Transferring nodes to a tactile medium

With the podcast now running in its second season I think it is fair to say that it has been proven that some nodes can be transferred to another medium without losing too much. Yes, their threedimensionality is suddenly gone due to the lack of softlinks and pipelinks, but they also gain during transit: for the podcast, noders altered their voices, added sound effects, emphasis and sometimes just pure passion to give the node a completely different aura to its written parent.

I would now like to attempt a similar transfer to a different medium, in this case paper: I am suggesting the production of a magazine that would do for this tactile medium what the podcast did to sound waves. Again, just with the podcast, things will be lost in transition. But, just like the aforementioned 'cast, there will be a gain: Noder art, photography, typography, and the fact that it's actually paper makes reading our beloved E2 a completely new experience.

There are other benefits: you can read it on the tube, on the loo, in the bathtub, in the garden (well ok: I can read my e2 in the garden due to wi-fi, but not everyone is so lucky). You can read it to your pets and take it to your parents and give internetophobe friends a copy.

Production will be done on Scribus and probably on A3 paper, folded to A4. I will of course take advice from the resident typographers and designers regarding the layout and I am sure this will become a collaborative affair. Printing for the first run will be done by my in-house printers.

Face it, the possibilities are endless.

"But", I hear Amnesiac yell, "isn't that just some sinister scheme to make profits and impoverish more noders who are already struggling to pay their internet connection, innit?". Well, no.

The initial small print run (issue 0) will be paid by myself, and all I ask is postage. There will be no pdf version to download, as it's supposed to be tactile and a magazine, not another electronic publication. I see this in the tradition of the 1930's literary magazine with a dollop of Popular Mechanics, Wired and MAD-magazine, homespun with our own texts.

I mean, really: We are writers. We like to see our words printed.

Now for the consultation bit: I of course want as many opinions as possible for this. Please msg me your suggestions, criticisms, rants and raves, I will add all of them to this node and respond. Do NOT add GTKY nodes to the bottom of this node, I prefer to be able to respond indvidually to each message.

Now go and give me plenty.

Junkill says: Superb idea!!! I'm totally excited about it. I'll be thinking about any good suggestions I might have and I'll send em to you as I think of them.

Eien_Meru says: It seems to me that you'd want printers in multiple continents to cut down on postage, maybe. On second thought, QA control might be more valuable than lower postage. I didn't think that through far enough.

I thought about that and it's a good idea. It won't matter for the first issue, though.

Danneeness says E2SENCE sounds incredibly cool. How would the nodes printed be decided? By suggestion and poll? Your discretion? However it's done, I'm looking forward to it. :)

Good question. Initially I'll let my taste rule, but I am sure we'll have a suggestion system like in the podcast

Excalibre says: This is a neat idea and I certainly find it appealing to imagine E2 in paper form. But this is going to cost something, and it's a problem that we have no obvious way to market it (beyond the orders from E2 users who will, undoubtedly, want copies.) There's no obvious mechanism for it to draw outside readers in, which means it's going to be a bit of a money pit.

I agree with every aspect of that. As I said, initially this will be a trial run to actually establish the economics of it (print price, postage, etc). If the format can be agreed on and we have a couple of issues and production is getting slicker, the next stage would be to distribute the printing: i.e a noder in New York could download the pdf, get it printed by a local printer and then sell 10 issues to the local literary bookstore, but these are pipedreams and I don't want to think that far. Let's get one issue out first and see what the economics will be. At this moment, this is a labour of love, just like the podcast.

golFUR says: I tried to do this once before. I encountered small expectations and a committee mind. If you want some help with this I have experience in most of the stages of putting together a magazine. I'd love to see this get big, put money in E2's pocket and then put money in the writer's pockets. If you have any big ideas with this I'd love to hear them. Either way, good luck.

Thanks for the offer. When things start to become concrete, you'll know

Pseudo_Intellectual says: How on earth is one supposed to pronounce "E2sence"? Itoussence? That aside, I think you will find that qualities that shine on the screen do not necessarily reflect best on the page, and vice versa. (Who took the "hyper" out of my text?) That said, good luck with the venture. (For bonus content, you could see about burning the podcasts to CDs and bundling them together 8)

Well, I thought it would be pronounced "Essence", as in the 'essence of e2'. And yes, you are right, some nodes will lose in the transition. So the selection has to be careful, but it did work for the podcast, where there's no 'hyper' as well.

Simulacron3 says (on the topic of why not integrating the print issue into online E2): It could be a superdoc that prints out the magazine. The visible superdoc would explain the deal, give tantalizing previews and and list backissues. It could easily shift to subscription via RSS, etc.

I would really like it to be print only. No pdf. No downloads. We have our own digital playground here already. Nice paper, nice print. No 9 inch matrix printer stuff.



futilelord: thank you for being so active in making e2 into "things" other than what it is

E2 is many things, but definitely not only a website

BlackPawn says: I would suggest serialising some of the appropriate content on e2, Sam512 and EC/Ex have written a few things that would translate into that format, I'm sure there's others.REMF for example. Are there any issues with copyright, given that noders retain the copyright to their works and a magazine is a publication?

