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When will the owls cease to be Watchers?


Owls have been known to perch among the branches—and have been accused of watching the world go by. While Truth has it that owls have been long sought out as birds of wisdom, so too does it tell that owls are tremendous observers.

And that the watchers of society need to heed the wisdom inherent in owls. For, although it is granted that owls do indeed see everything, they tend to be pictured as aloof—above the fray. And yet, in a turmoil-boiled world, comfort can be derived from the fact that owls are designated to observe, comment, and inspire.

Maybe, it’s not the owls’ aloofness that bothers watchers. But rather the owls’ ability to transform a moment of silence to a flutter of activity within a once tranquil sea of conformity.

Or maybe, it is the unknown quality behind those pictures of owls that seem to frighten people.

There seems to be a power gathering beneath the owls’ surface which will eventually be released—when the owls cease to be Watchers.

We are all Entrepreneurs

Whether you are a stay-at-home parent or a business executive, we are all running a small business, which is called our life.

Oprah Winfrey to be Keynote Speaker at U.S. Book Show

Oprah Winfrey will be the opening keynote speaker at the U.S. Book Show, the virtual book publishing trade show presented by Publishers Weekly.

Oprah Winfrey will give the opening keynote speech on May 25, 2021 at 10:45 a.m. EDT. She will discuss her newest book, What Happened to You?: Conversations on Trauma, Resilience and Healing, co-written with Bruce D. Perry, a child psychiatrist and neuroscientist. The book, released by Flatiron on April 27, discusses how people’s earliest personal experiences shape their entire lives. The book offers a new way to understand the way people behave. Winfrey, one of the biggest supporters of all members of the book industry, will also offer comments on her love for books and authors and offer her appreciation and encouragement for all those who support them.

Exit Right: How to Sell Your Startup, Maximize Your Return and Build Your Legacy

Mark Achler and Mert Iseri of MATH Venture Partners celebrating the launch of Exit Right at 2112 Chicago.

I had the privilege to attend the discussion by the authors and was impressed with their sincerity and willingness to do business the right way. And yes, that does not happen often. Mert Inseri had tried to get funding from Mark Achler three times and was turned down all three times. But that led to a relationship between the two men. When Mert approached Mark a fourth time, he was successful. Notice he did not give up. Rather he learned what Mark had to say and incorporated it into his business. Oftentimes, entrepreneurs give up when their ideas are rejected. The only thing that does is assure their failure. Mert did not know his fourth try would work … and fortunately, he did not stop working on improving his business. In fact, he now works for Mark.

And that is all I am going to say. I encourage you to read the book and discover what these men know about life and business.

You can buy the book on Amazon here

Here is the description of the book on Amazon:

Before you sell your company, even the odds.

While a successful entrepreneur may exit a handful of companies in their lifetime, large buyers close deals all the time. Without decades of experience in mergers and acquisitions, founders don’t have the tools they need to get the best results for themselves, their teams, or the new parent company.

Through dozens of interviews with M&A leaders at the biggest Silicon Valley acquirers—as well as attorneys, bankers, and founders who have been through the trenches—Exit Right delivers the hard-earned lessons that lead to successful exits. From negotiation to valuation to breaking down a term sheet, managing legal costs, and handling emotional turbulence—this unparalleled guide covers every critical aspect of a technology startup sale.

Learn where deals get into trouble, how to create alignment between negotiating parties, and what terms you should care about most. Above all, learn how to win in both the short and the long term, maximizing your price while positioning your company for a legacy you can be proud of.

POST NAB Broadcast and Production Technology Show

Key Code Media brought their POST NAB Broadcast and Production Technology Show to Chicago. NAB is the abbreviation for the National Association of Broadcasters who recently held a live, in-person convention in Las Vegas, which showcased all the latest in the world of broadcasting.

Attendees were invited to get all their tech and budget questions answered at one event! Key Code Media brought the best of the AV, Broadcast, and Post Production tech industry. Over thirty top solutions showcasing technology, including masterclass skill sessions were presented. Key Code Media encouraged people to come for the technology, education, and the chance to mix and mingle with fellow professionals from the Chicago area.

Jeff Sengpiehl hosted two master panels: “The State of Live Production in 2022” and “The State of Post Production in 2022.”

Live Production Panel Left to Right: George Klippel, LiveU; Thomas Fletcher, Fujinon; moderator Jeff Sengpiehl, Key Code Media.
Post Production Panel Left to Right: Tom Faber, Key Code Media; John Connolly, Key Code Media; moderator Jeff Sengpiehl, Key Code Media.

For more information on the show, click here.

Writing and Publishing in Time of War

Andrey Kurkov, the renowned Ukrainian author of Grey Bees and president of PEN Ukraine, gave the opening keynote address at the U.S. Book Show. With a theme of writing and publishing in time of war, Kurkov opened the virtual trade book fair in conversation with Edward Nawotka, Publishers Weekly’s international editor. The opening keynote took place in English.

