more likely to spend more on international authors than their own book sales will make in years. After a few years of their books not being advertised, but often hidden, the author must then contact the store and ask what has sold, and then pick up their check if any have sold. Now that there are more local authors, they are even asked to pick up their remaining books to make room for others. In essence local authors are treated like cattle, and told they are not worthy to make money, and they should be lucky to have a consignment deal before getting kicked out. Quality differences in the contents of books, whether self published or not, have very little to do with these market issues; as mistakes can be found with many mass produced products. Even National Geographic published the wrong image of a sparrow in a major commercial release; not just typos but the very information that is the focus of the ‘best selling’ book can be factually wrong.

Perhaps some day there will be a book store just for local and self-published authors, and their books will be PURCHASED just like the major brand names are now, rather than relegated to forgotten shelves and treated as though they are not worth the paper they are printed on. Perhaps some day we will invest more in our local economies, rather than giving all profits to a few rich fat cats that could barely care less.

So in this area there are basically 2 stores that accept local authors, but due to demands by local authors that they have a place to sell their books, it is increasingly rare that the small portion of the store dedicated to local authors will have room for everyone in the flooded self-published book market. It seems that self-published is a niche market that is not being allowed space due to corporate monopolist priorities. The competitive cut-throat capitalist monopoly model of economics, stands in contrast to the sharing and networking pluralist (multiplicity) more free-market model. Some business workers pride themselves for being very morally patient with customers, clients, bosses, employees, co-workers, and partners; in that they value them as fellow humans and are very generous to the point of pleasantly accepting financial loss as sacrifice for more happiness. That moral model is considered a bad business model for serious capitalists however, because survival success of business is based on financial capital, not ethical capital. There is a strong historic argument to be made that more financial wealth can be made quicker and greater by meaner people that take huge risks, rather than generous people who tend to give away and share more (studies show these people are often considered ‘poor’).

Self-published authors can be economically vital, if local stores open to showcase them as the main product. Some regional examples may soon show that people will travel from around the world to visit unique collections that support populations directly with financing. Rather than stores asking you pay to maybe keep your book there temporarily, and refusing to talk to authors in person or on the phone about the issue of slavish consignment; an alternative option will be to support stores that support self-published authors, which would make independent authors the best meaning (and most fitting use) of the word ‘common’. Possibly current store owners don’t want to be harming the local economy by practicing their old business models, but supply and demand and advertising have very real aspects that corporations do not want commoners to discuss.

The self-publishing paradox is that although the book market is flooded by grassroots citizens writing and publishing books, the means to support them are not part of conventional business models. Even alternative efforts are suppressed due to social, economic, and linguistic self-destructive elitism. Most people that write books do it because they love it or are best at it, not because of the economic incentives because it is generally well known that artists, musicians, and writers are not given living wages. The attitude that the voice of the people is not worth hearing, has never been considered wise or good.

Advertisements

The ‘Board and Books’ Club

Posted in Adaptive Reuse, Commercial Corporations, Crafts, jobs, Multimedia Communication, Pub Library, Roleplaying / Reenacting, Services, Sales or Trade, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 26, 2018 by Drogo

Urban Used Book Store and More

Before the apocalypse, some of us had opened a shop in the city for a place to sell what we made, to keep a collective library, and for a local hang out for geeks like us. We called it “The Board & Books” and it was an eclectic social community for all classes of gamers, intellectuals, artists, actors, musicians, and book lovers. We served some food and drink, but it was under the table to avoid needing to renovate and pay fees to code, to keep our expenses low since income was minimal mostly from monthly membership. If you stayed for more than an hour we asked that you pay to stay as long as you like, and that was incentive for return visits to get your money’s worth and have a chair and board to “call your own”. Walking sticks, paintings, and other home-made crafts of all kinds were welcome. On some days a smoking club would rent it, and we locked the door and responded only to the secret knock and call.

