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Doing, not just talking - a Real World Heinlein project 
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Heinlein Nexus
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Post Doing, not just talking - a Real World Heinlein project
Just planting a seed, starting a thread here, on what, if anything, folk would like to do in Heinlein's name aside from our engaging chatter here. That encompasses the universe of things aside from typing messages on this forum. A small universe for some, a large one for others.

The last time someone wondered about this 750 people ended up meeting in Kansas City and having a rather good time.

But I'm not talking convention here - although if that shows up, well, fine. No limits; just to put out a few wild ideas: Support a Heinlein reading program; attach Heinlein's name to something popular like a stamp or large like a battleship; arrange a f2f get-together; podcast readings of Heinlein stories (copyright issue?); sponsor a writing contest (hmmm...); build a Heinlein theme park in Second Life; buy Heinlein books in bulk and leave them in public places with "gift from an anonymous philanthropist" notes; you get the picture, anything goes. Brainstorm, people, brainstorm.


Thu May 01, 2008 6:52 pm
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Post Re: Doing, not just talking - a Real World Heinlein project
Your suggestion of an online nexus to continue such a virtual "event" is a good part of the reason I brought this forum back on line. I'd love to see such things happening in the continuum, even if most involve no more than a handful of people. As a wise man once said while trying to sell people useless products, Just Do It.

(The formulation used during the event organizing was JEDI - Just Effin' Do It.)

Just don't book anything on the weekend of March 18-21, 2021. I leave the reasoning as an exercise to the savvy reader.

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In the end, I found Heinlein is finite. Thus, finite analysis is needed.


Thu May 01, 2008 8:07 pm
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Post Re: Doing, not just talking - a Real World Heinlein project
Last week I asked somewhere on this forum if anyone would be interested in a T-shirt that referenced Heinlein, intended to be worn when donating blood, with a design perhaps based on the pin doners received at the Centennial and a quote on the back. The idea would be to spread awareness that he was -- dare I say? -- not 'just a writer' but -- this might be worse -- an activist, and -- here we go again -- not 'just for science', but for people, too.
The sales proceeds might not amount to much but they could be rolled into one of the other projects you mentioned.

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Fri May 02, 2008 4:55 am
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Post Re: Doing, not just talking - a Real World Heinlein project
Here's something else: those 3D images I asked about elsewhere are not available as posters. Would there be a market for that? Would there be copyright issues? Would it be possible to put quotes from Heinlein's writing across the bottom of the poster? I would love to see him connected to more than his written work in the public's mind. Connected to the finer of the potential futures.

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Fri May 02, 2008 4:58 am
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Post Re: Doing, not just talking - a Real World Heinlein project
There's a movement afoot to try to save the largest of the three 1930s-era dirigible hangars at Moffett Field in the San Francisco Bay Area: http://www.savehangarone.org/. Moffett was a Navy airfield back in the day (appropriate for a Heinlein connection), dates back to when Heinlein was in Annapolis and on active duty, and, unfortunately, is severely polluted by fuels and solvents and the like. Those of us who are involved want to clean up the pollution and turn the hangar into a major new air & space museum: http://sunnyvale.ca.gov/reports/1997-09/97-380.htm. The Navy would rather just demolish the building and, no doubt, sell it to developers to build high-volume housing on the site, as they did at Treasure Island. If I win the lottery, the bulk of the money will go to this project. However, the likelihood of that is, how you say?, minimal. I would love to see the Heinlein community rise to the challenge and put his name on the museum.

Image

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Fri May 02, 2008 7:13 am
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Post Re: Doing, not just talking - a Real World Heinlein project
There is a Heinlein project that needs doing one way or another, and that is to put together a complete collection of the publications available for reference. There is no such thing currently in existence. The most complete collection, at the UCSC Archive, in the first place has only spotty holdings of magazine publications, as Heinlein sent out his copies to agents and so forth; in the second place is it is non-call storage for the next three or four years, and in the third place I wouldn't put anything useful or valuable into the current archivist's hands.

There is no complete Heinlein collection anywhere on earth. I think there should be such a thing, and I think the holdings should be put into PDF form and made available for online research at a modest charge.