“Andrey Kurkov’s work has always been visionary and is as relevant now as it has ever been. He offers the world a poignant view of life in Ukraine,” said Nawotka. “His work is darkly humorous in a way that only an observer with Kurkov’s global understanding—and bird’s-eye view—could provide.”

Andrey Kurkov is the author of 19 novels, a dozen of which have been translated into English, nine children’s books and 20 movie and television scripts, Kurkov became known on the world stage with his international bestseller Death and the Penguin, a bleak portrait of post-Soviet Ukraine. The English translation was published in 2001, and since then the book has been translated into 30+ languages. He was elected president of PEN Ukraine in 2018 and on May 13, 2022 delivers PEN America’s annual Arthur Miller Freedom to Write Lecture. He will also participate in its Emergency World Voices Congress as part of the 2022 PEN World Voices Festival (May 11-14)

U.S. Book Show Opens Today

The U.S. Book Show opens today. The virtual trade book show (#USBookShow) runs May 24 – 26, 2022, with its primary mission to promote Fall 2022 books of particular interest to booksellers, librarians, book media, agents and publishing professionals.

“The U.S. Book Show promises to make an even bigger splash in its second year,” said Cevin Bryerman, CEO and publisher of Publishers Weekly. “We will again welcome a diverse slate of authors and even more of the popular Editors’ Picks panels looking forward to the fall.”

Further components have been layered on to the virtual book publishing trade show, now in its second year. New this year, an international pavilion will welcome exhibitors from outside the United States.

Bookseller-focused programming has also been broadened to include tactical discussions geared toward keeping stores healthy and thriving

Editorial programming forms the core of the three-day show, and this emphasis will continue in 2022. In 2021, Oprah Winfrey opened the inaugural show. Subsequent days saw keynotes from Ijeoma Oluo and Senator Elizabeth Warren. Author Spotlights featured Anthony Doerr, Padma Lakshmi, Keanu Reeves, Stevie Van Zandt and Brian Selznick. Attendance in 2021 topped 6,000, among them nearly 1,000 members of the media. The show was covered by the New York Times, Washington Post, Library Journal, Associated Press and others.

Most popular are the genre-focused Editors’ Picks panels, in which Publishers Weekly’s editors, in conjunction with influential book editors, select the Fall titles they believe are most buzzworthy. The editors then convene in conversational panels focused on various genres— among them, fiction, nonfiction, comics and graphic novels and children’s books.

Dedicated library programming will be front and center once again with thought leaders weighing in on topics such as book banning that directly impact libraries and readers. Industry programming will delve into issues of how or if the pandemic has permanently changed book publishing, digital marketing and more.

“In the spirit of Publishers Weekly’s long-held commitment to global commerce and collaboration, the U.S. Book Show has implemented an international pavilion of exhibitors, with a special panel of international publishers discussing the global future of the industry,” added Bryerman, who is overseeing the international outreach.

Chicago Podcast Day

On May 21, 2022, Chicago Podcast Day featured panels and presentations designed to help the Chicago podcast community create and succeed in the booming podcasting space. Curious about how to launch a show? It was covered. How about monetizing your existing podcast? That, too. Topics included editing tips, legal considerations, DIY marketing and creating a branded podcast for business. All levels were welcomed, from the “podcast curious” to the “seasoned veteran.”

The program was presented by James VanOsdol, 2112 Chicago, and the Center for Creative Entrepreneurship.

Jaime Black (Dynasty Podcasts) discusses the process of starting a podcast.
Attorney Ilya Zlatkin (Zlatkin Wong LLP) discusses legal issues with James VanOsdol.
Creating a Branded Podcast with Patrick Brewer and Alex Stewart (Sassy Confetti)


Amy Guth (Crain’s Daily Gist)

Jill Hopkins (Metro/GMan, formerly Vocalo)

Ilya Zlatkin (Zlatkin Wong LLP)

Chris Lanuti (Sox in the Basement)

Lou Carlozo (Qwoted)

Jaime Black (Dynasty Podcasts)

Alex Stewart (Sassy Confetti)

Erik White (Cumulus Media)

Mike Vanderbilt (Halloweenies)

Martin Atkins (Museum of Post Punk and Industrial)

Todd Ganz (If the Walls Could Talk)

Attitude is Everything

Have you ever imagined being the hero of the day? Imagined yourself being one day rich and famous? We all have. Whether it is the flash of us crossing the finishing line first. Or being a movie star with fame and fortune. Or a famous businessperson featured in national magazines. We all have imagined how our lives might be one day when our dreams turn into reality. It is these moments of inspiration that drive Entrepreneurs to their goal.