Our tiny shop version of the Pipedream Pub was called “The BOARD and Books” because we had at least one table to start with for playing games, writing, and studying books on. Table boards were also used for drinks and food when in private club sessions. The collective library was for our members to place books they liked or wrote, including old and new books. There were also prices on most of the books, on the odd occasion that someone wanted to own it for their personal private hoard. We even managed to sell a few poems.

We had old and new carved wood on display: walking sticks, canes, wands, sculptures, board panels, etc..

We had a converted piano made into a harp, flat-wide-screen digital monitor, and book shelf.

piano desk

Random paintings came and went. Art, music, and books were often traded.

Beamer and Tom made an awesome wooden table from old antiques and local barn boards.

railway-table-by-toyo-kichen-style-o

After a few years membership increased and so rates were raised to pay the bills and make some net profit, until Armageddon. During WW3 there was too much economic depression to charge much, and when the urban infrastructure became bad enough we had to close shop in the city, and focus on the Pipedream Pub in the country.  Many of the items and books from the shop were moved to the Pub library and hearth hall.

[ part of SCOD FALLOUT 2020 series script ]

SCOD Fallout 2020: Shelter Survivors

Posted in Fictional Stories, SCOD Fallout Projects, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on August 7, 2018 by Drogo

Act III : Post-Apocalypse

Fallout Sheltered Survivors

*

McGrail script – formerly part of Act 3; written by Joe McGrail, BJ, WP, and edited by Drogo

Dramatus Personae: Al (Adlai Stevenson Kennedy III), Maggie (Maria Magdelana), 3 alien “andies”, A.S. Kennedy I, ASK 1’s wife and 3 children (including ASK 2), Mr and Mrs Val Wagner, Wagner white trash niece “bitch 1”, and Wagner gay son “bitch 2”

Act 3.1

A new Narrator “Al” is revealed to be Adlai Stevenson Kennedy III, the politician survivor who is being questioned by Hooded Androgynous Aliens. Adlai is standing naked in the middle of a pinwheel floor with ethereal down-lighting. Surrounding the pinwheel is a circle of pieces of old cars, broken furniture, rusted metal, and junk. Room is dark, except for enough light to see Al’s bare legs and buttocks, arms, hands, and upper torso; we cannot see his face yet. A door opens from off-camera, with a blinding light shining through. We see his face briefly, as Al puts his hands up to block the light. 3 humanoid beings walk in wearing large hooded robes, concealing their age, gender, and skin. [pat, robin, terry]

Al: “This is my experience in teaching the Cold War as well as human sexuality and religious morals to a race of androgynous aliens. At first I thought I had been abducted by a cult, because they were all wearing hooded robes concealing their bodies.”

Al (ASK III) is naked, with 3 hooded alien questioners.

Androgen 1: Hello again, Mr Adlai Stevenson Kennedy the Third.

Al: Uh, hello. Since you are getting to know me, you might as well call me Al. My friends call me Al.

Androgen 2: We want to know more about what you recall about your planet.

Al: Well, that is kind of a big question to ask so candidly.

Androgen 3: Afterwards you may have the fee-male [turns to other two and they nod their heads yes] … yes the female so you will not feel so lonely, she will make you feeeeeel better, yes?

Al: Oh, isn’t that kind of you.

Andro 2: So tell us about your Kennedy family, Mr. Adlai.

Al: Do I need to be naked for this? Well, huh, I think I saw something that would help explain it a little better. [sighs, walks over to a pile of clutter, and retrieves a picture of the Kennedy clan circa 1960 per Jack and Bobby, shows photo to Androgens]

Andro 3: My my, they all sssssmile so. Ssssoooo many children must make the gender-obvious feel proud.

Al: Yes, and especially our religion, Catholics encouraged procreation.

Andro 2 (to Andro 3): It is true. Stevenson Kennedy’s descendents believed that having as many births as possible pleased their god.

