Many moons ago, in a place we like to call Reality, there was a fair amount of opportunity for intrepid folks to start their own publishing entities and deliver literature and film through three-dimensional objects known as books, VHS tapes and DVDs. Though the road was not smooth by any means, demand was sufficient enough to buoy those who believed their cause just and their goods, well, good. Then the Media Banshees of Doom began to scream that traditional publishing was dead and all must digitally publish or perish. Sadly, many believed this hyperbolic howling to be true and quickly abandoned the old ways entirely, feeding into a self-fulfilling prophecy.
To be sure, the bellowing of the Banshees has not changed over time, remaining consistent in message, frequency and volume. But it is through the exposure to this very constancy that some have achieved acclimation and realized that, like the ambient noise we live with daily and nightly, it can be and often should be ignored if ya wanna stay anywhere near the periphery of sanity. Also, when has heeding the screechy, nearly panicky advice of "experts" ever been a good idea? Never, that's when.
While, certainly, one cannot be a luddite about such matters--I for one loves me all sorts of digital publishing and willingly engage in it myself--but not everyone has access to it nor does everyone want to consume all their information/entertainment that way. There has always been and always will be a beauty to the experience of holding a book, VHS tape or DVD in one's hand. Tangibility is a powerful thing indeed and many of us do not want to see it disappear any time soon.
One such organization that has decided to tune-out the digital-or-bust madness and get on with the work is Urban Anthropology Inc. (UrbAn), a non-profit, community-based membership association. Since 1999, UrbAn's mission has been to raise awareness of and celebrate cultural diversity while developing programs and projects that tackle tough issues common to urban areas, most specifically in and around Milwaukee.
From its very beginnings, UrbAn included the production of creative work--documentaries, plays, etc.--as a means of teaching and demonstrating the very positive benefits and the not-so positive tensions and problems that can arise with cultural diversity. So it only made sense that UrbAn would eventually launch its own publishing arm, which it did back in January of this year.
Dubbed MECAH Publishing--MECAH stands for Milwaukee Ethnic Collection of Arts and Humanities--it aims to produce and distribute literary work and film that speaks to non-academic audiences and highlights the vast and varied mosaic of culture and sub-culture existent in southeast Wisconsin urban centers. And all work is produced and distributed through 3-D objects only, at least for now.
But here's the really big news: MECAH is currently accepting proposals for literary fiction and nonfiction work as well as films/documentaries. Yes, you read that right, so if you're a writer or filmmaker looking for a chance to create a work that both enlightens and entertains, and you can meet the objectives and the guidelines, you need to jump on this!
Now, longtime readers of Cricky's words know that I would never, NEVER blog up an opportunity that didn't have some real compensation component for the artists--I don't and won't waste either my or your precious peeper time on anything that propagates the pernicious practices of some, which are usually expressed through such sentiments as "It'll look good on your resume" or "The exposure alone is priceless." Pure rubbish, people! So you may have every confidence that I have confirmed beyond doubt that authors and filmmakers will receive 50% royalties of the net profits of the product sold. Not too shabby by any standard, folks.
Okay, now click on over to MECAH Publishing and let the good work begin!