Courage: Taking the First Step

The power to make your own decisions. The ability to act despite all odds when you know you are right. The ability to stand apart from others when your convictions are more important than your popularity.
The knowing that comes when you are connected to God and are willing to speak the Truth no matter what the consequences.
The ability to act despite the pressure to remain inanimate, passive when you see wrongs that are being committed.
The ability to perceive what needs to be done and the power within to act on that knowledge.
The ability to allow yourself the freedom to think about things and determine what is best…and act on that feeling.
The ability to look within

Master or Slave? The Choice is Yours!

Across the world, there is mounting chaos. With recent ostentatious displays of disharmony, greed, and war, we see a world in turmoil. I wonder what lies ahead for mankind…and this planet we call Earth.

Will technology greet us with a new enlightenment…or will we actually find ourselves further enslaved to our own technology? Will the computer’s drive for us to be more efficient and productive be the vehicle to our freedom…or our enslavement? Enslaved to a mechanism which takes no breaks…a mechanism which does not take the time to share the humanness we all share with one another.

Will we master this new technology…or will it master us? The answer waits in the future. But our actions today will determine the future we bring.

Slavery or Salvation. Masters or Slaves. Freedom or Constriction

Each day we choose our Path. We make decisions which affect our own lives…and the lives of others…with the choices we make.

What will be your choice today? Will you empower yourself…and those with whom you work? Or will you continue to exploit a hierarchical scheme in which empowerment has a much different meaning?

We are the Masters of our Future. Will you be your own master…or have you given your power to another? So they may rule your future. Be aware of the gifts the future brings…and be wary of those bearing gifts. For you may be a pawn in a larger Scheme. You…through your actions…must decide whose Scheme you will participate in.

For there are many houses in My Mansion. It is up to you to decide which room you will occupy. Will it be the servants’ quarters…or will it be as the Master of the House? And, if it is as Master of the House, how will you rule? How will you guide others so they too may advance to become the Master of the House? Or will you use your position to keep them in their place…so you can remain their Master.

And yet, life is so fleeting. It quickly moves on…ever changing…constantly flowing…never waiting…while you decide what type of Master you will be. Choose now…but being ever so careful. For the world is filled with many people who believe they are Masters…only to discover they are really Servants to the Chosen. So choose wisely…but choose.

For the river flows on endlessly…always picking up the drops and carrying them downstream. Never wary…never hesitant…for the river knows it must flow. That it must keep moving…lest it evaporate into thin air. Only to start the cycle again…when it will become a drop again…in the endless flow…of the river we call Life. Don’t stop the river by not choosing the right path.

Rather join the flow…and return to the Source of all that ever was.

Are you willing to stand up for Truth?

So far, the answer appears to be a resounding “No!” for the majority of us.

A friend of mine called me today and asked what she should do. A neighbor had openly told her that her teenage son had tested positive for COVID-19 and was having systems which the doctors had decided did not warrant hospitalization (yet) but that he needed to be quarantined. She took him home and put him in one of the rooms of her house although everyone shared the house as if nothing had happened. Soon, the neighbor’s youngest daughter was experiencing symptoms. However, the mother refused to allow her young daughter to be tested for COVID because she said the cotton swab used for testing was infected with the disease.

Meanwhile, the mother continued to go to the store everyday for her latte and groceries unmasked. Her other daughter continued to work in the local restaurant. The daughter with symptoms continued to go to elementary school, unmasked.

No one in the neighborhood knew that the son had tested positive, that the young daughter was symptomatic, and they were all living in the same house with no masks or precautions. Instead, they continued their lives oblivious to the fact they were spreading the virus throughout the town without anyone’s knowledge.

Until that point, my friend had no idea that the family was against the vaccines, and even though her son tested positive and the young daughter was symptomatic, the neighbor insisted COVID-19 was all a HOAX. A conspiracy. Fake News.

My friend was asking me what she should do. Who should she tell? Should she remain silent? Afterall, the neighbor told her as if it was nothing. There was no issue of personal privacy. The neighbor didn’t say, “Please don’t tell anyone?” Nope, instead, she was quite proud of her inaction and of herself.

I asked my friend what she knew she should do. You know, that feeling you get when you know God is telling you to act, and instead, you want to try and hide, hoping it will pass. She had very deep concerns about the neighbor next door who was 85 and in failing health…and all the other unsuspecting neighbors with health problems.

And then, I asked the question:

How will you feel if your dear neighbor of 85 dies when you could have done something?

So, I ask you, “What would you do?”

Joshua Tree Publishing’s New Book Release by Donal McCarthy

Joshua Tree Publishing’s Donal McCarthy, author of the just released book Dònal Òg Series, with Ruchel Louis Coetzee, author of PULANI: A memoir of a young woman in apartheid South Africa, share their thoughts about being published authors.

Donal McCarthy’s Dònal Òg Series