Andro 3: Indeed. A culture that not only definesss the gender itself, but also the rolesss of these gendersss as well as proclivity.

Al: You guys sure are clinical about love, tenderness, and how happy parenthood can be.

Andro 2: Did you say clinical or cynical? This, your diction is so phonetically arcane.

Andro 3: It fitssss with hisss arcane sssssexual tendencies.

Al: Look my friends, I meant clinical ok? And if this is going to be a long story, I would say start calling me Al now.

Androgens together: We agree, Al.

Al: So let’s see…. [fade]

Act 3.2 FLASH-BACK begins – Scene 1

Pre-Apocalypse family flashback of survivor politician

[exterior shot of ASK I’s house, cut to ASK I in house basement asleep on a cot]

Al (Voice Only): I can’t get those years straight, but it was the turn of the 21 century and my grandfather was worried about what was then the War on Terror.

Andro 2 (VO): What about your great grand-father and grand-uncles’ Cold War?

Al (VO): That ended several years before, only about a decade or so apart. According to my father, my grandfather had a travel alarm clock that he kept beside his bed….

[ASK I wakes up to a travel alarm clock buzzer, date shows on screen “2003-04” his wife is at the top of the stairs with a tray of breakfast]

Mrs. Kennedy I: [pregnant] Rise and shine, birthday boy!

ASK I: Thank you, my darling. (white briefs and t-shirt)

Mrs. Kennedy I: Did you manage to sleep well in the dungeon, Dr. Frankenstein?

ASK I: (shrugs) Yes, I guess. I don’t want to upset you, but you and the kids need to come down here with me once a week, so the real thing doesn’t scare ’em when it happens.

Mrs. Kennedy I: I know. [looks down, then puts her hand on her pregnant stomach] You know your father hasn’t said anything though?

ASK I: Senator Kennedy? No, he and good old Patrick – oh I need to call him later, its a twin thing – are still at it even with the Anthrax scare from Ft. Deterick.

Mrs. Kennedy I: Come on, your Belgian waffle is getting cold and there’s more coffee upstairs.

[ASK I takes the food tray upstairs with his wife]

Flash-back Scene 2

[Kennedy kitchen – 2 small children watching cartoons in a breakfast nook drinking juice, an Hispanic woman polishing silver]

ASK I: Hey guys, turn that off after breakfast. I don’t want you turning into zombies.

Child 1: [5 years old] what is a zombie, daddy?

ASK I: A zombie is someone who goes funny in the head from sitting in front of a TV for too long, and not enough time playing in the sandbox Santa gave him last Christmas.

Child 1: Yes Daddy.

Mrs. Kennedy I: [to maid] Gracias, Senorita Jimenes. [maid walks away from the silver so the Kennedys can be alone]

ASK I: Dad said he would be up on the weekend. Something about a 35th birthday present. I just dont let him push me into running for something. I am happy here in DC, but working for Uncle Joe trying to get money in for Citizen’s Oil. As soon as we can prove that those fuel cells…

[cartoon interrupted by news]

TV announcer: We interrupt this program to bring you the following news brief. The White House has just recalled the US Ambassador to the United Nations, after a shouting match with the Iranian foreign minister. This comes after Iran’s resistance to allow inspections of the nuclear facilities.

Mrs. Kennedy I: Your father must be ready to pounce on this.

ASK I: Jesus. What bastards. Two wrongs can’t make a right, ya know?

[Room starts shaking, TV reception fades, lights go out!]

Mrs. Kennedy I: Oh my God! Adlai!

ASK I: [in solemn deep tone] Its Kingdom come. Kids come on! We’ve got to get into the shelter! Where’s the dog?

Mrs. Kennedy I: [has both children by the hand] Hopefully Skip will have the sense to run toward the house.

ASK I: Mrs. Jimenez! Vamanos! [maid comes running out of the dining room]

Act 3.3

Interrogation continued. ASK III Questioned about Classicism, Racism, Sexism

[fade back to pinwheel room with Al and Androgens]

Al: According to my Dad that was how it felt. Especially when the TV went funny like that.

