Monday, April 23, 2007

On the Case

A cool thing happened today... Scrapped got a Telly. It's not an Emmy or Oscar or something like that but it's good fun for me regardless. I've never gotten a silver one which means judges rated Scrapped at least 9's out of possible 10's across the board. They get over 12,000 entries a year from all over the world and silver winners have been people like PBS, Discovery Health, Spike TV, Universal Studios Network, Walt Disney Studios, etc.

This is good timing because I've started calling distributors looking for someone to take over the business of marketing and selling in the mainstream. Scrapped has been sucessful in the grass roots network but is hungry to get out into the rest of the world. I'm frankly surprised it's gotten as far as it has because I'm not a business guy and have pretty much been doing everything myself or with the help of my wife, brother or Rebecca from the movie, well them and dozens of companies, industry professionals and thousands of people like you that gave me a break. It's not a major production, not even close... but I gave it everything I had, learned a ton and tackled scrapbooking as a completely ignorant, skeptical and non-social outsider. Thanks for that!

There's a great scrapbooking covnention in a few locations this summer that's invited me to show clips and attend so I'm aiming to find a home for the project soon and hand off the business duties so I can get back to promotion and development of new scrapbooking projects for guys and the non-crafty among us. Creative Memories has passed because lets face it, why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free so I'm going to have to yank them out to make it more product neutral for other companies that have been eagerly helping promote the movie.

I've been waiting for years to get this award. When I started hitting the film festival circuit a few years ago with projects I told Connie if I ever stuck with it long enough to get 1/2 a dozen I'd break down and get a case to keep them in. Today's the day.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

life in a box

After twelve years of marriage to a coffee addict I've turned over to the dark side myself. The drug of choice is being administered through Panera's hazelnut bottomless cup. I've passed on drinking coffee every morning while the pot is sitting right there until I've started meetings with my friend Dave on this crazy China project.

He lives about four blocks from the cafe with free wifi and coffee in a real mug ( not paper cup ) with as much go-juice as your little legs will carry you to for a dollar fifty ( and no tip jar... sorry )

Speaking of Dave, I got a call from him a while ago asking where he could go and what he and his wife should buy to start organizing his family's life history. I guess they took Scrapped to heart and are now motivated. Men do scrapbook and often without the frills. He's looking for a slip in book so he can get stuff together but have the option to pull pictures out and copy them for their four kids. At first I suggested photo corners so you can pull them out but faced with this giant mass of images they're looking for something with a slide in, quick and dirty, stories and pictures with names and dates solution.

I thought about Creative Memories Pictfolio - Milestone's album ( which I still get a kick out of wondering if anyone at headquaters was a Miles Davis fan and named it after his 1958 album... "Milestones Album" I'm guessing not ) I like the feel and quality of the beast but when I went to the website I forgot they were $40. Yikes. I suppose you get what you pay for but what if you don't want to get that much? :0) It's also only got 32 pages ( 16 sheets ) so I'm wondering if anyone has any input on alternative products that might be a little more affordable for someone tackling a thousand pictures or more.

Monday, April 16, 2007

wormholes in communication

I've gotten some calls, emails and posts in the last couple weeks saying wow... what a glamorus life you have! Well yes, and no. Yes, I've gotten to do some globe trotting and have had a blast but it's also a lot of grinding through phone calls, trying to pay bills and juggle schedules, projects and budgets.

One example of the disconnect is the emails I get on a regular basis saying "Hi I'm ( fill in the blank ) and I love your movie! I'm a consultant, retreat owner, store owner, or person with an unatural amount of friends and wanted to let you know that I've been loaning your movie out to everyone I know and am even having twenty people over for my retreat, party or general get together where I sell things to people. Isn't that great! I'm giving you exposure!" The best is when I get people assuming I'm going to send them DVD's for free because they're going to show Scrapped to a bunch of people, thus giving me exposure. As much as I am flattered that people like the movie, I still need to pay it off. :0) By all means feel free to get the word out and I'm very happy you're sharing the love but the kind of exposure where the one $15 movie is ammortized out over the two dozen people who end up seeing it is working out to be about 63 cents a piece for box office reciepts. I'll be passing the Scrapped debt on to my as yet unborn children... It's just the nature of the business but I thought I'd use that as an example of how this Rock n Roll lifestyle looks from the other side of the fence.

On one hand you've got the global connection thing. I added a nifty little map on the right of the page to track hits to the blog a few days ago so it looks like in the last five days people have checked in from South Korea, Australia, The Philippines, New Zealand, Egypt, Norway, The UK, The Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Argentina, seven cities in Canada and all over the US. On the other hand I'm trying to pitch projects and get funding all day today and am having a hard time connecting with people that live an hour from my house. It's a small world but that doesn't mean it still doesn't take half a dozen calls to get a hold of someone - as some of you who are trying to get a hold of me know...

Monday, April 09, 2007

writing on the Wall

As many of you already posted, emailed or called... yes, there was an article in the Wall Street Journal about men scrapbooking and yes, I was in it. What a blast. As I drove over to Barnes and Noble to grab a couple copies ( you can't scrapbopok a pdf file ) I realized that 1: any day you wake up with your name in the Wall Street Journal is a good day ( barring indictments, scandals and bankruptcies ) and 2: it's now officially OK for guys to scrapbook.

Seriously, when I started doing research for Scrapped about a year and a half ago I was extremely hard pressed to find guys that did it. there were a couple that wouldn't return my phone calls or just plain said they were to embarrassed to be on camera. I think we've come a long way and I like to think that Scrapped had something to do with it but I think there were probably just outposts and sleeper cells of guys out there who just didn't make a big deal out of it. Kind of like when you get a new car and all of a sudden you see a million of them on the road you hadn't noticed before. Either way, I'm sincerely glad to see guys getting more involved in wrangling up their mementos, opinions and stories in the acid free page.

I am a little concerned that women will wake up one day with men in the scrapbook store or weekend retreat burping and playing pull my finger in the back then rue the day men ever got involved. I'll apologize for that right now. I should also say for the record that Kelly Crow ( super nice person ) said in the article "Men are still largely banned from the country's 20-odd-scrapbooking retreats." I've found the opposite to be true. It could be the movie but I've been invited to tons of crops and had nothing but amazingly supportive responses from complete strangers. I've found scrapbooking women to be exceptionally welcoming.

If you haven't had a chance to read the article it's called "Wanted: A Few Good Men ( With Scissors) in Friday April 6th's Wall Street Journal. I don't want to get in hot water so I'm not going to post it but if you email me I might be able to find a copy for you...

What are your thoughts on the write up?