The serialization bit is definitely one to follow up. The copyright thing should be easily taken care of by asking the authors for permission. The question is of course what we do with the work of esteemed fled noders

ReiToei says: The mag is a damn cool idea. If there's anything I can do to help, let me know. I'm totally stoked about this.Also, somebody should get in touch with someone in Wired. They love stuff like this.

You're so right. Dozens of mags made the transfer from print to online. Who made it the other way around?

e-lainey says *falls over whilst evil eyeing cute bunny* I love your idea :P Im fascinated in seeing E2noders art. An idea would be to allow users to choose which nodes they want in their mag/book with a professionally E2noder designed cover. Possibly a competition for the cover, but that may be to much work. I actually like the idea of owning something from a site that I like so much. The only problem for me would be money :P The disadvantage is that most stories are on the website in the C! section

I don't see the problem with the C! section. This is our second highest accolade after the editor ching.

Chras4 says: Demeter had done a webzine using some e2 content, though using new content as well You might want to talk to her for her thoughts. Yes, paper is different from web, but it might give you some ideas.. I submitted some photos in past editions...etouffee likes writing from photos, he's urged me in the past to send him something to write to. I like the idea of matching visual to words, though it's true several of mine would lose something without the pipelinks, I still like the idea of a paper copy.

This will not be a solo project. This is E2 after all. I will try to get as much input from noders as I can, and I'll check out Demeter's webzine. And regarding etouffee: Every print magazine in the world should be blessed to feature him.

Andrew Aguecheek says: Your ideas are intriguing to me and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter ;-)

liveforever says: I am 100% behind this idea.

Ta you two!

Timeshredder says RE2SENCE: I heartily endorse this scheme or product.

E-lainey says: Thanks for responding! Im sorry for the miscommunication. I didn't mean that there was something wrong with the Ching section. I was asking that wont the nodes be presented on the E2 homepage aswell as in print? I was just worried but I still love the idea. Bah! Dont worry. What would also be very cool is E2 YouTubers :P

Scribe says: I think this is a great idea!! An idea for printing funds for future issues, market some limited number of ads to web based businesses. Also, I would love to submit art for this as well. And I think it would be a great place to put Aftermath Nodes with pictures!

"The Aftermath" could be a section on its own. Good idea.

Lometa says: What an outstanding idea! I have long awaited someone to come along with the know how to do this. In the past several have suggested a quarterly magazine. My idea was that they would be sold at airports because travelers pick up and leave reading mediums all around the world.

/me blushes

antikythera says: this is an awesome, awesome idea. how much is postage from new zealand to the US, again?

2 or 3 US Dollars, I think

IWhoSawTheFace says: Ausgezeichnet! Go for it, man. You are the king of all E2 media.

Na. Just an idiot with two much time on its hands.

BookReader says: Cool deal. I will be watching this with great interest.

etouffee says Great idea-- I would have my agent call you but I do not have one--good luck - and put me down for an issue.

Well, you'll probably be IN one as well.

bol says: Can I maybe be the first person to say: I've always thought the idea of an E2 magazine was a bad one, for several reasons. Still, if you do go ahead with it, I wish you the goddamn best of luck, and feel free to reproduce anything of mine at your leisure. At worst: the mag seems like an opportunity for people to lose extravagent amounts of money. One of my friends out here is a reasonably successful newspaper publisher who has lost eur160,000 in the last 12 months. At best, I think it's just vanity publishing.

This is not supposed to be a commercial enterprise. The initial printrun will be tiny, and yes, you are absolutely right, there is a large degree of 'look, we can produce an intellectual magazine' pride (and vanity).


wordnerd says:I'd like to recommend you use LaTeX for the typesetting, and if you need someone to do that for you, I love using LaTeX. I also like typing LaTeX. And wearing latex. And more I think about it, I think this might be counter to the purpose of E2. Remember Link and link? Not to mention the transitory life of writeups here. What do we do when someone needs a w/u pulled from the site? It goes away. In this, it lives on. I'm not sure it's a good fit. Also, what about the copyrights owned by the author? Is that being covered in this?

It is my honest opinion that the content of E2 is extremely precious and an amazing collection of texts that are wasted by just sitting in a small, not much visited corner of the net. I think that a lot of the content on here would make the transition easily to a non-linked medium, like paper. It has worked very well for the podcast. You are right in saying that link and link is an important principle (and revolutionary at the time of conception) but there are nodes without pipelinks, which would transfer easily. Regarding copyright: of course we can't print texts without the consent of the author(s). ...and re LaTex: thank you, but I am no masochist. So it will be Scribus for the typesetting and T-shirts for the day to day couture at work.

kohlcass says: ^^^^^^Oh mein gott! Ich kann kunst machen für Sie^^^^^^


squeezie says: What a fab idea - I can't wait to get my grubby mitts on a copy of issue 0. You've answered all the questions I've thought of so far in the Q&A at the bottom, so good luck, and don't forget to shout for help if you need it!