Andro 1: That is when they moved into their underground shelter?

Al: Yes. Our Kennedy family had been in Washington for over fifty years at that point. When my grand uncle Jack was president, he made sure there was a contingency plan for he and his family.

Andro 2: And that’s why they had a shelter?

Al: Yes, some called it a bunker.

Andro 3: The fffemale whose name was pronounced so differently… was sssshe inferior?

Al: No, certainly not. We always said all men were created equal, but that also included all women of course.

Andro 2: What was your labor class like? Were your workers bred diminutive, or well endowed?

Al: She was an immigrant, but she had some inalienable human rights. Before the fallout we had distinguishable climate zones; she was from a warmer climate and hotter culture.

Andro 1: She was in your employ, was she not? Your family was in that old ruling caste?

Al: Oh yes, economically. Heh-heh yeah um… We made all the big financial decisions so that people like her could come work in urban factories or on rural farm plantations.

Andro 3: Was this what you call classsssism?

Al: Huh? Well I suppose these things just manifest. Mrs. Jimenez did not survive long after fallout, she was older. But there was another group too.

Andro 2: Please help us to understand this, Al.

Al: By all means, my new friends.

Self-Publishing

Posted in Book Reports, Individuals / Members / Monsters / Creative Writing, Pub Library, SCOD Online School with tags , , , , , , , , , on July 25, 2014 by Drogo

If anyone has a digital file for a book, i can publish it for about $100 within a month. That is a very low price that the author can pay for my services, to do all the work of format editing and publishing on Amazon and Kindle. It usually takes me over 10 hours, so at $10 an hour that is quite a deal!

Any book sales I will report and share with the authors. It is in my interest to do so, because we could make more successful projects. Identifying success potential is key. I have published over 20 books. Want more information on SCOD publishing? Find me on Facebook or click HERE to collaborate on a book project!

Books Published by Drogo Empedocles

– Drogo Empedocles of SCOD

HFM_1_small

Social Anxiety at Public Parties or Pubs

Posted in Arts (Design & Performance), Cooperatives / Communities / Networks / Travels, Critical Commentary of Civilization, Psychology, Pub Library with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 19, 2013 by Drogo

Public Parties, Pubs, Clubs, or Bars and Social Anxiety

Thoughts by Drogo Empedocles –

The older I get, the more freakishly strange it feels to go to bars; its always been an odd feeling because it is so different than the rest of society… and yet not odd enough for me, i cant quite explain it.

I am not straight-edge, and I do not consider myself a drug ‘addict’; I strive for moderation most of the time, in most things. However I do like to ‘get out every-once in a while’ and be social, or even host parties; so i would like to express some feelings i have regarding the psychological issues i experience.

Even just to go for music it trips me out. People at parties are a different experience, i remember first learning this at my house as a kid when my parents had Gallery Shows. Some of the social anxiety pressure i think has to do with the amplified volume of collective energy, emotions, and noise. Voice volume gets raised, just to have a conversation or say anything at all; then by nature it feels aggressive or hostile even.

Differences between people aside, im wondering if it is simply the odd condition of people relating to each-other in a much more familiar way than outside the bar? I think it makes it very strange when someone does not interact by those rules in some way, whether being quiet or not wanting to be touched in anyway, etc…

Diversity is important, but it makes for interesting dynamics. Hunter vs Prey scenarios, and what-not. It is funny because im such a sensual and compassionate person at heart, im cool with mutual public affection of common forms, but i realize some other people are not for various reasons, including relationship contracts; and therefore this presents ‘issues’. Usually the most gregarious types of people will be the ones at the party or bar, yet there will inevitably be a minority of introverts or people hostile to affection.

