Goal: To write an accessible feature-style history of how and why historic Antioch College closed in 2008.
Why: As an engaged alumnus of Antioch College, I am regularly asked by both fellow graduates and other curious people how a college with so much history could have closed. The lack of a straightforward, short, accessible, and accurate history has been a huge issue. This has allowed simplistic, seductive myths about how the college was “too liberal” or “not run like a business.”
This more accurate history would focus on the mismanagement that led to the closure, specifically, poor decision-making at the administrative and board level of Antioch College’s corporate owners, Antioch University. Although not as sexy as blaming out-of-control student culture, the story is still a rich one, filled with good intentions gone awry, secrets, and backstabbing. It’s also a mirror of many of the issues facing higher education specifically, and American politics generally, in the 21st century. And it’s a marvelous lesson in how not to run an institution.
Form: The feature will ideally be around 2500-3500 words, and no more than 5000. I will ensure that it will be freely accessible, with its own website, and will distribute it via Creative Commons.* Experts on Antioch’s history will also be consulted in order to ensure maximum factual accuracy.
About The Author: I am a graduate of Antioch College (2005) and a freelance writer. During the campaign to prevent the college’s closure, I was active in communications work, specifically attempting to explain what was happening and why. As a student, I was a history major and edited and wrote for The Record, the campus paper.
As a freelance writer, I write most regularly for The A.V. Club, and have also been published in Salon, ThinkProgress, Paste Magazine, The Escapist, Joystiq, Kotaku, and more.
Why Kickstarter? Crowdsourced funding bypasses potentially resistant traditional publishing models, ensuring that the funders and author will be able to publish this important history—while also providing adequate (10-20 cents per word, plus costs) compensation for freelance writing.
Estimated Delivery Date: September, 2012.
What If It Goes Over? In the happy event that sourcing goes over the $600 goal, I will use that money to arrange wider, more varied distribution (such as printing booklets).
- Over $1000, I will attempt to produce a documentary for distribution online, via YouTube and other venues.
- Over $1600, I will instead complete a history of The Rise Of Antioch College, documenting the various alumni and community attempts to prevent the college’s closure, then re-open the school.
- Over $2000, I will examine the distribution and documentary options for the pair of articles.
- Over $2500, which seems utterly ridiculous, I will probably look to re-invest the extra money in other Antioch-related projects.
*I may attempt to have the piece published at well-known websites in order to ensure wider distribution, with three rules: 1) Any payment I receive from the website will be considered part of the Kickstarter money, to be used as stated above. 2) The piece will remain freely accessible at whatever site it is hosted. 3) The rights will revert to me, after a short time (3-6 months ideally, no more than a year) for release under Creative Commons as well distribution via ebook, etc.
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
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Your name in the acknowledgments page of the article’s website.Estimated delivery:
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$25 – Acknowledgment, plus early access to a professionally laid out PDF ebook of the article. (note: depending on rights and publication, ebook availability date may vary)Estimated delivery:
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Acknowledgment, ebook, and a “Vitruvian Heart” pin from the campaign to save the college shipped to you.Estimated delivery:
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Acknowledgment, ebook, and one of the few available print copies of the “Antioch Is My Home” journal from the campaign to save the college, signed by myself and its editor.Estimated delivery:
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