MINE

Ultracreatives Interview #17: Mur Lafferty by J.C. Hutchins

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After an unexpected -- and shame on him, unnannounced -- micro-hiatus, J.C. Hutchins is back with a new UltraCreatives interview. This episode features the triumphant return of author and podcaster Mur Lafferty. There have been some tremendous developments in Mur's career since she last appeared on the show back in February. J.C. and Mur discuss her novel Playing for Keeps, and how it was recently purchased by indie publisher Swarm Press for mainstream release. Mur also chats about the reactivation of her "Stories of the Third Wave" podcast, her ambition to rush the Amazon.com charts on August 25 and much more. It's a fun, fascinating interview.

Find Mur Lafferty on the World Wide Everywhere:

In the intro to this episode, J.C. also explains just where the hell he's been for the past three weeks, what commitments have kept him from releasing 7th Son: OBSIDIAN content, and when that content will return to the feed. (Hint: It's goddamned soon.)

As promised, here are links to some important sites (including MINE, J.C.'s new pop culture blog project) and some writing he's done in recent weeks.

Help spread the MINE meme! by J.C. Hutchins

As I mentioned in my previous post, I recently debuted a new and ambitious social media project. It's called MINE, and it's a hearty helping of pop culture goodness, designed to delight. If you dig what I'm doing over at MINE -- or just want to show some support for my creative endeavors -- you would rock my little world by posting one of these spiffy MINE Headline Widgets seen below (or here if you're catching this on an RSS reader) on your blog, website, Myspace, Facebook page, etc. Simply click the "Get Widget" tab at the bottom of one of these cheerful guys, snag the embed code (or follow the easy instructions to send to your favorite social media profiles), and tah-dahhh! post it in your webspace!

Like my podcast fiction projects, MINE is a zero-budget endeavor, and depends greatly on word of mouth to become successful. I'd appreciate any help you could provide me and my team of volunteer MINERS in getting the word out. It's another way to make MINE yours.

Pop Rocks!

--J.C.

What is MINE? MINE is yours. by J.C. Hutchins

I've been tweeting it up a storm for the past week, sharing the news with personal friends, and even gave it a nod in a recent blog post, but it's high time I told you good folks about my new social media project, MINE. MINE is "your one-stop shop for entertainment news, crazy rumors, Internet memes, whimsical news bites, music, gossip … you name it. We’ve amassed a small army of savvy, slightly-snarky writers — we call them 'MINERS' — dedicated to extracting the most fun and interesting stuff from the webscape."

I wrote that copy over at the MINE site (and there's more where that came from), and it truly represents my vision for the project. In a lot of ways, it's my take on what a pop culture blog should be: always fun, a smidgen smartass, not too geeky, nearly always useful or memorable, and never cruel. For me, MINE is a celebration of bubblegum conversation -- it's intended to remind you of the friends you had in high school or college (or if you're older and lucky, the pals you have now), sitting in a creaky vinyl horseshoe booth at Denny's, sharing fun stories and information as the clock ticked past midnight.

While the site has been live for only a week, there are already more than 100 stories in the MINE archives, merrily waiting to be consumed. The site is already ranking high in Google searches, and folks are linking back to our stories. Not bad for a newborn.

MINE is a sister site to Myxer.com (my employer), and represents a progressive experiment in brand- and community-building. I won't bore you with the details, but I created MINE with not only the users of that site in mind, but the entire online community, as well. We want to entertain as many people as we can, including you. If we're worthy, we'd like you to tell your friends about us, re-blog, re-tweet and circulate our stories ... and of course, come back for more. (We'd also really like it if you subscribed. It's convenient! :) )

While MINE will sometimes promote noteworthy Myxer.com content, it was not created to be a 24/7 shill-fest for the company. If I have a say -- and I do, I'm running the show with minimal editorial oversight -- it'll never be that. In a way, MINE is mine ... but more important, MINE is yours.

I say "MINE is yours," and I mean it. Part of the fun of a blog like MINE is user-contributed story tips. We have a place for that at the site, and I'd be delighted if you submit cool links for coverage. Commenting on the blog is open, and encouraged. The most-popular stories and recent reader comments are displayed on every page. Down the road, there'll be contests and opportunities to share your own creative content on the site; I'm taking the very best lessons from my experience building the awe-inspiring community here at JCHutchins.net, and incorporating them into MINE.

MINE is also yours in that I'm not the star of the show. You are, and people just like you. I've gathered a cadre of extremely talented volunteer contributors from the ranks of Twitter and the new media communities, including:

MINE's coverage is currently 90-plus percent "didja see this?" content -- meaning it's a link blog, providing a MINE-fueled perspective on the fun things we've found on the 'Net. But there is original editorial content at MINE, and it's terrific: we have Mur Lafferty's Geekgasm!, Jared Axelrod's excellent comic book essay series The Millennium Canon, "Indiana" Jim Perry's ultra-useful DVD Date Night, and original reviews (such as my recent critique of the new Lost Boys sequel). More original series are planned, including beer reviews and more columns by brilliant (and familiar) names in the new media space.

While every gem we excavate may not glitter brightly for you, there's likely something -- and more likely, several somethings -- at MINE that'll tickle your interest. I'm very proud of what I and my team of MINERS have achieved so far, and I'd love it if you took a gander.

So put on your helmet, grab a pickaxe and see what we've dug up for you over at MINE. Have fun, and remember: MINE = YOURS.

--J.C.