At this point I do not have many conclusions. Perhaps it is simply best to generally avoid the conflict of personalities in any public setting, especially parties and bars.  Yet parties and bars are considered the most fun, and appropriate for Holidays and Celebrations! Hmmmm. I guess I’m somewhere in the middle on all of this, since I am a compassionate introvert at heart, that does occasionally like the thrill of adventure.

SCOD Prophecies

Posted in Critical Commentary of Civilization, Economics, Philosophy, Politics, SCOD Thesis, Spiritual with tags , , , , , on September 5, 2013 by Drogo

These are the prophecies by Drogo Empedocles, accepted as the basis for SCOD.

 

  1. Some systems within Civilization will collapse due to a combination of factors after one major event.
  2. When some civil systems fail, people will riot, and sane people must defend themselves.
  3. Survivors will begin to take back power from government and corporations.
  4. Families and communities will value making their own living and food.
  5. Architects and Archivists will become beacons in the new dark ages.
  6. Suburbs will want to develop gardens more than building more houses.
  7. Cities will find that trapped within skyscraper artificial tombs, maintenance becomes overwhelming.
  8. The East Coast will once again value the Chesapeake Bay, and all waterways more as life itself.
  9. The Appalachian Trail will become a major highway with growing communities.
  10. West Virginia will reduce coal mining, and get back to real mountaineering.
  11. Harpers Ferry will reclaim its status as spiritual place of gathering and barter.
  12. The Hilltop Hotel will be run by local community groups.
  13. Park Rangers will become true Forest Rangers, and Police will become Road Warriors
  14. Without electricity buildings will be converted architecturally as forts and communal housing.
  15. SCOD will be established as a community and tested. SCOD will prevail.

 

 ps – predictions or prophecies may or may not come to pass, however if there is any chance they should be brought about, made true, and come to be; we should prepare and make plans no matter our chances of survival.

 

SCOD Medieval to Victorian Shift 2013

Posted in Medieval Tavern, SCOD Thesis, Victorian Tavern with tags , , , , , , , , , , on May 13, 2013 by Drogo

I am putting my plans and dreams for establishing a Medieval Tavern on hold indefinitely. If I had at least an equal business partner willing to meet me half-way on producing designs, plans, and investments; then I would do it. I have not been able to find such a business partner, and so therefore I was not willing to do it myself; as the risk and stress would have been too much for someone that is not rich. I had already taken out loans for college and car, that I struggled to pay. Now that I have greater financial stability and resources, I am not willing to pour all of my savings into a Medieval Tavern; because I would need to take out another loan, and even if I could make a working business, there is a good chance that business would not make net earnings the first few years (it would be in the red). With what would I pay the loans back, if the gross earnings went into paying only the utilities and employees? Business schools generally teach that most new businesses do not start covering costs, until several years later; some close before that, and others go bankrupt.

For many years I have had some loyal and interested friends, that worked on some of the concepts with me; however it takes more than the occasional comment of encouragement or critique, to match what I had designed, planned, and was willing to invest. I have realized, the hard way, that even creative people that can understand what an awesome idea it is, are probably not going to commit to such a major life project (by commit I mean spend most of their waking days on it like I have often done). Most people have their own lives and dreams, that they may or may not pursue. I have yet to find anyone as intent on making a Medieval Tavern as I have been, and I accept that may be the case until I die.

Yet because I am stubborn when it comes to dreams, I am transferring my SCOD efforts from the Medieval Tavern, to the potential for a Victorian Tavern, Tea-House, or Tap-Room. I have a house that was built in 1908, and has a Victorian first floor interior. There is parking along the streets nearby, and the town is the historic tourist town of Harpers Ferry; so there are already successful bed & breakfasts. In fact we had a B&B in our house for years, among other businesses. So it is more likely I will be able to achieve a Victorian Establishment of some kind, before I die; without as much financial backing, and less partners. I will be starting this new dream based on current and future conditions, and no partners (for now). Some dreams we live with, are in fact, in part, already a reality.

– Drogo Empedocles

0313131645