I was at the USNA a couple of weeks ago and was told the USNA's Nimitz Library has essentially no Heinlein holdings at all. It seems to me the Nimitz could be approached for a special collection -- though they might not be sympathetic to the online aspect of such a thing. I believe the Prize Trust could be induced to support such a project in one way or several ways or another.

(As to scans of the old pulps -- for some of them Heinlein had literal tear-sheets in his files, that is pages torn out of the magazines, for which scans were routinely made as part of the online Archive rampup, so that part of the job is already available.)


Fri May 02, 2008 8:05 am
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Post Re: Doing, not just talking - a Real World Heinlein project
James Gifford wrote:
Your suggestion of an online nexus to continue such a virtual "event" is a good part of the reason I brought this forum back on line.


Yes, and most grateful I am, too.

I am thinking of the last idea I tossed off the top of my head above, about leaving Heinlein books strategically and anonymously donated. That could spread virally to quite good effect and publicity if we angle it right and put a good message in each book. Not much cost, particularly if we can get a publisher to give us wholesale rates on a case or two; the benefit to them should be apparent.

Anyone got any thoughts on this venture, such as where to leave the books for maximum effect? Or the content of the message, or which book(s) to leave?


Sun May 04, 2008 9:35 am
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Post Re: Doing, not just talking - a Real World Heinlein project
To answer freesharon's question:
Quote:
Here's something else: those 3D images I asked about elsewhere are not available as posters. Would there be a market for that? Would there be copyright issues? Would it be possible to put quotes from Heinlein's writing across the bottom of the poster? I would love to see him connected to more than his written work in the public's mind. Connected to the finer of the potential futures.

Images produced by NASA are, by policy, copyright-free, that is, "in the public domain."

So if you want to print up a bunch of posters using NASA images of the Moon or Mars or whatever, and run a Heinlein quote across them, you don't have to ask NASA for permission.

You might still need to ask Heinlein's agent for permission, of course.

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Sun May 04, 2008 10:12 pm
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Post Re: Doing, not just talking - a Real World Heinlein project
Peter Scott wrote:
I am thinking of the last idea I tossed off the top of my head above, about leaving Heinlein books strategically and anonymously donated. That could spread virally to quite good effect and publicity if we angle it right and put a good message in each book. Not much cost, particularly if we can get a publisher to give us wholesale rates on a case or two; the benefit to them should be apparent.
Anyone got any thoughts on this venture, such as where to leave the books for maximum effect? Or the content of the message, or which book(s) to leave?

I already do that, but I buy Heinlein's at used book stores, Goodwills, etc., and leave them in coffeeshops, waiting rooms, employee break rooms, and such. I also give them to folks who know and enjoyed just one title.
FYI: A couple of years ago I decided to give myself a complete collection in hardback for my birthday, as my oft-read paperbacks were falling apart. I had some titles, of course, but I got all the rest but one for just under $75 from the used book sellers at Amazon's site.

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Mon May 05, 2008 7:50 am
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Post Re: Doing, not just talking - a Real World Heinlein project
The Society of Indolent Gentlefolk had (at least, until the organizer quit, around '02) a project to "get Heinlein into the libraries." Back when I cared what SIG did, I pointed out that the libraries had for years been ridding themselves of copies of Heinlein works, as no one checked them out. Putting new copies in was likely to be resisted - it's shelf space that's often at a premium, not the availability of books - and be no more likely to garner readers than the discarded copies were. Nobody listen to Zathras, but I don't recall the project ever getting off the ground. (Go figure.)

It's likely that a viral campaign, leaving copies in strategic places, has more effect, but I'd still wonder how much. When faced with a pile of books in a break room etc., people tend to pick the known, familiar and well-hyped - e.g., yet another superhero lawyer novel from Grisham Patterson, Scottolini Patterson, or one of the other Pattersons. (Not Bill.)

The Centennial was supposed to be the anchor of a much broader campaign to popularize Heinlein, and it never quite had the gravitational pull to do that. I'd be interested in discussion of a more diffused, viral, time- and cost-effective effort to raise public consciousness of RAH.

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In the end, I found Heinlein is finite. Thus, finite analysis is needed.


Mon May 05, 2008 8:02 am
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