Agile Publishing Model.

Futurist David Houle

Welcome to the future!  The future of humanity and the future of publishing.

I am very excited about my new book Entering the Shift Age and the new model of publishing Sourcebooks has created, the Agile Publishing Model (APM). The APM is an innovative platform that allows authors to make their content available faster and in a more flexible format. For example, to suit your needs and interests as readers, Sourcebooks offers a variety of ways to purchase the content of Entering the Shift Age, either in individual parts (“mini eBooks”) or as a whole. (Check out “How to Purchase: The Agile Way”.) You can learn more about the APM by watching the video below.

This is part of the future of publishing. Now let’s turn toward our own future, the future of humanity.

We now live in the Shift Age, a time of transformation that will be regarded by future historians as one of the most significant periods in human history. The Shift Age is one of those inflection points or times when much of humanity will change how we live, how we think, how we interact with each other and what we do.


Helping to Shape the Thinking

In early 2006, I started my blog Evolutionshift, with the tag line “A Future Look at Today.” In the first two to three years I wrote a lot about energy, alternative energy, climate change, and other environmental issues. I became known as a “thought shaper” regarding such topics, which led to invitations to attend conferences and to speak. A few years later, when blogs had truly gone mainstream, I started to get lots of in-bound solicitations to write about this new “green” product orthat new LEED certified building, to review a new book on some environmental subject, or perhaps to interview some scientist or environmental entrepreneur. In other words, I had gotten on the larger PR radar as someone with an audience who should be pitched stories and interviews.

“A thought shaper is a person who creates, shapes and drives the
perspectives and discussions surrounding various ideas and thoughts.”

In 2011, all of this simply became too much. Though Earth Day was in late April, I started to get pitched story ideas for columns around Earth Day starting in early March. By early April there were half a dozen in-bound solicitations every day. All of these folks seemed to think that their product was a great green product and that Earth Day was a great marketing hook or tent pole. Earth Day was perceived as a marketing event. This prompted a strong reaction in me.

In my Earth Day column that year, I spoke of my disgust with this view and said that Earth Day was not a marketing event, that it was no longer an Earth Day, an Earth Month, or even an Earth Year. While Earth Decade was somewhat more palatable, I basically said that we all had to think differently and that what we really needed to do was to think of the 21st Century as the Earth Century, thereby coining a phrase I have used ever since. In that column I wrote:

“The 21st Century will be the Earth Century. It will be during this century that humanity faces the reality of whether it wants to destroy itself and much of what exists on this magnificent planet or not. Assuming we make essential course corrections, future historians will write about the Earth Century as a turning point in human history.
So folks, stop getting excited about Earth Day. Retire that thinking and refocus on the next 90 years of the Earth Century.”

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