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Startups

Guy Kawasaki Joins Writer.ly Startup in Seattle

Former chief evangelist of Apple Guy Kawasaki has joined Writer.ly a Seattle startup and online marketplace for writers. He will serve as a new board advisor to the firm, which lets writers create profiles and search for biddable job requests for projects writing, copy editing, book designing, book marketing and so forth.

To celebrate, Writer.ly is offering Kawasaki’s latest book, APE: Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur – How to Publish Your Book as a free download to all new users who sign up by today.

Kawasaki will be one of the speakers at Mediabistro’s new online course to help independent authors publish on a budget, a class taught by indie publishing pros and writers who have topped our Self-Published Bestsellers List.

Mediabistro Course

Memoir Writing

Memoir WritingStarting January 7, work with a published memoir writer to tell and sell the story of your life! In this course, Wendy Dale will teach you how to create your story around a marketable premise, hone your narrative voice, write a memoir with a solid structure, and sell your memoir before you've even finished writing it. Register now!

Elevator Pitch: Storyville Wants to Do for Short Stories What iTunes Did for Music

In the latest episode of mediabistroTV’s “Elevator Pitch,” host Alan Meckler meets with Storyville co-founder Paul Vidich. Storyville is a mobile app for short stories that connects readers and authors. A former music executive, Vidich helped Steve Jobs bring music singles to iTunes. He hopes Storyville will do for the short story what iTunes did for the single.

For more videos, check out our YouTube channel and follow us on Twitter: @mediabistroTV

Also, find out who’s hiring on the Mediabistro job board.

Kickstarter-Style Project Helps Students Pay for College

Want to support students in your community? Explore ScholarMatch, a venture that helps donors contribute to the college tuition of promising young students.

Here’s more about the site: “ScholarMatch is a website and service whereby potential donors can learn more about scholars who need assistance paying their college tuition–and by learning more about these extraordinary students, our hope is that potential donors will be more likely to support the educational goals of the scholars in their communities.”

The video embedded above features two ScholarMatch supporters: The Office actor John Krasinski and college freshmen Bianca Catalan. The site was founded by Dave Eggersnonprofit organization 826 Valencia. McSweeney’s tweeted this description: “ScholarMatch is like Kickstarter, but for students hoping to attend college.”

A Storied Startup

There’s no better vocabulary-building exercise than reading, and entrepreneurs Gennady Pritsker and Ilya Lyashevsky have found a way to unite fiction with technology to help students ace the SAT’s and writers use their words.

Storied is an educational and literary application created in New York by Pritsker and Lyashevsky’s company,  Good to Know.  mbStartups recently caught up with the founders to find out how the app  works and how the company is using Kickstarter to take the project to the next level, as well as what’s in it for short fiction writers.

Pritsker and Lyashevsky have taken the 750 words most commonly used in the vocabulary portion of the SAT’s and put them into several short stories that use the words in context. Each story is followed by a quiz that lets the readers know which words they need to see again before the big test.  The words appear in several stories throughout the application to present the material more than once without resorting to flash cards.

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What was Rainforest Café Owner Steven Schussler’s Secret to Raising Capital? Insanity.

If you want to raise capital for your business, telling an investor that your new venture is weird, expensive to build, and that you’re not sure the health department will go for it is not the best approach.  And yet that’s exactly how Steven Schussler, CEO of Schussler Creative, Inc. managed to raise funds for the Rainforest Café, a jungle-themed restaurant chain with 45 locations all over the world.

Schussler appeared at last week’s Perfect Business Summit in Las Vegas to promote his new book, It’s A Jungle In There: Inspiring Lessons, Hard-Won Insights, and Other Acts of Entrepreneurial Daring.  In an interview with DocStock founder Jason Azar, Steven Schussler revealed that his biggest step in building his dream was to build a relationship with his investor Lyle Burman, albeit a dysfunctional one.

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