I’ve got a few days this week in the best part of the country there is.
At least that’s what Dudley Zoo looked like 50 years ago…
I’m travelling up to Dudley on Wednesday morning and spending the afternoon with Lorna Prescott and friends and whoever else turns up at Gather Dudley at 65 High Street. If you’re on the Black Country side, do come over and say hello. We’re going to talk about community, co-creation, creative collaboration and probably some things that don’t start with ‘c’ just for the hell of it. Lorna’s written about it here and it does help her if you could also sign up on the Eventbrite page.
On Thursday, my tentative plan is to spend the day at the Impact Hub in Birmingham. Again, I’m open to visitors or invitations to stuff that’s going on in the City Centre.
There is a teensy-weensy plan for curry on Thursday night. Ping me on Twitter if you want to join us.
On Friday I’m co-facilitating “A Conference on Unconferencing” with top gent Dan Slee. If you’re at all interested in self-organising events, or how to get people to do important stuff without bossing them around then this is the day for you, it’s on from 9.30 till 4pm and will be chock-full of interesting people and ideas and action.
I do love the West Midlands but I love what we’re doing there even more, so if you would like me to come and do some similar stuff where you are for a few days, please do get in touch.
In November I decided to switch my Patreon to supporting a monthly collaboration journal called Tuttle Moonthly to be published on (or as near as poss to) the full moon. It’s been a great way of focusing myself on what I’m most interested in, where I’m actually at with collaborative work and thinking about what it might mean to revive the Centre for Creative Collaboration.
I’m going to carry on doing Tuttle Moonthly but I’m going to take it off the patreon and shift that to people supporting my vlog. First reason is that it doesn’t seem fair to make the collaborative thing something that people pay to support – it should be that if you’re collaborating on stuff with me that makes money, we should have a better way of sharing that money or at least benefiting from it. So there’s a built-in barrier both to funding and collaboration. The other thing I realised is that the vlog is the thing that people are actually fans of – British modesty and self-deprecation aside, people consistently say that they like the vlog, where as Moonthly is something I want to do and needs some nurturing to get going. I think they work better the other way round.
So what to do about the Moonthly this full moon, given that I’ve also been bunged up and not very sociable for most of December and early January? Well I will pull together something to represent what I’ve done and I’m also thinking about a monthly project for people to encourage people to work on with me as well as what I’m thinking generally about collaboration, work I’m doing etc. It would be nice to have a challenge for people to work on month by month if they want to. Yeah?
So, your first task is to help me with defining a challenge for this coming moonth. Next full moon after this week is February 11th. I’m looking for fun things or a theme to focus on that we can do together – opportunities, not obligations – something I can mention to people when we meet, something you can contribute to through a variety of media, and something that’s more when we do it together rather than lots of individual contributions pulled together (although I will put aside some time each month to pull something together).
Whatcha think? What theme would like to work on for Jan/Feb?
Hello and Happy New Year!
This is an asking for help post. I’ve got a bit of a tickly cough otherwise this would have been a vlog.
I’ve got two things to do in January outside London, which I’d like help filling out with other stuff.
Birmingham: I’m very pleased to be co-facilitating a conference about unconferences alongside Dan Slee which is one of the outcomes of the academic work I contributed to last year. It’s all day on Friday 20th and obvs if you’re in Birmingham or thereabouts you should come along. It’s a paid gig but rather than rush up and back down again, I’d love to take the opportunity to do something else around Brum in the week before (or maybe the week after) – so have a quick think (and maybe look at the video below about what I do) and let me know if it sparks mutually beneficial ideas.
Bristol: The annual Devoted and Disgruntled open space is the weekend before that 14th-16th and it’s in Bristol. Now I don’t have a paid gig to hang this off but I’d really like to go. It’s not an expensive thing but it does all add up so if there were something I could do in the Brizzle-ish area that might pay my train fare and cover or include accommodation, that would be peachy.
These are the main things I do, but you might have seen something else in my repertoire that tickles your fancy. My fees are always reasonable and flexible!
PS Oh yes, house gigs are a definite possibility – I’ve got a bundle of new songs that I wrote at the end of last year as well as the usual ukulele bufoonery.
PPS If you’re not in Bristol or Birmingham but you’d still like to me to come and do something, don’t be shy!
It’s cold, it’s getting darker and we need to make it easier to work together on the things that matter, removing some of the more common barriers to collaboration that you see in this city.
C4CC removed many barriers. We worked hard to maintain that ethos of openness in the face of pressure from institutions who had other expectations of how collaboration works. It doesn’t just happen on its own, but you can’t make it happen either.
So here I am, trudging along on a frozen football field having a bit of a think.
Bonus Link! : I’m making a Journal of Creative Collaboration via Patreon – come see!
I went to the London Bloggers Meetup last night for the first time in a while. It was on video-blogging and as well as hearing from and meeting some interesting people, it helped me get a few ideas about my own work slotted into place. In particular it inspired me to do more of the journaling type, this is me, here and now and what I think podcast/vlog. The first one is in the works (I went for a walk and talked into the camera, that’s my style) – I’m going to try to cut it down to something watchable today and to make it a regular feature of my Steemit output. You can thank/blame Andy Bargery who runs LBM.
I went out and realised there was far more I wanted to say than could be squeezed into a three or four minute video. So I’ve still got a couple more of these in the can and I’ll work out how to release them without overwhelming you!
I realised today how awkward it feels to me to talk about inspiration – I’m always flattered and pleased when people say I’ve inspired them, but I don’t want to admit it works the other way too.
Those of you who’ve only seen me up against my living room wall with a ukulele in my hand will be gratified to see that I can move about and that I’m lucky enough to live in a lovely place (right next to the municipal tip recycling facility).
Sorry about the wind (meteorological not flatulent)
This post was originally published on Steemit a blockchain-based blogging platform that provides a micro-payment environment for authors and content-creators. If you’d like to support my work (and perhaps get paid for your own writing), pop over there, sign up, say hello and upvote my posts!
I’ve been talking about the “enemy within” since the time of the Brexit vote but the same thing applies to the current themes in American politics. My first reaction to these authoritarian men who whip up populist support at the cost of anyone who’s a little bit different is anger and hatred. And then I realise that I’m falling into the same trap. The trick I’ve learned is to acknowledge and accept that I’m just the same in some ways, that I’m equally capable of being hateful, divisive and fearful but one day at a time, I try to be a better person than that. If I can love and accept the enemy within and turn him into art, I reduce the power of the enemy without to disturb my peace. That’s the theory anyway.
This song came to me while walking down Pentonville Road this afternoon. I was out for a walk in Islington and passed by Joseph Grimaldi’s grave. I thought about writing a song called “They’ve put a clown in the White House” but the muse nudged that one aside for another day and you’ve got this instead. People talk about the muse whispering in your ear, it really was just like that, I couldn’t wait to sit down and write it out and record it the old cowboy tune “Red River Valley”.
Let’s just keep breathing and loving each other as well as we can.