Engine of More: 4 book ideas
So I know my book is about Hackerspaces, but am not 100% sure what about them, my book is about exactly. I list below 4 book ideas… any one of these could be a whole work of years to do properly or could take a weekend if I wanted something “done”. I suspect that I need to choose one of these rather than the mixed up all of these in one book, that I’ve been playing with in my mind and in my writings.
In the service of trying to work that out, here are a number of approaches I’ve considered:
Hackspace Foundation Handbook: the book would be, more or less, a list of Hackerspaces as reported to the UK Hackspace Foundation https://www.hackspace.org.uk/ as per the map seen here. Some extra rigour might be taken to indicate their size, when and how they are open, key tools and events as well as significant projects they engage in. The book might include a couple of useful look up tables and info-graphics as well as some ideas on how to start a space or some tips and tricks on how to run a space taken from “Rules of Thumb” and other ideas I’ve had. It would be unofficial rather than an endorsed product of UKHF. It would be strongly influenced by books like “Bradshaw’s Guide”.
The Wabi-Sabi Workshop Handbook: would be a made up workshop/members handbook for a utopian imagined workshop (i.e. one that exists only in my mind) I’ve been toying with the idea of opening a new type of Hackerspace for a while and have labeled that project the Wabi-Sabi Workshop because I like the ideals of the Wabi-Sabi aesthetic and its implications for a makerspace culture. It would be heavily influenced by works like Tom Sach’s 10 Bullets and would form a utopian trope like “Utopia” by More or “A Modern Utopia” by Wells where an ideal is described without having to actually prove it works.
How to start a Hackerspace: this book would be a companion for those looking to found or start a space. It would concentrate on the organisational, financial and marketing aspects of starting a Hackerspace rather than choosing tools and other geekery covered well elsewhere. It would seek to focus on the tools needed to cope with the emotional labour or founding and running a Hackerspace and would be something like a self-help book, with a style influenced by books like “Tribes, we need you to lead us” by Godin or “the life changing magic of tidying” Kondo and “The war of art” by Pressfield.
The Maker Monk*: more of a personal journey to seek a utopian, recognisedly unobtainable ideal as a maker and as a person through a series of personal challenges and approaches to thinking. Whilst aiming to be accepting and not judgey, it’d also promote the idea of challenging ones self out of comfort zones and taking joy from the achievement of climbing your own personal Everest. Coping mechanisms, rules of thumb and outlooks on life. This is the hardest one to write because I can’t think of a good title hence the *, I’m uncomfortable with the connotations of monk, with the idea of seeking excellence and with the idea that I of all people could suggest any of it. This sort of work would be heavily influenced by Stoic philosophy and the idea of trying to achieve the unachievable Stoic ideal. It would borrow heavily from Zen and Epicurean philosophy and other modern approaches to living a good and content life whilst remaining a life-long student and a collector of skills. * I don’t like the word monk it implies male and religious.
I really don’t know which and I’m seemingly jumping between the one and the other. If somehow you are reading this, I’d very much welcome some feedback or suggestions.