Thanks for the good luck wishes. I sorely need it.

Gorgonzola says: Definitely worth a shot. You could call it something simple and straightforward like Everything 2, or maybe Origami Nodes (since it's on folded paper), or since you want something tactile, (gasp) TOUCH THE PUPPY! Perhaps each issue could use a famous E2 meme for its "episode" subtitle.

Mmh. Like the Nathan, this is unacceptable issue?

GrouchyOldMan says: Grand experiment, count me in! You can use any of my stuff with copyright granted. Most of my wus have associated photos. Where should we send $$

No money yet. We'll see how much the first print run cost me, and then I'll see how much we should (if) charge).

Apollyon says I am an artist, i am busy at the moment but if you tell me which nodes are being re-produced (and a deadline!) i might be inspired to produce something! best of luck, with it all!

I hope to have a 'how to contribute to E2 magazine' up in the next 3 days.

SharQ : Brilliant idea, best of luck, I'd suggest using LULU and doing on-demand printing? Other than that, I'm mad busy with stuff at the mo, but I'd love to have helped Good luck!

I'll compare the price with my local printer. But Lulu did cross my mind. I'll nevertheless count on pics from your esteemed self.

drownzsurf says: Yo, you can use my art from GrayPanthers to do one on usergroups, if you'd like. I like this idea, mucho.

I'll be delighted to, ta!

ReiToei says: Will we be able to submit photos to E2SCENCE?




A review of Issue 0 of E2SENCE: The Magazine of E2, written at the request of Heisenberg

(Disclaimer: A writeup by this reviewer appeared in this issue of E2SENCE.)

E2SENCE, as you can read above, is a small magazine put together and published by Heisenberg for the purpose of spotlighting and promoting the website.

Physically, the magazine is attractive but thin -- just over a dozen pages. It's all printed in black, white, and gray. Artwork consists of several photographs and a simple piece of abstract penwork -- all are very nice, but none appear to illustrate any of the writeups.

I'm not a good judge of graphic design -- my own artistic skills are limited to amateur cartooning. But one graphic element that I particularly enjoyed was the background of many pages. Filling up the backgrounds of many of the pages are the actual softlinks associated with the writeups -- they are printed in very light gray text and do not interfere with the readability of the article text. It was fun to try to pick out the hidden node titles in the background.

Like it or not, a project like this will always be perceived by the general public as a literary magazine -- a collection of well-written poetry and essays on a wide selection of subjects is considered the exclusive domain of the literary magazine.

In that sense, E2SENCE would surely be the most shockingly daft literary magazine in existence. Sure, the magazine lures readers in with typically literary fare, including poetry and reflective essays, but literary types are likely to violently plotz when they run into Professor Pi's winking factual examination of the Infinite monkeys theorem or the pure in-joke of This is a node that was solely created to fill the PQ criteria. Klaproth Ahoy! by kthejoker, much less the divine lunacy of fondue's Monkey, monkey, monkey, monkey, William Shatner. Honestly, I consider these additions to be a good thing -- literary magazines are usually dry as dust, and a nice dose of anarchy is good for everyone.

Of course, it's not all iconoclastic fun -- etouffee's You, born of the water, could you ever live far from the sea, Lovejoyman's January 22, 2004, and doyle's How do you know the fishes are enjoying themselves? all help remind readers that E2 has a high concentration of genuinely beautiful writing.

However, the project is far from perfect. The most notable sour note in the magazine is the absence of the entire second half of Scout Finch's God slipped away quietly, during third period physics class. While the casual reader might not notice, the omission is simply shocking for readers familiar with E2 and the heartbreaking power of Finch's complete writeup.

Seeing E2 writeups in a printed magazine is a good way to point up the differences between online and printed media. On the one hand, you can take E2SENCE on the bus with you, to the beach, to the bathroom, which is a great deal tougher with the computer. You can drop off a copy of the magazine in your local library or coffee shop to try to spread the Everything2 gospel. You can show it to your friends and say, "See, I am too a writer." It's on paper, it's print, it's real. But on the other hand, E2 writeups without softlinks do seem to lose something in the translation to traditional printed media. And of course, pipelinks are lost forever in print. Browsing is limited to turning the page, instead of clicking on a dozen different links.

That isn't to say it's bad, because it isn't. It is, for the most part, very good. But reading it in a magazine is a very different experience than reading it on the 'Net.

Will E2SENCE attract readers and/or writers? In the current format, probably not. There aren't enough copies to ensure anything beyond token distribution. But of course, this first issue isn't really intended to convert the world to Everything2ism. It's simultaneously a test of Heisenberg's ability to produce an E2 magazine -- and I'd grade it a solid "B," woulda been higher except for the big mistake on Scout Finch's writeup -- and a gift to E2's current members.

In almost every respect, a success. I look forward to seeing more.

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