Taxi cab violence on the streets of New York (courtesy MyInwood)
The title for this mornings post should garner a bit of eyebrow raising attention, I hope.
These are truly interesting times. Months after submitting a completed manuscript for publication, and a rather grueling time consuming search for historic photographs, I was informed this morning that the project was being suspended. The primary culprit is the astounding cost associated with historic image acquisition.
This has been on ongoing issue for quite some time but when coupled with the transitions associated with technological developments, it has driven traditional publishers to the wall.
I thought that the modern digital age would make available an unprecedented number of historic images. However, many newspapers, libraries, historic societies, and similar organizations now consider archives cash cows. As an example, with this book on the violent evolution of the American taxi, the publisher and I have been confronted with usage fees ranging from $100 to $500, a cost that is not feasible.
It appears as though I have been given a challenge to find a silver lining in what has been a rather challenging week. So, I choose to see this as another opportunity to explore the world of self publishing. Of course this means that first I will need to assume the duties usually passed off to layout departments and editors.
Before commencing with this, I need to finalize the self published guide to the Kingman area and the pending rewrite for a revised edition of Backroads of Arizona. This should keep me busy for awhile.
In my spare time there is a need for generating revenue to continue the ongoing habit of eating on a regular basis. Such is the life of the independent writer.
Meanwhile, in Kingman, things continue to develop at a rather amazing clip. Dunton Motors Dream Machines that is in the process of being transformed into a classic vehicle sales facility as well as eclectic museum added a rather famous drag racer to their collection.
Purportedly named after a hooker in Searchlight, Nevada (no Harry Reid jokes, please), Searchlight Sally is a hot rod in the classic style. In addition to being displayed at the Dunton Motors facility, it is scheduled to make a rather noisy appearance at Chillin’ on Beale this coming Saturday evening.
To have an office at this facility should be rather interesting for me as well as for visitors. Having a front row seat to all the interesting vehicles and people that pass through Kingman on Route 66, and to be surrounded by an ever changing exhibit of American automotive history should ensure everyday is a new adventure.
Across the street at the Powerhouse Visitor Center, the Historic Electric Vehicle Foundation continues to add to the collection at the Route 66 Electric Vehicle Museum, the first of its kind. The most recent addition is Buckeye Bullet 2, an incredible racer that ran over three-hundred miles per hour on the Bonneville salt flats.
The Buckeye Bullet 2
Coming soon is an electric drag racer, Gone Postal. This vehicle also set a few records several years ago.
Plans haven’t progressed much behind general discussion as of yet but it looks as though an electric vehicle weekend will be linked with the traditional display of hot rods and classics at Chilln’ on Beale this coming October. Details will be provided as they become available.
I have get to work but to close this out, here is the latest press release from the Route 66: The Road Ahead Initiative.
The Road Ahead Looks Promising!
Route 66: The Road Ahead – Collaboration Workshops Completed
Over 300 people took part in the Route 66: The Road Ahead – Collaboration Workshops that concluded Wednesday, July 29th. Designed as a way for the Route 66: The Road Ahead Initiative Steering Committee to gather feedback on a set of recommendations for the development of a national framework for collaboration amongst Rt. 66 stakeholders, the meetings were attended by members of Route 66 associations, tourism officials, economic development professionals, business persons, preservationists, educators, government officials, and others interested in reviving and renewing Historic Route 66. The Collaboration Workshops began on July 21st in Springfield, Illinois, and included meetings in Springfield, Missouri; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; Amarillo, Texas; Albuquerque, New Mexico; Flagstaff, Arizona; and San Bernardino, California.
The purpose of the Collaboration Workshops was to gather feedback regarding a proposed new national framework for collaboration amongst Route 66 stakeholders. Workshop attendees participated in a series of small group discussions, during which they considered a suggested mission statement, a set of strategic outcomes/goals, and a draft structure for a new organization that would function as a national framework for collaboration. Participants also considered the idea of seeking Federal designation of Route 66 as a National Historic Trail.
The 2.5-3 hour Collaboration Workshop meetings were lively affairs, with participants actively engaged in discussing the ideas proposed by the Steering Committee. Mr. Bill Thomas, Chairman of the Steering Committee, facilitated the meetings, which began with Mr. Aaron Mahr, Superintendent of the National Park Service (NPS) National Trails Intermountain Region, and Ms. Kaisa Barthuli, Program Manager, NPS Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program, providing background information on the role of NPS in its partnership with the Steering Committee, as well as a brief overview of how and why the Steering Committee was established. Mr. John Conoboy, retired management specialist in National Trails, was on hand to present background information and help facilitate the discussion regarding the proposed National Historic Trail designation for Route 66. Those in attendance were asked for direct input regarding all the ideas proposed by the Steering Committee, with written comments, questions, and recommendations collected from them at the conclusion of each meeting.
With the completion of the Collaboration Workshops, the Route 66: The Road Ahead Initiative Steering Committee will now:
·Review and synthesize participant feedback into a report
·Distribute the report to Steering Committee
·Develop next steps based on the report findings
·Report out to stakeholders on next steps
·Implement the identified next steps
The report to the Steering Committee will be completed by or before September 30, 2015. A report and next steps will then be distributed to stakeholders and the general public by or before November 20, 2015.
Copies of the proposed mission statement, set of strategic outcomes/goals, draft organizational structure, and information pertinent to the possible designation of Route 66 as a National Historic Trail can be reviewed at the Route 66: The Road Ahead Initiative informational website at: https://sites.google.com/site/66roadahead, along with a complete listing of Steering Committee members and other background information.
The Route 66: The Road Ahead Initiative is a response to recommendations from the Route 66 Economic Impact Study (2012) and the Route 66: The Road Ahead Strategic Roundtable (2013), organized by the World Monuments Fund and NPS with funding support from American Express. The initiative is focused on an inclusive, representative approach to developing a national framework for collaboration designed to leverage new opportunities and innovative partnerships in heritage tourism and historic preservation along the Mother Road.