The video below pretty much sums up the experience far too many authors seem to go through. As a publisher I know I'm guilty of suggesting most of these techniques from time to time, but it's particularly entertaining when they're all strung together like they are in the video. I'll admit I laughed out loud at least three times while watching this. Thanks to reader Paul Mikos. for sending it along. Enjoy.
I love Dilbert. Or perhaps it's more accurate to say that some days I feel like I live Dilbert. I have several Dilbert strips taped to my monitor. Call me a simpleton but every so often one will catch my eye and I'll laugh all over again.
I read the strip every day and was delighted to see that Scott Adams is taking it, as well as dilbert.com, to another level. Dilbert has grown up and gone Web 2.0 on us, as noted in this Webware post. The site currently lets you write your own punch line to a strip and then share it with others. Next month you'll be able to write the copy for all the panels in a strip. The Webware post also talks about other community features due in May where you and your friends will be able to collaborate on all the panels.
Dilbert is the perfect platform for this sort of thing. It's almost on par with water cooler chatter or episodes of The Office; everyone can relate to Dilbert at one time or another and it's fun to share the humor. This observation (excerpted from Webware) shows that Scott Adams "gets it" when it comes to community and intellectual property as well as how to leverage the former to bolster the latter:
"We're accepting the realities of IP on the Internet, and trying to get ahead of the curve. People already alter Dilbert strips and distribute them. If we make it easy and legal to do so, and drive more traffic to Dilbert.com in the process, everyone wins. Plus it's a lot of fun to see what people come up with in the mashups."
As a general rule I absolutely hate anonymous blogging. If you've got something to say, say it and don't hide behind some veil of secrecy.
So although I don't like them, I have to admit that sometimes they can be pretty darned funny. In this particular case, we're talking about comedy talents that are far superior to what you'd typically see on TV, although I admit that's setting the bar rather low.
What am I talking about? Mary Jo Foley recently did a funny short post called So many Fake Steves so little time. It's about the fake Steve Jobs blog, which I've been reading for a couple of weeks now as well as the recently-launched fake Steve Ballmer one which I discovered through Mary Jo's post. (Btw, can't you just picture someone at Microsoft saying, "hey, that fake Steve Jobs blog is getting way too much publicity...we need to start a fake Ballmer one!")
If the authors of these blogs aren't already in the comedy writing industry they need to consider a career change!