My natural talent for telling people where to go was honed many years before Jim Hinckley’s America was officially launched. The origins for the multi faceted road trip inspiring that is Jim Hinckley’s America can be traced to the first article published in Hemmings Special Interest Autos. That was back in 1990. It was written on a 1940s Underwood typewriter, the photos were taken on film, and the entire manuscript was sent snail mail.
The story sold itself. It was entitled Myloe’s Marvelous Mechanical Menagerie. It was about a colorful eccentric that lived in the midst of a vast wrecking yard in Huachuca City, Arizona near the Mexican border. The yard had opened about the time Model A Fords were firt rolling from Ford Motor Company factories. Myloe had purchased it after WWII, and officially closed it in about 1970.
The remnants of a very rare Hamlin was just one of the hundreds of relics hidden in the brush and amidst the junk. Aside from Terraplane pick up trucks, Pierce Arrow carcasses, early Ford Thunderbirds, and a sea of Studebaker trucks surrounded by woodie wagons being used for storage, there were old busses and barns filled with new old stock parts dating to the late teens.
Well, needless to say, the world has changed a great deal over the course of the past thrity years. And even though the quip about the Jim Hinckley’s America team being modern Amish has become a running joke, we have worked to embrace technological advancements to ensure our road trip inspiration reaches the largest audience possible.
With the primary facebook account being locked since mid February, and our inability to resolve the problem, an effort has been made to compensate. And there has also been an effort to seek the silver lining and develop over venues.
The popular Sunday morning program Coffee With Jim has transitioned to an audio podcast on Podbean. The advantage is that it is a more interactive program when broadcast live, and the episode can be archived for future listeners. The bad news is that it lacks the visual content the audience has come to expect. So, we are working on development of a monthly edition on the Eventbrite platform. This will allow for video interaction but we will have to charge for the program.
We have also launched Wake Up With Jim as thrice weekly audio podcast. It is also intereactive but is a fifteen minute format rather than half hour. And the content is more focused. Initially it has been broadcast on Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning. But so more time can be devoted to development of content this is shifting to a weekly format, Wednesday morning at 6:30 MST.
A complete revamping of the Jim Hinckley’s America website is underway. In addition to program schedule and information sections are being added with links to other published work.
Cooperative partnerships with event organizers are also being developed. Some of these include speaking engagements. Counted among the most exciting are the National Road Trip Day festivities in Kingman, Arizona and the Miles of Possibility Conference in Pontiac, Illinois.
Attention is also being given to the YouTube channel. Podcast programs now post automatically. A series of video programs from the road and from various adventures is under development. And we are in negotiation with several interested producers with the plan being the creation of a regular series.
And, of course, we have two new books out this year. The first was released in January, the second is due for rlease in August. That means there will be an array of interviews, media events, and of course, speaking engagements.
Lots of exciting things happening in Jim Hinckley’s America!